Sunday, May 07, 2006

Setting the Scene, 'LIGHTS'. (Film #2)

I have now begun work on planning and building the set and props for the next film. As I want to focus the viewer's attention on the central characters (and their faces), I want the set to remain very minimal but want to carefully consider the lighting of the set. I have constructed a 30 x 30 x 10m enclosed black box 600m up in the air, above the clouds. In the center of this room I have also constructed a grand piano prop (which will be very key to the story).

Additionally, basic replicas of the piano and stool models have also been constructed within a basic ray-tracing 3d App where I have captured the floor lighting and shadows cast from two spotlights (one red and one blue). The light and shadows on the floor have been rendered, exported as a large image and then cut into 9 (512 x 512 pxl.) square sections using Photoshop. These 9 textures have finally been imported into SL and mapped to the 9 floor sections of the set. Care was taken to scale the props (both in SL and in the external 3d App) in such a way that the fake light and shadows appear fairly convincing within the Second Life set.

Adding to this, I have also positioned two dummy spotlights in the set (as shown above) and further reinforced the illusion that these are real light sources by extending semi-transparent cone shapes to produce a glowing effect (as shown below); soon I hope to extend the red and blue spot-lighting effect to the avatar face and body by utilising the hardware lighting currently only available in the preview release of Second Life.


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