Real thanks to a bunch of people who gave me feedback over the past 2 or 3 months I've been working on this
SideTrip : The Sea of Lamps
Characters: Azure, the human boy, and Alex the god of concealment.
Modo was used to do the layout for the scene.
One of the trickier things to make was the lamp textures. These lamps are spherical, therefore the textures also had to be spherical. Since I wanted a whole bunch I explored some procedural ways to produce them.
I ended up using Artmatic Designer, an unique, long-running Mac program to produce the base texture elements. Artmatic is capable of wrapping space in a variety of ways, it also has perhaps the most unique set of processors / nodes available.
I then brought the textures into Substance Designer which I used to process the flat shapes into something with a bit more detail and dimension. In this step, I created the decorative metal framework that holds the glass pieces in place.
In all, 10 textures were made using this method, all equirectangular projection and in 4k.
Models used in the scene. Credits in order: Me, Andrej Dzajkovski, Alex Calandri, Kevin Weber.
Here's the rough image I had in mind initially. In the end I went with the all-center approach.