Similar to these questions (1, 2, 3), I wish to emit light from some of the atoms in my model. I've randomly generated some atoms to be glowing and blue. I've followed a lot of the methods of these questions in generating my own material. However, I'm not observing (rendered) any light diffusion from the blue atoms onto other atoms and their surfaces. Clearly the light source I've created is working well and creating these shadows.

Atomic model with some glowing atoms

All spheres share roughly the same material properties, although I'm giving any emission from the magenta atoms and so using a different material node set. I've ramped up the emission strength for this image just to show it's not diffusing properly of neighboring atoms, although ideally I have this lower so there's still some aspect of the atom curvature relative to the main light source observable.

I was wondering if using Blender 2.8 might have changed some of these properties from previous versions, as I'm fairly inexperienced.

What am I missing, to observe light diffusion from neighboring atoms?

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Hello :). You Lightpath Node > Is Camera Ray only allows emission rays going directly to camera. That prevents any reflections of your emmisive atoms. $\endgroup$ Jul 20, 2020 at 11:07
  • $\begingroup$ Right! So I guess one solution is actually just to design a completely different material and instead of randomly applying through nodes, use scripting or something similar to randomly apply? I guess I'll wait and see if someone comes up with a solution to allow diffusion whilst still showing some of the surface color/texture through nodes. $\endgroup$
    – Mr G
    Jul 20, 2020 at 11:19
  • $\begingroup$ If I remove the light path node, and only use the emission shader for blue atoms, I still find myself with the same issue. imgur.com/a/WJOwjzG $\endgroup$
    – Mr G
    Jul 20, 2020 at 11:24
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Oh, you're using Eevee, I totally missed that! In that case there are limitations on light-emitting objects. Perhaps try Cycles render engine :). $\endgroup$ Jul 20, 2020 at 12:15
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Yeah I believe so! I actually wasn't aware limitations of various rendering engines in Blender, or that it was common to switch between! imgur.com/a/1G1RQM6 $\endgroup$
    – Mr G
    Jul 20, 2020 at 12:34


Browse other questions tagged .