Blender noob here again! I'm working on making a Swamp scene and I'm curious how I can make my water look murky/smokey. Would I need a smoke simulator in the system too? Or is it a materials thing? Any suggestions?

  • $\begingroup$ blender.stackexchange.com/questions/78504/… $\endgroup$ Apr 26, 2018 at 17:33
  • $\begingroup$ It depends if its for an animation..If it is static, then i suggest using a dirty, green texture and making it the same roughness as the water, and placing it on top of the water, or in certain areas. $\endgroup$
    – cgperfect
    Apr 26, 2018 at 17:47
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ You'll be using a textured volumetric material for the material...the texture for this could be based on a smoke simulation or just a noise texture... $\endgroup$
    – JakeD
    Apr 26, 2018 at 18:21
  • $\begingroup$ youtu.be/Z_mqcwhaOwI $\endgroup$
    – Linguini
    Apr 26, 2018 at 19:51

1 Answer 1



This method will be pretty hard for your hardware, but it's the only reasonable way (I can think of) to make it look good from any angle.

Any other method I've tried like using gradient to change Roughness, Transmission, mixing with other shader is looking similar from the side but they will not work looking from above.

It's really simple setup.


First of all you will need to use Separate XYZ to be able to create gradual transition between dirt and clear water.

Next you can use this separation to create water color change (not necessary) and use Principled or Glass shader for water itself.

Lastly add Volume Scatter and Absorption to make "dirt" inside your water. Multiply node will help with Density - higher value = denser dirt.

Don't forget to crank up Light Paths > Volume to something higher than 0. I've used 2 in this example.

enter image description here


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