Making an object in the scene into a light source?

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  • SimonJMSimonJM Posts: 5,852
    edited December 1969

    RAMWolff said:
    Still no luck with this. I loaded in a "tube" light source from the Uber set and that renders just fine. Tried the suggestions from the link but still have no luck with creating my own light source using an object in the scene. This should not be this hard.

    I concur, it should not be so hard, so ... what prop(s) are you using for the light sources? If I have them I will try them out to see what I get.
  • RAMWolffRAMWolff Posts: 9,671
    edited November 2013

    It's a home made prop done in DAZ Studio and then UV'd and improved in ZBrush and then exported and imported into DAZ Studio.....

    I made it to have something to make my poses for Dawn in, a front wall to lean on, a back wall to lean on and a floor to catch shadows. I got a little fancier with the mirror shaders and what not but it's really a simple thing. All with material zones to turn off areas I don't want on.

    The area I have darkened with text showing where the Uber Area Light is is what I settled with. The intention was to have both columns, the beam and the short front wall as light sources. Add in different colors and light strengths to give an interesting effect on Dawn but as I've mentioned it didn't work out quite that way.

    This is the end result with just the tube light and a few other lights I had in the scene already. Turned out fine but it's not the intended idea.

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    Post edited by RAMWolff on
  • SimonJMSimonJM Posts: 5,852
    edited December 1969

    RAMWolff said:
    It's a home made prop done in DAZ Studio and then UV'd and improved in ZBrush and then exported and imported into DAZ Studio.....

    I made it to have something to make my poses for Dawn in, a front wall to lean on, a back wall to lean on and a floor to catch shadows. I got a little fancier with the mirror shaders and what not but it's really a simple thing. All with material zones to turn off areas I don't want on.

    The area I have darkened with text showing where the Uber Area Light is is what I settled with. The intention was to have both columns, the beam and the short front wall as light sources. Add in different colors and light strengths to give an interesting effect on Dawn but as I've mentioned it didn't work out quite that way.

    This is the end result with just the tube light and a few other lights I had in the scene already. Turned out fine but it's not the intended idea.


    So basically some cube and plane primitives, with the tweaking you have done in ZBrush?
    Really, really should be working. My guess would be inverted normals, I think you can quickly check that by scaling the prop to -100%

  • FirstBastionFirstBastion Posts: 5,363
    edited December 1969

    Whatever gets the look you want in the shortest possible time, that's the tool to use.

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  • RAMWolffRAMWolff Posts: 9,671
    edited December 1969

    SimonJM said:
    RAMWolff said:
    It's a home made prop done in DAZ Studio and then UV'd and improved in ZBrush and then exported and imported into DAZ Studio.....

    I made it to have something to make my poses for Dawn in, a front wall to lean on, a back wall to lean on and a floor to catch shadows. I got a little fancier with the mirror shaders and what not but it's really a simple thing. All with material zones to turn off areas I don't want on.

    The area I have darkened with text showing where the Uber Area Light is is what I settled with. The intention was to have both columns, the beam and the short front wall as light sources. Add in different colors and light strengths to give an interesting effect on Dawn but as I've mentioned it didn't work out quite that way.

    This is the end result with just the tube light and a few other lights I had in the scene already. Turned out fine but it's not the intended idea.


    So basically some cube and plane primitives, with the tweaking you have done in ZBrush?
    Really, really should be working. My guess would be inverted normals, I think you can quickly check that by scaling the prop to -100%


    Hmm, well the UV program I use to straighten out the UV's that ZBrush generates will show the obj as black when the normals are inverted, this was not the case, everything showed as it should have.

  • SzarkSzark Posts: 10,633
    edited December 1969

    RAM that little graphic labelled Area Light Source is not the light source but a headlamp blocker, as the name implies it turns off the Preview (headlamp) lights. This is due to Area lights not being true lights and therefore will not turn off the preview lights themselves at render time, so they need a little help.

    The light Source is the mesh itself. I just waned to clear that up.

    You could use two Area Planes scaled to the floor and half wall and hide the old mesh light parts and see if that works.

    I haven't been able to text this issue since it was raised a few days ago, it was linked to in this thread on page 2

    Simon if my memory serves me negative scaling doesn't work for inverting normals any more in DS and hasn't done so for some time now. Again something I have not checked lately but when I found out from Richard I went and tested it.

  • RAMWolffRAMWolff Posts: 9,671
    edited December 1969

    Yes, I know but thanks. I outlined the area but had the tube light made transparent but that little spiky doohickey was still showing so wanted to outline where I placed the tube light. Sorry, should have been more clear about that.

  • RAMWolffRAMWolff Posts: 9,671
    edited December 1969

    I rebuilt the pose station. Added in three light sources above. Over all better. There are some UV issues so I'll fix those when I get some more time.

    Just used a simple rod, included in the newly made set but turned transparent to light the scene. Colored the light to see if it was really working and ended up liking it. The light sources above are just Ambient turned up fully to get fake effect but to show the that they are ready to use.

    UberAreaLight-Success.jpg
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  • TJohnTJohn Posts: 10,533
    edited November 2013

    Cool, maybe I'll finally get a chance to pay you back for the great freebie morphs and stuff I got from you, Dude.
    First off, the omnifreaker area base is what you want to use.
    Think of it this way - it adds some categories to the shader on the surface of your object to turn it into a light emitter. It is a shader, not a light.

    1. Select the surface you want to turn into a light emitter - here I used the light bulb on the pull string light from "Light The Way", putting it and a camera inside a cube.
    2. Find the omnifreaker uberarealight base (looks like you already know where it is) and with the surface still selected double-click the icon.
    3. I've given you the settings for the light bulb surface, so you can get an idea of what works and how.

    I've added a render I did that is completely lit by the light bulb objects in the scene, each one acting as a light-emitter. All you have to do is copy and paste the surface to any other objects you want to light up.

    Hope this helps.

    ETA: the second image should come first.

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    Post edited by TJohn on
  • TJohnTJohn Posts: 10,533
    edited December 1969

    And a little rgb fun with the lights. :)

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  • RAMWolffRAMWolff Posts: 9,671
    edited December 1969

    Thanks so much for this sir. I'll give it a try tonight or tomorrow. I'm off to coffee and dinner so not sure when I'll be home.

    Glad you like the morphs! It was fun making them! :-)

  • zawarkalzawarkal Posts: 1,018
    edited December 1969

    tjohn, thank you for the detailed instructions!!

  • cwichuracwichura Posts: 1,042
    edited December 1969

    Estroyer said:
    Not to mention those lovely HD benefits from the new M6/V6 don't seem to transfer well to external renderers.

    I am a bit bummed by this, is it really that bad for the HD figures?
    HD morphs work just fine in LuxRender (at least via Reality, I don't have Luxus to test it, but I assume it's the same since they both use the underlying Studio API to retrieve the mesh). You just have to set the subdivision level on the figure you've applied HD morphs to to 3 in Studio (requires using the parameters to unlock the default limit of 2 levels). With this, the HD morphed meshes are exported without issue.
  • RAMWolffRAMWolff Posts: 9,671
    edited December 1969

    OK. Making progress.

    I think my last niggle is knowing how to make the light source have more of a natural glow about it. The overhead lights have Ambient applied so they show up in the scene but they look like flat colored disks. I'd like to achieve a glow of sorts with the center of the disks brighter than the edges. Probably not possible but thought I'd ask.

    This is my "PosingStation" rebuilt AGAIN for better UV Mapping. 3 over head lamps all have separate material zones so I can make a customized overhead lighting setup. The LightBar has it's transparency turned all the way up so it not visible in the scene but still casts light.

    UberArea-4Lights.jpg
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  • SimonJMSimonJM Posts: 5,852
    edited December 1969

    Not sure if it will give the effect you wish, but try setting the UberArea light on those overheads to a high intensity, falloff active and falloff end to a very, very low value - something like 10 to 20?

  • RAMWolffRAMWolff Posts: 9,671
    edited December 1969

    tjohn said:
    Cool, maybe I'll finally get a chance to pay you back for the great freebie morphs and stuff I got from you, Dude.
    First off, the omnifreaker area base is what you want to use.
    Think of it this way - it adds some categories to the shader on the surface of your object to turn it into a light emitter. It is a shader, not a light.

    1. Select the surface you want to turn into a light emitter - here I used the light bulb on the pull string light from "Light The Way", putting it and a camera inside a cube.
    2. Find the omnifreaker uberarealight base (looks like you already know where it is) and with the surface still selected double-click the icon.
    3. I've given you the settings for the light bulb surface, so you can get an idea of what works and how.

    I've added a render I did that is completely lit by the light bulb objects in the scene, each one acting as a light-emitter. All you have to do is copy and paste the surface to any other objects you want to light up.

    Hope this helps.

    ETA: the second image should come first.

    Learned quite a bit from your screen shots. Thanks so much

    I am still having issues though, might just be a limitation of what the shaders can accomplish more than anything else.

    Is there no way to make the lights "glow"? The Ambient doesn't really do that. All I'm seeing that the Ambient does is creates a visual for the light source but the glow missing leaves the effect slightly flat truth be told.

    Also finishing up my first render with my rebuilt Posing Station. It's now got 38 built in lights and 35 material zones for turning off stuff you don't need in the scene. What I'm not seeing is in the reflection in the mirrored wall the lights are not showing up, the base is but the light bulbs are transparent.

    It's always something! lol

  • cwichuracwichura Posts: 1,042
    edited December 1969

    RAMWolff said:
    Is there no way to make the lights "glow"? The Ambient doesn't really do that. All I'm seeing that the Ambient does is creates a visual for the light source but the glow missing leaves the effect slightly flat truth be told.

    Sounds like you are looking for a volumetric effect by your description. The 'glow' is really an atmospheric property of the micro-particles in the air reflecting the light from the emitting source. (E.g., think fog effects.)

    That said, I don't use 3Delight to render, so I don't know how you set this up within Studio itself, though I believe I've seen various atmospheric packages in the store here in the past. In LuxRender, volumetrics like this this is easily to do, though they absolutely murder render speed...

  • cwichuracwichura Posts: 1,042
    edited December 1969

    Another option is to apply a bloom effect in post. This is good for localized light sources. I use this trick for Lightsaber glows. Examples: Holding Court, Sith Assassin 001, Sith Assassin 002

  • TJohnTJohn Posts: 10,533
    edited December 1969

    Yeah Wolfie, I'm afraid for glow you'll need to use an Atmospheric Camera (AoA has a good set) of the Volume type. If you have PhotoShop, it has a filter called Diffuse Glow that works well. Just duplicate your image, run the filter (it's very adjustable) and then turn down the opacity on the glow layer until you like what you see. I'm sure there's an equivalent in Gimp, et.al.
    I used the filter on this image to make the sphere glow.

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  • RAMWolffRAMWolff Posts: 9,671
    edited December 2013

    Well here is the render. I guess I left some maps on the front wall as it’s got something that made it reflect my homemade star system so it makes that area look really odd.

    One of the issues: notice in the mirror reflection behind Dawn that the light’s are not rendering, but the bases of the lights are. Odd behavior.

    I guess post work for the lights is what I'll have to do then, thanks for all the great tips on that!

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    Post edited by RAMWolff on
  • TJohnTJohn Posts: 10,533
    edited December 1969

    My, that is odd. Only the lights on the top on the far ends are showing in the mirror, as well, including the bases. Stumped...

  • RAMWolffRAMWolff Posts: 9,671
    edited December 1969

    Yea, I'll have to keep playing around with it till I figure it out. If anyone's got any ideas about that let me know. THANKS again for all the help, very much appreciated! :-)

  • BarubaryBarubary Posts: 1,174
    edited December 2013

    cwichura said:
    In LuxRender, volumetrics like this this is easily to do, though they absolutely murder render speed...

    Oh, they do that in 3Delight, too....:ahhh:

    Post edited by Barubary on
  • SimonJMSimonJM Posts: 5,852
    edited December 1969

    RAMWolff said:
    Yea, I'll have to keep playing around with it till I figure it out. If anyone's got any ideas about that let me know. THANKS again for all the help, very much appreciated! :-)

    I've sometimes had issues with applying the UberArea light shader to multiple surfaces, but not of late. Each of the lights is it's own material zone I think you said, so you have 20 to 30 different surfaces set to be light emitting?
  • RAMWolffRAMWolff Posts: 9,671
    edited December 1969

    SimonJM said:
    RAMWolff said:
    Yea, I'll have to keep playing around with it till I figure it out. If anyone's got any ideas about that let me know. THANKS again for all the help, very much appreciated! :-)

    I've sometimes had issues with applying the UberArea light shader to multiple surfaces, but not of late. Each of the lights is it's own material zone I think you said, so you have 20 to 30 different surfaces set to be light emitting?

    Yes, it was but a test but I did select many light's in the props and applied the same shader to it and then tweaked each set (color mostly).

  • SimonJMSimonJM Posts: 5,852
    edited December 1969

    RAMWolff said:
    SimonJM said:
    RAMWolff said:
    Yea, I'll have to keep playing around with it till I figure it out. If anyone's got any ideas about that let me know. THANKS again for all the help, very much appreciated! :-)

    I've sometimes had issues with applying the UberArea light shader to multiple surfaces, but not of late. Each of the lights is it's own material zone I think you said, so you have 20 to 30 different surfaces set to be light emitting?

    Yes, it was but a test but I did select many light's in the props and applied the same shader to it and then tweaked each set (color mostly).

    May be worth checking that Ambient is active on each light surface in turn?

  • RAMWolffRAMWolff Posts: 9,671
    edited December 1969

    Yes, each light has the ambient turned on according to the instructions from tjohn's screen shots.

  • RKane_1RKane_1 Posts: 2,976
    edited December 1969

    Joequick said:
    Yeah, I'd gladly pay for a one click solution shader pack that just made stuff glow and magically worked right in nearly all lighting conditions.

    Why is there no "/like" button in this forum.... oh yeah...it's not Facecbook. *chuckle*

  • HitManWAHitManWA Posts: 152
    edited December 1969

    K T Ong said:
    I would strongly recommend the Reality plugin. Using this plugin you can convert absolutely any surface in your scene into a real light source, plus adjust the light's color and intensity and even make Reality put a glowing aura around the light source. (I believe Luxus can do all this, too, but I've zero experience with it.)

    I'm not one to show off, but below is an example of what I meant. It's rendered using Reality. The two laser beams were just two cylinder primitives which I turned into light sources, plus put an aura around them. Good, huh? ;-)

    How did you set the aura in reality?

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