Blender spot light

Blender spot light DEFAULT

Light Objects¶

Common Settings¶


Defines the type of light.


Color tint of the emitted light.

Point Light¶


Point light.¶

The point light is an omni-directional point of light, that is, a point radiating the same amount of light in all directions. It’s visualized by a plain, circled dot. Being a point light source, the direction of the light hitting an object’s surface is determined by the line joining the light and the point on the surface of the object itself. It can be used as simple model of e.g. a light bulb.

Light intensity/energy decays based on (among other variables) distance from the point light to the object. In other words, surfaces that are further away will be rendered darker.


Power of the light in Watts. Higher values increase the intensity of the light. Negative values can be set, but should be avoided for predictable and physically based result.


When larger than zero, light will be emitted from a spherical surfaces with the specified radius. Lights with larger size have softer shadows and specular highlights, and they will also appear dimmer because their power is distributed over a larger area.

Spot Light¶

A spot light emits a cone-shaped beam of light from the tip of the cone, in a given direction.


Power of the light in Watts. Higher values increase the intensity of the light. Negative values can be set, but should be avoided for predictable and physically based result.


When larger than zero, light will be emitted from a spherical surfaces with the specified radius. Lights with larger size have softer shadows and specular highlights.

Beam Shape¶


Changing the spot options also changes the appearance of the spotlight as displayed in the 3D Viewport.¶


The size of the outer cone of a spot, which largely controls the circular area a spot light covers. This slider in fact controls the angle at the top of the lighting cone, and can be between (1.0 to 180.0).


The Blend slider controls the inner cone of the spot. The Blend value can be between (0.0 to 1.0). The value is proportional and represents that amount of space that the inner cone should occupy inside the outer cone Size.

The inner cone boundary line indicates the point at which light from the spot will start to blur/soften; before this point its light will mostly be full strength. The larger the value of Blend the more blurred/soft the edges of the spotlight will be, and the smaller the inner cone’s circular area will be (as it starts to blur/soften earlier).

To make the spot have a sharper falloff rate and therefore less blurred/soft edges, decrease the value of Blend. Setting Blend to 0.0 results in very sharp spotlight edges, without any transition between light and shadow.

The falloff rate of the spot light is a ratio between the Blend and Size values; the larger the circular gap between the two, the more gradual the light fades between Blend and Size.

Blend and Size only control the spot light cone’s aperture and softness (“radial” falloff); they do not control the shadow’s softness as shown below.


Render showing the soft edge spotlighted area and the sharp/hard object shadow.¶

Notice in the picture above that the object’s shadow is sharp as a result of the ray tracing, whereas the spotlight edges are soft. If you want other items to cast soft shadows within the spot area, you will need to alter other shadow settings.

Show Cone

Displays a transparent cone in 3D Viewport to visualize which objects are contained in it.

Area Light¶

The area light simulates light originating from a surface (or surface-like) emitter. For example, a TV screen, office neon lights, a window, or a cloudy sky are just a few types of area light. The area light produces shadows with soft borders by sampling a light along a grid the size of which is defined by the user. This is in direct contrast to point-like artificial lights which produce sharp borders.


Power of the light in Watts. Higher values increase the intensity of the light. Negative values can be set, but should be avoided for predictable and physically based result.


Shape of the light.


The shape of the light can be represented as a rectangle and changed with the “X” and “Y” values.


The shape of the light can be represented as a square and changed with the Size property.


The shape of the light can be represented as a disk and changed with the Size property.


The shape of the light can be represented as an ellipse and changed with the X and Y values.


Choosing the appropriate shape for your area light will enhance the believability of your scene. For example, you may have an indoor scene and would like to simulate light entering through a window. You could place a Rectangular area light in a window (vertical) or from neons (horizontal) with proper ratio for Size X and Size Y. For the simulation of the light emitted by a TV screen, a vertical Square area light would be better in most cases.

Size / Size X / Size Y

Dimensions for the Square or Rectangle.

Beam Shape¶

Spread Cycles Only

How wide the emitted light fans out controlling how diffused the light is. Larger values create soft shadows while smaller values create sharper light simulating a gridded softbox.


Example of Spread at different angles.¶

Sun Light¶

A sun light provides light of constant intensity emitted in a single direction from infinitely far away. It can be very handy for a uniform clear daylight open-space illumination. In the 3D Viewport, the sun light is represented by an encircled black dot with rays emitting from it, plus a dashed line indicating the direction of the light.


This direction can be changed by rotating the sun light, like any other object, but because the light is emitted from a location considered infinitely far away, the location of a sun light does not affect the rendered result.


Strength of the lights in Watts per square meter. Typical values are around 250 for an overcast day and 1000 or more for direct sunlight. See more details at Power of Lights.


The size of the sun light according to its angular diameter as seen from earth.

Power of Lights¶

The power of sun lights is specified in Watts per square meter. The power of point lights, spot lights, and area lights is specified in Watts. But this is not the electrical Watts that consumer light bulbs are rated at. It is Radiant Flux or Radiant Power which is also measured in Watts. It is the energy radiated from the light in the form of visible light.

If you want to set the power to real world values, you have to convert the wattage of consumer bulbs or LED lights to radiant flux, but it is not a straightforward process. The wattage of bulbs means the electrical power required to power them. LED lights have a “Watt equivalent” which is neither the electrical power they require nor the amount of light they put out. Some consumer lights specify lumens or luminous flux which is the radiant flux weighted with the wavelengths perceived by the human eye.

To save you from doing the conversion, here is a table of typical power values for point, spot, and area lights:

Real world light


Suggested Light Type


0.05 W


800 lm LED bulb

2.1 W


1000 lm light bulb

2.9 W


1500 lm PAR38 floodlight

4 W

Area, Disk

2500 lm fluorescent tube

4.5 W

Area, Rectangle

5000 lm car headlight

22 W

Spot, size 125 degrees

And a table of typical Strength values for sun lights:

Sun type


Clear sky

1000 W/m2

Cloudy sky

500 W/m2

Overcast sky

200 W/m2


0.001 W/m2

These values will likely produce much brighter or dimmer lights than you would expect, because our eyes adapt while a render engine does not. So to compensate, adjust the Exposure in .

To get realistic results, remember to also set the light size and color to realistic values. The color of your lights will also influence how bright they appear to the human visual system. If you leave the power unchanged, a green light will seem the brightest, red darker and blue the darkest. Thus you might want to manually compensate for these perceived differences.

© Copyright : This page is licensed under a CC-BY-SA 4.0 Int. License. Last updated on 10/17/2021.


Blender 3D: Noob to Pro/Adding Lamps

You can quickly add several different types of lights to your blender scene

 SHIFT + A  → Lamp → Spot

A light will appear in the location of the 3D cursor. You can move a light just like any other object.

If you want to quickly light a scene just for illumination, not for a specific look, add four lamps around your subject. If you are interested in experimenting with a lighting arrangement, a nice quick way to experiment is to create a Monkey in the scene to test with.

 SHIFT + A  → Mesh → Monkey

The monkey is just as good of a test subject as a human face, so give it a try. You can throw various materials on the monkey and try different textures too. Don't bad mouth the monkey, she is really useful.

Explaining the Different Lamps[edit | edit source]

  • Point: Single point light source. Provides very localized light. The shadows can be sharp, or you can set its size to something nonzero to make the shadows fuzzy. Useful for representing light sources within the scene; e.g. if there is a lightbulb or candle or something in the scene, position one of these within it to give the impression of light coming from that object.
  • Sun: A light with parallel rays that will illuminate the scene with a bright even light. Because the sun is (effectively) infinitely far away, the position of this lamp does not matter, only its direction. Good to use in brightly-lit outdoor scenes (i.e. a sunny day).
  • Spot: Spot lights produce light in a cone shape, and have some special features. They are the only light source that can be made visible with the 'halo' option, to simulate light in a fog. They are also the only light source that can cast buffer shadows (see below).
  • Hemi: 180°-wide uniform, shadowless light source. Great for use as a fill light, or as a back light. Similar to Sun, its position does not matter, only its direction.
  • Area: These are similar to point lamps, except that they are rectangular. As a result they can cast accurate raytraced soft shadows. These are my lamp of choice for still shots, but they take a lot of time to render.

You might want to see the adjusted scene and play around with it for awhile.

Shadow Types[edit | edit source]

There are two different kinds of shadows that lights may cast: buffered and ray-traced. The main difference is that buffered shadows are much quicker to calculate, but take more memory, and can be of lower quality without some fiddling. Also strand-rendered materials (as can be used for hair or fur) cannot cast ray shadows with the Blender Internal renderer, so you have to use buffer shadows for them so their shadows look realistic.

Only spot lamps can cast buffered shadows. Hemi lamps cannot cast shadows at all.

Lamp TypeBuffer ShadowRay Shadow

Creating a basic scene with basic lighting[edit | edit source]

  • This addition is simply a way to apply what you know about lights and to discover a few settings like colors or creating simple shadows. The purpose here is to create a basic scene with a sphere over a plane, nicely lighted. You should already know the basics of Blender (creating a mesh, moving and rotating it, rendering).

Creating the scene[edit | edit source]

  • Okay, let's start! Open a new file. Add a UVsphere of 32 rings and 32 segments. Leave it in the center of the scene.
Smooth button

Click the Smooth button in the Tool Shelf on the left of the 3D view ( T  to make it visible if it’s not) so the sphere will render as a nicely smoothed sphere.

  • Add a Plane, and move it just under the sphere to be the floor. Scale it so it is very big. The ideal would that we can't see borders with the camera.

Top view of our REALLY BIG plane

  • Then we will move the Camera. Grab it and rotate it so it looks at the sphere from top and a bit from the right. You can have an idea of what it sees pressing  NUM0  to have a CameraView.

What the camera should be looking at

Trick : First  RMB  on the Camera, then  SHIFT + RMB  on the Sphere (the order is very important). Do a  CTRL + T  and select TrackTo Constraint. Select TrackTo Constraint

The camera will be looking at the center of the sphere... You can then move either the camera or the sphere and the camera will still point at the sphere. The Camera is looking at the Sphere

Adding the lights[edit | edit source]

  • Okay, what we have is a pretty beautiful scene, isn't it?... Well, it isn't! But it is enough to add some lights... Here I will describe a basic lighting scene I use as a default for fast renderings. I picked it out from another tutorial, you can find the link at the end of this page.
  • Now we will add our so-awaited lights.  SHIFT + A →Lamp→Spot. Yes, we will first use the Spot light. We can see it as a projector. This is the only light casting shadows. Place it so it is upper and on the left of the sphere. Rotate it so it looks at the Sphere (you can use a Trick I gave you before to have the light looking at the sphere).
  • Okay, let's see what we can tune with the spot light. Having the lamp selected, go in the Lamp settings: Blender267LampDataContextButton.png

You will see these buttons (right):

  • Yeah, really lots of options. Don't worry, I'll explain the basic ones.
    • Distance : Sets the maximum distance the light can reach. Increase it so the lighting cone really goes behind the sphere. I set it to Distance:40.
    • Energy : This is the force of the light. You can leave it at Energy:1.
    • RGB : You can change the colour of the light. Click on the colour and a little window will appear to select the colour you want. Leave it white.


    • Buffer Shadow : Enables the light to cast shadows, leave it pushed. Here you will create the dark side
    • Only Shadow : This light only creates shadows, without casting light ( yeah quite unrealistic, but it can be useful ). Leave it unpushed. Adding a shadow without changing current lighting
    • Spot Shape Size : This is the angle of your cone, in degrees. Leave to Size:45.
    • Spot Shape Blend : This smoothes the circle cast by the light. We will smooth it so that it looks better. Set it to Blend:0.4.
    • Clip Start and Clip End : This is the distance from the light between which shadows will be cast. You can see the "line of effects" in the 3D windows when you change these. Set them so the line starts before the sphere and ends far ( well, a bit ! ) behind the plane. You should obtain something like this. (this is very important... If you do this badly, it can result in completely dark scene!)
  • Now, we have set our Spot light. This light will be our side light and shadowing light. You can make a fast preview pressing  F12 . You can see your so nice shadow. But there isn't enough light... Let's add some more!

So dark! Let this tutorial bring light to your scene

  • Time to add a second light!  SHIFT + A →Lamp→Point. This time, we will create a point lamp. This is like a point which emits light in every direction from that point. You should place it at the opposite of the camera, quite at the same height. This light will be used to better see the form of the sphere and to add a sort of general lighting of the scene.
  • Go in the Lamp buttons, and set it to a higher energy like Energy:1.25. You can make a quick render to see how much this light is important to a scene.

Yo, much better !

  • Now, we will add a second basic lamp.  SHIFT + A →Lamp→Point and we will place it just behind the camera point of view, a bit moved at the opposite of the Spot light. This third light will slightly light the dark parts of the sphere.
  • Decrease the energy of this light, as it is only supposed to fake the reflections of the environment. I set it to Energy:0.8. Another little trick, as this is not supposed to be a direct light, there shouldn't be a little white glow called Specular on the sphere coming from this light. Uncheck specular checkbox.
  • Okay, it's time for the final rendering. Of course, this is a really basic lighting set you can use for rendering a simple mesh; but for more complicated scenes, lights can come from other places, with other colors, etc... Thus we didn't use the Sun, Hemi and Area lights, which are a bit more complicated.

All this, only to light a sphere ...

Note that the following site contains nude figures: For a more in-depth tutorial, here is a tutorial from the Blender Documentation, which has been a great source of help for me.
User note: you might want to check this tutorial on lighting:

Outdoor lighting[edit | edit source]

  • Here you will use a Sun in conjunction with a Spot light and some little Lamps.

Lighting Without Lamps[edit | edit source]

It is possible to light a scene without lamps, or with fewer lamps. In the World Context Blender255WorldContextButton.png of the Properties Window, there are three options, for “Environment Lighting”, “Ambient Occlusion” and “Indirect Lighting”.

Environment Lighting adds a shadowless light that seems to come from all directions and fill all parts of the scene.

Ambient Occlusion (“AO” for short) is supposed to mimic the effect of shadows darkening corners and crevices of real-world objects (in theory this should naturally fall out of accurate lighting calculations, but it is easier to compute it separately); Blender also allows you to use AO to brighten parts of the scene outside those corners and crevices.

Indirect Lighting tries to mimic light bouncing off diffuse surfaces and illuminating other diffuse surfaces. It only works when the “Gather” option (next panel down) is set to “Approximate”.

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Volumetric Lighting¶

“Volumetric lighting is a technique used in 3D computer graphics to add lighting effects to a rendered scene. It allows the viewer to see beams of light shining through the environment; seeing sunbeams streaming through an open window is an example of volumetric lighting, also known as God rays. The term seems to have been introduced from cinematography and is now widely applied to 3D modeling and rendering especially in the field of 3D gaming. In volumetric lighting, the light cone emitted by a light source is modeled as a transparent object and considered as a container of a “volume”: as a result, light has the capability to give the effect of passing through an actual three dimensional medium (such as fog, dust, smoke, or steam) that is inside its volume, just like in the real world.”

—According to Wikipedia, volumetric lighting.

A classic example is the search light with a visible halo/shaft of light being emitted from it as the search light sweeps around.

By default Blender does not model this aspect of light. For example when Blender lights something with a Spot light, you see the objects and area on the floor lit but not the shaft/halo of light coming from the spotlight as it progresses to its target and would get scattered on the way.

The halo/shaft of light is caused in the real world by light being scattered by particles in the air, some of which get diverted into your eye and that you perceive as a halo/shaft of light. The scattering of light from a source can be simulated in Blender using various options, but by default is not activated.

The only lamp able to create volumetric effects is the Spot lamp (even thought you might consider some of the “Sky & Atmosphere” effects of the Sun lamp as volumetric as well).

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And here. and here. here everyone somehow immediately seemed to go limp, as if they suddenly came to their senses, remembering at the sight of a woman that life.

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