I’m really excited right now. I feel like I’ve been reunited with an old friend who has changed quite a bit but is still the same cool buddy I used to spend time with so many years ago. I’m talking about a program here, not a real person. But not just any program. I’m talking about Terragen! One of the very reasons I became a designer and taught myself how to use Photoshop was all because of Terragen. Now, I now you probably don’t know what Terragen is, so let me explain what it is a little bit.
Terragen is a 3D terrain and landscape environment rendering program which lets you create, sculpt and model realistic looking landscapes and scenes. Lots of production studios and special effects companies use it to create landscapes for lots of high-end movies with lots of special effects.
Now from what I remember, the way I stumbled onto Terragen was through the site DeviantArt. At the time I had set up an account to post my photography and drawings on there. But as I explored the site and all the work that other artists who were much better than I was, I came across a group called Terraspace which was a collective of artists who would design surreal space scenes using Terragen and Photoshop and release monthly wallpaper packs. What I saw on that page absolutely made me extremely excited and overwhelmed with curiosity. I found out what they used, and started figuring out how they did everything. Keep in mind I was relatively new at Photoshop and design in general. I started searching the internet for any tutorials I could find that would teach me all the advanced techniques and skill-sets the pros were using. In short, I taught myself how to be good at design by attempting to recreate the most difficult and complex things I could find.
And this my friends, brings me back to the present. Its been around 6 or 7 years since I last used Terragen and only recently it occurred to me to check if there was a Mac version of Terragen, and indeed there was. In fact it had been updated to a new version called Terragen 2. So I put down the cash and got myself a copy and fell in love all over again.
It’s really only been 3 days since I got it and I’ve already made something pretty awesome that the 16-year-old me would have never believed he would someday be able to do. Check it out. There’s definitely more of these on the way.