Lighting Challenge #23: Mad Science (WIP)


@wzienrgo - I really love your image I think it has great composition and is a really nice render but I think as an image it is just missing a few things. Namely being texture. I think once you get some really nice textures on the books, especially those facing the camera the image will improve a lot. I also like the idea of having that fetus inside the tube but the really bright reflections are interfering with the fetus coming off as the subject, if that makes sense.

The bright blown out windows are perfect the way they are. I think that just a slight darkening of the darkest areas of the image would really make the image pop. That can just be done in PS.

Looks really good.


Nice fire effect! Only issue is that I don’t think it really does anything for the image other than just look cool. I think this is because the mouse isn’t really reacting in any way. It may just be me but it looks like the fire isn’t casting any light. I think it may help if you changed your composition to make the fire the subject? That would be my suggestion, still a really nice effect though!

Just my two cents



@ udayavel really lovely work, I like a lot the bloom effect in the scene
@Sharinsri really good light from above it add a drammatic effect, I will boost a bit a fill light in the cage
@jadrock the texture look good, even if so much red light saturate the whole composition and doesnt’ give contrast to the image. I will also adjust a bit composition to have it more balanced. on the right of the image there is too much emplty space in comparison with the crowded center of the image
@Destinylight the glow look very real, i like a lot the shelf with the beaker glowing (the blue ones)
I will add a bit more of fill light in the front of the image and eventually take out the ball if you would not like to texture it. The mouse need a more of displacement/fur. It’s really a a good image mate !
@Inky99 Even if generally I dont’ like image with lot of image,tehis is really well planned image. The glass look good and also the liquid inside the beaker: as a personal taste I prefer the second one (with the contrast warm in the near and blue in the stairs) the only thing to check out is the refraction index of the sphere (a flint glass should be 1.73 or so). Great work !
@greyother Keep going and give a bit of SSS to the skun of the mad scientist
@Stillewater. Keep it simple. Start with putting lights, like one omni in fonrt, a fill light, a rim and make a test render without texture
@tank570585 put some fill light (or just a bit of GI) even if the light come from the neon effect it look a bit too dark. Great start ! and very creative idea
@Pendragonz Wonderful ! One of my favorite !
@jn999 Cool ! I like it :wink: you can give the brain liquid less color in order to put more in evidence the brain
@russellfilms, can you give some hint on the ball ? i really like it. Your image look great I will add just a tiny bit of fill insie the cage. Great shaders !!!
@Miliciano. That’s great texturing of the glasses really incredible I love them I think I will post in my website :slight_smile: (of course giving you credit)
@Leight, really on of my favorite
@JM-art Keep going and add a bit more of bloom to keep it cartoonish. You should fur tho the mouse :slight_smile:
@rajavijayaraman add a bit of fure and it will look even better, really great image!

@kanooshka Where are you :slight_smile: ?
Waiting for feedback from all and then posting/rendering final image this week :slight_smile:


 Thanks [b]jojo1975 [/b][b]&[/b][b] zmuh11 for your comments.i will try to add fur.


Ok, its been a while I was in vacation for five weeks and yes I didnt touched a PC at all :smiley:

I started to texture wich I think its always the longest part of lightning challenge like this. You cant have a good lighning without good material that reacts correctly to lights. So feels more like a texture challenge for me If i compare the time I pass on light VS texture.

Anyway still lot of fun, so here is a new update, its a crappy progressive render with low render settings, just for the purpose of posting but it gives quite a good idea.


Thanks zmuh11 for your suggestions. I will try to improve it soon.

And here is the update of the other image in my first post. Also waiting for C & C :slight_smile:


Again it looks like a really nice render nice soft subtle mood, but overall it’s a little boring. Especially the top half, again I think it’s just a texturing issue especially on the books. I think the desktop could also use more variation.

I also am not a fan of the the glasses being made of just that one shiny material. Again I think a little variation would add some life to this image. Also maybe the bokeh effect is just a little bit too strong.

Again nice render but it needs some work to catch a viewer’s eye IMO.

Still looks awesome though I love your materials!

I like the baseball cap, though choice of team is a little troublesome :smiley:
The tackboard also looks nice can’t wait to see it more finished.



Not had a lot of time to work on it for a while. But made some changes to lighting…

All advice welcome.

Will try and do a bit more before the end of the month.


Hey guys,

This is almost the final version. The lighting is pretty much set I just got tweak and change a few shaders and this is good to go. This version is just a raw render with some color correction and stuff. When I render this for real I’ll separate the various lighting passes, etc.

Hope you enjoy!



hey guys, this is my first post and first submission to the lighting challenge,
please give your advice!



This was a happy accident I ran into while working on this scene.

What do you guys think?


The people hanging over there is really an interesting point for me :). Fantastic idea.

Again thanks a lot for zmuh11’s suggestions. I’m still working on it right now. Hope to get it improved.


Here’s my finished work for the candle light version.
I am going to make a daylight version soon.
Made with 3ds Max, Mental Ray & After Effect.

Your comments & criticisms are welcomed.

Hi-Res is here


like it, but it could use some more texture and shading details like grit/dirt and bumps.

Nice colors, but the candle light is a little bit too saturated.



Thank you for your comments. You are not the only one suggesting me to add some texture to my scene. Now I’ve had the books facing camera textured as zmuh11 suggested. For everyting else I may not have more time to deal with them. :slight_smile:


Love this atmosphere! Can‘t wait to see your final image.


Agreed, CHRiTTeR. My laptop screen tends to desaturate everything.
Here’s the desaturated version.
I am going to get a desktop soon, Please recommend me for better LCD monitor. :slight_smile:
MAC has good display, too bad 3ds Max cannot be installed on mac.


@tank570585 - for some reason when I saw this it reminded me of the movie “The Number 23” You should take that gritty idea and run with it.

@ollie83 - The biggest drawback for me to your scene is the fog coming out of the skylights. It’s so uniform that it looks very unrealistic. I would try added a texture to the lights that are casting the fog to get some variation in them. Also I think your framing could change a lot. I know you are trying to keep the hanging people in the background. Maybe keep them in the background but then pick 1-2 props and zoom in really close on them and texture/do whatever to the props to perhaps make them explain just why the hell the mad scientist is frying people and hanging them out to dry. Some nice texture work in there.

@jeonado - I think your candlelight saturation is fine but the book that the glasses are on appear to be floating???


Hi, this is my first attempt, in to this forum, comments are welcome



Hi everyone
I’ve done some changes to my shaders and tweaked a bit more of the lighting. I’m guessing that this should be my final but all critique and comments are still welcome so I could make some last min changes.
Thank you very much

3ds max, mental ray, FG only.