Ocean Gypsy

“…Softly Ocean Gypsy calls…
Silence holds the stars a while.
They smile sadly for her where she falls…
Just the time before the dawn,
The sea is hushed the ocean calls her
Day has taken her and now she’s gone…
No one noticed when she died,
Ocean Gypsy shackled to the tide,
The ebbing waves, the turning spreading white…
Something gone within her eyes,
Her fingers lifeless, stroked the sand,
her battered soul was lost.
She was abandoned…”


Technical aspects: Once in the while I hear music that stirs me, and the instrumental talents and vocal arts of “Blackmore’s Night” did just that when I heard their music just a short while ago for the first time. The prose above are just a few verses from their piece “Ocean Gypsy” (originally performed by the group RENNISSANCE) It stirred me deeply and evoked images of an old abandoned fishing boat lying rotting on a wide forgotten beach. I hope I communicated the sadness and the melancholy of the scene.

I researched the fishing vessel and obtained photographs of a 1917 fishing boat from the archives of the American Maritime Museum. I used Rhino3D to build up the basic ship model which was then textured and “weathered” with a combination of bump maps, procedural textures and transparency masks in Bryce 4.01. The seagull was a modified bird that I found on the Amapi 3D 5.1 CD-ROM.

I got a lot of help from Jonathon Allen’s tutorial on low tide scenes, and a discovered a technique where I could simulate volumetric clouds using multiple cloud plane layers in Bryce 4.0. Only afterwards I discovered this tutorial which basically described what I had spent weeks trying to get right. If only I had discovered it sooner. The image required very little post production except a bit of cleaning on the boat, and some weathering of the planks in places.

Worlds in the Making