Request directional light with radius attenuation control.


Is it possible to have directional lights (similar to ones in 3ds max), also similar to spotlight functionality but would like to have the option to have full parallel shadowing, this will help a lot with lighting scenarios.


Light function material can already do that.

Yes i’m aware of Light functions, but you can only have one sunlight in the scene and you obviously can’t control its radius of influence or attenuation, so i was suggesting to have a light like a spot light except its directional, as in the shadows will be cast as parallel. this would allow to place the light in specific areas while keeping other places lit differently. Right now the only way I could see this done is to put massive shadow objects to obscure certain areas in the environment in order to control the effect. Picture this: Character is standing in forest scene with broken sunlit areas, if you have to control this lighting (say you want to have sunlight on his face at a specific point or space in time) you have to make sure the entire environment is setup for this, even if the environment is not in the frame. If you had the ability to create an addition directional light, you could leave the environment lighting setup as is and just add that particular light for that specific timing and framing to fake the sun coming through on the character, you will also have the ability to fade the light intensity in and out as required. It just makes things more intuitive to light with, plus the attenuation, radius and light functions on the light would help further.

Isn’t the idea behind directional light to simulate sunlight? (there is no attenuation to it in the scale of Earth)

Yes the idea is to simulate sunlight. And Yes perhaps attenuation is not really necessary for this but it also helps when you are doing lighting like this, for instance you can have attenuation sunlight affect the head/face of a character as it slowly fades out for the lower body for specific shots and framing faking shading for the lower parts (but most likely I would rather use a light function to do this in a case like that). I know most these ideas perhaps are not “Physically correct” but then again for most of us coming from fx background and lighting in feature films these are tricks we use all the time to get the mood needed. This attenuation feature is secondary though but i mentioned it because it comes with spot anyway (and even in 3d apps you have it) so I assume that if a directional light is added it would be modification of a spot light conversion of sort and wouldn’t hurt to have this extra feature in there anyway.

In all cases what is important in my humble request : ) is to be able to add multiple directional lights in a scene with radius settings and light function, the rest are details.

You could try to use spotlight with really really long radius but narrow angle. When its far enough it will look like all rays are parallel.

How many directional lights do you need? Using lighting channels you can have up to four directional lights that won’t interfere with each other.

Yes thank you for the pointer! I had tried the channels but entirely missed trying it with directional sun, for some bizarre reason as i thought it would be problematic.

edit (again): ah, will do some more tests with this, thanks guys if it doesn’t work for whatever reason i will write back here.