Learning Dark Arts

Come learn the art of 3D computer generated art and animation. This blog deals with the lessons learned and the art created by Robert G. Male using DazStudio from Daz3D. Also covered are the ancillary software, tools, techniques, and processes needed both before and after rending in the 3D software.


Spell casting woman.

R.M.T.P. Co.


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February 6, 2012

No Beard Please

I mentioned previously about issues that I have had with lighting lately. Beyond the obvious too dark or too bright issue there is another one that involves shadows. DazStudio creates some shadow-like features when you turn on lights in the scene. These tend to be limited to the figures and are due to where light hits, where it does not hit, and the levels in between. Some of these are very nice looking and much desired. I have been dealing with issues where they are not wanted because they look unrealistic or just unappealing. One of those issues I have been fighting in postproduction is bearded women. If you put in an overhead light so that the floor or ground in your scene is not pitch black you almost automatically get this beard effect or shadows on the lower face, but they are not where you expect they should be. Sometimes they ride very high on the cheek as in the picture below.

I find it very difficult to blend out these beards and notice them in so many recent renders. There must have been some kind of change in the way that DazStudio renders the scenes. In addition I have found this problem to be onerously more apparent when I turn the Shadow settings on for the overhead light. I have come up with a fix within the render engine, but it may present its own problems. I have started changing the angle of this ground light to more than 90 degrees down from the horizon. An X-Rotate of the light of -110 degrees is a good place to start. It does make the light less bright on the ground so you may need to adjust the Brightness to compensate. Depending on your scene and the brightness, it may affect how your figures' are lit from behind. When I use a two light set up it hasn't been an issue and the fact that it lights the very back of everything means less impact on the scene if the Y-Rotate is parallel to the angle of your camera, otherwise it may light some items in a way that you do not want.

If you haven't clicked through on the image above to the full size image please do. That scene has the -90 X-Rotate and a light pointing horizontally straight at the figure so that it is not dark. Where then do those light patches appearing on her midriff and under her breasts come from? Neither light should hit those spots like that, with or without shadows turned on, but there they are.

Music: Waiting For Wednesday by Lisa Loeb.

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About Me

Robert G. Male

Name: Robert G. Male
Location: Ontario, Canada

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