why is there no shaddow?

Hi folks,
I just made some simple objects and rendered them. Actually there doesn’t seam to be anything special about my blender file but I just can’t figure out why there are no shaddows on the rendered picture.

I am using the blender internal rendering engine, activated raytracing, radiosity and shadows. I placed a sun somewhere above my sandbox, gave it 1.5 times of the usual energy and made the color a little yellow. that’s all.

Can someone give me a hint?

Here is the file:


You need to enable ‘Ray Shado’ in the lampbuttons.

I guess this smiley >>:o<< would be appropriate for you to use in your reply. :smiley:

thanks :slight_smile: ya well … let the newbe ask his newbe questions 'cause the newbe used the search function of the forum :-p

one problem is solved, the next one has come:

Is is possible to make the shaddow not completly black? Usually when I walk in the sun there is no complete black spot behind me … it’s just a little darker than the surrounding.

New file:


Yes, turn on ‘ambient occlusion’.

jep that looks a little better :slight_smile:

ok there is one thing left:

as you can see on the first picture (first post) there was a transparent glass on the blue solar cells. This glass has turned to nearly completly visible when I switched on the ray shadow. Is there also a nice button to bring back the transparency or do I need to adjust the alpha value again?

New file:


Turn on ‘raytransp’ for the glass material and anything else the glass will be casting shadows on.

yes, makes it a little better. thanks! :slight_smile:

But it still doesn’t look right. And if I take a close look at the shadow of the fence … in my oppinion it is still too dark. And one more thing is that I would expect some bright line on the sand. A reflection of the light from the sun which bounced at the side of the table.

I think I just leave everything as it is. Setting up the lights in blender is so confusing.

New file:


Now, this (light bouncing of objects) would require GI or something similar. AO can’t fake that, you would need to enhance your lighting setup (ie. adding a lamp for the bright line…).

Now for the shadows…as I can see, you’ve enabled “Both” for the AO effect - this will darken shadows. If you set it to Add you’ll see that the shadows look more natural thenn. However, Add will also effect the general look of the scene and make it much brighter. Or, another option is to make the AO effect much more subtle… So, either way, some more adjustments will be necessary to get the lighting you want.
And with sunlights you can’t get soft shadows either (they’re raytraced).
So, you MIGHT want to look at an external engine like Yafray or Indigo if you don’t want to mess too much with lighting for now.

BTW, at first I really wondered why there are so many vertices in the scene, consisting only of a few rectangular objects…then I looked at the ground plane :wink:

Oh, yeah, you’d be better off setting it to ‘add,’ definitely. Also, ‘lighting with blender’ isn’t hard. Lighting anywhere is equally difficult.

Yes thanks. That made the shadow a little brighter.

The ground grid was part of my idea to create some waves in the sand. :slight_smile: If you know a better way please tell me. I already had to move the sand to the second layer so I can work properly in the first layer again. My computer runs at only 900 MHz.

Which rendering engine do you think is reasonable for me? Yafray or Indigo?

New file:


  1. Actually, no. I guess you could reduce the poly count a bit and use fractal modeling or something but still, you won’t come around using quite a few vertices. Unless you go with bump mapping only, of course…

  2. Oh, that’s hard to judge. I thought about Indigo since it seems to be quite easy to set up scenes like this. Your sunlight should be enough there, and Indigo will to the rest. Of course I’m not sure if this will work with this scene as well.
    But on the other side, it requires quite some computation, which is probably not ideal for your 900 Mhz. But sadly, the same goes for every engine using advanced techniques like GI…
    So, Blender’s internal is really a good option for you. It’s quick and simple :wink:

btw: I found out how to make the glass transparent again. I just needed to switch off the “traceable” button at the glass material. So one more problem is solved.

@myke: Many thanks for your tip. I will try out indigo and make some renderings. If rendering becomes too slow I will turn back to the blender internal rendering engine. Maybe the renderings of indigio are worth the additional waiting time.

I just rendered this scene (attachment) with the blender internal rendering engine at 400x300 pixel (like thouse other renderings in this topic) and it took me already 20 minutes.

What does GI stand for?

New file:


wow!! I just read a part of the manual of indigo. Indigo sounds extreamly incredibly superb! I also had a look at the indigo gallery and it was simply impressive!

But it seams as I need to get a new computer first. Indigo needs a cpu with SSE. My good old athlon has no such function. Let’s see if I can get this celeron 1,4 GHz I saw in ebay lately :slight_smile:

well thanks for the tips again!