Quick Lighting Discussion

Everything used in the following pictures comes standard with the Daz download.  This is the Basic Female character in a Tankini (and the JS Pants).  She posed with the Female Fashion 02 pose.  I was tempted to tweak stuff but didn’t.

The setting is the Aikanaro set that comes with Daz.  I’ve loaded up all the walls without rearranging them.  I’ve moved Genesis back to the back wall.

In my render setups, I’ve set the aspect ratio to 17:22 (Letter sized paper) and only 640×828 pixels because this is just for demo.

1.  This is a Distant Light with the intensity bumped up just a little bit.  It’s straight on and no shadows.  I upped the intensity of the light to 125.8% just because.  This is our Key Light.

Just a distant light, no shadow

2.  Same as above but with Shadow set to Deep Shadow Map.  Note that now, she looks darker and there’s the shadow behind her.

One light but with Deep Shadow Mat

3.  Same as above but with the Shadow Softness upped to 45% and the Shadow Bias upped to 8.83.  Notice how she looks better although I still don’t like the shadow behind her.

Softened shadows


But I don’t like that simple angle.  Not much drama in it.

4. All the same settings as above, but I’ve changed the angle of the light so that it gets more shadows including some shadows across her from the Column wall.  A more dramatic picture but you lose stuff in the harsh shadows.

Changed angle of the Key Light

Now let’s begin adding some more lighting points.

5.  I added a spotlight and set it to shine on Genesis’ face from an angle that’s about 90 degrees from the Key light and level with Genesis’ face.  I pulled the intensity down to 77.7% but it’s too high and you almost totally lose the shadows on her face.  It’s not totally bad but it can be better.  Obtw, I’ve got a Deep Shadow Map set to this light.

A Strong Fill Light

6.  I backed the intensity of the second light back to 26.2 % and I think it looks much better.  You still have the shadows but they’re not as harsh.  You can see the edge of her nostril better.

Ooops.  Um.  I was in the ER last night and I’m on pain medication and I appear to have not saved the image above.  Instead we’ve got the fill light set AND a backlight added with WAY too much intensity.

A Kinder, Gentler fill light

7.  Now I’m adding a third light from behind.  Because of the position of the wall, I’m going to set no Shadows.  That allows me to put it BEHIND the wall and the light still hits Genesis.  I set the intesity low and the color to Yellow just to make it show up for this test.  This gives her a little bit of a glow.  — And it’s a less pronounced effect than what we see above where I BLASTED away with a high intensity on the backlight.

A Kinder, Gentler backlight

In an indoor scene, you normally use a Spotlight for the Key Light.  To add drama, you can change the colors of the lights but you’ve got to be careful because it can make the color of the character change to a point where they look ill or unnatural.


BTW, if there are any more mistakes in the post, I blame the pain medication.



One Response to “Quick Lighting Discussion”

  1. Thanks for taking the time to go over this; it’s really helpful!
    It’s amazing what a difference the lighting makes in creating a three dimensional effect. I’m going to try this.

    Now, go take care of yourself, and stay out of the ER, okay!?

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