15+ Midjourney Lighting Prompts (With Examples)

Mukund Kapoor
By Mukund Kapoor - Author 19 Min Read
19 Min Read

Lighting is the key to creating stunning, photorealistic artwork that stands out.

Using the right Midjourney lighting prompts, you can easily elevate your AI art.

For example, you might want to create the golden glow of a sunset, the dramatic shadows of a film noir scene, or the soft, dreamy atmosphere of a misty morning; all this is possible with the lighting prompts styles we will discuss in this guide.

In this guide, we’ll share the best Midjourney lighting prompts and show you how to use them with examples.

Midjourney Lighting Prompts

Remember, we’ll use the latest V6 Midjourney version for this guide. If you have not yet updated your Midjourney, you can easily do so by going to Midjourney Settings and changing your Current Suffix to –v6.

Also in this guide, we’ll not be using random prompts, so that you can notice the lighting differences on the subject.

Here are the lighting style prompts that we are going to talk about in this post:

  • Soft Lighting
  • Hard Lighting
  • Back Lighting
  • Golden Hour
  • Midday Sun
  • Overcast Lighting
  • Artificial Lighting
  • Seasonal Lighting
  • Shadowed
  • Sunflare
  • Rim Lighting
  • Cross Lighting
  • High Key Lighting
  • Low Key Lighting
  • Broad Lighting
  • Short Lighting
  • Flash-Lamp & Flashtube
  • Incandescent Lamp
  • Crackle Tube
  • Halogen Lamp
  • Strobe Light
  • Flickering Lighting
  • Motivated Lighting

So tighten your seatbelts, and let’s get started learning.

Soft Lighting

Soft, diffuse lighting can create a more natural, atmospheric look and feel to the generated images. It helps to minimize harsh shadows and highlights, resulting in a more even and pleasing luminance.

It’s a great lighting style if you want your AI images to have more pleasing lighting that’s not harsh on the eyes (for example, hard shadows).

soft light example midjourney
Soft Lighting

Prompt: a photo portrait of a beautiful and diverse woman, soft lighting,::3 dslr::3 –aspect 1:1 –version 6.0 –stylize 50

Hard Lighting

Hard lighting, characterized by stark contrasts between bright highlights and deep shadows, can add drama, intensity, and a sense of three-dimensionality to the generated images.

It’s a great lighting style to create more striking, cinematic, or mystical aesthetic images.

Hard lighting example midjourney
Hard Lighting

Prompt: a photo portrait of a beautiful and diverse woman shadowed, hard lighting,:: dslr::3 –aspect 1:1 –v6 –stylize 30

Back Lighting

By placing the light source behind the subject, backlighting can create a beautiful rim of illumination around the edges, separating the subject from the background and adding depth and dimensionality to the image.

It’s a great lighting style to achieve a dramatic, ethereal, or ethereal look in your Midjourney AI artwork.

backlit example midjourney prompt

Prompt: a photo portrait of a woman with flowing black hair, backlit by a golden sunset, bright backdrop, wearing a flowing white dress –v 6.0

Golden Hour

The golden hues and long shadows of golden hour lighting can create a dreamy, ethereal quality. This warm, soft lighting occurs during the first and last hours of the day.

It’s a great lighting style to capture a serene, atmospheric, and aesthetically pleasing mood.

golden hour midjourney example
Golden Hour

Prompt: a photo portrait of a handsome man, golden hour lighting –v 6.0

Midday Sun

Midday Sun is a harsh, direct light from the high sun creates strong shadows and highlights. It works well for subjects that need a bold, high-contrast look, like buildings or action scenes. Midday sunlighting is good for clarity and vibrancy in AI portraits or images.

midday sun midjourney lighting prompt output
Midday Sun Lighting

Prompt: a photo portrait of a beautiful woman, harsh midday sun lighting, dslr –aspect 1:1 –version 6.0 –stylize 50

Overcast Lighting

The light becomes soft and even when the sky is covered in clouds, which we call Overcast lighting.

This can create a calm, moody, and atmospheric look in the images. Overcast lighting reduces harsh shadows and highlights, giving a more subtle and diffused illumination.

It’s a great lighting style to make your AI image feel cozy, tranquil, or mysterious.

overcast lighting midjourney example
Overcast Lighting

Prompt: a photo portrait of extremely beautiful woman, overcast lighting, dslr –aspect 1:1 –version 6.0

Artificial Lighting

Lighting that is created by human-made sources, like lamps or spotlights, can add a lot of control and creativity to the images.

Artificial lighting allows you to create specific moods, highlight certain elements, and even defy natural lighting conditions.

Artificial lighting
Artificial lighting

Prompt: a photo portrait of a handsome man, artificial studio lighting –v 6.0 –stylize 59

Seasonal Lighting

The quality of light changes throughout the different seasons of the year. In winter, the light is often softer and more diffused.

In summer, the light is brighter and harsher. Incorporating seasonal lighting can make your Midjourney AI images feel more authentic and immersive.

It’s a great lighting style if you want to capture a specific time of year or evoke a certain mood and atmosphere.

Let’s take an example here of winter:

Seasonal Lighting
Seasonal lighting

Prompt: a cozy mountain cabin in the soft, muted light of a winter afternoon, with snow-capped peaks in the distance, Unreal Engine

Or, let’s take the example of the rainy season:

seasonal lighting rainy season

Prompt: children playing in a garden, seasonal lighting, rainy season –v 6.0

In the above image, you can notice how dull saturation is with more colder colors.


Shadowed lighting can create a sense of mystery, drama, and depth in the artwork.

Shadowed lighting makes some areas of deep shadow in the image, often with just a small amount of light peeking through.

shadowed lighting midjourney
Shadowed Lighting

Prompt: a photo portrait of a handsome and diverse man shadowed


Sunflare Lighting is when the sun’s rays create a bright, glowing effect in a photo. It adds warmth and drama to images in Midjourney AI art.

It’s a cool lighting style to use if you want your pictures to look extra special.


Prompt: a portrait of a beautiful woman, Sunflare, –stylize 70

Rim Lighting

Rim Lighting is when light outlines the subject, creating a halo effect. It adds depth and highlights the edges of objects.

It’s a fantastic lighting style to make your artwork stand out with a warm or cool glow.

rim lighting midjourney style

Prompt: a photo portrait of a woman, rim lighting, dslr –aspect 1:1

Cross Lighting

Rim Lighting is when light shines from behind the subject, outlining its edges.

In an AI art, it adds depth and emphasis to the subject, making it pop in the image. It’s a fantastic lighting style to use if you want your artwork to have a striking and dramatic look.

cross lighting midjourney style

Prompt: a photo portrait of a woman, cross lighting, dslr –aspect 1:1

High Key Lighting

High Key Lighting is when a scene is brightly and evenly lit, minimizing shadows.

In Midjourney, it will create a soft, cheerful atmosphere and is ideal for capturing a clean, bright look in images.

It’s a great lighting to use if you want your artwork to have a bright and uplifting feel.

High Key lighting midjourney example image output
High Key Light

Prompt: a photo portrait of a woman, high key lighting, dslr –aspect 1:1

Low Key Lighting

Low Key Lighting is when a scene is predominantly dark with selective areas of bright light.

It adds mystery, drama, and a sense of depth to the images by highlighting contrast between light and shadow.

low key lighting
Low Key Lighting

Prompt: a photo portrait of a woman, high key lighting, dslr –aspect 1:1 –stylize 10

Broad Lighting

Broad lighting is a general term for lighting that comes from a wide, diffused source.

This creates an even, soft illumination across the whole scene. Broad lighting can make Midjourney AI images look natural, calm, and balanced.

broad lighting
Broad Lighting

Prompt: a photo portrait of a boy, broad lighting, dslr –aspect 1:1 –stylize 10

Short Lighting

With short lighting, the main light source is coming from the side of the subject, creating more shadow on one side of the face or object.

This can make the subject look more dramatic and sculpted. Best style if you want your artwork to have a strong, moody, or cinematic feel.

Short Lighting midjourney style
Short Lighting

Prompt: a photo portrait of a boy, short lighting, dslr –aspect 1:1 –stylize 10

Flash-Lamp & Flashtube

Flash-lamp and flashtube are two different types of lighting that can be used in Midjourney AI art.

A flash-lamp is a type of lamp that produces a very bright, sudden burst of light. This is often used for photography to capture fast-moving subjects or freeze action.

flashlamp lighting midjourney style
Flashlamp Light

Prompt: a photo portrait of a boy, flashlamp lighting, –aspect 1:1 –stylize 8 –v 6.0

A flashtube is a type of electronic lighting that also produces a quick, bright flash of light. Flashtubes are commonly used in cameras and studio lighting.

flashtube lighting midjourney style
Flashtube Lighting

Prompt: a photo portrait of a boy, flashtube lighting, dslr –aspect 1:1 –stylize 8 –v 6.0

Incandescent Lamp Lighting

Incandescent lamps work by heating a metal filament inside the lamp until it glows and emits light.

The light from incandescent lamps has a warm, yellowish color tone. This can create a cozy, inviting feel in Midjourney AI images. The lighting also tends to be a bit softer and more diffused compared to some other lighting sources.

Incandescent lamp lighting is great if you want your Midjourney AI artwork to have a classic, nostalgic, or homey atmosphere.

Incandescent Lamp lighting in midjourney
Incandescent Lamp

Prompt: a photo portrait of a boy, incandescent lamp lighting, –aspect 1:1 –stylize 35 –v 6.0

Crackle Tube

Crackle tube lighting is a unique type of lighting.

A crackle tube is a special kind of glass tube that has been treated to create a cracked or distressed appearance.

When lit up, the crackle tube gives off an irregular, flickering light that can look like crackling electricity or flames. This creates a very dynamic and eye-catching lighting effect.

Use this lighting only if you want a sense of energy, and chaos in your images.

Crackle Tube
Crackle Tube

Prompt: a photo portrait of a boy, portrait lit using Crackle tube lighting, –aspect 1:1 –stylize 7 –v 6.0

Halogen Lamp

Halogen lamps work by heating a small capsule filled with halogen gas. This produces a very bright, intense light.

The light from halogen lamps has a crisp, white color that is often described as “cool” or “daylight” in tone. Halogen lighting tends to create strong contrasts between bright highlights and dark shadows.

halogen lit midjourney art
Halogen Lighting

Prompt: a photo portrait of a boy, portrait lit using halogen lamp lighting, –aspect 1:1 –stylize 7 –v 6.0

Strobe Light

Strobe light produce very quick, bright flashes of light in rapid succession.

This creates a flickering, stroboscopic effect that can make images look like they are moving or frozen in time. Strobe lighting is often used in photography and video to capture fast-paced action.

strobe lighting
Strobe Lighting

Prompt: a photo portrait of a boy, portrait lit using strobe lighting, –aspect 1:1 –stylize 7 –v 6.0

Flickering Lighting

Flickering light is when the brightness of the light keeps changing, giving an unsteady or wavering appearance.

This flickering effect can make an image look more moody, unsettling, or have an eerie, supernatural feel to it.

flickering lighting midjourney
Flickering Lighting

Prompt: a photo portrait of a women, flickering lighting, –aspect 1:1 –stylize 7 –v 6.0

Motivated Lighting

Motivated lighting is a technique used where the lighting in the image is meant to look like it’s coming from a specific, logical source.

For example, if there’s a lamp in the scene, the lighting should look like it’s coming from that lamp, and not just generally lighting up the whole area. Or if there’s a window, the lighting should look natural as if it’s coming through the window.

Motivated lighting helps make the image look more realistic and believable. It creates a sense that the lighting is part of the scene, rather than just being added on top of it.

motivated lighting
Motivated Lighting

Prompt: a photo portrait of a women, motivated lighting, –aspect 1:1 –stylize 7 –v 6.0

Moon Light

Moonlight is the soft, gentle light that comes from the moon at night.

Compared to sunlight, moonlight is much dimmer and has a cooler, bluer tone. It creates long, soft shadows and a more mysterious, atmospheric feel.

Using moonlight lighting in Midjourney AI artwork can make a scene look peaceful, romantic, or even a little eerie. The low, diffused lighting is great for creating moody, dreamlike environments.

moonlighting midjourney prompt output
Moon Lighting

Prompt: a photo portrait of a women, moonlit, –aspect 1:1 –stylize 7 –v 6.0

Diffused Lighting

Diffused light is a type of lighting that spreads out the light in a soft, even way. Instead of having harsh shadows and bright spots, diffused light creates a gentle, uniform illumination.

This type of lighting is really important in fashion photography and Midjourney AI art. When photographing models or creating fashion-inspired images, diffused light can make the subject look smoother, more flattering, and more evenly lit.

diffused lighting
Diffused Lighting

Prompt: a model wearing the latest designer dress , fashion show, diffused lighting, –aspect 1:1 –stylize 7

Urban Night Lights

Urban night lights refer to the different types of lighting found in cities and towns at night. This can include things like:

  • Street lamps – These are the tall, bright lights that line the roads and sidewalks. They help light up the streets and make it safer to walk around at night.
  • Neon signs – Many businesses in urban areas have neon signs that create a colorful, eye-catching glow at night. This adds a vibrant, lively feel to the city.
  • Building lights – The windows and exterior of buildings are often lit up at night, creating a glowing effect across the cityscape.
  • Vehicle headlights – The headlights of cars, buses, and other vehicles moving through the city add their own pockets of illumination.

Using urban night lighting is great if you want your Midjourney AI artwork to feel immersive, contemporary, and true to the experience of being in a lively city environment.

urban night lights
Urban Night Lighting

Prompt: a women, new york, urban night lights, –aspect 1:1 –stylize 7

Bokeh Light Effects

Bokeh is a photographic effect that creates soft, blurry circles of light in the background of an image. This happens when the camera’s lens is focused on a subject, but there are small, bright light sources in the background.

In Midjourney AI art, bokeh light effects can add a beautiful, dreamy quality to the artwork. The out-of-focus circles of light create a sense of depth and atmosphere.

Bokeh is great if you want your Midjourney AI images to have a more artistic, ethereal feel. The soft, glowing highlights can make a scene more magical or romantic.

bokeh lighting
Bokeh Lighting

Prompt: a portrait of a women, bokeh lights, –aspect 1:1 –stylize 7

And That’s It!

Mastering the use of Midjourney lighting prompts is essential for creating captivating, professional-quality AI-generated images.

Remember, don’t be afraid to try out different lighting prompts and combinations to see what works best for you.

If you’re eager to learn more about Midjourney, check out the below articles:


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By Mukund Kapoor Author
Mukund Kapoor, the enthusiastic author and creator of GreatAIPrompts, is driven by his passion for all things AI. With a special knack for simplifying complex AI concepts, he's committed to helping readers of all levels - be it beginners or experts - navigate the intriguing world of artificial intelligence. Through GreatAIPrompts, Mukund ensures that readers always have access to the most recent and relevant AI news, tools, and insights. His dedication to quality, accuracy, and clarity is what sets his blog apart, making it a reliable go-to source for anyone interested in unlocking the potential of AI. For more information visit Author Bio.
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