Tutorial for Studio Lighting in VRay

Written by mark anderson
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Tutorial for Studio Lighting in VRay
Studio-lit object. (saucer image by Sergey Shlyaev from Fotolia.com)

Studio Lighting is a term commonly used in the Computer Graphics industry to describe a certain rendering set-up to display a model in a "vacuum" space. This effect is notably used in product displays for Apple products. VRay is a rendering engine delivered as a plug-in product for mainstream three-dimensional (3D) modelling applications. Developed by Chaos Group, this product has become a tool of choice among 3D artists and graphics enthusiasts. Using VRay, you will be able to recreate the popular studio lighting effect with relative ease.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • 3D Application compatible with VRay (3ds Max, Rhino, SketchUp, Maya)
  • VRay

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  1. 1

    Open the model you wish to render in your 3D application. Create a camera for the view that you wish to create of your model.

  2. 2

    Create a plane that is placed underneath your model. Modify this plane so that you extend the planar object to expand behind the back of your model, creating a wall that is perpendicular to your ground plane. Further modify the planar object by extending the plane above and over the model to create a planar object that wraps around your model on three sides.

  3. 3

    Apply a smoothing modifier in your 3D application to the planar object. Make sure that the object is visibly smooth enough at the points in which the planar faces turn so that you cannot see any segmentation in the background when you render your scene.

  1. 1

    Add two VRay Plane Lights to the left and right sides of your model, perpendicular to the back and ground planes of your background planar object. To create the light, navigate to your VRay Light creation tool, click the "VRayLight" button and choose "Plane" in the "Type" drop down list. Click and drag in your workspace to create the VRay Light.

  2. 2

    Create a third VRay Plane Light that is directed upward toward the top of the planar object you created in Section 1.

  3. 3

    Modify the settings of your VRay Lights. Input 4.0 as the "Multiplier" value in the light settings. In the "Options" list, make sure that the "Invisible" option is enabled and the "Affect Specular" option is disabled. Adjust the colour of the lights if you want to change the feel of your rendered image.

  4. 4

    Render your image from the camera view you have created in Section 1. Adjust the multiplier value and colour of the three individual lights to achieve your desired lighting effects.

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