2011 gallery ↑
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Recent Guardians:

  • John Harrah -- (4/16/16)
  • Andrew McCormick -- (1/13/16)
  • Kevin Lynch ('Crimmy') -- (11/2/15)
  • Gina Ballou -- (9/30/15)
  • Herelli SA LLC -- (7/13/15)

Recent Sponsors:

  • Jonathan Stanley -- (11/1/15)
  • Mark Petts -- (8/13/15)

Recent Patrons:

  • Rachel Lewis -- (5/22/16)
  • Ace Eggleston -- (5/15/16)
  • The Gollub Family -- (4/15/16)
  • Patrick R Skelnar -- (12/24/15)
  • Richard Month -- (11/1/15)

Recent Donors:

  • Sharon Tucker (5/21/16)
  • Jason Mitchell (5/19/16)
  • Chris Frazier (5/15/16)
  • Tyler Shults (5/1/16)
  • Jeff Jann (4/24/16)

Fluorescence (visited by Reddit aliens)
"On December 2nd I was sitting and waiting for a render to finish which I decided it would be fun to do an "IAMA" (Ask me Anything) on Reddit.com. Redditor "poker_face" asked if I could "draw" a Reddit Alien (TM). My answer was "We'll See", which was taken to mean no.

As my kids know, "We'll See" can sometimes mean yes. I had a such a nice visit with the Reddit community that I thought it was the least I could do to try my hand that the iconic Alien.

Most Redditors seemed to know me from my "Fluorescence" mushrooms so I thought it would be fun to combine the two. Especially since my Christmas render is still churning. I roughed this out and rendered it on my third-string workstation using Lightwave 10.

This one is dedicated specifically to Redditor "Rethread". As requested: Something "warm and fuzzy" for the Redditors. "

"Fluorescence (visited by Reddit aliens)"

 Pickle Jar Versions

7.19/10 rating (125 votes)

Latest Member Comment:

"@Ryan: Thanks!"
I see you've added the 5K version to the Pickle Jar now. Great – thanks very much!

Richard H.
Thu May 14, 2015 at 3:46 am
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Comments (42)

Elegy (Winter/Day)
"A daytime rendering of my "Elegy" winter scene (without wolves). I hope folks using "ChronoWall" to change their wallpaper with the time of day will enjoy this one!"

"Elegy (Winter/Day)"

 Print Available

8.67/10 rating (165 votes)

Latest Member Comment:

"Tree Pictures"
This is one of my favourite tree scenes


Wed February 17, 2016 at 6:46 am
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Comments (68)

"My first experiment using Mandelbulber, an open-source 3D fractal renderer. This once rendered in 7 hours at 5280 x 3295 on Bucephalus. I called this one "Helios" because my son Jason (5) told me this one looked like a sunrise. My other son Ian (8) thought it looked like a Sarlaac. . ."


 Print Available

Pickle Jar Versions

7.17/10 rating (119 votes)

Latest Member Comment:

"Mandelbrot Canyon!"
I love slot canyons and am having a *lot* of fun imagining the water flows that might have created this one. *g*

Thu October 16, 2014 at 10:31 pm
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Comments (58)

An Octopus's Garden
"I've always loved underwater scenes and was thrilled to learn that Vue 10 had a new water rendering engine. I worked on this scene for about a week and it's gone through quite a few different revisions. Light and color behave differently underwater and this has been a learning experience for me.

This was my latest render and I would say that I am around 80% happy with it. I started in to fixing the last 19% when tragedy struck. Vue crashed and for some strange reason refused to reopen my scene file. The backup appears to be corrupted too. I'm glad my kids were at school when that happened because I get in trouble when I swear in front of them.

Anyway, the first file was lost so I worked over the weekend rebuilding it. I've changed a thing or two since the original (which can be found in the Pickle Jar). I've moved some things around and added some more sea life to the scene (the title has changed accordingly).

Hope you enjoy it! I look forward to many more underwater scenes with the new Vue render engine!

PS3 Dynamic Theme Available!


"An Octopus's Garden"

 Pickle Jar Versions

8.31/10 rating (131 votes)

Latest Member Comment:

Thanks for the quick fix!

Sat April 6, 2013 at 9:35 am
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Comments (109)

Elegy (Winter/Night)
"A night-time winter version of my "Elegy" wallpaper. I rendered this one shortly after posting the original Autumn version, but thought it would be better to post it later in the season (a little closer to Halloween)."

"Elegy (Winter/Night)"


8.61/10 rating (175 votes)

Latest Member Comment:

"Elegy Winter Night"
Just as I thought you had not shown snow falling except on GG winter, you introduce us to this. Oh, and thank you for adding three wolves. I understand that odd numbers are more asthetically pleasing, but I would rather see two of these magnificant creatures than one (probably means it has no pack-not good) as on Desert Snow and Desert Dawn.

Tue February 28, 2012 at 3:18 pm
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Comments (59)

The Grand Design
"I've always thought galaxies were the most incredible structures in existence. The title here, of course, is in homage to Professor Stephen Hawking. The second render has some added nebula, star clusters, and other "irregularities" as suggested by some of my Members."

"The Grand Design"

 Print Available

Pickle Jar Versions

8.65/10 rating (135 votes)

Latest Member Comment:

"Gets better the longer you look"
I love that there are many features from our own galaxy in this piece. That provides in a more familiar feel. It gives me a little jolt of excitement when I see another nebula that I recognize, and this keeps me looking at it.

Sun September 30, 2012 at 7:51 am
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Comments (49)

Dracul -- Happy Halloween 2011
"My Halloween offering for 2011. My first version was a bit understated so I ramped up the evil for v.2. A number of folks suggested that I make the castle look a bit older and in disrepair, but I was really going for a "Dracula in his prime" look here.


PS3 Dynamic Theme Available!


"Dracul -- Happy Halloween 2011"

 Pickle Jar Versions

8.66/10 rating (190 votes)

Latest Member Comment:

I adore that black and white version (bwcastledracula1). Reminds me (as I'm sure was intended) of the classic horror films. So very, very awesome! Definitely a favorite.


Fri October 30, 2015 at 8:51 am
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Comments (218)

"In August 2011 a Member (thanks Manu!) sent me a link to a photo on National Geographic's website which reminded him of my "Autumnwood" wallpaper. I thought it would be a fun project to make my own version of the scene and this is the result. Now, it isn't a complete copy. I didn't have the photo open in another window while I was working on it, but it was definitely inspired by the NatGeo photo however. "


 Print Available

9.16/10 rating (562 votes)

Latest Member Comment:

"One of my favorites"
I am looking at the autumn wallpapers and deciding which to use. I think they are your best overall collections. I use this one every year and have since it came out. Several others are my favorites as well.


Wed November 4, 2015 at 9:24 am
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Comments (168)

String Theory
"I was watching TV a few nights ago and had the good fortune to catch "NOVA: Hunting the Hidden Dimension". I was floored! Now I already knew a great deal about fractals but this documentary really brought home how essential they are to my work. Of course I immediately fired up my copy of Apophysis. This is the result. My first fractal render since 2008..."

"String Theory"

 Print Available

Pickle Jar Versions

8.24/10 rating (152 votes)

Latest Member Comment:

"Facebook timeline verison"
Hey Ryan,

I wanted to toss this up on my timeline but the image sized for the timeline looks different than the actual background. Like its over saturated or too bright. Do you agree or am i just tripping =P

Scott Wray
Wed May 9, 2012 at 3:34 pm
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Comments (75)

The Last Throes
"Here's a second, more "conventional" version of "The Last Throes", without the "dust experimentation" that quite a few thought muddied the scene.

I was experimenting with some new ways of generating outer space "dust". The scene started in Lightwave (the stellar "phenomena") and then I used the resulting render as a backdrop in Vue d'Esprit to add the dust. I used the resulting combination as yet another backdrop in Lightwave to add the planets. Then back into Vue for one more layer of dust. I may do some more playing around with this technique in the future..."

"The Last Throes"

 Pickle Jar Versions

8.23/10 rating (151 votes)

Latest Member Comment:

I have reuploaded the triple-split file Zip. Please let me know if you are still having trouble with it!


Tue September 27, 2011 at 8:48 am
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Comments (104)

Cosmic Shoals
"I didn't really set out to update Cosmic Shoals when I started this project. Rather I set out to model a globular cluster (and some of that is still in the image) but the story "grew in the telling".

Technical note: In the past I have used Zbrush for "landforms" such as these (see "Circumpolar) but this time I chose to use Vue's built in "symmetrical terrains". By adjusting the clipping range you can make all sorts of interesting shapes without the memory overhead of importing .OBJs.

Jessie told me this one reminded her of some of my earlier work, and I tend to think this is because of the lack of any vegetation or the other objects I tend to scatter around using Vue's ecosystems. I tried adding some "alien flora" here and there but nothing seemed to look right (given the scale of the scene). I may yet play around with that but I thought it looked nice enough to share as is. Hope you enjoy it!"

"Cosmic Shoals"

 Print Available

8.47/10 rating (200 votes)

Latest Member Comment:

I find it so hard to rate your pictures; there's so many and so magnificent. In this one, I thought it'd be cool if there was a kayak pulled up on the shore near the person.

Chris S
Tue May 21, 2013 at 3:40 pm
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Comments (61)

"A little something I worked up on my MBP while waiting for "Heliocentric (Night)" to render on my main box over the weekend. Once it finished I applied the finishing touches on Bucephalus.

I didn't notice while I was making it but my son Ian (upon seeing this render for the first time) mentioned that it looked like it was from the movie "Tron" we had just watched for our Friday Family movie night. I had to agree that he was right.

This is my first "mandala" since 2008. I know at the time it was suggested that I do something different with the theme next time, so I hope this qualifies!"


 Print Available

8.14/10 rating (197 votes)

Latest Member Comment:

"Awesome Design"
Nuff said in the title. Keep up the great work.


Wed October 7, 2015 at 1:37 pm
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Comments (55)

Heliocentric (Night)
"This is my third version of "Heliocentric (Night)". I also gave in to temptation with the second version and added a huge planet in the sky. Some folks liked, it but I can see where maybe less might work better in this case. For the third version I've gone with a quarter moon to light the scene.

The first version took nearly 80 hours to render on Bucephalus at 3277 x 2048. The second took only 15. The third took 17 ;)

I was informed by my son Ian yesterday the two characters by the fire are indeed myself and him. I guess it is official then..."

"Heliocentric (Night)"

 Pickle Jar Versions

8.57/10 rating (159 votes)

Latest Member Comment:

""I guess it is official then...""
...so which one of you is the assassin? :)

Wed October 12, 2011 at 1:48 pm
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Comments (111)

"Getting more comfortable with Vue 9.5's new cloud controls. They really do allow you to place clouds wherever you like. Very powerful! The previous versions had one character standing on the rocks overlooking the valley, but a number of folks seemed to see two. In the end I thought it would be a good idea to actually have two people together. In this case they are the sorcerer and "assassin" that I used for my "Arcana" scene. So does this scene happen before or after the events in "Arcana"? You tell me..."


 Print Available

Pickle Jar Versions

8.72/10 rating (208 votes)

Latest Member Comment:

I just realized that the (single-screen) version 3 of Heliocentric is absolutely stunning. Wow.

Love that contrast with the night sky in the corner that gets cropped out when it spans 2 monitors. Simply breathtaking!

Fri August 3, 2012 at 9:41 am
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Comments (179)

Phraxis Moon
"When I was working on "Phraxis" back in 2009 I came to the point (which I do with all of my space projects) where I had to decide if I was going to keep it a "space render" (as seen outside the window of a space ship) or a "planetary render" (as seen from the ground). I had already finished the space scene so I whipped up a quick and dirty scene to see what a view from the ground would look like. I decided to post the space render and moved on with my life.

After switching my workstation over to Bucephalus in June 2011 I was looking through my old hard disk for projects to revisit (mostly old multiscreens that I neglected to render). I found my old "planetary" version of Phraxis and decided to post it in the Pickle Jar.

The reaction was so positive that I decided to spend a few more hours and flesh out the rough scene so it could have its own place in my gallery. Thanks for the feedback everyone!

PS3 Dynamic Theme Available!


"Phraxis Moon"

 Pickle Jar Versions

8.58/10 rating (211 votes)

Latest Member Comment:

"Phraxis Moon"
A fine piece of work. Exceptionally detailed and so well done!

Mario Carini

Tue September 8, 2015 at 6:48 pm
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Comments (102)

Red Harbinger
""The comet's tail spread across the dawn, a red slash that bled above the crags of Dragonstone like a wound..." -- A Clash of Kings (Prologue)

After seeing the season finale of HBO's "Game of Thrones" I was inspired to revisit my Harbinger wallpaper and create a new version for fans of the series (and myself) who are waiting impatiently for season 2. This one depicts the blood red comet that hangs ominously over all of the happenings in Westeros during the second book.

The blue Harbinger was the first wallpaper I worked on after a long, very arduous, hospital stay in 2009. Reading "Clash of Kings" during that time was truly one of my few joys at the time.

I had originally posted this in my Pickle Jar, but the reaction was so positive that I decided it had earned a place in my gallery.

Valar Morghulis!"

"Red Harbinger"

 Print Available

8.57/10 rating (219 votes)

Latest Member Comment:

"GoT and Black Company"
I still love this wallpaper, originally before reading the inspiration was Song of Ice and Fire, it came across as the comet in the North from the Black Company, especially as it was called Harbinger in the book. Might be something others would be interested in as well.


Thu August 27, 2015 at 11:45 am
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Comments (47)

Tropic of Thetis (Nightfall)
"After I posted "Tropic of Thetis" it was suggested that a night version might include some bio-luminescence in the water. This is my third version of the night scene. In the earlier versions(available in the Pickle Jar) I played around with the brightness of the clouds and the amount of haze. This version is more like the first, with the brighter clouds, a bit more haze, and the bio-luminescence shifted to the orange (away from pink).

I've also added some 'glowing foam' in the surf. I would be interested to hear your feedback on that.

PS3 Dynamic Theme Available!


"Tropic of Thetis (Nightfall)"

 Print Available

Pickle Jar Versions

8.78/10 rating (352 votes)

Latest Member Comment:

"Thetis Tropic night."
I LOVE THIS ONE. one tiny comment - the bio-lumo in tv nature films is sometimes a yellowy green?...anyway, what do i knowthis is as usual very UPLIFTING...My 'stick men' for some strange reason have been turned down by the Tate Modern Gallery in London !...perhaps they do have taste after all?!?

but compared to your ,CREATIVE , COLOURFUL & YES, UPLIFTING

PICTURES..well they say it all ! All the best .HONEY

Bye LEONARDO ...(sorry Ryan)

Honey Halliday
Thu February 12, 2015 at 5:49 pm
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Comments (240)

We Don't Like Zombies
The Bliss family is big into PopCap games and no game gets more play than "Plants vs Zombies". My kids (especially Jason) love it so much that I thought it would be a good way to show them "what Daddy does for a living".

They watched me model the plants, position, shade and render them. Of course they wanted me to add more and more different plants, but I think I we will save those for future scenes.

Since this isn't a 100% Ryan Bliss original, I have decided to post a (lower res) free version here. DB Members can find all of the available resolutions here. I hope the folks over at PopCap enjoy my homage. The title is a line from the "Zombies on your Lawn" theme song. Thanks for all the fun!"

"We Don't Like Zombies"

 Pickle Jar Versions

6.77/10 rating (173 votes)

Latest Member Comment:

"Great. Now I'm hooked on a new game! ;-)"
I agree with Robert, I'd love a mushroom garden! And Chomper. I love Chomper! Adorable render, fits well with the game, I think... and the ages of the junior artists ;-)

Sun December 11, 2011 at 2:50 pm
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Comments (55)

Inner Workings
"This is my first render using Lightwave 10. The image is 100% Hypervoxels (no polygons).

I've always been fascinated by the processes that go on at the very large/very small ends of the scale. It has been mentioned that this scene strongly resembles histone proteins (see the diagram on this page). What do you think? "

"Inner Workings"

 Pickle Jar Versions

8.19/10 rating (257 votes)

Latest Member Comment:

"actually, *this*page* :)"
I think they've reworked the science blog that you refer to. Is http://scienceblogs.com/transcript/2006/08/08/nucleosome-binding-sites-1/ the correct page?

Chris S
Mon May 20, 2013 at 5:53 pm
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Comments (176)

The Fisherman
"This project went through many different twists and turns over the course of Nov/Dec 2010. Perhaps I will post those renders in the Pickle Jar in the weeks ahead. I'd hoped that it would be my last project of 2010, but the render went long and it is my first offering of 2011. "

"The Fisherman"

 Pickle Jar Versions

8.65/10 rating (387 votes)

Latest Member Comment:

"Oops: 1920x1080"
I like this one; I've been a member for awhile but hadn't seen this before. There seems to be a problem with the source file for the single screen 1920x1080 image: I've tried from different browsers, and it always downloads as 1920x960...


Wed January 6, 2016 at 2:52 pm
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Comments (113)


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