Underwater scenes are frustrating!

Hi there.
I have been trying for months to figure out how to do an underwater scene.
There are tutorials on landscapes, space, anything else pretty much except for the ones you want.

I want to make a simple underwater scene. I want to go above and below the surface of the water. For people, boats and fish. Finding nemo style.

So far all the tutorials I find on youtube are sub par. The scenes are created far from what I want them to look like and when I follow those tutorials they just turn out crap and look nothing like what the guy makes them. Besides that, they are useless for what I’m looking for. Most people just go for rendering a still image. Where can I learn how to make a proper animated underwater scene?

There are the ocean tutorials as well but none of them go below the surface.


Hey Ram! Great suggestion and problem haha :wink: I do not know of any good underwater scenes either unfortunately but you did give me a good idea to create a whole course on underwater scenes. I have put it in my course list and will see about working on it shortly :slight_smile:

Trying to explain on text here how to do an underwater scene would be too much haha so hence the course

Well I think what defines the look of an underwater scene is how the objects behave underwater (physics), you don’t see the water itself, maybe adding a bit of volumetric lights and godrays. Have you seen the latest Aquaman Trailer?.. you can get a lot of good references from it… Don’t really know if i was able to explain myself, i’ts a really tricky subject and english is not my first language haha.

hey francisco,

Was considering something along those lines as well.
I figured sim water would be too render heavy… and also i have not worked very much with volumetrics before.

I know you have to give the illusion you are underwater. and somehow animate bubbles and create the wavy sea effect.

this rises a few questions.

  • shrinkwrap a volumed cube or something to an ocean surface?
  • how do i give it the “water” look
  • how do I make it non-render heavy?
  • how do I make it animatable and optimized instead of some stupid still image facing the surface?
  • the tutes i follow dont make realistic looking water. or finish the job doing so.
  • how to create the ocean floor caustics? and bubbles?

Everything else would be easy to set up. There is just no guide on giving it the water illusion for the camera.
All i get from the tutorials is: Put the camera inside the cube.

Some of us don’t want to work with HDRI or environments either. Let us deal with the sky and the ocean surface… and just show us how to attach it to the volumetric light below and create the underwater effect.

Every tute i have seen on it so far is either unfinished from 4 years ago… or a complete waste of time and far from what I’m after.

So it’s definitely not a matter of “google it” :frowning:

I get how the references should look as I have done a lot of that. I just don’t know how to make it like that.