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Dramatic Lighting for 3D plots

  • To: mathgroup at
  • Subject: Dramatic Lighting for 3D plots
  • From: vanhet at
  • Date: Sat, 11 Apr 92 21:38:55 -0700


I am asking for tips on how to make 'dramatic' 3D plots for B&W
printers.  Unlike the examples in the Mathematica book, most of
my 3D plots are not spheres or icosahedrons. Instead, I typically
have a 'gently curving' surface with one or 2 peaks or hills.
On a non-color laser printer, these type of surfaces usually appear 
flat gray with perhaps a darker gray on one side of the hill.

I would like to easily produce more dramatic images where the shades 
of gray run all the way from white to black.  I've done this before
on one surface by spending several hours working with the 'Lighting',
'AmbientLight', and other options, but I'd like to learn an easy
set of tips that will let me apply this to a wide variety of 
surfaces seen from a variety of viewing angles.

Does anyone know a set of tips to speed up the choice of Lighting
settings (including info on how the light source directions interact
with the ViewPoint settings) for B&W surfaces?? 

If I get some good tips, I'll post a summary.  Thanks,

John van Heteren
vanhet at

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