Rembrandt lighting / by Xuan Prada

…with a touch of salt&pepper.

Just a simple test here.
I wanted to create a strong portrait lighting for this male subject. I thought on Rembrandt Light, one of my favourite lighting set-up.
Rembrandt light is great, I love that kind of lighting specially when you are shooting portraits on exterior locations, but I prefer other lighting set-ups for studio shots.

So, I did a couple of touches to create a darkish environment on the Rembrandt lighting set-up for studio scenes and achieve a more strong and dramatic portrait.

Find below some test which I did and some lines about the construction of this set-up.
Big thanks to the guys of Infinite-Realities for provide this great model.

I used a big soft box created with a portal light controlled by Kelvin temperature.
Then, I created a huge sphere wrapping all the scene, with a 16bit grey to white gradient to help Final Gathering to add soft environment light.
I also create a strong rim light to separate a little bit the subject from the background.
And finally to create more penumbra areas and strong feeling to the image, I put a light blocker close to the subject. With this basic geometry with a constant black shader the environment light created by FG is absorbed on the right side of the picture.

With this simple set-up my Rembrandt Light looks more dramatic, right?

  • This is my scene. Quite simple.
  • Take a look to the orthographic views to see the distribution of the lights and other elements involved on this set-up.
  • Some parameters below.
  • Some lighting study before touch the computer.
 Blocking.

Blocking.

 Some environment lighting added.

Some environment lighting added.

 Blocking the environment light using a black panel.

Blocking the environment light using a black panel.

 Testing displacement maps.

Testing displacement maps.

 First test with SSS.

First test with SSS.

 Some passes to play with. (environment light).

Some passes to play with. (environment light).

 Main soft box.

Main soft box.

 Rim light.

Rim light.

 Reflection.

Reflection.

Final render.