lighting design study thread

working in an electrical engineering firm, i got interested in lighting design, and decided to try and develop a better understanding of lighting interior and exterior spaces.
since i don’t have access to a studio and an endless stream of lighting fixtures to use for real life experiments, i thought to use cg for my experimentations (even though the eye and the camera does not perceive the world the same way), and to start a thread here to showcase my progress.

critique, suggestions, feedback, musings, all are welcome.

my latest finished design: “kitchen” by lukethsdhafdf (blendswap)

the method
my idea is to use freely available scenes (downloaded from blendswap or other places) and try to develop a lighting design for them, that is plausible as well as beautiful. that way, the changes i need to do to the scenes are minimal, and i can develop my ideas and capabilities faster. also, using existing scenes forces me to work with (semi-) realistic constraints, which are essential for creativity.
for each scene i try to envision several different designs, since usually the first idea that comes to mind is not necessarily the best one.

It’s a nice idea, but I can see you hitting problems quickly. It’s not just the difference between the eye and the camera that are the issue, but the difference between the camera and CGI. CGI artists will frequently cheat the light, adding light sources where there are none to fake bounces etc.

@Roken true. although i don’t intend on adding fake lights, i do stretch reality (for example, boosting exposure).
i don’t mind the resulting noise (although bless lukas stockner for the denoiser!) and i can live with longer render times.
the major thing i’m missing here is proper IES integration in blender. the available addon creates lights with unreasonable intensity.

by lukethsdhafdf (blendswap)

final design:

another angle:

in this case, i did not render the original lighting scheme, but i did try something somewhat similar, yet didn’t like it and abandoned it at an early stage (hence the low quality of the render):

rendered at 512 samples with denoiser. some textures were taken from the blender cloud.

design by NewSee2l035, irokrhus (blendswap)

here i have actually done quite a few different designs. the original (with very few modifications) is this:

my own designs: option 1

option 2

rendered using blender 2.79 RC2, denoiser, resolution at 200%, 512 spp.

option 3 (because the site doesn’t allow more than 3 images per post)

i think personally the last option is the best, even though (or perhaps because) it is the simplest. (perhaps that is also the reason it took me the longest time to think of.)