Lighting Challenge #7: An Eye for an Eye


Please enjoy reading through this thread as an archive, but it is closed to new posts. You can still download the old models and also post your entry in order to ask for feedback here

This thread is archived.

Lighting Challenge #7 is on-line!

Eyes are possibly the most important part of a character, and learning to light and render eyes convincingly can make the difference between creating an engaging character and making a zombie. To get started, you can download the scene here:


The rules are to shade, light, and render this scene, to look like an eye. All shading and rendering techniques are fine, as long as your model is lit in 3D, with all the illumination and shadows coming from the light sources you add to your 3D scene. (This means basically anything goes except for projecting a photograph of an eye over the geometry…) Any minor tweaks you want to make to the scene are OK. You do not need to use all of the geometry if you find that this eyeball model has more parts modeled than you need. After you’ve posted your own entries, please share how you did it and try to help other people with their projects.



Good luck everyone!
I think this time I’ll actualy have the time to light this myself.
I’m also looking forward to see your entry Jeremy :slight_smile:


Looking forward to this one.

However, I’ve just DL’ed the .obj file and all I see is the patch of skin, no geometry for the eye or the eyelashes.

I don’t mind dropping in a sphere & some lashes, but I thought I’d ask if maybe this file was a mistake.



XSI OBJ exporter didn’t allow for NURBS so you also need the IGES file !
Unless Jeremy re-exports from Maya.


Sorry about that! The .obj problem is fixed. It now has all the models. (Shift-reload the download page and you should see the file size change for the new obj file.)

The obj file has everything converted into polygons. You’ll want to do a polygon smoothing operation on the surfaces before you’d render a close-up. Alternately, if you want NURBS surfaces, you can import them from the IGES file.

If people want me to host more file formats, I’m always willing to. If anyone wants to provide me with files for Max, C4D, Modo, or whatever other app you use, then I will host them, and that might make the challenge more convenient for other people who use your brand of software.



Thanks for the quick response. However c4d doesn’t seem to be able to open that file, Modo neither.

I’m kicking around the internet a bit and apparently the c4d Engineering bundle supports it, which leads me to believe I can figure out a way to open it with a little work. But I may end up just dropping in that geometry myself. If I do that (I’m gonna be off the computer for the next several hours) I’ll post the c4d file for anyone else to use if they like.


I just added DXF and FBX formats, in case those suit anyone’s importers.

Once it’s imported (and smoothed if you imported a polygonal format) the geometry should look like this:



barrymcw: Cinema imports the obj file fine. If you have the option the fbx is actually nicer though. With the obj the axis for all objects in the scene is placed a 0,0,0 regardless of where the object is in the scene. The fbx imports with the axis in the proper place.


Thanks much. The new OBJ works perfectly.

I doubt I’ll get a render in this evening, but I’m excited to get started.



Great, I’ll try to do this challenge. Others one were greatly done !
Thanks Jeremy for these challenges!


Hello Everybody… My first post at 3dRender and also first 3d graphics post ever !!

I been playing for Maya and Renderman for 2 months now … … Im using Renderman for Maya (RfM) plugin k.

So i change the Skin Surface to Subdivision Scheme and add SubSurface Scattering … Im also using DeepShadow from Renderman … No GI or Ray Trace for this yet… Ill like to work on the Eye Shader maybe changing color … also i liketo add some bump to the skin…

here’s the image

Thanks for all the help…


Thanks for these challenges Jeremy. This looks like the first one I’ll actually have time to take a crack at. Thanks again.


Hey, this looks cool, Ill give it a try. Ive got it working in C4D, and I have a file, so let me know where to send it, if you want it.


Wow Jeremy I just finished my candle scene and this has already came up ( I know I was late :p).

I hope to see your entry in this one Jeremy. This is gonna be exciting!


Okay, this is my first crack at this and it needs some work. I’ll render a larger version when I have a version that I am happier with. Let me know what you think.


I managed to hack his computer and got his entry, here is it:

Dont tell anyone ok?

Looking forward to see what this challenge comes up with, excpecting gorgeous renderings.


tahnks for another challenge Jeremy :slight_smile:

just downloaded :slight_smile: gonna start

good luck everyone


Okay… :smiley: This is my first time in the Lighting Challenges =D

The scene is very simple and the skin seems to be like rubber =x But I tried my best…

See Ya =)


Nice work guys…

@Mauricio your eye is looking great … try to put some reflections also SS on the skin all right…

@sjmcc nice artistic look … i like it :slight_smile:

here’s my update

I did some work on the skin bump also change the eye color to green using a 3d solid fractal with that … i change some of the eye materials to blinn n i dont know about that…

I would like to work on a layered shader to give more depth to the eye … ill do that later when i get some free time…also i like better reflections on the eye like mapping an image ??? i dont know how to do it since im not using GI or Ray trace , i get some weird eye look relfections with that… =(



Just downloaded the file, assigned basic materials with some sss on the eyes and skin, threw the kitchen hdr in there with an added directional light. Not bad for a start, poor eye image though.