Create > Lights > Directional Light


Adds a directional light to your scene.

Use a directional light to simulate a very distant point light source (for example, the sun as viewed from the surface of the Earth).

A directional light shines evenly in one direction only. Its light rays are parallel to each other, as if emitted perpendicular from an infinitely large plane.


If you render a directional light with photon emission with mental ray for Maya, ensure that objects are marked properly for photon tracing.

Related topics

Create > Lights > Directional light >


See Intensity.


See Color.

Cast Shadows

If on, the light produces depth map shadows (for directional, point, or spot lights) or raytraced shadows (for ambient lights). Cast Shadows is off by default. See also Shadow attributes.

  • Depth map shadows are typically used for quick render tests when the quality is not important.
  • Raytraced shadows produce more accurate results and can handle transparency, but can be slower.
Shadow color
Interactive Placement

Turn this option on so that you are automatically looking through the directional light upon its creation.

See Interactively place a spot, area or directional light.

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