How to get Shadow Intensity settings with Rhino 7 (Cycles)?

Any recommendation for lowering shadow intensity with an emissive light in R7?

Emissive lights have no shadow intensity setting.

Substituting with rectangular light and self-illuminated material also doesn’t work - Shadow Intensity for Rectangular lights or Spotlights has no effect when rendered with R7. At least as of Mac 7.5. (They do still work with Legacy render.)

For Raytraced and Rhino Render none of the shadow intensity settings work.

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Curious what tricks people have come up with? - it’s not easy to retouch shadows realistically in Photoshop…

I think a solution could be to work like at the real world and brighten the shadow by additional light.

The way I do this is with a combination of emissive material and a Rectangular light. The latter’s size and distance from the model controls the shadow intensity and edge.

Light-shadow-example.3dm (384.0 KB)


Thanks Brian. That seems like a promising approach. In my model (attached) the emissive light is also coming from the bottom of the disc, so it is a bit more challenging. (It’s easier to see the difference with just one table and light, so the light from the other doesn’t bleed in.)

Adding a small panel light mostly just brightens the floor, without changing the darkness of the shadow.

Adding a large panel light does lighten the outside of the shadow, but creates a double shadow which isn’t right for what it supposed to look like one light source.

Raising the light up higher creates another double shadow, so that doesn’t work.

Adding a giant panel light is the most promising so far, as it is so big it illuminates the floor under the table.

However it is still far brighter than the emissive light by itself, so I will play with intensity settings and likely still need Photoshop work at the end.

My model: Light-shadow-example.3dm (3.0 MB)

emissive only

emissive plus small panel light

emissive plus large panel (double shadow)

emissive plus giant panel

light panel size comparison

Shadow intensity will have an effect on point, spot and distant lights from Rhino 7.7 onward (service release candidate out likely next Tuesday). You’ll essentially control the softness of the shadows when using these lights.

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Excellent news!