Chandelier? And other lighting issues?

Hello all,

I am looking for some help with respect to lighting some of my scenes. Please keep in mind I have never worked with BLENDER [or any 3D program for that matter] until this January.

Specifically the chandelier that will be in the dining room of my house design.

However what I am looking for is:

Lights that WON’T reflect off the ceiling.

My usual way of lighting something is either spot-lighting and/or area lighting and simply engaging the sphere with a set size and energy level.

However in using the spot lighting technique it doesn’t shine through glass [like a ceiling light] properly. My glass settings are usually 200 hardness, .4 alpha on z transpart and .4 mirror so I have a semi see through technique with a mirrored aspect [like real glass].

Should I diminish the hardness to get proper spot lighting reflection?

For my space ship hallway I used something entirely different and object linked my particle system to a point light. Shaded the point light a sickly green and let it go. I did it that way because I wanted some flickering to it.

Problem with that is it ups the size of the file considerably and as such I can’t use that for all my lighting systems without slowing my computer to a snail’s crawl.

So any advice on lighting would be great. I am looking for something realistic.

My guess is that you either have not checked the TranShadow option on the receiving materials or are trying to do something that would require an engine like Cycles (if you don’t want the light source completely invisible for instance).

Either way, it’s hard to guess without a screen that shows your problems, so it might be recommended to post one.

I’ll do one better.

Light is reflecting off the roof

There’s also the kitchen which I would like to add lighting to.

But I am probably just missing as the render is without ambient light [world] like the alien hallway

Watch for geometry problems in the first shot, and banding in the lights on the second one.

One good way to address problems of unwanted light is to use layer-specific lights, excluding particular surfaces from being considered for reflecting a particular light source. You can also use this to cause a light not to “see” intervening geometry that would otherwise block the light.

Another useful technique is the use of node-based compositing to allow you to more precisely control exactly what interacts with what, and in what way. (Handy for breaking-down the interior vs. the exterior lighting problem in this case.) These are not good “starting out with 3D” subjects to dive into, but it is worthwhile to introduce the general idea that “this is computer graphics, not reality.” You want the end result to be as plausible to the eye and to the viewer’s general knowledge of the natural world as you wish for it to be, but in this biz, “cheating the shot” is a virtue. You don’t have to imitate the real world to produce a shot that looks convincing. Quite often, a “natural looking” shot is tremendously contrived … even out-and-out faked.

Practice looking at sample photographs critically, to de-construct how the shot was made, and study some books on professional studio lighting technique. Or, just subscribe to Vanity Fair magazine for a year, and study the first 30 pages or so … the ones leading up to the table-of-contents. :slight_smile:

During a photo workshop that I attended many years ago, the pro kept repeating and repeating this mantra: “Look at the light.” He kept saying it all week, and it took all week for us to finally glom onto what he meant by it. In other words, “don’t look at the scene, don’t look at the physics or the geometry … look at the light, because that’s what your picture is actually made of.”

To now join this idea to what I said about “cheating”: consider what you want the light to be doing, and then consider the cheapest and most-shortcut way to get the light to do that, well enough for the purposes of the shot.

Every shot is different. A close-up establishing shot of a chandelier would be very different from a subsequent shot where the light’s supposed to plausibly appear to have been cast by that lighting fixture (an effect that would require nothing more than a simple “gobo”). They just all have to be consistent, and the viewer’s own knowledge of the real world will fill-in details, even if they’re not actually there.