View Full Version : Maya Mental Ray Room Lighting

03 March 2009, 11:14 AM
Hello CGTalkers,

So I'm revisiting a room I made about a year ago and introducing mental ray lighting. I have yet to find a good tutorial that talks about a correct way to lighting a room like this. Ive tried maya physical sun and sky, ive tried HDRI, and I've tried area lights. I just can't achieve the volume and density that the original photo has. Whats the best way to light a room like this. Know of any good tutorials?

Thanks in advance!

03 March 2009, 02:32 PM
Very good work! :thumbsup: The differences I see are the shadows in the original are darker. Try to use camera exposure and get the shadow darkness with it. If it won't work, then find GI multiplier and decrease it a little. Then sadows on the floor in the original look softer: the reason is probably that your shadows are emitted from logical small fixtures, but in reality they maybe mix with bounced light from the ceiling, making them more soft...though I'm not sure. Try to replace them with one big area light, it will calculate faster and cleaner, and make shadows soft. Though leave the small lights and exclude them from illumination and shadow casting and GI to look like they are illuminating. Make reflections stronger, they look less pronouned than in the original.

03 March 2009, 03:13 PM
I would also add that some of your shaders could use some reflectivity/specular tweaking. The table top, and the ladder particularly stand out as needing to be more reflective, but with a glossier reflection.

As they currently are, the reflections are too diffused, giving them a matte appearance.

Otherwise, you seem to have a strong start. Best of luck!

03 March 2009, 07:41 AM
Thanks guys for the feedback.

So is my best bet just sticking to area lights to pour light into the room? As I use HDRI it seems better at lighting an object and physical sun is good for outside.

Know of any tutorials?

Thanks again guys.

03 March 2009, 03:05 PM
I typically use an area light to simulate skylight coming through a window, but that's certainly not the only way. If I want sunlight streaming through the window as well, I'll usually use a directional light as well.

Here's my normal setup for an internal daylight shot: a strong directional light (light blue to light warm color tone) with crisp shadows, coupled with a blue-toned muted area light with very soft shadows to simulate bounced exterior light & the sky.

Like I said, I think your lighting is well on it's way, you're just losing some it in your surface shaders.

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03 March 2009, 03:05 PM
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