Ran Ben Avraham breaks down just what exactly IES Lights are in the 3D world and then extends that look into how to use IES light profiles in a Maya render. IES stands for the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America (IES) and has actually been around for 100 years or more. IES provides the standards for real life lighting engineers, creating a file format For the electronic transfer of Luminaire Component Data which most rendering engines can read and use.
In this tutorial we will discuss how to incorporate IES files into your scene lights, and how to tweak them, where to find IES files online for free, and how to quickly view them without the hassle of rendering them over and over again in Maya
Ran Ben Avraham also discusses where you can find IES light profiles that you can use in your own work, and how to incorporate the lighting profiles in Maya Mental Ray. Check out the tutorial for What are IES Lights & How to Use Them in Maya here.
A little while ago, I posted here a brief tutorial that Jamie Cardoso created walking through creating your own customized IES format lighting profile using a handy little tool called IES Generator which will allow you to open IES profiles and modify them into your own customized look for your next rendering project.