Vray Photorealistic renders

Hi, as you will notice from my renders below, I’m a beginner. Can someone help by pointing out my mistakes? I would really appreciate it. I’m not sure what I’m doing wrong, but it simply doesn’t look real enough.

I don’t know id it is the case, but I would get rid of all the “infill” lights you might have put in and let all the light come from the actual lighting fixtures (and windows, if it is a day scene). It looks like most of the light is coming “from nowhere” and that results in the blandness and lack of shadows. You can also adjust the strength of the lights and the exposure.
Don’t be afraid of the darkness.

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Thanks. I do have a lot of hidden lights. I will try to get rid of those and stick with window light.

It’s hard to say exactly what to do to fix as it requires a lot of knowledge of:

  • modeling in SU (ie high poly/high quality geometry and assets),
  • use of PBR (ie photo-realistic, reflection, bump, etc) materials,
  • camera settings (F-Stop, exposure, depth of field, etc),
  • composition (rule of thirds, camera height, two-point perspective, etc),
  • post-processing (adjusting contrast, highlight burn, white balance, etc after the rendering is done)…
  • and most important, lighting.

Agreed with @Anssi (twice in one day!) that there are too many generic lights’ that just give an even ‘wash’ over the space. Start by using ‘Materials Override’ setting in the Asset Editor, making sure to uncheck ‘can be overriden’ for both emissive and glass materials. That way you can test your lighting only and get it looking good before moving on.

Here my model I’m working on now with mostly default settings. It’s a bit dark. The only lights are two can lights in the ceiling and two pendant lights over the bar. I’ve added rectangle lights in the windows so I can control the amount of light coming from outside.

Before messing with too many camera settings, I like to adjust the exposure UP and highlight burn DOWN. This is starting to look way more realistic.


One more thing, be sure to add the ‘light mix’ render channel. This will allow you to turn off/on, change color, inensity, etc of lights AFTER the render is finished. That way you can see the impact or contribution each light makes to the overall scene.

Update: See example where I’m playing with the pendant lights. This helps me understand what colors and intensities look good so that later, when I do this again, I have a better idea oh what to expect.


Thank you. This is very helpful :grinning: