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Is there a way to make a shadow render with a different material in cycles? I'm trying to make an animation that uses a different material for shadowed regions from a single light source. The material used for the shadow should be different than the illuminated material.

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For example, in the image below, the shadowed region of the plant and rings would be replaced by a different texture. If this is not possible in cycles, is there an alternative approach in EVEE?

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This is not possible in cycles. (There is a work around but it's not highly functional and needs a few specific requirements which are not always possible) In Eevee this is possible and is actually very easy. enter image description here

The first diffuse shader(can be any shader) is your base material. This is then converted to color using the shader to RGB node.Then this is used as factor for ColorRamp. Then with the color ramp you can adjust the amount of shadow to be seen. Then use the output from the Color Ramp as a factor for a mix shader node. Now simply put shaders you want in the respective sockets (Remember that the white portion from the Color Ramp output is the second shader and the white part is the first. This is because black means 0 and white means 1.)

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  • $\begingroup$ Thanks. I had to get some of the setting for the lamp and shadows tweaked, but this did what was requested. $\endgroup$
    – Ed Tate
    Jul 17, 2023 at 19:59

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