Sun light through plant lighting not achieved

Hello. I tried to reproduce a picture, just to try to dive myself into the materials and lighting issue. I wanted to achieve the effect of light through the plant. After a lot of tweaking and testing on lights and materials parameters, I ended up with the result below. I need some ideas on how to manage myself to make it. I share the .blend file (Google drive). Thank you.

Blend file:



I’m not if this is the best way to test it because you are doing alot post prod and you say you are struggeling for better lighting??? I was playing arround a little bit and after disableing denoising and postpro i had some nice images… and at the end the pure file you gave with Sun Strength 10x and Sun Color Saturation 5x gives me this in Preview:

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Replace sun lamp with Nishita sky, and possibly some ground outside to bounce off from (Nishita doesn’t contain a fake ground). Also don’t clamp by default, use it as a troubleshooting device.

Work on the geometry. No smoothing, and the “leaves” are just elongated cubes. Crap in, crap out, as they say.

For the pot, I’d use Oren Nayar (not full) diffuse mixed in with a little bit of Principled sheen on its own to compensate for energy loss at glancing angles (which O-N on its own handles pretty bad - kinda outdated). At the very least, a Principled with high roughness.

Leaves are translucent, so I tend to mix diffuse with a more saturated translucency shader. I never bother with solids, but for solids I’d mix some SSS with the diffuse to get more of the self glow, and translucency to allow light to pass diffused. Glossy, if any, to be mixed in at the end, but there are no texture maps, just a weird generator using messed up coordinates.

Some of the albedo values are totally off. Bring them down to reasonable values and compensate by bringing the exposure up.

Glass plate need a glass shader with transparent shadow via mix with lightpath/isshadowray, and some volume absorption. Also I’d get some air between the glass plate the the stand.

As for finalizing, I’d probably choose a mix of standard and filmic, as there are some blown out areas in the reflected light on the wall which filmic on its own will compress easily.

Also turn off global AO. For the green tinge volumetric to come through the total internal reflection in the glass, you need loads more bounces, set total, gloss, and transmission to 64 or something. Also close off the other wall, maybe leave a window where you can control the lighting.

I have no idea what’s attempted in post.

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What makes or breaks those comparison renders is usually the lighting.If the lighting is wrong from the beginning,everything gets looking wrong or different at least.

If the lighting is right and you use good PBR shader then the result follows automaticly.(provided the modeling is decent enough ofc)

First rule of thumb is model to scale. I was messing around with this for fun (see below) and I couldn’t make any sense of the subsurface stuff and volume absorption didn’t respond as I’d expect either. Then I spotted nothing was to scale, so any lighting attempt is pretty much futile. I used real sun from Nishita, which goes a bit warm at low angle. I compensated for this using CM/Curves/White Level. All albedos were changed, and in some cases complete shaders - showing the one I made for the leaves. Smooth shading and autosmooth enabled. Deleted all the lights and made a new elliptical light (using reflection off lamp base) - that’s when I noticed the scale was horribly off.

Tweaking filmic to make the wall hot enough caused the shine on the glass to overblow. Shooting with a camera tends to shoot at higher range, then do some highlight recovery to make it representable in 8bit. I didn’t bother with any of the post stuff to make that happen, so parts looks very blown out. Only denoise, exposure, and curves in post, nothing fancy. Without knowing anything else about the room, obstructions and conditions, I have no idea where the original darkening left of the table comes from. There is also a grey’ish plane outside that bounces sunlight into the ceiling. Closed the back wall completely off.