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Lighting, Texturing, Rendering in 3DSMAX: Part 1
Added on: Sun May 12 2002
Page: 1 2 

In this scene, just make the shadow maps smaller and blur them up abit. Change contrast and Soft Diff.Edge to a softer look...That's pretty much it. The skylight is finished!

If you render your scene now, you see that it has vastly improved to look as a daylight scene. But there is no color bleeding. Color bleeding is when light hits a colored surface and brings some of the color to the next surface it hits.

I usually do this with direct lights. In this particular scene we don't need much color bleeding, just some light that bounces off the grounds surface... make the light color the same as the color you intend to use on the ground, only a little de-saturated and darker... no shadows for this one, have it pointing from underneath your ground towards the sun....

Now, we are almost done with the lighting. Just add a subtle Volume Light to the sunlight. It will take us another step away from the BS look.


MAX 4 has a few nice anti-aliasing filters that are often overlooked. Since we need our image textured before we can decide what filter fits best to the image, we will leave that for part 2 of the tutorial. Instead, lets move to post effects.

In photos taken with a camera you often get bright areas glowing over the darker areas. This depends on how long the time of exposure is. So, how do we do this in MAX?

Enter Render Effects. Render Effects are effects that are applied to the image after the actual render is complete. Glow is one such effect, and that is what we will use...

In the Render Effects window, create a Lens Effects effect. In the Effect parameters, choose glow. In the Glow Element Parameters change
Size to around 10, and Intensity to around 50.

Use Source Color to 100... In Glow Element Options change the Image Source to Whole, and Image Filters to Bright 140. These settings will produce a pretty good glow effect.

And, finally, add a Film Grain render effect... film grain will dirty your image up and make it appear more realistic.

The completed scene file is available:

That concludes the first part of the tutorial and the first step away from the BS-standard MAX look... any questions, comments or suggestions, email me.

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