Partial lighting can be a blessing or a curse. Often it is caused by strongly directional light, like the sun at midday, or light that is partially blocked by vegetation or other obstructions. It cause some areas of a photo to be over or under exposed, or at least make it challenging to get the right exposure. On the other hand, it can be used to create very interesting photos.
Partial lighting can make a subject stand out from the background.
Strong shadows can also highlight forms.
Small amounts of direct light can also function like spotlights, highlighting a bird or a part of a bird. They can also convey a sense of place, such as a shady forest pierced with small rays of light.