Wojciech Grzyb's Ray Tracing Project 2012

What did I do?

I have decided to make a model of the Lethbridge water tower shown above. I chose the water tower because I thought it had about every basic shape in it which helped me dive into blender and work with its functions more closely.


For my first few attempts I started off with taking a cube and modifying the base to be octagonal but that lead to hair pulling. I then went online and found this basic tutorial which simplified what I was trying to do. Once I created a circle with 5 vertices the base of the tower was completed. I then created a cylindrical shape spanning from the ground to the base of the resaurant. Once I created that with all the approximate sizes I wanted I just duplicated that one I created 8 times. This is what I had on the screen:

For the next step I have prepared a circle for the base of the restaurant which I extruded to form the walls. I come across difficulties here in created a curve at the top of the tower. I came across another youtube video that showed you can fan out or in the vertices. Fanning in will create curve inward and fanning out will make a wall portruding outward. Following this strategy I have created the curved top of the restaurant shown here:

At this stage I had a modelled water tower but it still required the portruding poles around the base of the restaurant. In the picture below I tediously added them one by one.

Finally I have created the front sign with a UV image attached to it. I have the image displaying in the photo below but for some reason it would not allow me to render it.

In the next couple pictures I have revealed the final model of the water tower. The railing on the outside of of the restaurant is transparent. I created a plane around the perimeter then I played around with the transparency to make it have a see through glass effect. For all the windows I created individual squares which I extruded into the building to have the window sill effect and also played with the transparency option in blender to give the glass effect. I also created the lighting effect using this tutorial where I placed the light source to the left of the eye source.

Modelling Software and other work cited

Software Used:

Blender 2.61

Work Cited:

The photo at the top of the page was taken from google images by typing in Lethbridge water tower.
Tutorial 1
Tutorial 2


I have had some experience with Blender in the past but not as in depth as for this project. This experience has helped me figure out how powerful Blender is (once you know what you're doing) and what it can do. I spent about 9 hours on the modelling of the water tower. There was still more details to explore. I will definitely experiment with Blender more and reccommend to anyone who has the patience and eagerness to learn a few things.

Copyright Wojciech Grzyb
February 2012