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Lighting La Ruelle - Chapter 1: Fog/Mist at Nighttime

By Andrew Finch

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Date Added: 5th March 2013
Software used:
3ds Max, mental ray

Here is a render of the moon lighting applied (Fig.06).

1679_tid_Fig_06.jpg
Fig.06

As you can see the moonlight cascades down the stairs and through the archway, creating a very soft arched shadow over the cobbled stones. It's a little dark and flat around the front of the buildings, even at night you get some bounce light illuminating the shadowed areas. So I placed another MR_Area Omni light at the front of the scene above the buildings. This will make the detail at the front of the building pop out.

Here are the settings for the Night bounce light (Fig.07).

1679_tid_Fig_07.jpg
Fig.07

Here is a render of all the base lighting applied (Fig.08).

1679_tid_Fig_08.jpg
Fig.08


The image Is still dark and uninteresting but once I apply the environmental lighting it will create more life in the scene.

Environment lighting

Environment lighting was my favourite aspect of this tutorial. For this scene, the most important part of the lighting comes from the street lamp as it serves as a focal point and plays a big part in creating the illusion of a foggy night. Before I placed the light in the lamp itself, I needed to setup the lamp object so it interacted correctly with the light once added. I had to alter some of the settings in the glass geometry of the lamp so it didn't cause any unwanted light interaction. To do this I selected the glass panel object, right clicked and selected 'object properties' from the quad menu. In the window pop-up I needed to de-select 'cast shadows' and 'accept shadows'.

After making these changes, when I placed a light inside the lamp object the glass panels didn't cast shadows and block out the light being cast. The only shadows that should now be cast are from the lamp object onto the walls and floor, but these shadows should be so diffused you will not notice them. I added a MR-Area Omni light in the scene and moved it to sit inside the lamp object, roughly where a light bulb would normally sit.

Here are the settings I used to get the right result (Fig.09).

1679_tid_fig_09.jpg
Fig.09





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