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Thread: Ambient Occlusion

  1. #1
    Registered User stevenpalomino's Avatar
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    Ambient Occlusion

    I'm having the hardest time trying to figure out Ambient occlusion in LW. It seems like it's much easier in other packages, but in LW you have to add it as a node? I think I might be doing something wrong then because it just turns my materials into grainy objects. Is there a tutorial out there that can clarify the process? I've watched William Vaughan's tutorial on it.. but I've already got a material set on my object. Do I need to make a separate pass or something? Thanks in advance!
    Steven

    PS you can see in the attachment I've added the node only to the pants
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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  2. #2
    Registered User Kuzey's Avatar
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    edit...I see you saw the video. I would play around with the setting and see what you get. Object scale might be a factor in how it works too..

    Kuzey

  3. #3
    Registered User stevenpalomino's Avatar
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    finally figured it out. I was using the "infinite" option instead of the ranged option in the occlusion 1 node. here's some before and after (with & without amb occ) pictures. Sure it needs some tweaking.. but worked after all next question:

    How in the world do I get soft shadows with area lights??
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  4. #4
    \\ is sparkling // Iain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stevenpalomino View Post

    How in the world do I get soft shadows with area lights??
    Scale the light up. Bigger the light, softer the shadow.
    portfolio

    The Liver is evil and must be punished!

  5. #5
    Registered User Kuzey's Avatar
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    You can get nice soft shadows with Dome lights...there's a video on that one too

    Kuzey

  6. #6
    Registered User stevenpalomino's Avatar
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    oops forgot about that :P thanks

  7. #7
    Architectural Designer Tzan's Avatar
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    Just thought I would post this.
    100% SG_AmbOcc_Exp no lights.
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  8. #8
    Registered User stevenpalomino's Avatar
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    Howd you do that?? Photoshop?

  9. #9
    Architectural Designer Tzan's Avatar
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    How did I do what?

    Modeled in LW
    Applied SG_AmbOcc_Exp.p shader, You can get that from Flay. there is also a node version.
    The ambient was set to 100%, no lights
    color 201...
    diffuse 90

    Thats rendered straight out of Layout, no photoshop

  10. #10
    Registered User stevenpalomino's Avatar
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    hmm.. I installed the plugin.. but where is it under :S

  11. #11
    \\ is sparkling // Iain's Avatar
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    Add it to your material in the Shaders Tab of the Material Editor.

    Default settings are pretty good-just change the Max Ray Length (basically the extent of the effect) to suit the scale of the object.
    portfolio

    The Liver is evil and must be punished!

  12. #12
    Registered User stevenpalomino's Avatar
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    ahhh okay I see.. would it plug into the main diffuse of each material? seems like it's a bit of a hassle to plug it into each material. I guess it'd be easier to just assign it to everything and set it up as a pass correct?

    Speaking of passes. How do I set up an occlusion pass? I'm coming from XSI so it's just "Create occlusion pass" there and then it renders and comps automatically.. How do I do this in LW?

  13. #13
    Rasterbator Bog's Avatar
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    Ha ha ha... "create occlusion pass" indeed. No, we work for a living around here :P

    You have to save a copy of your objects out with the Ambient Occlusion shader node applied (or as stated the SG_AmbOcc shader or node) to all your objects' surfaces. Then set your scene up with 100% ambient light, no other lights, saving out to a different folder.

    Then take a drink

    It's a heckofalot easier with ShaderMeister (which is on my to-buy list, below beer but above new socks) but that's a commercial tool.

    Breakouts in LW are, by default, A Bit of a Pain. If anyone's got a better way of breaking out an AO pass, I'm all ears. Eyes. Monitors. Whatever.

    I should say, though, that's specifically AO. For all your other buffers (Spec, reflec, yada yada) you want to pop open your Image Processing panel, and locate the Add Image Filter dropdown in the Processing Tab.

    Adding the Render Buffer Export plugin will let you set buffer savers for each channel. Yes, you need a separate instance of the plugin for each channel. Yes, you can have another drink now.

    EXRTrader from those same fine and fantastic folks at DB&W, who also do ShaderMeister, will let you handle all your buffer savers flexibly in a single plugin, just like grown-ups do.
    Last edited by Bog; 07-05-2010 at 09:51 PM.
    Mark Hennessy-Barrett
    www.imaginetix.co.uk
    www.shaxam.com
    ...and then I was on fire.

  14. #14
    Registered User stevenpalomino's Avatar
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    Yeah.. i was trying to find a less painful way of doing ambient occlusion.. but I guess i'll have to buy the plugin.. although.. the amb occ + Exrtrader deal doesn't look too bad.. $100 for something that'll save me hours at rendertime? Yes please!

  15. #15
    Rasterbator Bog's Avatar
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    The folks who built those tools are Top Notch as well, which is always good. I like doing business with good people.
    Mark Hennessy-Barrett
    www.imaginetix.co.uk
    www.shaxam.com
    ...and then I was on fire.

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