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Notes on lighting and shading by medli20 Notes on lighting and shading by medli20
~x666NiGhTmArE666x sent me a note asking me for help on lighting and shading. Since light logic isn't a topic that I can properly discuss without the aid of visual media, I figured I'd compile whatever came to mind in this format. This is by no means an in-depth tutorial on how to do things correctly, so please do not take it too seriously. I'm still learning a lot about these things myself, so chances are I've probably made some mistakes here and there.

These are just some of the basics I've picked up from experimentation, observation, and sitting in class. I haven't even touched some topics like different materials or colored lighting because I wanted to keep this short and sweet. I hope somebody will find this useful, though.

Wall-eyed shady face man was referenced from this picture: [link] ...even though it ended up looking nothing like David Tennant lol
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:iconjohnnygatthird:
johnnygatthird Featured By Owner Jul 16, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Too late already took this as the gospel truth...this is a very good and easy to understand tutorial. This should help me with the lighting in my tags. Thanks :)
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:iconweirda208:
Weirda208 Featured By Owner Jun 30, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank you very much for this tutorial, you wrote necessary thoughts and illustrated it very well :nod:

Your shading skills here are so neat! *w*
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:iconcutieink:
CutieInk Featured By Owner Jul 14, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
thank you so much, this will help with my next picture :)
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:iconmedli20:
medli20 Featured By Owner Jul 22, 2013  Student Digital Artist
No problem and good luck!
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:iconsorbetberry:
SorbetBerry Featured By Owner Jun 2, 2013  Hobbyist
awesome! thanks for this!
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:iconmedli20:
medli20 Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2013  Student Digital Artist
Thanks, and no problem!
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:iconsorbetberry:
SorbetBerry Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2013  Hobbyist
:heart:
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:iconsgt-stories:
SGT-Stories Featured By Owner May 28, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
HELPFUL!
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:iconmedli20:
medli20 Featured By Owner May 29, 2013  Student Digital Artist
I'm glad you found it to be helpful :)
Reply
:iconsgt-stories:
SGT-Stories Featured By Owner May 29, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I find everything to be helpful XD
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:icongeekygami:
Geekygami Featured By Owner May 19, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Why does the light reflect where the shadow is?
It confuses me.
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:iconmedli20:
medli20 Featured By Owner May 19, 2013  Student Digital Artist
The physics of light dictate that light will bounce off nearly any surface. We use this principle in order to see-- our eyes pick up light that has been bounced off of other objects. Because of this, light bounced off from a surface such as a tabletop will act as a secondary light source of sorts, albeit a much weaker one than the primary light source. It's easier to see this in action with a more reflective surface. Try putting a ball on a mirror and you'll see that the underside will be illuminated.
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:icongeekygami:
Geekygami Featured By Owner May 20, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Still, the light reflection seems to be coming from the shadow of the ball. Does this have to do with
the ball's reflection taking its shape, as you'd see on a metal teapot?
If so, why doesn't it take upon the rest of the ball?
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:iconmedli20:
medli20 Featured By Owner May 20, 2013  Student Digital Artist
The light doesn't reflect FROM the shadow itself, if that's what you're asking. (well I suppose it technically does, which is why it's visible, but it's to a much lesser degree.) The light bounces off the surface of the table and shines back on the ball, which is what you're seeing there.

It has to do with the angle of the surface that the light is bouncing off of in relation to the ball, the shape of the ball itself, and the fact that it's just easier to notice light on a surface that would otherwise be cast in shadow, due to the contrast.

To further illustrate this, take a look at these photos: [link] [link] (please excuse the quality)

Take a good look at the bottom 1/3rd of the tape dispenser, particularly where it curves. The reflected light there is illuminated because the bottom part is facing the surface it's sitting on in the most direct fashion. It's easier to see the degree of the reflected light in the first photo because it's a somewhat glossy surface. (my old DS) The second photo helps illustrate that reflected light can carry the color of the surface it's sitting on, hence the orange hue of the reflected light.

I'm not very good at explaining things, but I hope this clears some things up.
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:icongeekygami:
Geekygami Featured By Owner May 20, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Yeah, I think that pretty much sums up the question I asked.
The light reflected is "wrapped" around the shape.
Since it's wrapped the distance between both ends of the "rope" is lessened, giving the effect of a face being
super thin on a metal pole, for example, right?
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:icongeekygami:
Geekygami Featured By Owner May 20, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Oh, also, just wondering:
Do the cast shadow and core shadow have a difference, when not counting that one is cast by something while the other is on something and is not cast by another?
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:iconprooshawott:
ProOshawott Featured By Owner Mar 26, 2013
awesome!!!
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:iconartistforlifexd:
artistforlifeXD Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2013
this is awsome!!
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:icon1sonicsky1:
1Sonicsky1 Featured By Owner Jan 29, 2013
I'll definitely make sure my sister :iconepicninjaartist: sees this; As she could use some help on lighting and shading.
Reply
:iconneonnoble:
NeonNoble Featured By Owner Jan 23, 2013
Very helpful for future reference (I'm so bad at shadows and lighting)! I'll make sure to use it wisely!
Reply
:icone-pona:
e-pona Featured By Owner Jan 23, 2013
Useful, especially applied to faces. I haven't seen a tut like this before. Thank you!
Reply
:iconaeternumluminis:
AeternumLuminis Featured By Owner Jan 23, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
AGGUGUGUAHAH ;A;
I DIED when I saw this was David Tennant:heart::giggle:
This is a fantastic tutorial, I'll be sure to use it!:la:
Reply
:iconastrothestickman:
AstroTheStickman Featured By Owner Jan 23, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is cool! However there's a typo at the end; "gospel" is spelled "gopel" here, just saying :)
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:iconprincessoftomatoes:
Princessoftomatoes Featured By Owner Jan 23, 2013
Thank you,this was very helpful!~ c:
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:iconzakaevz:
Zakaevz Featured By Owner Jan 23, 2013  Student General Artist
David Tennant? WHHHHEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE
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:iconlord-phillock:
lord-phillock Featured By Owner Jan 23, 2013   Artist
dude, it's David McDonald!
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:iconmystr0:
mystr0 Featured By Owner Jan 23, 2013  Hobbyist Filmographer
Aye, now only if I could learn a thing or two about background perspective with people, still having a hard time creating good "vanishing points" along horizontal/vertical lines.
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:iconkerkins:
kerkins Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013
Thank you for this useful note :)
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:iconnoranb:
NoranB Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is really helpful! Thank you~
Reply
:iconnekodeaththekid:
NekoDeaththeKid Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
i always have trouble shading this helped me; its easier drawn than said i do that too XD your not alone
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:iconsoari-san:
Soari-san Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013  Student Traditional Artist
Thanks a lot for this, itīs basic and so well explained.
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:iconlonesau:
LoneSau Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013  Student General Artist
very nice and neatly explained tutorial!
I bet this would help heaps of people, including myself :D
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:iconxlacie:
xLacie Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013  Student
Very simple and useful, thanks!
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:iconelpatrixf:
elPatrixF Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
day polygon face
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:iconmedli20:
medli20 Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013  Student Digital Artist
It's going to eat your soul. :lol:
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:iconmangasockattack:
mangasockattack Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Super useful~
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:iconmedli20:
medli20 Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013  Student Digital Artist
Thanks, I'm glad you think so! :)
Reply
:iconunknown-variable:
Unknown-Variable Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013
So useful! 8D And right after I got critiques giving me tips about shading as well! >u< The advice never stops! :la:
Reply
:iconmedli20:
medli20 Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013  Student Digital Artist
I'm glad you were able to find this useful!
Reply
:icontechnojara:
TechnoJara Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013  Student General Artist
this is pretty helpful, i'm seeing ways to shade i've never even thought of before haha.
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:iconmedli20:
medli20 Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013  Student Digital Artist
I'm glad you found it useful! :D
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:iconpeeka13:
Peeka13 Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Somehow I recognized that face as David Tennant anyway. XD;; I was like, "that face looks like David Tennant, but it's probably just my mind playing tricks on me" and then I read your description and...yeah. XD I guess I'm just good at recognizing his face, lol.
But yes, this is very helpful~! o3o
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:iconmedli20:
medli20 Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013  Student Digital Artist
Ahaha I'm glad the face was somewhat recognizable and that this was helpful! :XD:
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:iconberrieblosym:
BerrieBlosym Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Very helpful :love:
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:iconmedli20:
medli20 Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013  Student Digital Artist
Thanks!
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:iconberrieblosym:
BerrieBlosym Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
You're welcome ^U^
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:iconkroobie:
Kroobie Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
THANK YOU. FOR THIS. :thumbsup:
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:iconmedli20:
medli20 Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013  Student Digital Artist
buh-whuh? But your understanding of light logic is already so much better than mine! :O_o:
You're welcome anyway? :XD:
Reply
:iconkroobie:
Kroobie Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
xD I'm really bad at human face lighting lmao so this is super helpful!
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