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Digital Lighting and Rendering Paperback – 27 Apr 2006

4.5 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: New Riders; 2 edition (27 April 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0321316312
  • ISBN-13: 978-0321316318
  • Product Dimensions: 19.9 x 1.8 x 24.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 595,932 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From the Back Cover

Crafting a perfect rendering in 3D software means nailing all the details. And no matter what software you use, your success in creating realistic-looking illumination, shadows and textures depends on your professional lighting and rendering techniques. In this lavishly illustrated new edition, Pixar's Jeremy Birn shows you how to:

  • Master Hollywood lighting techniques to produce professional results in any 3D application
  • Convincingly composite 3D models into real-world environments
  • Apply advanced rendering techniques using subsurface scattering, global illumination, caustics, occlusion, and high dynamic range images
  • Design realistic materials and paint detailed texture maps
  • Mimic real-life camera properties such as f-stops, exposure times, depth-of-field, and natural color temperatures for photorealistic renderings
  • Render in multiple passes for greater efficiency and creative control
  • Understand production pipelines at visual effects and animation studios
  • Develop your lighting reel to get a job in the industry

About the Author

Jeremy Birn is a Lighting Technical Director at Pixar Animation Studios, where he worked on Cars and the Academy Award-winning The Incredibles. Prior to joining Pixar in 2002, Jeremy did lighting and rendering at such companies as Palomar Pictures, Wild Brain, CBS Television, and Tippett Studio, where he worked on effects for the feature film Evolution. Jeremy has taught courses at the California Institute of the Arts in Southern California and the Academy of Art University in San Francisco. More of Jeremy’s work and more about his writing is on his website, www.3dRender.com.


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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As an intermediate level surface modeller I found this book extremely helpful. Among its numerous plus points are that it is not application dependant, it explains theory in lucid plain English and it is one of the few instruction books which does not resort to the use of 'filler' information which is self evident, of marginal relevance, or easily available on the web.

There wasn't a chapter in which I did not learn something new. The stellar chapter for me was on architectural lighting - how to get a 3d scene (indoors or outdoors) looking 'real' rather than a lit model. For character modellers there's the basic information about 3 point lighting and theory beyond that.

The book is very well illustrated and the author and production team have been at pains to ensure that the quality of the illustrations is such that subtle colour changes in before and after shots are apparent.

I am not sure about 3d experts, but I would definitely recommend this book for beginner to intermediate level as the 'lighting bible'. Lighting makes or breaks a render and this is the best book I have found which explains the theory in an clear methodical way.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Whilst I've read through this once and as a relative beginner I know there is a lot to learn. This book is a great start for anyone serious about developing their CGI skills and I can see it getting lots of use as both a reference and study aid.
It covers all the main topics in reasonable depth and plenty of examples without getting too bogged down with specific software.
On a practical point the soft back version allows it to be laid flat and to stay open on the page without breaking the spine.
There are lots of colour photographs to illustrate many of the topics and frequent tips on how professionals 'cheat' to get the desired results.
All in all a well organised, detailed and comprehensive reference for anyone who wants to get under the skin of 3D lighting and rendering
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Format: Paperback
This book is great for anyone who has an interest in animation/film/gaming. Being an animation student myself this is just so useful for understanding colour, camera and composition among many other things. However you will need a basic understanding of a 3D software such as Maya for a fair share of the book. I was a little disappointed there were no tutorials, focusing more on explaining the uses of the tools in 3D software, but it does include exercises to practice what it teaches, and overall a book that is very useful for upping your knowledge and skills for creating 3D content.
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I'm a keen amateur 3D artist who is gradually learning the craft of 3D. I've got to the point where I needed a better grounding in the key areas of lighting, texturing and modelling.

Jeremy Birn's book is a mine of useful information and professional expertise. It is very easy to read, and indepth, and manages to convey complex technical information without being confusing or overwhelming. It is interesting to read, and easy to digest.

You do get the sense that he knows the 3D industry well and is writing from great experience, not just by the depth of information, but by the scope of topics he addresses that go beyond the creation of art, and covers how you might use these skills in a professional environment. I even found these bits helpful e.g. don't light your scene until most of the modelling is pretty settled - saved me lots of time!

It also manages to do so in a way which applies to different 3D packages, so you are not penalised by not owning 3DS Max or Maya or whatever.

There is a nugget on every page - I read a bit, and then try to use it in a project, and I have learned so much already.

Three criticisms that rob it of the 5th star:
1) It is slightly short on illustrations perhaps, especially for a book which is all about visual art, but this doesn't seem to detract from the book's overall impact.
2) Not quite enough thought has gone into the practical examples and exercises at the end of each chapter - they are quite brief. But then you can always create projects to test things out in your own software package.
3) A CDROM with some examples and projects would have been welcome e.g.
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