Procedural Renderman for Spanish Moss
For my MFA thesis, I wanted to dive into the more technical side of surfacing. I wrote a RSL shader in order to procedurally texture Spanish moss, a plant that grows in the trees of the Southeastern United States. I was interested in surfacing this plant because it is hairlike but still a plant. For my shader, I included aspects of a hair shader like BRDF, BTDF, and Subsurface Scattering. I needed to have these calculations because they work to have the corrects light interaction that am hair strand would have. Of course, my moss does not have the same specularity as a hair strand would have so I had to change how reflective the surface was in the code. I also included aspects of Pixar's Coral Reef Shader in order to recreate the velvety texture of the moss. I also included fractal Brownian motion noise to create some surface color differentiation and displacement in order to add bumpiness to the actual model. More information on my thesis, code examples, and pictures can be found at
The left two images are photos of real Spanish moss in its natural habitat and the right image is a rendered image of my shader applied to a model.