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A New Source For Textures

8

Episcura offers HDRI images - while it is a paid service, a free account allows you to download up to 15MB/day.

Chris Sikkenga writes:

episcura.com was born out of necessity. Textures available at stock sites are not affordable. HDR images are very expensive. A few CG artists decided to rectify the situation and created this new resource.

Our new home for seamless textures also offers HDRI and snapshots. The snapshots can be used to pitch ideas to clients, as references for models, or whatever you like. The textures and images are royalty-free.

Speaking of free, you can download 15MB daily for free. Monthly subscriptions are available which give users more download bandwidth. The site just launched and future plans include a free page that doesn't count against your bandwidth, 16 bit plates and a contest with a cash prize.

New images are added weekly and the team is eager to get some feedback. Contact us through twitter or Facebook. Let us know what you'd like to see!

Please check out episcura.com.

8 Comments

  1. Looks good! Simple and cleanly organized website!
    Are there plans to be able to "bundle" bandwith of several days for the free subscribers? Like 7*15Mb per week instead of 15MB daily? Because each HDR is around 70MB, so it will never fit into the 15MB.
    Or maybe low-res versions that weigh in under 15mb.
    Clean skydomes would be great, ie: only sky above the horizon-line, no big buildings or trees, etc.,
    Also a question: how is the range of the HDRs, is the sun bright enough? (ie: casts sharp shadows when rendering)

    • Thank you!
      Currently there are not plans to expand or bundle the bandwidth, but we plan on adding a free page very soon with some HDRI as well as some of the larger textures. When we get that functionality finished we will let you know, it's coming very soon!
      One of the reasons why we don't offer differing sizes with the HDRI is because of the loss of quality that would occur. We shoot almost all of the HDRI with 5-7 exposures which gives a large amount of depth to the 32 bit image.
      We will definitely take your clean skydome suggestion under consideration, and it is something we could add in the near future. :)

    • Sadly, they have a way of handling that -- HDRI access is part of their paid plans. Free users can’t even get low quality versions D:

  2. This looks pretty cool, but what's the licensing like? In the ToS it says:

    "Licensee is required to expressly acknowledge any use of the Content, whether modified or in its original form, whenever said Content is used or incorporated within the Licensee’s own work, in any form, including but not limited to software, 2D or 3D models, graphics, movies or printed media (“Licensee’s Work”)"

    Does that also apply for paid customers? Seems a bit excessive to have to have to say where you got the textures every time you use one in a render.

    • We are currently working on a FAQ which will explain the TOS in detail. Basically our main concern is if you create a model and resell it on turbosquid, you are in effect selling our texture with your model, which is fine, we just ask you give us a credit for it.
      If you use our textures on a creation and sell it, please include episcura as a source where possible, that's all we are asking.

  3. Ken "Porkchop" D. on

    This is great news. Finding quality images is always a challenge. On top of that, the site looks really amazing!

  4. Stephen Norrington on

    Hi there, great site, great images but, as a professional feature film maker, I reckon the existing ToS will be a dealbreaker.

    Further to Greg Zaal's comments, the required attribution text block will be off-putting to professional movie projects for two reasons: it's a lot of loud end-roller text relative to the amount of material that will be likely be used (other more important companies such as camera suppliers do not assert themselves half as vigorously) and the forceful statement that "Episcura is the rightful owner of these images, and these images may not be redistributed for any reason whatsoever" will scare production lawyers into refusing to allow the images in the project at all.

    The funders of motion pictures need to be absolutely sure that they are the clear and unambiguous owners of the movies they fund and any statement that assertively muddies that water will cause the materials to removed to keep things clear - after all, it's not hard for a motion picture to go out and shoot its own high-end materials - using image / texture sites is a convenience that can be easily undercut if the ToS is too demanding

    If the underlying concern is only that the textures and images do not get redistributed as textures and images in the CG/VFX world the ToS could make this specific and clear and limited.

    If it's true that it's ok to use these textures and images in motion picture projects unencumbered (except for attribution) then the maximum attribution that would probably fly would be something like "Images and Textures by Episcura.com" in the end-roller along with all the other image/texture suppliers.

    Lastly, the clause 3 "LICENSE SUBSCRIPTION FEE - Licensee’s use of and access to the Website and related Content is conditional upon payment of a monthly or yearly subscription fee" is also problematic because it suggests that free downloads do not bestow upon the downloader the right to use and access the content - probably not the intention but muddy enough again to get the site added to "no-touch" lists in pro VFX departments.

    Hope this is useful info for you - the site is lovely and the images fantastic - cheers, SN

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