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Exterior Lighting - Renderworks HDRI


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I'm getting great results with interior renderings, but struggling with realistic looking exterior lighting.

In my first render (draft01) I used HDRI lighting only, and the shadows are so nice/soft. I can turn this into a great 'dusk' type shot, however, I also need to do one with more light. What's the best way to do this?

If I throw a directional light in (draft02) I lose the soft shadows.

And if I increase the 'exposure' under custom renderworks, it seems to increase the saturation too much.

I'd really appreciate any advice you have


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OK - adding some ambient light did help a bit. I set it at 15%

I also didn't realize that I could go beyond 100% for the RW background resource brightness. I put it up to 200%.

For 'draft03' I added two directional lights set at 85% & 35%. Seemed to work well also.

(photoshop would probably be great for eiditing brightness etc. if I had it)

Thanks for the help!


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  • 4 weeks later...
  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee

Yes - within the Viewport settings on the Object Info palette, set the Renderworks Background to whatever you want to have visible (or leave it as None if you prefer).

Then, click Lighting Options (also on the Object Info palette) and choose the HDRI background you want to use for lighting. It will not be visible, but it will create light in the scene.

Hope that helps!

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