And by the way, there is a huge downside to using GI or radiosity or whatever….
It’s called “artistic license”. The ability an artist has to take reality and modify it to suit his purposes, to generate a mood in an image, to tell a story, to generate a certain emotion in his viewers. GI tries to reproduce reality. Artists generally want to take that one step further. They want to twist reality a bit to enhance a mood or an emotion. With GI, you basically set up your scene, and the GI simulator figures out how light would behave in that scene.
But often you don’t want that. Often you want to exaggerate the lighting, to generate, for example, a mood of mystery, or joy, or serenity.
Now if you’re a hobbyist whose only interest is to amaze himself that he could generate an image that looks all real and stuff, and have no interest in making images to tell a story or for others to enjoy, then yeah, do whatever is fun. But if you want to have flexibility and control over your images so you can tell your story, then GI might be less than ideal.
And FWIW, this is not a new technique, or something that was discovered by anyone here. We were doing this back in the ‘80s and 90’s before radiosity was even invented, and when GI solutions took weeks to render with the slow processors we had back then. And big studios are still doing it today to save render time and to have control and flexibility.
It’s a good thing….