specularity lighting issues

I know how lights work and have looked at tutorials etc but I am not realy able to get the lighting I am expecting / wanting. One thing is, it seems like in real world settings specularity (areas that are white basically) is spread across the object, but with 3d lighting I can only get it in a limited area sort of, it’s hard to explain. I tried to use more lights but it is hard to balance them. Another thing to try is the specularity map, but it seems I would need a seperate hardness map and so on. What some seem to do in their renders is have a super bright light on the side, so maybe the front has an even spread of highlights, is that normal? Just wanting to hear some methods to get better highlights etc.

Have you tried the various specular shaders already? Like CookTorrance, Blinn, Phong etc.?

All of them have certain settings which should help you to get the specularity you want. It’s short but maybe http://wiki.blender.org/index.php/Manual/Specular_Shaders helps a little, too.

Welcome to 3D!!! Have you been trying to adjust material properties via your lighting set-ups? The hardness value on a material’s specular shader will spread the specularity across the surface more. With the default material setup nearly all of the light reflected from the material is diffuse, reflected lighting, not specular lighting. The diffuse pass is what it is. I have found that with this pass I am better off setting it on the shaders tab and then leaving it alone. The specular pass however is much more versatile in the nodes compositor. You can really crank it up on the shaders tab then precisely adjust it to suit your particular needs after it has been rendered via the nodes as long as you define it as a separate pass by CTRL clicking it on the render layers tab (it puts a little black dot in the center of the button when you do this) then clicking it again so that it actually gets calculated in the render (it will turn gray in addition to the black dot). You simply recombine it afterward via a mix node where you can take it down to 0.01% of it’s original intensity (any less = no specularity at all) and all the way up to 500%. You can add even more if you like via another mix node. You can get incredible light bloom effects from the pass via a blur node. I’d like to see the Hardness factor (scale, non-linear because falloff is not linear) become available in the nodes but this pass is so versatile that it’s really not necessary. It would also require the pass to have an alpha channel which it does not.

Interesting ideas. However I would think I could get good results without setting up passes, nodes, or blur… I did try material settings. I think I am asking about placing lights mostly, like if you have multiple lights, they create multiple specularity, which doesn’t look right, but disabling a lights specularity doesn’t look right to me either. It doesn’t give a broad shine to a textured wet or oily object when I try it.

try reading this http://wiki.blender.org/index.php/Manual/Lighting and the next coupla pages thru Lighting Rigs. Sounds like you want a 3 point frontal or 4 point rig, either with some area lights.

It can and it will if give you the shine that you want if you know what you’re doing. Multiple specular highlight areas do look ridiculous…outdoors. Indoor shots are another matter entirely. At this point in the game you probably need to do all your tweaking without going to the nodes else you run the risk of never figuring out the materials system. There are a lot of damn fine artists and animators hanging out here who rarely, if ever, take advantage of Blender’s compositing system. For me personally, getting a grip on Blender’s render layer and compositing system brought my compositing skills up from the novice ranks and set me on professional ground.

To each his own, I guess.

Well those are pretty new features anyway right? They may be still catching on. Anyway I found one of my major problems was that mip map was turned on for a bump map.

I’ve had mip maps screw me a time or 2 also.

They’re not all that new at this point. You can tell what folks around here are good at by which forums they haunt most. Papa Smurf is one of the most well rounded guys in the bunch, AndyD is an animator at heart, Fligh is a god but I don’t think he cares much for the nodes (I could be wrong though), I can do just about anything with the compositor…you get the picture.