Lighting a mine tunnel

I have a scene that’s inside a mine and it’s illuminated only by hanging lights. In real life, this would be plenty because the light will bounce off the walls and illuminate the mine carts even a little. The way it is now, almost everything is pitch black.

I need it to be brighter, but turning up the brightness of the lights only makes it whiter where there is full illumination. Not quite distributed enough.

What can I do the illuminate the scene further? I’ve tried ambient occlusion, but that doesn’t seem to work in the cramped interior of the tunnel.

You could try to set AO to add only and turn energy up (in the world menu F8), it should make things a lot brighter. Also try to turn emit and translucency up for your materials (in the materials menu F5).

search this forum for tunnel

there is ab exanple with several lamps distributed along the axis of the tunnel
which seemst obe doing the job nicely!

hope it helps

I wouldn’t turn up emit or translucency unless the object themselves were supposed to be transluscent or emitters.

Ambient Occlusion is the quickest way to go here. Try it with Approximate first – it’s much faster. You’ll probably end using it at energy level 0.2 or so.

Alternately, you can add two hemi lamps to the scene, one pointing up and one pointing down. Set them to very low intensity values (like 0.2). Set each to an appropriate color for the reflected light of the scene (i.e., if the ceiling is gold, set the lamp pointing down to have a gold tint). Opposing hemi lamps are a very fast way to give a little bit of light to those areas.

Ambient occlusion does nothing. It must be too tight.

I managed to get it looking like I wanted by having a crap load of point lights along the wall with no shadow casting turned on of course.

If ambient occlusion is doing nothing, you aren’t setting it up correctly.

I’m guessing he’s just lazy.

Don’t you have to have raytracing turned on for AO to work?

You can also turn on No Specular for your lights you have in place. Maybe your hot spots are coming from specular lighting, it’s hard to say with only a text description.

do your lights have a limited distance?
do they cast shadows?
what light type are they? lamp?
can we have a screen shot?

personally, I’d try using lamps with a limited distance (i think this is called falloff, but I don’t have blender in front of me) that don’t cast shadows, coupled with ambient occultation set to subtract. You can set this to raytrace if you like grain, or approximate if you don’t. grain can be nice.

Setting good lighting involves a lot of tweaking numbers in boxes and seeing what happens.

Another point is is it for animation or still image? do we need to keep render times down?

Hey, can I see your .blend? I’d like to help, if I can.

I wasn’t using raytraced AO, I was using AAO.

I got it to a good state by just placing pointlights everywhere. It renders a full HD frame in under 5 minutes, and I’m happy with the quality, so I’m good. :yes: Thanks for your suggestions.