Keyshot 8 Released


Earlier this week, Luxion released its latest version of their flagship product, Keyshot 8. (Try out a demo or buy the latest here.)

I had the pleasure of being invited to participate in Alpha & Beta testing of the software to help discover bugs and issues as well as test out some of the new powerful features they’ve added including but not limited to;

  • Image Styles with Photographic Mode for Tone Mapping

  • Frontplate & Background image options

  • Bloom Threshold

  • Cutaway Shader w/ Material Caps

  • New Liquid Interaction w/ Nested Dielectrics

  • Multi-Layer Optics Shader

  • Scattering Medium Shader

  • Ability to map density textures and support for OpenVDB

  • Displacement Mapping

  • Geometry Scatter Shaders; Flakes & Bubbles

  • Configurator and Viewer Improvements

  • Other workflow and usability performance enhancements

I’m very excited about most of these new features, especially in the liquid interaction and geometry shaders, as those will have a big impact on my day to day work. It’s very obvious to me that this update was to entice the creative and artistic side to the user’s interaction, whereas, Keyshot 7 definitely appealed to the workflow and user interface side of things.

Luxion also held a closed competition for Beta testers to push for the best image and animations showcasing the new features. I participated with two entries, (Seen below) and the Luxion team awarded me with a First Place prize for the Beer Mug. I modeled all of the parts in Blender, and imported them into KS8 for the composition, lighting, shading and rendering. I utilized a few of the new features including displacement, bubble scatter, openVDB support, and definitely the new nested dielectrics approach for the liquid in the glass interaction.

‘A Little Over the Top’  - First Place Winner -  Keyshot 8 Beta Competition

‘A Little Over the Top’ - First Place Winner - Keyshot 8 Beta Competition

The render came out beautifully, and I was actually surprised that after the 14 hours of calculations finished, there wasn’t much I felt I needed to change. Part of the fun was that I discovered a new method for driving the bubble density inside of the glass/liquid. It turns out, you can use an OpenVDB file as a density map texture for the bubbles. I ran a custom smoke simulation in Blender, and saved the cache files for one of the frames as .vdb and plugged it into the new bubble geometry node. (See below)


 My other entry was actually my original submission for the contest, but after a deadline extension, I decided to go for the Beer Mug attempt. (Thankfully it paid off!) For this image, I wanted to of course, showcase, displacement (see plate, and crumbs) and liquid interaction, as well as the bubbles. Here the crema of the espresso is actually from a cloudy plastic shader with super high density on the bubble scatter.