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In 3ds Max 2011 Essential Training, author Aaron F. Ross demonstrates how to use this top-tier application for digital content creation, widely used in diverse industries such as architecture, industrial design, motion pictures, games and virtual worlds. This course covers modeling with polygons, curves, and subdivision surfaces, defining surface properties with materials and maps, setting up cameras and lights, animating objects, and final output rendering. Exercise files accompany the course.
Now we are ready to add lighting to our flying logo project. So I am going to use Standard lights in this case, and I want to create a so-called key light, which is the primary source of illumination in a scene. So in the terminology of film, video, and photography, a key light is the most important light source, the one that's going to generate highlights and shadows, as opposed to a fill light, which is just sort of filling in the shadows. So for a key light, I'll usually use a spotlight, and spotlight is going to illuminate the scene, sending out light in a cone shape.
You will notice that there are two flavors of spotlight. There's Target Spot and Free Spot. Target Spots are a lot easier to work with, because it gives you a target or aim point that you can manipulate in order to point the light in a certain direction, which is easier than a Free Spot, because with a Free Spot, you have to rotate it. So I am going to do a Target Spot. So I will click that button, and then I will create it in the Top View. When I click the mouse, I am defining the position of the light, and then I'll hold down the mouse and drag out to set the position of the target, and then release the mouse, and I've just created the target spotlight.
I will right-click to exit out of Target Spot creation. I want to move this up a little bit so I can do this by selecting the Move tool, and I can move the spotlight in any view. And I can also move the target and just as with cameras, sometimes you might get into trouble if you try to click on something here. You might accidentally click on the wrong object. So to make it easier on yourself, you can go up to the Selection Filter here on the main toolbar and choose Lights so that now I can only select lights.
And I can move these around. And observe the results in my shaded camera view, because that's what really matters here. And as you see here, the light is always pointing towards its target or its aim point.
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