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Paul Hunnicutt
Senior Member
Username: Asonearchitecture

Post Number: 384
Registered: 08-2011
Posted on Friday, November 09, 2012 - 04:02 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

I'm not able to see soft shadows. I'm bet this is User error - something wrong with my settings and not a bug.

hard shadows


soft shadows


sun settings


raising the softness/tolerance values doesn't seem to do anything


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support@formZ.com
Moderator
Username: Tech

Post Number: 18165
Registered: 04-2001


Posted on Friday, November 09, 2012 - 04:05 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

Paul,

If you are setting all your RenderZone Options for all lights to have Transparent Shadows -- this is only for the Hard Raytraced shadows. Perhaps you can set your Sun Light to Hard Transparent Shadows -- add a cone light or two using the Soft Shadows -- and set your RenderZone Options for Shadows: Per Light?

Does this help?
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Paul Hunnicutt
Senior Member
Username: Asonearchitecture

Post Number: 385
Registered: 08-2011
Posted on Friday, November 09, 2012 - 04:24 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

What I want is control over the shadow edges and the relative darkness of the shadows. It would be easy to use the sun because of how simple it is to change its location parameters.

To say it in Photoshop terms - If the shadows on the first image above were in their own layer I would make them lighter (or lower opacity) and soften the edges a bit. That is sort of what I'm looking to know how to do.

Currently I have the ambient light, sunlight, and then another distant light just to brighten the image a bit (shadows off). However, even if I add a cone light and only use that - with Soft Shadows on, no matter the settings I don't get any shadows to show up. If I switch to Hard Accelerated or Raytraced I get shadows, but can't do anything to lighten the shadows or soften the edges.
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Paul Hunnicutt
Senior Member
Username: Asonearchitecture

Post Number: 386
Registered: 08-2011
Posted on Friday, November 09, 2012 - 04:33 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

ok I am getting shadow to show using a cone light. However, none of the setting seem to control the intensity of the shadow or the edge softness....

also is it good to render in Renderzone with Ambient light on? I suppose there are many many ways to get the lighting you want, but is the Ambient light generally on to some degree?

Thanks for your help!
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support@formZ.com
Moderator
Username: Tech

Post Number: 18169
Registered: 04-2001


Posted on Friday, November 09, 2012 - 04:53 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

Paul,

It is quite common to use a simple set up for exterior renders. Ambient light intensity between 35 and 55 for a bright sunny day, with Ambient Occlusion on to darken the inside corners. (Set the AO Distance to Custom = 3' and Quality = 1...) This will also lighten shadows, as it adds light on all faces at once.

One Direct Light as your sun set to raytraced shadows will produce a sharp shadow. The sun does this as well on a clear day, for all intents and purposes it is a collimated beam. It comes from so many millions of miles away, the last forty feet or so doesn't really spread the light out enough to be incredibly noticeable in a distant rendering.

This is the best method for creating a fast and credible render exterior.

Attenuated light (fuzzy edges) is produced in form•Z with area lights, and these are not at all suitable for using as a sun.
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Dan Shear
Senior Member
Username: Redrngr

Post Number: 740
Registered: 04-2001


Posted on Tuesday, November 13, 2012 - 06:57 am:   Edit Post Print Post

"This is the best method for creating a fast and credible render exterior."

Maybe not necessarily fast but for Credibility of Exterior Rendering then I think using Atmospheric Lighting is a very good thing.

Dan S.