Tesign's Splash Technique for Vue
                                                                                                              by Bloodsong and Tesign

  Here is a closeup of the splash 
effect in action.  The bass is from 
Zygote (although the skin is custom-made), 
and the plants are standard in Vue.
   Terrains are used for the droplet effects,
 but the bulk of the splash is actually built 
out of primitives.  It is difficult to believe, 
isn't it?
A detail of "Hungry Bass" by Tesign
(used with permission)
One: Construction of the Splash 

Here is the side view of the splash grouping, without all the extra stuff.

   Here is the top view.  You can see how the terrains are tilted towards the camera.

Two:   Terrains for the Splash 

  For the droplets, create a new, random terrain, then scribble your dig tool around all over it.  You can experiment with effects like Pebbles and Stones for round drops, and different types of Erosion.  Diffuse is good for smooth droplets. 

     Clipping the terrain leaves random frothy droplets, like this.  You can adjust the clipping for thicker or thinner scattering of drops.  Also, for closeups and smoothing, you might increase the terrain size to 512x512, 1024x1024 or higher.

     This is the terrain with a bit more clip, and a larger terrain size.

Three: Tweaking, Tweaking Tweaking 

  Tweaking is the key! 

The scene lighting didn't make the drops look quite right, so there are a few spotlights placed to enhance the effects.  One spotlight lights up the fish, and the other gives the water its sparkly glow.

     Here is one terrain splash rendered with its shader and scene lighting on it.  There are many ways you can tweak the water material to get the effect you are looking for.  Various transparency levels and colours affect the water, and the Clear/Murky colour and depth settings can enhance the look as well.  As with the Puff Cloud Technique, each scene will require its own experiments and variations.

Here is another possibility; I've tried Boolean subtracting a torus from a terrain to make an 'in-the-round' splash.  Well, it needs a LOT of work, but it is a start.  I also tried mixing a 'sea foam' shader with the water on the top.

  It is starting to curve nicely and fan out... but that's about it!  :)  Experiment with different terrain styles, Boolean objects and materials, and good luck!

Also!  See Guitta's Vue Splash Technique.