Lighting Effects

        Surprising lighting effects can be achieved in Anim8or version 0.6 scenes with just a little effort. You will find below a few tricks for faking volume light, glow, lens effect and changes in global illumination (color and intensity). All of these effects are animatable.

        This is not intended to be a step-by-step tutorial (I assume that you are an Anim8or user), but a guideline and a challenge for your imagination. First look at some images, later I'll describe the "tools" responsible for the effects. If you are passionate about lighting effects, I am convinced you can do much better than me!

        Let's try to improve a scene using filters, and I mean almost real objective-lens filters. The Shark-scene, as you can find it in Anim8or's Manual, is down-loadable from Elias Marzane's anim8ortrade.
Initial shark-scene
First, a little make-up by setting a background color for the environment, enabling a partially transparent fog,  reorienting the lights and adding a shadow. 
Shark-scene with fog and shadow
Now, if we would like to decrease the transparency of the water so that even the foreground shark to be faded and the background one to remain still visible, we couldn't manage it by setting the fog parameters (which already starts from the camera). We need a nonzero origin value for the fog. Placing a tiny neutral filter in front of the camera, 
Neutral filter, adding fog in foreground
covering its whole field, can do this. Setting the transparency of the filter, we adjust the starting value for the fog.  Using colored filters, we can change the hue of the image. Our water, even with reduced transparency, seems too limpid, needs some turbidity. It's begging for micro-plankton! So, let's add a spotted filter.
Shark-scene with red filter
Shark-scene with yellow filter
Micro-plankton (seen only in high-res)

Evidently, a single filter object can act as a color filter, transparency filter, texture projector (as the spotted filter does) and so on.
Shark-scene with glow filter 
In order to look great, our scene needs some diffuse light. Let's try a glow filter!  It is much better. The glow filter has its own color (yellow) and has an amount of self-illumination (ambient) to light up the image. See the set-up. 
Hemispherical glow filter
Tilted cylindrical filter
Now, we remove the glow filter and add volume light, using a cylindrical filter. See the set-up. We have got a more convincing underwater scene. 
Click the image to enlarge
High specular value filter
By changing the material parameters of the filter we can set the volume light effect. 
Low specular value filter
Small movements of the filter may afect considerably the image and that is one of the possibilities for animating the effect. 

Ending the diving, we are ready to jump right into the fire!

No filter 
The candle's flare was done with a shiny surface, user lights and fog, inspired by the superb spectrum effect of Wladyslaw Strugala's rainbow. Adding a glow filter, adding one more, some rays (with a transparent shiny cylinder-made star object)  and finally a discrete anamorphic effect (a simple blue 
             Adding a glow
transparent cylinder),  we get a pretty nice lens effect.
Adding a second glow
Adding a ray-device
Anamorphic Click to enlarge
See on the left the setup of the scene. Moving the candle's flame along with the effects' source objects and using a transparency filter sliding in front of the camera, we are able to animate the effects. Skinning the flame would have given a more realistic look.

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