A new software utility makes it easier than ever for photographers and educators to share their studio lighting setups.
Set.a.light 3D Studio, from German developers Elixxier Software, lets you create three-dimensional lighting setups in a virtual studio, simulating the lighting effects on digital mannequins and generating printable diagrams to help plan your shoot.
Until now photographers could share PDFs, data and 2-D screenshots of their set.a.light studio setups, but viewers required a full version of set.a.light 3D BASIC or set.a.light 3D STUDIO to open .set files and fully explore the diagrams in 3-D.
Thanks to the newly-released, free set.a.light 3D Viewer, now anybody can open these files. The utility lets users move themselves around the studio, adjust the power of individual lights and export new PDFs to print for use on location. So if you want to understand or recreate another photographer’s setup, you can try it out before doing any heavy lifting in real life.
“With set.a.light 3D STUDIO, content creators can show and explain their setups in a completely new dimension. But it was clear that they needed to be able to show it to every user,” said Johannes Dauner, CEO of elixxier Software.
Those who run photography workshops or write lighting tutorials could use a full version of set.a.light to build a replica of a studio setup, then distribute the .set file as a handout, which students can access for free using the Viewer program. It’ll also be handy if you use set.a.light, but your friends don’t, and you want to share your creations.
Looking at a setup in 3D Viewer, you can switch lights on and off to see what effect each one has on the model. To add or move lights, change modifiers or adjust the camera position you need the full set.a.light — €120 (US: $139) for the pro version or €40 ($39) for the basic edition.