Bounce Lighting

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  03 March 2011
Bounce Lighting

Hello there,

I'm sure this is a F.A.Q. but I was searching for it in this forum and on the internet and I was unable to find something that satisfied me. Maybe I was using the least apropiate reference words.

How can I create bounce lighting for animation like it's done in films? Do they use radiosity, light rigs or what sort of method?

I know Pixar uses their own Point-Based GI. Do all studios do that?

Thank you to anyone who responds. Have a good day.
  03 March 2011
Bounce Light

It all really depends on the time you have to complete a project, how long your rendering schedule is, what your software supports and which techniques are reasonable for a particular shot. There's no one solution answer for all projects.

As far as bounce light techniques I'll name a few popular ones (there's many more):

Photon mapping - can be long to render, less control, most accurate
Point clouds - not supported by many render packages, can take awhile to create the pointcloud
Camera based GI (Final Gather) - can be long to render, less control, can flicker
Manually placing lights to simulate bounce - longer to setup, lots of control, can still take awhile to render if not cautious

Any one of these solutions work well but they each after their advantages and drawbacks. If it looks the way you want and rendertime will work with your deadline, then use that method. In the end you may even mix techniques. If a photon map looks good in general and just needs some extra accents for a particular shot, then you could strategically place some spotlights. Hopes this helps you out.

  03 March 2011
simple set ups:

renderman: make environment light, set to 'colorbleed', turn on raytracing, and render. (point based is smarter once you nail everything down)

mental ray: either use an ibl node or change the environment color to a something other than white, turn on final gather.

vray: create dome light, use GI if you wish (brute force, adaptive DMC)

thats really all the renderers i've used for work..

if your interested in getting into nice results fast, things like Octane, Arion, Fry-Render, Maxwell, Theta Render provide a nice way into making pretty images.
  03 March 2011
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