Andrew Price says “Vignetting is the darkening of the edges of a photo” in his “The WOW Factor” book.
You can easily make a “vignette” effect in the compositing node editor. Generally we use “Lens Distortion”, math node, and “Blur” node then multiply with the original image.
In this example, we will use a plane parented by the camera and play with the material and texture values. We will be able to change its color, size and shape. So there will be lots of values to modify as you wish!
First we put a plane and give it a name like “vignettePlane”.
Show the plane as wire and check “Name” in the object panel. I will not tell every step but the main ones. Let’s add a material, give a name like “vignetteMaterial”, and a texture named “vignetteTexture”. These panels have the key values.
Specular intensity is 0, Translucency is also 0 but we will use Transparency.
Transparency is on and Alpha value is 0. Don’t forget to uncheck “Traceable”… Or else you will get an irritating shadow…
Anyway I changed these shadow values like here.
Now this is the best time, or fun time! Add the texture and make it “Blend”.
“Show Alpha” and but you don’t have to click “Both” 🙂
Click “Ramp” and slide the second color stop. If you want too much vignette, put the second one far to the right side. Brightness is also nice to scale the effect in or out.
In the “Blend” tab you can choose an effect type. Mostly we use “Quadratic Sphere”… Cool name…
Lastly we go to the “Influence” check Color, Alpha and Translucency to make them 1. Mapping size can be useful to reduce harsh borders while scaling the inner/outer of the texture.
Some example renders: