For a vector illustration project, I am looking for a way to extract the shadows of objects in Freestyle. Currently I am only able to export the object itself (with Freestyle Edge Marks and the Freestyle SVG Export add-on):

Left: monkey rendered in blender with a drop shadow. Right: the exported .svg only contains the object, and not the shadow

How can I reveal the contour of the shadow with Freestyle?

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    $\begingroup$ Freestyle only exports hard geometry. Shadows don't have a coherent outline that can be unequivocally traceable. See blender.stackexchange.com/questions/77279/… $\endgroup$ Commented Jul 5, 2021 at 9:33
  • $\begingroup$ @DuarteFarrajotaRamos thanks for your comment. So you suggest to mimic the shadow with the Knife Project tool, so as to give the shadow a "substance" of sorts? $\endgroup$ Commented Jul 5, 2021 at 10:14
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    $\begingroup$ That might work. Though it involves a certain amount of manual work. Maybe you can do it non destructively with modifiers like Shrinkwrap perhaps $\endgroup$ Commented Jul 5, 2021 at 10:39

1 Answer 1


As a workaround, you could try the following:

  • Import your rendered PNG into Inkscape
  • use the "bucket fill"-Tool on the shadow, this will rather neatly trace the contour of the shadow (as long as the color is somewhat uniform)
  • Set line and fill of the traced area as you like
  • Import the Freestyle-generated SVG on top and move/scale as needed
  • Delete the PNG

This should give you a pretty good vector image for further usage

  • $\begingroup$ @haarigertroll thanks for this workaround. I will try this. $\endgroup$ Commented Jul 5, 2021 at 12:01

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