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[WIP] Lighting and Shooting a fantasy town

I was looking for any resources, guides or advice on lighting and presenting scenes. I created a fantasy town in unreal engine and am now looking to present it in the best light possible.


  • ChromedDragon
  • teodar23
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    teodar23 interpolator
    You need to look into post processing, color correction and LUTs. But first tweak your skylight and sunlight intensities til you get a pretty good result, then turn down that fog.
  • birb
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    birb greentooth
    Having more or less zero knowledge of the technical constraints of lighting something inside a game engine, I'm putting my concept artist hat for this critique. Please disregard what can't be done!

    You might want to look at photos of similar locations to get a baseline lighting you can twist into a different mood. This is important to keep the scene in line with the depicted setting. Right now this village is reading as someplace hot because:

    - The light is very golden. There's no hint of other colors in it, not even the blue of the sky. Because light is a combination direct incidence with bounces this light reads as somewhere situated in a very bright yellowish place—like a desert.
    - The fog is intense and uniform. Fog, being cold, should stick close to the ground unless all the air is cold as well. This doesn't look the case with such intense sunlight. Heated water vapor on the other hand rises indiscriminately.

    Yet the architecture style and roof slopes suggest somewhere that sees real cold, contradicting the lighting. In this case the lighting also does little justice to the scene, flattening it and eating up the colors. A single-hue lighting flattens an image, a multiple-hues lighting adds depth.

    There are also many gorgeous colors hidden in those textures. Bring them out and you'll capture the viewer's attention without them even understanding why. :p

    I did a quick google search for "medieval german village" to get some references for rebuilding the lighting in PS then twisted it in an a high-contrast-but-dreamy mood as an example of what a colors-mindful lighting approach can do for a scene. I hope this helps!

  • JamesBrisnehan
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    JamesBrisnehan polycounter
    Do you have lighting reference you can share with us? A photo, a concept, or a screenshot from a game/movie? Knowing where you want to go is the first step in trying to get there.

    But for now, I agree with Birb. The lighting needs more color and contrast. 
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