Blender 3D: Noob to Pro/Beginning Lighting

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Lighting, you say? Psshh. Just throw up one light source and let her run, right?

Lighting is probably the most underestimated part of a scene by new 3D artists. Unlike real life, it’s actually quite easy to produce a uniformly well-lit, shadowless scene in Blender. But such scenes are usually pretty dull and boring.

Far more interesting are ones with highlights drawing attention to some areas, and shadows in other areas, leading the viewer to wonder what they might conceal. If a picture tells a story, and a picture is worth a thousand words, then lighting is like the punctuation for those words, the pauses between sentences and the sudden dramatic changes of tone.

Extremely uniform lighting can even give the picture a “photoshopped” look, as though the artist took part of one picture and stuck it on top of another. Whereas even a little bit of shadowing of one object by another can reinforce the impression that they are very much three-dimensional objects with a definite spatial relationship to each other, located in the same scene.

The following tutorials will help you gain knowledge of the technical use of lights in your scenes.