Genuine Victorian Gas Lamppost

  • January 29, 2014
  • Blender 2.6x
  • Render: Cycles
  • Creator: Mr_Lamppost
  • License: CC-BY
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Variants of this design of lamp standard were in use in London as early as the1820s however the version represented here was popular and widely used throughout the second half of the 19<sup>th</sup> and the early part of the 20<sup>th</sup> century. The design remained in regular production with the addition of an access door in the base for electrical control gear up until the 1950s, reproductions, both direct copies and close approximations of this design are still being made today. There were many variations in both size and design of copper lanterns so I have made a generalised approximation based on a modern reproduction. The illumination is provided via inverted incandescent gas mantles which did not feature in street lighting until around 1908.

The model was created a few years ago to answer a request made on one of the Terragen 2 forums. I was only just finding my way with Blender 2.4? so used Wings 3D I was also not near any reference at the time so had to go from memory for the sizes, which while not 100% accurate fall within or ore very close to the range of variation in lamp standards of this design. I have done a complete overhaul of the original awful Wings geometry, virtually rebuilding the whole thing with Blender. I took the opportunity to make significant improvements to the lantern but have kept the sizes the same as the original Wings model so this could function as a direct replacement.

The model is provided in four flavours, lit and unlit for both Blender Internal and Cycles renderers. In order to make the model as portable and reusable as possible each version has it's own .blend file. Textures for the background scene are in a separate &ldquo;Textures&rdquo; folder. I did experiment with multiple scenes within one .blend but the grouping and naming of the objects and materials became tortuous, the approach I have used keeps things simple. To include this lamppost in your project go to [File &gt; Append], choose the .blend file for the version you want then select [Group], select the lamppost group and append. Everything is grouped and parented to the lamppost so can be easily placed within your scene.

It should be noted that the lit version for Cycles is prone to fireflies even with high numbers of samples. The preview image was rendered with 1600 samples which is little better than tests I made with 400. For this version a point light is used along with a &ldquo;Trick&rdquo; material for the mantles, which allows the lamp to be placed inside the mantles allowing correct shadows to be cast from the lantern. I did experiment with trick glass for the lantern that emitted light but this didn't produce the desired shadows and was not significantly better at not producing fireflies.

Although only basic materials are applied to the lamppost and lantern all components are fully uv unwrapped ready for you to paint your own dirt and blemishes. The lamppost casting is modelled hollow and complete with it's root, the bit you don't see that gets buried in the ground.

As a bonus you get tileable texture sets, diffuse, bump and specular where needed for yellow London bricks (Running bond), paving slabs, cobbles and granite kerb stones.

For accurate installations prior to 1908 you will need to remove the mantles, pre-heater assembly, shorten the gas pipe and fit (Model) a fish tail burner. If there is interest I can do so this and upload a new version.


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