FIRE is able to display Floating Shadows and Floating Reflections of your objects on the ground, even without a geometry ground plane in the scene. This feature is very helpful during the design stage or even for presentations of your products, as it quickly provides a nice preview of your models even at an early stage. To turn this feature on in FIRE you simply have to enable the Floating Shadows and/or Floating Reflections checkboxes in the FIRE properties tab. It is worth remarking that the floating shadows are actually cast from the emitters in the scene, respecting their geometric characteristics and material settings, and so the shadow render is accurate. With this feature it is easy to show an object over a solid color background while producing reflections and shadows in the ground.
Enabling Floating Shadows and Floating Reflections in the Render Options panel in Studio
Above: The model as seen in the Studio scene, the FIRE preview without Floating Shadows and Floating Reflections, and the FIRE preview with Floating Shadows enabled alone.
Below: Floating Reflections enabled alone, and the FIRE preview with both options together. Click the image to enlarge.
And of course you can use the Floating Shadows and Floating Reflections even on your IBL environment, getting a decent integration of your model in the surrounding environment.
Floating Shadows and Reflections of the model on a IBL environment, visible on the FIRE preview.
This feature was intended to exist in the FIRE preview only. To get true shadows and reflections on your final production render you may need to create an actual ground plane with actual reflective and shadow catching properties.
How the Floating Shadows and Reflections feature works?
Take a look at how this feature works in this video overview.
Floating Shadows and Reflections overview