Yeah, modeling materials can be tricky, particularly if you want accuracy. Life is not always fair, you get what you pay for, and there's also no such thing as a free lunch, either. =)
For me, doing relative studies of architectural scenes, it's always made sense to keep things simple which does mean keeping color out of the equation (both for materials and light sources), and using generally diffuse materials (which is really the majority of architectural materials that cover broad expanses of interior spaces). When specularity is a critical component of a surface, such as in light redirecting materials, I resort to BSDFs or other means of describing the light scattering (photometric distribution file resulting from light forwards ray tracing exercise, usually).
Some amazing things can be done with textures and patterns to enhance the realism of a rendering, but I'm generally more interested in numbers so I have not played with those too much. I can tell you that you are automatically introducing more variables to the physical definition of the surface to which you are applying those textures and patterns, so tread carefully.
Material definition has been discussed at length on this list, so I'd search the archives. Also check out Carsten Bauer's amazing textures and patterns from his Workshop talk in 2002 (linked on the Radiance-online.org website) for inspiration as to what's possible with textures, patterns, and the Radiance functional language -- sick stuff!
NREL Commercial Buildings Research Group
Golden, CO 80401
From: Germán Molina Larrain [[email protected]<mailto:[email protected]>]
Sent: Friday, April 26, 2013 09:46 AM Mountain Standard Time
To: Radiance general discussion
Subject: [Radiance-general] Modeling the real world for lighting analysis.
I am a starter on the use of Radiance, and I have some doubts about the modeling (of the real world, as it always is, in engineering at least). I have heard that material reflectivity is a very important parameter that. How important are:
- Color (I am pretty sure I read something in this list about grey-world simulations... I think it was Rob).
My concern is that defining materials is actually not a very easy task, so I just wanted to know what are the most important things here.
THANKS VERY MUCH!