Lost for Creating Artistic Colored Shadows. Any Tips?

How do you make artistic colored shadows? My art style has changed recently and I’ve begun using those in my 2D work (I’m very inspired by Russian commercial art). I can achieve this style using the NPR shader in Maya but I’m lost as far as Blender. How do you make this effect without having to fake it?

Thanks in advance! :smiley:

It would help if you could post an example of what you are looking for or what you mean by “artistic colored shadows”


I’m not sure if it’s what you want, but you can set the shadow colour in the Shading buttons (F5) in the Shadow and Spot panel. It defaults to black, but you can change it to anything you want.

Blender can already do colored shadows. What do you mean by artistic?


What I mean by artistic shadows are ones that are colored on the figure. Looking at the Suzanne model, it appears that the shadows are set to Multiply as opposed to Normal.
Here is an example:


and this one:


See how the shadows are different tones other than black? That is what I want to achieve. I just don’t know how to set the colored shadows to Normal instead of on Multiply.

That is called diffuse shading (the ones on the figures themselves), do not confuse it with shadows. You can control it via a color ramp. As far as the Shadows themselves go, you’ll need a bit more advanced knowledge of Blender’s compositor.


Or, you can simply learn to use colored fill lamps:

Top row, L to R: Red fill; magenta fill; green fill against a contrasty BG
Bottom row, L to R: Green fill; blue fill with tinted SSS in leotard (blue tint) and skin (gold tint); neutral (white) fill for comparison, all with no BG to show shadow color more clearly

Blue fill, fairly strong, for cross-lighting that models the forms well and provides good clarity while using color temp (warm and cool) to maintain strong highlight/shadow distinction:

Can you explain a bit more how do you get that result? Type of lamp/settings?

Sure, but it’ll take some prep as it’s easier to show than tell, plus I’ll post it in my Kata WIP thread, since it’s specific to that project. Once I get it in that thread I’ll post a link to it in this one as well.

EDIT (later on): Here’s the link to my WIP thread and the Lighting Info post: