help with lighting
Sorry for the delay; I was away.
You've really jumped in the deep end. In general, stay with the Chaos render, leave resolution where it is because it only affects coloring for chaos, and don't use Terminate other than for batch rendering. In particular, terminate should be avoided when using the fractal metamorphs with T suffix because they have internal iteration in a tree structure that varies the rate wildly and will terminate prematurely when going through an unproductive area of parameters. Just stop the render when you're happy with it or it isn't improving much (though the T fractals tend to go in bursts, not evenly like others do.)

The best approach with these metamorphs depends on whether it's a 2D or 3D result. If you use a Quat or Triplex type it is 3D and works with lighting. If it is a Julia type in conjunction with one or more constructor holons it is 3D. If it is a single iterator holon with Julia type, then it is 2D and works best without lighting (or with ambient only lighting, which is a convenient way to set the background color.) There is a preset in 1.6 Basic for black on white. (Otherwise you would need to set the fractal object color to black and set the background color to white.)
Hi Garth, Thanks very much for the help. I have done a lot of work with POVray and Cinema 4D bt some of the basics of XenoDreams escape me. I am attaching a screenshot of a render and a preview to indicate where the problems are. I changed the lighting as you recommended but the render still is completely washed out and not at all like the preview, which is a little small cause I altered the display while doing the screen shot.
Can you help me with the exact setting in the attached that I need to synch the preview and the render? That would be a great help.
Not sure if I can attache a file so the screenshot is here:

and the XD files is here:

Best wishes,
Thanks again
Hi Dennis, that helps a lot.
First, the render in the screenshot is still the Unlit picture (which is what always shows during rendering, and is just a bitmap of the raw colors of the object). It will only show the Lit picture after applying the lighting. Lighting is a kind of deferred shading. Typical workflow is something like this: start the render, let it go for long enough to get some solidity, adjust lighting; when the lighting preview shows enough quality to do a full size test, stop the render, apply lighting, and if you like how it's going, resume the render; refresh the lighting preview from time to time (eg by scrolling around it) to see how it's improving. I also do test renders at a small size sometimes, if I'm not sure how it will render or I want to see where the lights with shadows need to be set for best effect.

However, this object is frankly a mess that will never render well. The preview in the screenshot looks like what I see in the first few seconds, but it soon gets messier and shows no sign of converging on a stable form in minutes. That generally means not worth rendering. The Triplex metamorphs are quite slow and best used alone on an iterator with all scales 100, along with one or two constructors. I really recommend keeping it simple until you are more familiar with them, as well as the process in general.

The Using XenoDream guide does have a lot of tutorials, starting with the most basic, and although some would prefer more illustrated steps (or videos), they do give a reasonable start and cover a lot of topics.

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