Of All Places


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50 reviews for Of All Places

  1. Rodewaryer [nonmonthly]

    This is so subtle yet clearly cries out an obvious message. I wouldn’t change a thing.

  2. Sebastian

    … I signed up!

    Don’t let nobody *ever* stop you from making these images!

  3. Nick

    This is probably my favorite image from your entire site and occupies the most time as my background. Awesome.

  4. Liz

    Definitely Bonsai!! Almost Minimalist. A picture that makes me wonder what is outside the cave? What kind of life exist in such a peaceful isolate place? Only with the right ingredients will life be in balance. Thanks again DB for such wonder!!

  5. regedit64

    J’aimerais retrouver des images sur la musique.

    une portée avec des notes

    un manyscrit de Bach

    un piano

    une guitare

    etc etc

    merci et bonne chance

  6. Loretta

    Well it’s not someone’s living room!

    I’ve seen seedlings in some pretty strange places, but they usually get pulled up or sprayed by weed killer because they’ve interfered with some suburbanite’s idea of a Better Homes and Gardens lawn.

    The real beauty of this is that the seedling is now well beyond sapling, and it continues to thrive without human intervention.


  7. 7SiNz

    One of the best IMO.. To those of us who like simplicity, this is one of the best. Props for an awesome job..

  8. Dave

    The simplicity of this is what draws me to it. The light shining on the tree and reflecting off the water come together to create the perfect simple scene, one that brings forth the beauty of simplicity long forgotten.

  9. Stonefish

    After near ten years on this site, I figured I’d seen it all. Didn’t think I’d ever run into another picture that stunned me.

    This one just made me sign up for a lifetime.

  10. Telaria

    Very nice, Ryan!!! As a lover of bonsai and amateur bonsai ‘caretaker’, this one really speaks to me. Thanks again for another stunning piece of unreal reality.

  11. Grant H

    I try to imagine this tree being about 3 feet tall; totally inaccessible…the ultimate Bonsai!!

  12. Jonny 5

    The framing is perfect for wall paper. I do think it could use a little more realism, especially on the tree itself. The tree looks like it was done with oil based paint. I like the idea of adding a web of roots that plunge down into the water.

    Keep up the great work!

  13. MisGuided

    I really like this one dude. Relaxes me just looking at it . Keep it up !

  14. Tril

    I prefer the more dramatic lighting of the tree in the first version, but much prefer the water in this one (didn’t get a chance to see your second render–pickle jar?) A little judicious cut-and-paste and I can have the best of both worlds 😉

  15. Greg in KC


    The more I look at this one, the more I like it. Until your next creation comes out, this one has a permanent place on my desktop at work.

    Keep up the great work! I’m enjoying this so much I just signed up for another year and am considering a life-time membership. Anything to support a great artist like yourself!

    Thanks again for all the effort.

    Greg in KC

  16. Pawan

    This is an absolutely AMAZING piece. Thanks Ryan.

  17. Terry

    Just a quick message to say I really like your dual and triple screens version of this. I love it when your work allows people to imagine being there, like someone said, you could imagine walking round a corner in a cave and seeing this. In my opinion that is true art.

    How about adding a scoring system for your multiscreens, I know their the same image but osme work a lot better than others, could be a good way of getting more feedback?

    10/10 anyhow well done!

  18. jmbhbb

    I get more complements from db desktop images…

    This one gets stares. Thanks for the dual-screen version. I love it.

  19. bohb

    This is a nice image, but something bothers me about it. That is the reflection of the stones in the water, seems like they reflect too far out for their height the angle above the water.

    I think I understand why the reflections are there, I just wonder if theres a better way to give the ripples definition in your future images.


  20. Safire

    I’ve been a member for a couple of years now but never rated anything or commented because quite frankly I’m neither an art critic or an academic and any fumbling attempts at digital graphics I have made were merely for my own edification and desire to learn.

    I’ve spent years admiring your work and in sheer awe of your talent and dedication. Today I began rating your images after seeing how important feedback from your audience is to you.

    I’m a programmer by trade and a writer at heart.

    Your works inspire me. I spend much time reveiwing them when I am blocked or looking for something I can’t quite pull from my brain. Even your older images still have power though you have truly surpassed yourself many times through out this site.

    This image truly feels like a moment in time. The overall effect is one that fraw me in. It invites me to climb out of the water on to the rock and sit for a moment to bask in the beauty which lies quietly hidden in the most unlikely of places.

    In Humble Gratitude


  21. Ashley

    i love the new images but for some reason the size i used to use for my laptop screen isnt one of the choices anymore. all the new sizes are too big for my screen and the images are too cropped. is there a way you could add the smaller sizes again? thanx! keep up the good work!

  22. Wolfie

    I prefer your natural environment images, this is a great example.

    Love it.

  23. Amit

    Please make it for dual mons

  24. David W

    Id love to see this in duel. if its possible.

    its a very centered picture though Im not sure whatelse there would be to show. but you always figure it out! CANT WAIT!

  25. Overdrive

    The image has little improved due to the changes to the water. The slightly darkened rocks look also better, but I still think there’s something too artificial with the structure of the rocks on the right side (too much detail). The lightfall below the tree hasn’t been changed, unfortunately. That part still looks like an oilpainting to me.

    Therefore, no change in my original rating.


  26. Mercury

    Ryan, I have to admire you for your willingness to listen. . . If I were in your position I would have closed the comment section a long time ago. I honestly can’t believe the nitpickiness of some of these people. Seriously, deducting 2 or 3 points out of 10 because of such utterly minor details suggests that these people think too highly of their own opinions. I gave the original version 10/10, and that hasn’t changed at all. The water looks great, the rocks look great, the tree (and roots) look great, and the shaft of sunlight looks fantastic. Keep it up!

  27. jvaughan

    I love this one. This is a really nice reprieve from the past few images which have seemed to be very “busy”. Keep up the awesome work! Been a member for 4 years and still counting.

  28. Anna

    That big tree root at the bottom looks quite fat – but honestly, it does actually look realistic to me – I’ve been caving and bushwalking in my native Australia and have seen trees doing their very best in situations just like this, with just that kind of root system – even clinging to the sides of the rocks in caverns just like this one. What I would actually have liked to have seen is more roots – tendrils dipping down into the water, reaching for the water below. Another inclusion may point in the direction of fallen leaves – either those from the tree or those that have fallen from the top of the cavern and into the water. It seems a little too ‘clean’ for a cavern housing such a beautiful tree (I wonder what kind of affect would be created if you changed the colour of the leaves to an autumnal feel) – I can certainly see some of the consternation about the leaves from other members making sense – there is a sharpness missing from them which is probably a rendering job – for me, the topmost leaf cluster is the best, with the shadowing pretty much perfect.

    But once again, you expertise in digitally creating a work of nature is fantastic. Well done!

  29. Dan

    I can’t say I’ve seen the old version, but I like the way the water moves now. It makes me feel like I’m the one taking in the scene, having just waded around a corner in the cave. It’s me making the ripples, and I am awed by what I’m seeing.

    Awesome work!

  30. Rob

    I really like all of your variations, but I think you nailed the light on the leaves on your first attempt. The brighter highlights added greater depth and realism. I realize that you could tinker with this endlessly, but overall I prefer your first image.

  31. Eugenio

    great image.

    the single rising root does throw me off a bit but i still love the image. i esp. enjoy that you decreased the amount of light in the pic, probably cause of the significant drop in reflection from the water.

    i do gotta say that for whatever reason, (and i saw a good one below me about the rendering software) plants never really real.. they look kinda blurry

    and also, my rating doesnt seem to wanna go through, for reasons entirely unknown 🙂 but i give you a 9/10

  32. Mark

    Well, I’m going to break the trend and say that this image is far better then the other. The rocks and water look much more real, thank you. The tree roots look better as well, but I have to say, that single root is a tad odd.

    But, better overall.


    orginal: 7/10

  33. Morgan

    I have to agree the water in the original looks far better. When I first saw the original image the water was the stand out feature for me.

  34. Terry

    Hey Ryan,

    I’ve been on holiday so missed your first render of this. You underestimate yourself if you say this can’t top your other work, I’ve always admired your work for its originality not how it compares to what you have done previously. With this and Circumpolar its almost like ocmparing chalk and cheese. I like them both.

    Caves are something I have had a go at without much luck (I submitted a piece a while back of my attempt) In mine I basicalled created a terrain, copied and mirrowed it then half filled it with water, used multiple light sources to give the false impression of a cave entrance as when I tried cutting holes in the terrains it kind of went crazy and kept crashing.

    Really like this, gets a 9/10 from me. Also thanks for the HDTV renders, they will be adding a touch of class to my the PS3 soon.


  35. duluen

    great pic, only thing is that lil root… seems out of place and attracts alot of attention away from the tree.

  36. Patrick

    I like this picture better every time I look at it. I love the moisture on the rocks.

    Keep it up, man.

  37. garrett

    The final version looks great, but the iphone version still appears to be the first revision.

  38. Eric H.

    Ryan, this one is by far the best revision.

    The water looks nice, and trimming that darn root somehow helps a lot.

    It’s now the wallpaper on both of my computers!

  39. Mark


    I’ve enjoyed all of your work through the years, and lately the realism is impressive but certainly not why I joined Digital Blasphemy. I joined it to see what art you could come up with in your mind with the tools that you have at your fingertips. Three changes in as many days to an image that now looks almost the same as it did in the first iteration. I’m reminded of a quote from the late French filmmaker, François Truffaut:

    “Someday I will make a movie for critics. When I have money to waste.”

    Artistic integrity above all else. Go with what is right for you, not what others tell you. Listening is one thing, but from my perspective there are a very small vocal minority who are changing the way you create art. It’s not about realism, it’s about ‘digital blasphemy’. I pay my membership happily each year to get what you create in your mind, not what someone else tells you is their vision.

    Best regards,


  40. Ryan

    My images almost always go through many small chages before I am happy with them. Usually this is all before any of you even see the end result. Jessie will suggest something or I will look a render in the morning that looked great the night before and want to start over. In this case however I posted the image before I was completely satisfied and said that I would make some tweaks. I invited the comments and I was happy with the feedback. With “Of all places” I was trying for as much realism as possible and I welcome critiques that will further that goal. In the end I want to have an image that most of you enjoy. The changes I made were pretty easy to implement so it was no big sweat doing a re-render or two.As I said, I invite the feedback. I think I can separate the signal from the noise and act in the best interests of the project.

  41. Mark


    Point taken. The motivation behind my comments was your statement on the front page: “I know this one won’t be as highly rated as “Circumpolar” (none of my other images are either) but I am prepared for that.”. They’re all incredible, not everyone will like everything you do all of the time. One of your highest rated images and the one that is most closely associated with Digital Blasphemy has its origins in 1999 and was created with far more primitive software than Vue 6, Zbrush 3 and Lightwave 9.2.

    Perhaps my choice of wording was unfortunate, it was certainly not an attack against your methodology or your motivations in listening to your members suggestions. Constructive criticism is the lifeblood of improvement. I guess that’s part of the territory when you provide your members the ability to provide feedback directly on the site, you take the good, the bad and the ugly and make a decision from there. Your art over the past year has gone from strength to strength and I enjoy every single image that you post. Imagery that wasn’t previously possible has become commonplace and I am astounded at what you are able to create. Since November 2006, the realism consistently approaches that of a photograph, even in your more abstract work. I really enjoy “Of All Places”, I am sure it will remain on my desktop for a long time and I’m looking forward to the dual-screen version. Would you perhaps consider adding the first and second versions to the “Pickle Jar”?

    Best regards,


  42. Larry

    IMHO, I liked the original, especially the water.

  43. Lee

    I agree with Larry. The orignal’s water looked better.

  44. Eric H.


    Somehow the new water just looks… too busy for my enjoyment. I have to wonder, how much wind is there in this cave to cause the surface of the water to be disturbed?

    1.) The surface of the previous water was better.

    2.) The new tree looks even more realistic, minus the single flailing root

    3.) Is the image lighter? I was hoping for reflections of the light off the water and back up onto the walls, with various areas of focus due to the curvature of the ripples/waves

    Overall though, a slightly better image than before!

    Keep up the amazing work.

  45. Ryan

    I felt more and smaller ripples would give the scene a better sense of scale.

    I thought the original water was too reflective (like an oil slick someone said) so I varied it by angle. I think it looks much more realistic this way.

    As for reflected light ripples on the walls, I tried it and wasn’t happy with the results.

  46. Scott

    I really love your work in general however, I do not think any of the nature scenes you do look real. It has something to do with the leaves or undergrowth– mostly the “green” stuff. It must be the rendering software or something. Just looks really fake and not photorealistic at all (same with people).. Most images you do that have people in them do not work for me.

    However you space, abstracts, and many other fantastical images are just AWESOME!

    The island images look great too—

  47. Ryan

    I’ll keep trying…

  48. Kevin

    I really like your work, but I would have to agree that some of your nature pics look a bit surreal. I have a theory, which may explain this… The large panoramas look amazing as well as your abstracts and such. However on pictures such as this one, the “camera” has the entirity of the picture in focus, where people are used to seeing photos with a depth of filed… or having stuff closer to the camera blurred. Might be worth playing with, albeit tricky..

    Keep up the great work!

  49. thorin

    I liked the original better – personal preference

  50. Scott Wray

    Hey Ryan,

    I threw this one as my iPhone 4 background. LOVE LOVE LOVE it. matches the black phone and time/slider bar so well. I came looking for a print.. oh well =P

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