How to Make Earth (Cycles)

It's been 5 years ago since I created this earth tutorial. And year after year, it's remained one of our most popular tutorials on the site! But since that tutorial was made using Blender Internal (boo!), I figured it was time for an remake using Cycles.

Also, as you can see it's more of a fun stylized result ;)

Finished Result

In the tutorial you'll learn:

  • Easy texture mapping for spheres
  • How to use maps to make more convincing materials
  • Create a realistic sunflare entirely in Blender
  • Adding glow, color grading and a warp effect in the compositor


All textures are from NASA but have been resized for easier use in blender.


In the post I mentioned:

Space Background

In the tutorial I used Pro-Lighting Skies to make the deep space star background:

If you don't have it you can get Pro-Lighting Skies here. Alternatively, you can just use a star background, and add it as an image texture in the World Panel. It doesn't result in that much of a change ;)

Make something cool? Post it it in the comments below!

I'm really hoping to see some unique twists on this tutorial. Maybe an alien invasion? :P