Chapter 13

Special Visual Techniques

And now for special effects! Special visual techniques are the topic of the next nine sections of this chapter. These include blending, fog, billboarding, antialiasing and multisampling, point sprites, environment mapping, stencil buffer techniques, image manipulation and bump mapping.

The goal of blending objects by combining their color values, the topic of Section 13.1, is primarily to engender translucency; however, blending can also be used in effects such as reflection and morphing. Section 13.2 shows how to use fog to cue the viewer to the distance of an object. This imparts realism to a scene, as does the technique of billboarding introduced in Section 13.3, a cost-effective way to create the illusion ...

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