Poll

Would high-quality artificial lighting improve interior renderings?

Yes-an absolute must-have
28 (66.7%)
Yes-would be very valuable
12 (28.6%)
It would be nice, but not required
1 (2.4%)
Makes no difference
0 (0%)
Would never use this
1 (2.4%)

Total Members Voted: 42

Author Topic: Artificial Lighting  (Read 3915 times)

cbcarch

    Reputation: 4
Artificial Lighting
« on: May 23, 2011, 04:37:29 pm »
May 23, 2011, 04:37:29 pm
For complex interior scenes with no windows or glass to let in sunlight, and exterior scenes at dusk or night, having realistic artificial lighting would add a great deal of power and realism in Lumion. The current solution of using "illuminating maps" to give the illusion of lighting does not work well. Other packages similar to Lumion have this ability.

Please vote and perhaps the developers will make real efforts to add this critical functionality in future releases.

Aaron

    Reputation: 80
Re: Artificial Lighting
« Reply #1 on: May 23, 2011, 06:41:27 pm »
May 23, 2011, 06:41:27 pm
What brings you to the conclusion that lightmaps currently don't work well to simulate indoor lighting  ???

Radiosity/GI will happen in Lumion, as well as dynamic lights.
It just takes a lot of effort to find a good solution thats both
fast and produces good results with all sorts of geometry.

Patience  ;)


Pete Stoppel

    Reputation: 33
Re: Artificial Lighting
« Reply #2 on: May 23, 2011, 07:02:37 pm »
May 23, 2011, 07:02:37 pm
I'd actually like to see a tutorial on light maps, say from Sketchup to Lumion with a light map/hdri.

cbcarch

    Reputation: 4
Re: Artificial Lighting
« Reply #3 on: May 23, 2011, 07:45:48 pm »
May 23, 2011, 07:45:48 pm
"What brings you to the conclusion that lightmaps currently don't work well to simulate indoor lighting  ???"

Experience and a good eye for detail. Take a look at interior scenes rendered in other apps such as 3dsMax,
Maxwell, or even Lumion's competitor TwinMotion. The lighting is just better. A quick look at this poll tells me I'm not the only one who thinks so. A light map or luminous material is not ever going to produce the same effect as photometric lights via raytracing or a radiosity solution.

For example
In Lumion:
Try rendering a complex interior scene with no windows / daylighting, say inside a casino floor with hundreds of slot machines, custom lighting, and a very sophisticated design with multiple bars, LED lights, cove lighting, color changing gobo lights, etc. LOL. This is what our clients require, so we must use other software. We'd love to use Lumion, but it's just not there yet.

"Radiosity/GI will happen in Lumion, as well as dynamic lights. "

I'm anxiously awaiting that.

cheers!  ::)
 

Aaron

    Reputation: 80
Re: Artificial Lighting
« Reply #4 on: May 23, 2011, 09:09:31 pm »
May 23, 2011, 09:09:31 pm
I didn't have a clue that apps like 3dsMax produced superior lighting. Thanks for the tip  :+

Perhaps I'm interpreting the usage of lightmaps a bit differently then you are.
Could be my lack of experience or that I seem to be missing a good eye for detail  :o
I was under the impression a good artist can mimic the effect of GI by baking it in a lightmap
and the results can look very convincing. Depending on resolution, baking quality etc. of course.
This procedure can typically be found where studios just lack the time to render out
real GI, shadows, reflections etc. calculations per frame and need to produce good results in a limited timeframe.

I guess with the example you are sketching, for RT rendering, you should probably contact NASA
and ask if they can install Lumion on one of their computers cause if you'd like all of those lights
to be calculated with GI in RT, you are going to need one very special machine to pull it off  :-D

On a more serious note>

Check out these video's on how lightmaps can speed up your workflow:

http://www.texturebaking.com/training-material/

For assets utilizing a lightmap in Lumion this proces would be pretty much the same.

@Pete > I can help you from the Lumion end of things but regaring Sketchup you're probably better of waiting for some serious advice from one of the experts on this forum.









cbcarch

    Reputation: 4
Re: Artificial Lighting
« Reply #5 on: May 23, 2011, 09:25:10 pm »
May 23, 2011, 09:25:10 pm
Aaron,

Perhaps I've just missed it--maybe you can show me a killer interior scene done in Lumion? All the examples I've seen with no daylighting using light maps are poor at best, or they try to bring in daylight from the sun/sky system to light the interior.

I understand "texture baking", including lighting passes, etc. in Max. Not the most effective solution from our experience!

FWIW, I'm trying to give real world input from an end user perspective, so the developers can hear what is needed and perhaps put some focus on it for future releases. Again, in a very short poll, the results speak for themselves and it's not just me who would benefit from solid artificial lighting tools. Have you seen TwinMotion? If not, take a look. Very similar product, but with lighting tools.

So-try to have an open mind, instead of defending Lumion's obvious shortcoming in artificial lighting
and sending back such tongue-in-cheek comments.

( And yes-we have a Boxx Renderfarm that can render our "NASA" scenes using Backburner quite effectively. Lumion can't do it, so we use other tools when required. As I said, we would love to switch 100% to Lumion when/if the lighting tools become available.)

But right now my vote is for TwinMotion...............may the best product win. LOL.

cheers..........









[/quote]

Aaron

    Reputation: 80
Re: Artificial Lighting
« Reply #6 on: May 23, 2011, 09:44:36 pm »
May 23, 2011, 09:44:36 pm
*sigh*

so if I render a quick/bad lightmap, just to get some fake interior lights in my scene because I don't have time or I don't care, this leads you to lightmaps just not working at all for this purpose? Interesting.

Out of interest, what other tools do you currently use that can produce the 'Nasa' results you want in RealTime? I mean, you did register that Lumion is a RT application aimed at getting results fast right?
Comparing it to 3dsMax, Maxwell renderer is just funny.

Anyways, all the best with Twinmotion! Indeed it does have artificial lights.
Mind you on those scenes though. Keep your scene at a maximum of 1000 triangles or Twinmotion
will just eat it up. Don't be a stranger and drop a few of them killer interior screens back here once
you have them just the way you like it ;-)



cbcarch

    Reputation: 4
Re: Artificial Lighting
« Reply #7 on: May 23, 2011, 09:51:29 pm »
May 23, 2011, 09:51:29 pm
I-Ray comes to mind. RT solution with Max.

Can you show me some really high quality Lumion examples of interior scenes with baked light maps?

I'm waiting.................

PS--Here's a good interior example done in TM with artificial lights:

http://www.therenderingkiller.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/2nd_winner.jpg

Aaron

    Reputation: 80
Re: Artificial Lighting
« Reply #8 on: May 23, 2011, 10:04:38 pm »
May 23, 2011, 10:04:38 pm
I-Ray and Realtime.....lemme think for a mo.
Hmmm....

I think we should agree that further debating this issue is probably pointless.
Let's just agree to disagree ok?

I will do my best however to show you a decent lightmap in Lumion when I have some sparetime deal?
I have to setup a scene for that and unlike you I can't shoot bolts of lighting out of my ass nor do I have a
BOXX renderfarm. If I fail miserably, I'll eat my shoe whilst publicly announcing I'll never pitbull myself into one of these futile debates. Thats a promise  8)

Edit: Very nice render for sure. Yes you have to wait a bit for Lumion to be able to match that.
Don't take my word for it but please don't fall for TM2 marketing. It just doesn't work.
At least I can guarantee you that once Lumion crosses this bridge, it WILL work.


Lars

    Reputation: 12
Re: Artificial Lighting
« Reply #9 on: May 23, 2011, 10:59:43 pm »
May 23, 2011, 10:59:43 pm
Isn't the question of the poll wrong?
It should be:
Would you like high-quality artificial lighting to be added to Lumion?

There is only one answer to the current question (no need to vote for that): YES-off course will the interior rendering quality be improved by artificial lighting. |:(

Brian Hengelsberg

    Reputation: 43
Re: Artificial Lighting
« Reply #10 on: May 24, 2011, 02:06:51 am »
May 24, 2011, 02:06:51 am
Anything can be done with unlimited hardware resources.  Most of us are on a budget, and one reason we are using Lumion is because we cant afford to spend thousands of dollers on hiring people with said equipment ($10,000 computers and render farms).  As an architect, i value being able to turn out fairly good work that allows my client to graphically see what their structure is going to look like.  I have put together several presentations that have 1.) got us a project that was politically to go to another firm (but we blew them away with our work and got awarded the contract), and 2.) have developed a market niche that is rarely touched on small projects the budget is just not there. There is a time and a place for having completely photo-real lighting, but you mostly hear the people generating the work saying this is needed and not the client.  All i know is that every client that i have presented my work to has been happy, and they have an extra $$$ for their physical building, not a computer generated one.  Lumion is not a replacement for Max, Vray, and the like...it is a bridge between sketch and partial reality.  This software has come a long way, i have been here since the beginning.  I for one look forward to the hard work these people have put into their software.  They have pride in there work, and it shows.  Keep up the work Lumion team, we are with you for the long haul!...end rant :P

cpercer

    Reputation: 20
Re: Artificial Lighting
« Reply #11 on: May 24, 2011, 03:10:09 am »
May 24, 2011, 03:10:09 am
I tried TwinMotion briefly when it debuted; but it could not handle the larger file sizes that we had.  So we tried Lumion and save for a few bugs the result has been fantastic. We are an architecture firm. In the two years since I have been with the firm we have transitioned from 2D drawings to 3D BIM and found Lumion just in time to save us from self-inflicted injury due to outputting a Revit walkthrough. If you've never rendered in Revit then count yourself among the priveleged.

We model everything in Revit since we must produce CD quality drawings and there is no chance that Revit will be removed from our workflow.  I can't justify spending lots of money on programs that I need to bake lightmaps (which I have no idea how to do anyway) onto Revit models, but I bet I could instantly figure out how to place and modify a light object in a program I already own.

I'm not saying lightmaps don't work, only that I've had to change my workflow in such a way that I'm leaving architecture and entering game design.  What I need is a balance, and for a program that advertises itself as being built for architectural rendering, I'd say the scale tips toward a solution that includes RT lighting.

PS - On a computer sidenote, my Clevo X7200 just arrived: I7-970, 12gig RAM, SSD+HD, and a GTX485M all in a laptop package!

Aaron

    Reputation: 80
Re: Artificial Lighting
« Reply #12 on: May 24, 2011, 03:53:38 am »
May 24, 2011, 03:53:38 am
I'm not saying lightmaps don't work, only that I've had to change my workflow in such a way that I'm leaving architecture and entering game design.  What I need is a balance, and for a program that advertises itself as being built for architectural rendering, I'd say the scale tips toward a solution that includes RT lighting.

That probably wraps things up nicely from the quality (or lack of it) POV as well.
Lightmaps are indeed quite complicated to create.
It goes without saying, any type of RT dynamic lighting solution would be most welcome, especially if
combined with GI. I'm sure once that's in the package, the results will be utterly amazing.

Congrats on that Clevo!


Re: Artificial Lighting
« Reply #13 on: May 24, 2011, 09:00:57 am »
May 24, 2011, 09:00:57 am
That probably wraps things up nicely from the quality (or lack of it) POV as well.
Lightmaps are indeed quite complicated to create.
It goes without saying, any type of RT dynamic lighting solution would be most welcome, especially if
combined with GI. I'm sure once that's in the package, the results will be utterly amazing.

Congrats on that Clevo!



We'll probably stick to spot lights with shadows. The problem with spot lights though is that each one has a shadow map so rendering times can get big. We try to stay away from baking light maps because in the long run you always get stuck. Large environments are simply not even possible. For the die hards there's always the option to go for Vray and import lightmaps.

It's better to do everything on the fly. We will also try to do some GI it won't be nearly as good as Vray but at least it will be much faster :D

cbcarch

    Reputation: 4
Re: Artificial Lighting
« Reply #14 on: May 24, 2011, 03:05:53 pm »
May 24, 2011, 03:05:53 pm
This thread has done precisely what I intended it to do. Generate discussion about a very important
aspect of an otherwise outstanding product. As I have mentioned repeatedly--we think Lumion is incredible and would use it for 100% of our work if the artificial lighting was there.

It's just a shame that EXTERIOR scenes are so easy to produce at a very high quality--including oceans, rivers, wind, animated animals and people, etc.---but INTERIOR scenes ( without the help of the daylight system ) seem to have been neglected, or at least have a very long way to go to be at the same level of quality as exteriors. We as Architects do not sell our designs soley on exteriors--and in fact, the Interiors are almost always more important to the client, and lighting in our projects ( Hotels, Resorts and Casinos ) is critical especially on the gaming floor, bars/restaurants, public lobbies, spas, and Theatres.

FWIW, I really do appreciate all of the various points of view and experiences everyone has shared.

cheers  ;)

Edit: Note to the moderators:
I noticed that my "rep" has gone down to 1; oh well. It's not a popularity contest, now is it?
I have gotten the very important subject of artificial lighting into the discussion!