Here's just a brief update on my scene I've been playing about with, making it appear more fuller and atmospheric
I added some bead ornamentation, and also placed the needles in a more ideal arrangement, and tied them together with rope more effeciently. I like the way they represent a Ram skull from a distance, these elements further evoking the sacrificial element.
The scene however still feels somewhat empty...so after some research, I cam across and Ivy Generator, which does a fantastic job at re-creating a simulation of how ivy would naturally grow, and randomises each time you create the effect.
However, after several hundred attempts at tweaking and experimenting with the many sliders that effect the growth of the vines, the thickness, leaf to branch ratio, and sizing of the leaves not to mention trying to figure out how to import and export geometry, but I finally managed to reach a result I was after, with help from this blog:
After some tweaking of the new geometry in regards to the lighting arrangement, I began to play with the textures so they would read properly, due to them being alpha's maps, I had some trouble getting them to work, along with some coding of the mtl. file that needed to be imported . The shaders needed their transparency fixed so adjusting the outputs was a must, however after doing so the transparent part of the alpha seemed to shine, for reasons still unknown, but after changing what was original set up for to a Phong shader, changing to a Lambert seemed to fix this.
As you can see the textures seemed to have a saturation problem, and feel quite separate from the scene. In order to add some individualize the work from the generator, and to try and remedy this problem, I began to experiment with different textures, however I tended to struggle creating alpha maps from them as I'm not very familiar with this process, leading to white rings around the texture, and the saturation problem.
However, after deleting the textures from the hypershade, and reapplying the old ones, a strange thing occurred, where the past deleted textures still rendered, ignoring the newly placed textures, and even though this was a completely different scene, and geometry, it wouldn't stop happening.
This has grinded me to a stop for the time being, because Im really perplexed as to what the hell is happening lol. After some reflection, I feel the best next step would be to perhaps create the vines, without the leaves, and make my own geometry and alpha's, and place them scarcely around the vine to achieve the same effect.Once I've figured out the problem, I'll make sure to post a step by step process for future efforts. On top of this, I feel there is a need for more in my scene, as it still feel very empty in a sense.