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Thread: Lighting

  1. #1
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    Lighting

    I use Lightwave 3d to render out my Daz Studio characters. I built up a basic texture system that I need to change the base color and I have a realistic looking character. Right now I need a somewhat better lighting system. I use modified 3 light system but not sure I have it set correctly but it did the job. Bought a compositing course over the weekend that when he photographs the model he uses 3 constant lights.The 2 rim lights he has one on each side slightly behind the model at 100 percent lighting. The key light he has in front of the model and off to the right at 50 %. With that set up he has bright lights on each side of the model and the key light fills in between them. It looks like it is a very natural lighting setup. So I grabbed three area lights tried to set it up like he did and couldn't get the same lighting set up. So can someone help me to achieve this? Or work with me on lighting. I'm not a photographer but would like to learn how to mimic their lights in Lightwave.

  2. #2
    Curmudgeon in Training Ma3rk's Avatar
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    I do a lot of that myself.

    Any format you export from Daz will only have the basic textures. And to do proper texturing you need good lighting so it's a bit of Chicken or Egg.

    I'd highly recommend using an HDR set up initially; it's quick, easy, and results are immediate. You can still supplement if desired. I'm made a basic scene that I use all the time that's just a gray cove but with a camera rig that has separate axis controls. I do a 1/2 arc around the subject so you can see from different angles from what the same lighting is doing rather than rotate the subject in a turn-table fashion. I find that more revealing of issues than a turntable, particularly when dealing with Fur that uses translucency.

    Here's a VPR grab sample:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I usually turn the HDR's visibility off & set a solid BG, but that doesn't affect the subject. I currently use one called Furry Clouds (HDR Haven); has a good direct source but also a thin cloud layer that softens the fill side. Also with an HDR, you get all the stuff ABOVE & BEHIND camera that most forget about, but that's what you need for reflections, etc. in eyes particularly. You won't get that in a digital 3 point set up.

    When it comes to texturing, I'm using OD Tools but that only gets you part way. There's no set naming convention, so hard to tell at times if a map is supposed to be a Spec or a Bump at times. Alphas may be inverted, Tramsp maps that should be used as a clip, etc., so there's a lot of manual entry. Nor is there any direct way of translating from Daz's Iray to LW's PBR system that I've found anyway.

    Have fun.
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  3. #3
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    Talking of textures I use everything but the normal maps. I use bitmap2material to create a glossy map. Once I got the skin textures set up all you have to do was change the base color. I use 3 point light system plus I add a HDR light

  4. #4
    RETROGRADER prometheus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ma3rk View Post
    I do a lot of that myself.

    Any format you export from Daz will only have the basic textures. And to do proper texturing you need good lighting so it's a bit of Chicken or Egg.

    I'd highly recommend using an HDR set up initially; it's quick, easy, and results are immediate. You can still supplement if desired. I'm made a basic scene that I use all the time that's just a gray cove but with a camera rig that has separate axis controls. I do a 1/2 arc around the subject so you can see from different angles from what the same lighting is doing rather than rotate the subject in a turn-table fashion. I find that more revealing of issues than a turntable, particularly when dealing with Fur that uses translucency.

    Here's a VPR grab sample:

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Ack!Me_000_147.png 
Views:	79 
Size:	2.19 MB 
ID:	148390

    I usually turn the HDR's visibility off & set a solid BG, but that doesn't affect the subject. I currently use one called Furry Clouds (HDR Haven); has a good direct source but also a thin cloud layer that softens the fill side. Also with an HDR, you get all the stuff ABOVE & BEHIND camera that most forget about, but that's what you need for reflections, etc. in eyes particularly. You won't get that in a digital 3 point set up.

    When it comes to texturing, I'm using OD Tools but that only gets you part way. There's no set naming convention, so hard to tell at times if a map is supposed to be a Spec or a Bump at times. Alphas may be inverted, Tramsp maps that should be used as a clip, etc., so there's a lot of manual entry. Nor is there any direct way of translating from Daz's Iray to LW's PBR system that I've found anyway.

    Have fun.
    Mark,
    an advice and consideration.
    The image you posted is 2.2 mb and png format, it is taking minutes to load to look at, consider saving to jpg at 80% quality.
    Cute lion cub, I love them..looking decent except for the aliasing and a bit of lack of luster in the eyes, but your just testing..I know
    As for hdr, I think itīs not good enough with just any hdr..if you use a lion cub, why not opt for true savanna HDRīs..it matters for the lighting.
    Would like to see harder brighter direct sunlight on the cub as well.
    Personally I would just try with realistic sky instead of hdr(unless you have a really good one) and fill in with some savanna vegetation.

  5. #5
    RETROGRADER prometheus's Avatar
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    Edited..I accidently quoted Mark in this post..when it should be Grafxstudio..

    I assume you are refering to studio lighting with the Area light approach, if itīs environmental outdoors, you would normally not use that.
    First off, what room/studio do you opt for with the lighting? windows or reflector setups?
    Aim for scaling your area lights to be the same size as any window light source, or reflector source, think about the distance from that light source to your subject.
    Next check light intensity what is appropiate for a window light or a reflector light in intensity..that may be the hardest part, as well if you use falloffs..and often that may be a case of manually eyeballing tweaking it to look good, but the basics is to start with the above I think.
    You can scale your area lights with the size controls, but remember, if you scale them too big..you will loose out on sharper reflections like in the eyes, it will become more blurred/dispersed..and also yield softer shadows.

    with the new lumen value for lights, you can now set your intensity to match various photo lighting intensity...so read up on that, what light bulbs..reflectors and other light sources typicly have.
    Marks advices are good, but you can also use simply photorealistic sky, that will cover the lighting All around if using radiosity with it, ground should be there to reflect under the objects a tiny bit.
    Reflection for eyes, well if you donīt use HDRīs, you need to fill in with objects of buildings, cars, other people..and treeīs, and volume cloud items for best realism, or fake it with reflection maps for the parts that will be reflecting a lot, but that comprimizes the realism.

    For inside shots, you could ask yourself if you want a natural inside portrait look ala the girl with the pearl artwork, or similar with dark room and softer light on the subject..or a studio lighting.
    with that softer darker look, you should often reduce radiosity/GI, but it depends on the angle of light coming in to a room if any, and what time of the day or night it is.

    Also for setting up with area lights, remember that they are flat planes, which angle it has towards the lit subject is also of importance, you can use the viewport view from light to help out directing the angle towards the subject.

    But..we need to see some image of what you have now..what kind of environment it is in etc.

  6. #6
    Curmudgeon in Training Ma3rk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by prometheus View Post
    Mark,
    an advice and consideration.
    The image you posted is 2.2 mb and png format, it is taking minutes to load to look at, consider saving to jpg at 80% quality.
    Cute lion cub, I love them..looking decent except for the aliasing and a bit of lack of luster in the eyes, but your just testing..I know

    Oh, I didn't notice. I'll change my VPR grabs to jpg then.
    Earth can't be flat otherwise cats would have pushed everything off the edge!

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  7. #7
    Curmudgeon in Training Ma3rk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by grafxstudio View Post
    Talking of textures I use everything but the normal maps. I use bitmap2material to create a glossy map. Once I got the skin textures set up all you have to do was change the base color. I use 3 point light system plus I add a HDR light
    Normal maps add a lot to the detail. I've B2M as well, but that's really only for doing surfaces that UV tile. Not much use for most organic type models.

    When the FBX is imported, there's a .images folder created but with only the basic maps if there were any. Most of the newer characters & sets will have all the maps back in Daz so you have to go looking for them & copy over. Takes up a little more HD space, but much easier to work with in the long run than trying to use the original sources as they could be quite scattered about. I can rename them to something more logical when needed & leave the originals intact.
    Earth can't be flat otherwise cats would have pushed everything off the edge!

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  8. #8
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    Here is the model I textured yesterday. I created the skin textures and the eyelashes in two Libraries files. Each of the main skin surface has Glossy map which I invert for roughness, use specular map, use a subsurface map a copy of the glossiness map on clear coat, a bump map and the base color map. So whether I import as fbx or obj I use the same textures. I change each color map for each skin surface. Then when it come to clothing I have surfaces set up for most fabrics for PBR. Add themm for each surface and change the base color. So it don't take me long to set up a character once I import them. The hardest is when I have to import an obj format because I have to go in and change it from the Modeluv to useruv on each surfaceClick image for larger version. 

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  9. #9
    Curmudgeon in Training Ma3rk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by grafxstudio View Post
    Here is the model I textured yesterday. I created the skin textures and the eyelashes in two Libraries files. Each of the main skin surface has Glossy map which I invert for roughness, use specular map, use a subsurface map a copy of the glossiness map on clear coat, a bump map and the base color map. So whether I import as fbx or obj I use the same textures. I change each color map for each skin surface. Then when it come to clothing I have surfaces set up for most fabrics for PBR. Add themm for each surface and change the base color. So it don't take me long to set up a character once I import them. The hardest is when I have to import an obj format because I have to go in and change it from the Modeluv to useruv on each surfaceClick image for larger version. 

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    I was just going to mention that. I'm revisiting some characters that I originally did from OBJ's & now doing them from FBX, so my saved library was only partial help.

    Are you doing these in a Principled or Standard?

    Here's a screen grab of a nodal set up that is basically what OD Tools will do in a few clicks IF the map naming has a logical structure... which ~ 80% don't. But with this as a template, it'll get you a long way. There's always mix 'n match 'n swap 'n try things for me anyway. There really isn't a formula depending on what you have map wise. I just hit on using the spec map for rough & spec with a lowered opacity tonight & I'm pleased with it. Always seems to be a struggle to get those behaving. Don't know if it's technically correct but it does work quite well for this character anyway.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I just happened to be working on something that perfectly illustrates what I was saying earlier about needing to really check from differing light angles. Notice how with the light starting at quite frontal and partially as you come around seems fine. But then notice what happens when the angle becomes more acute? I haven't re-done the face yet so becomes the most obvious here, but also notice that from a very hard back, it looks fine again.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    So, the specific HDR really isn't the issue; you just want something that's a range of tonalities essentially so you can see how things behave. This is a work bench that your familiar with to get your surfacing working correctly, so you can just concentrate on the lighting when brought into a new scene.
    Earth can't be flat otherwise cats would have pushed everything off the edge!

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  10. #10
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    I added Normal maps to my surfaces. Like I said I have a library already setup for male and female. Here is my setup so far. Robbie Mueller helped me with setup so far.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Maybr this wrong but I like the outcome so far. The two weak spots I have our the eyes and the lights.

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