View Full Version : Night Scene (Vray)

05 May 2006, 06:53 AM
Hi Guys

Need some advice on using Vray to setup a dark cityscape (exteriour) night scene.
Basically at the moment just have one directional light running and playing with the settings in Vray.

All the buildings in the scene have self illuminated windows - problem is that despite having relativly nice models/texturing work in the scene - it still looks 3d & therefore fake... really need photorealistic

all suggestions welcome :)

05 May 2006, 10:11 AM
What kind of mood are you after? Do you have a render you could show?
Nighttime light (moonlight) would be very soft so see if you can use a skylight. What colours and the main-to-fill ration all depends on the mood you want.
Nighttime city stuff also looks particularly interesting if lamplight is being reflected in roads and pavement.


05 May 2006, 12:21 AM
Hi - thanks for the reply.

This image is a frame from an animation (camera pull back) im working on.
Mood is dark, dirty, slight play on blue tinges.
Bascially should eventually look like a dark stormy night - possible rain to come later.
Will use vray light materials for street lights later which should add some cool effects to assist lighting up the streets.

Currently working with one directional light (grey) - GI settings & vray environment light dark aqua blue. I also been playing with Vray displacement mod to create streets (which Im still trying to figure out - needs work as you can see looks flat and washed out at the moment)

This project is still very much a work in progress - overall aim is to keep render times down as much as possible & would like to gain photo-realistic results.
All suggestions welcome :)

05 May 2006, 03:08 AM
Which version are you using ?:)

05 May 2006, 05:29 AM
Ok, here are a few things I'd try out:

-get a background in there. Since almost half your frame shows sky you should get one in there asap to judge overall atmosphere, brighness, etc.

-add some direction to the skylight. You may need to ditch the moonlight if you're going for ominous storm night (overcast) but make sure your skylight has a brighter side and not just a top to bottom gradient. For example add a large, soft moon in your skylight material. It'll create some shadow and light variation

-increase skylight detail. I can't tell what direction, if any, the mainlight is coming from as no shadows are cast. If you're relying on skylight only then increase the density so you can make out contact shadows.

-make pools of light. Separate foreground and background by placing lights strategically. Lead the eye. Right now the scene is evenly lit and therefore flat.

-get some speculars in there. I assume the moon is behind the cam so it won't create any and the skylight doesn't either. If you're purely using Blinn materials, scatter a few non-light casting omnis in the scene (at for example windows, streetlights, etc). This is because Blinn won't pick up specs from self iluminated materials.
If you're using any VRay materials on your walls, pavement or streets then set them to fresnel/falloff some blurry reflections. That'll pick up the self illuminated materials (but render longer). You may need to really boost the self illum mats though.

-to save rendertime, do your lightpasses without GI and do a separate skylight pass for later comping. It's so dark that you'd get little bouncelight so no need to waste rendertime on that. Unless of course you have an exceptionally bright light in the scene, in which case you render this one out separately too with GI on.

Hope that helps


05 May 2006, 07:07 AM
Hey Wiro

Great advise - thanks for that!!!
I will try all those recommendations and post another screen shot soon to recieve more feedback.



05 May 2006, 05:43 AM
I was actually using a Directional light not a skylight - i would like to try to keep away from using skylight (in this case render time becomes unbareable)

Using vray 1.4 and suggestions for lighting the scene with different lighting systems would be appreciated.

Cheers :)

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