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Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Facelights, Revisited

Long ago, I wrote a tutorial about facelights.  It's still valid, but since Second Life implemented the Advanced Lighting Model*, there are three things to add about facelights:

1) The new lighting model makes most facelights look a LOT brighter than they used to.  If you are using an old-style facelight, there's a good chance that you look like a walking supernova to anyone using the new and improved lighting model.

2) The new lighting model improves the look of avatars even without facelights, to the point that many people think they're totally unnecessary.  They have a point, but I take a more middle of the road view; I think that a modest facelight still has a place.  The key word here is "modest"!

3) The new lighting model introduces a new type of light, projectors.  Projectors can throw light in a specific direction, like a spotlight, instead of spreading it in all directions.  Plus, projectors can use a texture to act as a "virtual gobo".  A gobo is the term lighting technicians use for an opaque sheet placed in front of a light, with various cutouts in the sheet to cause the light to form a desired pattern.

My friend and fellow blogger Nalates Urriah created a facelight using the new projector light.  She both sells a ready-made and very inexpensive one, and shows you how to make your own in this post on her blog: http://blog.nalates.net/2016/10/04/second-life-the-new-facelight/ 

*Find the control to turn on the Advanced Lighting Model in your viewer's Preferences, in the Graphics tab.

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