Author Topic: Insights regarding hard shadows  (Read 1535 times)

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Offline zooropa

Insights regarding hard shadows
« on: July 04, 2019, 02:47:10 am »
I am trying to get a sharp shadow casted by my object.
I checked Esben Tutorial  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iHaEfQ7_BnA

My question:

Yes, increasing the the source light brightness will give me harder shadows, but also cast stronger light, burning my scene.
Any insight regarding this ?

Here you can appreciate the light at 600 brightness (overall scene looks ok, but I would like harder shadows):



Here you can appreciate the light above 1000 brightness, better shadows (I still want them harder), but burning the can:





I can share the scene if needed ! Thanks so much

Offline DriesV

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Re: Insights regarding hard shadows
« Reply #1 on: July 04, 2019, 06:35:17 am »
Two things you could try:
  • Lower the ambient lighting level in the HDRI. I.e. make the Background in the HDRI Editor brighter. The reason the shadows are relatively bright is that the ground surface is being  illuminated by ambient light.
  • Use a Photographic Image Style. Especially the Curves adjustments will be helpful to darken the shadows further. The tone mapping of Photographic Image Styles will also help to eliminate burnt areas in your image.

Dries
« Last Edit: July 04, 2019, 06:39:21 am by DriesV »

Offline zooropa

Re: Insights regarding hard shadows
« Reply #2 on: July 08, 2019, 06:26:32 am »
Thanks a lot Dries,

1. Totally worked out for me, definitively the shadow opacity and the background color are related, good tip.
2. I am animating the scene. I believe I would not be able to tone map within KS. Maybe I can do it in PS with a Frame animation setting.
3. Do you know how to manipulate the sharpness from the shadow edges  ? I guess the size of the light source has something to do with it ?

Thanks

Offline RRIS

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Re: Insights regarding hard shadows
« Reply #3 on: July 09, 2019, 04:28:24 am »
Thanks a lot Dries,

1. Totally worked out for me, definitively the shadow opacity and the background color are related, good tip.
2. I am animating the scene. I believe I would not be able to tone map within KS. Maybe I can do it in PS with a Frame animation setting.
3. Do you know how to manipulate the sharpness from the shadow edges  ? I guess the size of the light source has something to do with it ?

Thanks

Re. 3: If you're relying only on your HDR/Environment, increase the resolution from the standard 4x2k.. that way you can decrease the size of your pin without it dissolving in a size smaller than a pixel (meaning, there is a lower limit to the size of your pin.. increasing the resolution will allow you to lower that limit).
Another option is to use a light object (spot or point or whatever). Keeping the size of that object light as small as possible will give you nice hard shadows.
Don't forget to increase your shadow quality as well, for me anything over 1.5 will usually be sufficient.