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May you help me deconstructing the following image so I can learn how the lighting setup is done?

first lighting setup

second lighting environment

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  • \$\begingroup\$ What is the source of these images? \$\endgroup\$
    – Joachim
    Commented May 15, 2021 at 14:24

3 Answers 3

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With either a bright constant light or a flash set behind and to the left of the chairs. Imagine a line connecting one of the corners of the shadow of one of the chairs with its corresponding physical chair corner. Extend that line back and to the left and up, and place the light somewhere along that axis. For more precision, trace several such lines and see where they intersect.

The rest of the lighting in the scene is soft diffuse omnidirectional light (no shadows visible) possibly from low down so that the floor is lit evenly and any shadows that are cast are cast upwards where they aren't captured.

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    \$\begingroup\$ There is also a visible weaker shadow of a second fill light from front left. It's shadow has apparently been edited out of the second single chair photo, but it clearly seems present. \$\endgroup\$
    – WayneF
    Commented Dec 3, 2018 at 13:42
  • \$\begingroup\$ @WayneF Good catch - I missed that one, but yes, that can be seen in the first picture as shadows cast by the lower parts of some of the chair legs. \$\endgroup\$
    – twalberg
    Commented Dec 3, 2018 at 14:20
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I have the feeling those are not photos, but 3D renders. There are several clues for that.

The light looks like it is almost parallel so it is very far, almost like sunlight. (I marked several pairs of dots, the shadow and the spot on the chair producing it, not perfect because of the curved nature of the chairs)

enter image description here

But at the same time, it has some diffusion that does not correspond to the sun's diameter. It is a diffuse light, but for the distance, it acts as a spotlight.

Then it has a loooot of ambient light, but as we do not see additional shadows, this is not made with another defuse light pointed at the chairs, but more like a type of illumination called ambient occlusion. In a real studio, this could be done using a white painted room and shooting different lights into the walls and ceilings.

This contrast is typical of digital sunlight and bounced light on a white floor.

enter image description here


So, to do that in real life you need a really tall studio, painted in white with a strong light and a lot of additional lights to emulate the bounced sunlight.

There are used for large productions, like photos of cars. But nowadays, people prefer to do... 3D models even to taking photos of real cars.

In this case, they model one chair and changed the textures.

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@Rafael @twalberg @WayneF Thank you very much for your help.

I'd say these are nicely done renders then (:, as there are even few scratches visibile in the shadow of the single chair shot..

I'm actually recreating this scenario in a 3d software and this is the result i came up so far following your suggestions (heavily post produced); all the lights must be reworked though. I'm posting a wireframe of my light setup

Thank you!

enter image description here

enter image description here

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