Here’s another great light set add-on for Daz Studio based on IBL lighting techniques. Here’s the full marketing description:
With the lights and presets in this package you will be able to light your scene with “real” light captured in HDRI light probes. The lights in this package use advanced IBL techniques combined with other ray-tracing methods like AO and Specular Occlusion to simulate a very convincing, soft lighting including specular effect-like highlights and even reflections of the environment, all with a single new light! Also if the scene needs it, you can calculate indirect diffuse surface-to-surface reflections.
I know, a lot of technical words thrown at us there.
The ahEnvironmentLight Version 2.0 light add-on package is a complete lighting environment, as the name implies. And you can get a lot of nifty results using it. Especially if you also buy the ahHDRI IBL Daylight Pack add-on for the ahEnvironmentLight.
I have had this global lighting environment since it came out, but I rarely use it. It’s not because the package is lacking. The reason I don’t use it is because of having to work a little extra with it in my case. When I put together outdoor scenes in Daz Studio I like to see true to life lighting; for example, shadows. IBL lights alone have never really gotten me the results I have wanted; to be fair, it’s because I really have a lot to learn.
The extra work comes in for me because in order to add shadows to my scenes with IBLs, I first have to find out the direction of the IBL light so that I can use a distant light to bring out those shadows. You have to make sure that both the IBL and the distant light you add are illuminating from the same position. Also, until the ahEnvironmentLight set and it’s add-on, the ahHDRI IBL Daylight Pack, it was a pain for me to get the desired lighting conditions to mimic the exact time of day. This work has been eased with these two packages. The ahHDRI IBL Daylight Pack has a 24-hour day cycle of lighting presets that you just throw into a scene, less work. The other reason I use this light set rarely is because I use Light Dome Pro. Light Dome Pro is just easier for me because I can easily direct the light where I want it right through its control panel.
The manuals that come with the ahEnvironmentLight and the ahHDRI IBL Daylight Pack are chock full of details and are easy to follow.
Below I have two samples I rendered with the ahEnvironmentLight add-on. One uses just the ahSkyLight_12:00pm IBL preset from the ahHDRI IBL Daylight Pack and the other with an addition of a distant light for shadows (the ahHDRI IBL Daylight Pack manual provides full details on how to get this done).