New materials

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cholme
Posts: 16
Joined: Fri Mar 19, 2010 1:05 pm

New materials

Post by cholme » Thu May 27, 2010 7:23 pm

I am hoping someone has some tips for me. I want to create some custom materials that I use frequently. What is the best way to create realistic materials. For instance I use a lot of wood and metal. I see all the materials on the Indigo site, but how are they created? Do they start with a photo? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

StompinTom
Indigo 100
Posts: 1821
Joined: Mon Sep 04, 2006 3:33 pm

Re: New materials

Post by StompinTom » Fri May 28, 2010 12:41 am

In my work, most (if not all) textures are based off of photographs, either mine or stuff I've gotten from places like cgtextures.com, mayang.com/textures, etc.

Bump maps can be faked easily by just using a black and white version of the diffuse map, with a bit of tweaking. Specular maps may be a bit more tricky, but you can get a high contrast black and white image from your diffuse map as well, and they look great on the material.

Start with the diffuse map (color map), make sure it's got even lighting (no obvious lighting "baked" into it) and is as uniformly lit as possible (ideally, it would tile, you can use Photoshop for that).

cholme
Posts: 16
Joined: Fri Mar 19, 2010 1:05 pm

Re: New materials

Post by cholme » Fri May 28, 2010 4:55 am

StompinTom -

Thanks for the advice, and I don't mean to be thick... but can you expand a bit? Say I download a photo texture, do I have to create a bump map in Photoshop? if so, do I simply convert the photo to greyscale? Then in the indigo editor, do I apply settings for sheen etc., point the bump to my greyscale image and export the material from Indigo?

Again, I don't meant to be thick, but I don't have a firm grasp on this program yet.

Thanks,

Chris

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Headroom
Indigo 100
Posts: 992
Joined: Wed Aug 08, 2007 1:07 pm
Location: Spartanburg, SC, USA

Re: New materials

Post by Headroom » Fri May 28, 2010 5:28 am

In general that's what StompinTom is referring to, however, creating good textures is an artform in itself, specifically if you want to cearte seamlessly tileable textures.

If you are not so interested in developing that skill but are rather interested in visualizing your furniture design ideas AND are not shy of spending some money, there are high quality texture collections that you can purchase. For example the wood collections from www.arroway.de should work could for well for you.

http://www.arroway-textures.com/en/products/wood-1

I have their wood flooring collection, which is of very good quality and certainly better of anything that I could create.

Then again, being able to create your own textures is definitely a very valuable skill to have!

cholme
Posts: 16
Joined: Fri Mar 19, 2010 1:05 pm

Re: New materials

Post by cholme » Fri May 28, 2010 8:50 am

Thanks... those materials look amazing. Unfortunately, I am not in a position to drop the kind of cash that those would require, so I need to hone my skills at creating my own.

I will definitely bookmark that site and when I have some extra cash, it looks like a good investment.

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dakiru
Indigo 100
Posts: 746
Joined: Mon Jun 22, 2009 6:51 am

Re: New materials

Post by dakiru » Fri May 28, 2010 10:00 am

cholme wrote:Thanks... those materials look amazing. Unfortunately, I am not in a position to drop the kind of cash that those would require, so I need to hone my skills at creating my own.

I will definitely bookmark that site and when I have some extra cash, it looks like a good investment.
There is a possibility not to use Photoshop. For example, ShaderMap Pro - for 20 bucks quite enough features to make bump, specular etc. maps from the photo. And those maps mostly create the biggest part of the appearance of realistic material.

StompinTom
Indigo 100
Posts: 1821
Joined: Mon Sep 04, 2006 3:33 pm

Re: New materials

Post by StompinTom » Fri May 28, 2010 10:35 am

Check out cgtextures.com. Best online texture resource ever and you can get a whole slew of very useful textures without a subscription.

cholme
Posts: 16
Joined: Fri Mar 19, 2010 1:05 pm

Re: New materials

Post by cholme » Sun May 30, 2010 4:26 am

I sort of get the concept of creating solid materials, like wood or stone... what about something like a leaf? I have seen a few textures in the materials library, like the Leaf and Fern that have actual shape to to them, not just a solid texture. How are these created?

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