This was my first attempt at the new SSLT feature on POV-Ray 3.7 (sub-surface light transport). Obviously, pool balls looked like a good candidate, though finally I had to use classic POV-Ray media instead… somehow SSLT didn’t like my textures construct (a bit convoluted, I admit), and I was getting plenty of artifacts.
Anyhow, I later learned to use SSLT properly and, as you will see on the dominoes images I rendered shortly after this one, it worked perfectly… so I’m guessing it was my fault that it didn’t work with these pool balls.
The “dirty” highlights were accomplished by mixing, via texture map, two slightly different versions of the same texture (different phong and reflection). The scratches are just a bump map using a modified version of an image from imageafter.com.
The ball image_maps are from sharecg.com, uploaded by Elisa LR. I tried to do my own, but given up as I was not able to find the correct font for the ball numbers.
The pool surface is just a plane, again with a tricky texturing to simulate the furry look and the dirt (two layers). The triangle rack, the chalk and the cue were quickly modeled with Wings3D and exported with its own exporter. The only one that was not so easy was the triangle rack… the corners were a bit of a nightmare.
Rendering took from 1 to 2 hours on my PhenomIIx4, using 1 area light and mild focal blur.