View Full Version : How do I add soft sun light through a window in Maya?

09 September 2009, 06:30 PM
Hi all,

I'm working on an animation and want some soft sun rays coming through the window. I have an area light which is acting as the sun and this has been placed outside the window, I need the light to penetrate the window and fade. I presume the 'fog' option is what I need for the light but I cannot find it within the area light options. I have also tried a spot light and have managed to use the fog affect but it does not penetrate the window.

Any help appreciated!


09 September 2009, 06:52 AM
Area light doesn't have a light fog attribute. From memory using the spotlight decay regions will give you the ability to specify a maximum distance for your fog. Click the spotlight press t and click the little clock icon that appears a few times and it will give you a visual guide to the extent of each decay region. You will also need to use depth map shadows to get the light to take account of the shape of the hole you are shining it through e.g. window

09 September 2009, 09:50 AM
Thank you Nadmai.

I have actually managed to attach a light fog to the area light through making the light a spot light and then adding the fog, then changing the light back to an area light.. it has retained the light fog attribute. Though the light still will not penetrate the window, though it is casting shadows... I presume it's a setting with the material I have for my window, I'm using a Phong and just upped the transparency.. any ideas?

09 September 2009, 11:12 AM
I've managed to get the light fog working and penatrating through the window... though it looks okay I would prefer to have more of a sun ray/beams affect, the light fog just looks too foggy!... also it is possible to change the shape of the light fog as it's a cone shape, it would be better if it could project from the shape of the area light....

09 September 2009, 11:30 AM
You could try mapping a 3d texture to the light fog colour such as a rock and then play around until you have a low grey with a brighter grey for the flecks of dust in the air - it that's the effect you're looking for.

I don't know how you would get the shape of the fog to be like an area light using this method, all I would suggest is cutting the angle of the spotlight right down increasing the decay region and moving the light further away as the angle will tend to make the fog lines tend towards the parallel.

09 September 2009, 08:18 PM
thanks Nadmai, I pretty much did what you said by bringing the fog light away to create a better angle, making the fog light less cone shaped.... seems to of worked out quite well

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09 September 2009, 08:18 PM
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