Join Larry Mitchell for an in-depth discussion in this video Light properties, part of Poser 7 Essential Training.
- [Instructor] So just like working with our camera properties, we can work with our light properties as well. At the end of your properties tab, if it's open, you can go to the objects' properties, and just like with the camera, if you don't see the light selected, you can just come to this slow arrow, click it once, and you can access your lights. And so here we have the properties, we'll get into the parameters next, and in the properties we can see our light is visible, it's animating, and it's on. These are very simple but essential properties to be clear on, or you'll be hunting, looking for a light.
The default is to be an infinite light, and this affects not only the light in the model, but also how these shadows will be perceived, and you have more sophisticated lights like your spotlight, and your point light, and these again, these also have impact, and so if we choose a spotlight for example, we see we have different shadow types. We have the retrace shadows, we have the depth map shadows. To really show how these interact, we'll actually need to render, and it'll be easier to show this if a character is sitting down.
So we'll jump briefly to getting our character to sit down, so we can see how these shadow models work. To do this, we'll go through our library, which is accessible just by clicking this little icon, if it's not yet open, we'll go to poses, and when we go to poses, we have different options. On by default, if your James characters loaded, you'll see these poses when you go to the pose library.
So these are groups of poses, and we'll just go straight to a pose for this lighting example. We'll go to setting, on the ground, and we'll choose this one. So we'll just double click this, and we're out of here. So here we have James sitting on the ground, and we'll adjust our camera to give us a better view since we know how to do that now. We'll orbit, and we'll also move our camera in, so you can see using the cameras are pretty effortless thing here, also, we don't want this to be animating so much so that's turned off, it'll have a camera helping us too much.
And let's go ahead and render this. And so we'll just click this, render icon. And so now poser will go through all of its steps of rendering to give us our final image. So we can see that we have different types of shadows happening here. I'm going to go ahead and set this light color back to white so we don't have effects and shadows happening at the same time, this may make it a little easier to learn what's going on.
And so this is light two, and by the way, as we choose our lights here, and the light controls, if we look at properties, it says light three here, now it says light two, so we know which light we're working with, it's very important to keep you from becoming confused and editing the wrong light. Now we also need to look at where the light is positioned to know how its shadows will affect its character. So to do that, we must look at a different perspective, and so we'll use a different camera.
So we can get to a camera controls here, we can also get to our camera controls here, I mean just right click and choose camera view, and we'll choose right camera, and I'm going to move this and zoom out a bit. And so, here's one of those cases where I'm just going to go ahead and restore that camera.
And we can see how the light is right down here. Now, we've moved our lights so far using these controls right here, now I'm going to directly select light, light two as you can see right here. I have the move translate tool, which is going to move to, and I'm going to move it up. And now I'm going to use one of those menu items that we referred to earlier, which is point at, object, point at.
I'm going to tell this light, looking at the hierarchy of what's in the scene, to point at James' hip. Hit okay, and now the camera is looking at him. Now I'm going to go back to our main camera, My right click here camera view main camera, and so we can see already that the light is acting differently than it did before, and it'll give us a better chance of looking how it's casting its shadows. And so, I'm going to render again.
So we see that our shadows are also more lit because of the orientation of this light that's been added. And so, this is the retrieve shadows that are turned on, we can switch to map shadows, and render that again, and we'll use that feature where poser lets us look at our previous renders so we can compare between the retrieve shadow and the depth map shadows. So we can see it's a very significant difference in shadow type, and so, we can see as we compare our renders, it's a really neat feature.
Be able to look at which option you really want to work with interactively like this. And so these are the basics, you have things like the shadow blur radius, that's a fine control, over the softness of the edge of the shadow, and the shadow minimum bias effect, based on the distance of the light through the base of the shadow. Sometimes this will be used to adjust whether or not the shadow of the foot appears to be at the right location, because depth map shadow, which looks softer, are not as accurate are retrieve shadows, so you may need to adjust the minimum bias to compensate for that.
And be at the conclusion is another form of shadowing which is a bit more render intense, and it does not require very accurate lights to get you pretty neat shadows, but it takes a longer time to render.