Thank you Vision4Next and thanks guys for the complements.
I render all my height maps on my laptop. 8K can take a while. Sometimes I have to leave my laptop on over night🙈 and save them out as 16bit tiffs.
The actual displacement I do in Modo, which I used the trial version on my laptop. I don't own a copy and sometimes I use the computers at work after hours. As they're built for handling bigger scenes and have copies of Modo and Nuke. So WFab I might not be your hero after all lol!! My laptop can't handle that many proxy items (the trees and shrubs) but it can produce the height maps, eventually.
To light the scenes I always use HDRIs and a direction light just to boost the intensity in light and shadows but if I'm not happy with the clouds I just replace the sky in Photoshop with one that matches the colours and tones to the HDRI used.
It's been a while since I've posted any wips and I thought I'd share some of what I've created in WorldMachine. I usually render out heightmaps at 8K or 16K. I really like to push for larger renders just to see how much detail it can produce when displaced.
I create and render my scenes using Modo and comp in either Nuke or Photoshop. I'm still new to Modo and am learning a bit of Speedtree so I can add foliage in my scenes. The bare trees to me still aren't perfect and the random scale of the shrubs is a little off in the sunset one (you can see there are really tiny ones)! Please feel free to ask any questions and any creative criticism is welcomed:)