This is the third tutorial in my four part series dealing with character animation. These tutorials are targeted to beginners wanting to learn the basics of organic modeling, unwrapping, texturing, rigging, and creating a cute 3d monster. In this third part we’re dealing with texturing. You’ll learn how to create and apply textures with Viewport Canvas. I’ll do my best to keep things as simple as possible. I’m using 3ds Max 2011 and Photoshop.
In 3d graphics, texturing means the process of creating and applying textures to the model. In fact, the term texturing consist of two things: UVW mapping and texture painting. UVW mapping was covered in my previous tutorial and this one will concentrate on the texture painting. We’re going to create the texture by using Photoshop and Viewport Canvas. Viewport Canvas is a 3D paint inside of 3ds Max. In the picture below you see the result of this tutorial.
We’re going to render the scene with Mental Ray. By default 3ds Max uses Scanline renderer so we have to change that. Change the renderer to Mental Ray ().
We continue from the unwrapping tutorial. As a starting point we should have the unwrapped model with the Turbosmooth modifier applied. We don’t need the checker material anymore so let’s get rid of that:
Viewport Canvas is a new feature in 3ds Max. I think it was introduced in 3ds Max 2010 and in 2011 it has been completely upgraded. If you don’t have 3ds Max 2011 you unfortunately can’t really follow this tutorial. If you have Photoshop, you could render a UVW template () and try to apply the ideas on top of that. Anyway, let’s launch Viewport Canvas and start painting.
Let’s use the Fill and Gradient tools to give some color to our monster:
Deactivate the Gradient tool (). A new dialog appears. At the moment there are two layers but layers cannot be saved in a PNG file so something has to be done. There are several options and they are all pretty self-explanatory. We select ‘Save as PSD and replace texture in material’. I think that’s usually the most preferred choice. Now the file is saved as PSD and applied to the diffuse color channel in the material. You might wonder why we didn’t save the file as PSD in the first place. Unfortunately 3ds Max doesn’t allow that at the moment but I’m guessing it will change soon.
Next we’re going to work with Photoshop to create some texture:
Let’s apply the texture to our model. You could do it in Photoshop but I’m using Viewport Canvas:
Tip: If the texture is displayed in low resolution go to the display driver settings and and maximize the resolution ().
Now the monster has a nice painted look but unfortunately the texture seams are clearly visible. Next we’re going to do something that would be really difficult in Photoshop but really easy in 3d paint. We’re going to use the Clone tool to paint over the seams:
Let’s create more details by adding another texture to our layer stack ():
Now we have more small details in our texture. As you see this is very fast method of adding some random details to the surface. Now our diffuse map is complete. Next we’re going to create and apply texture maps to bump and reflection channels as well.
Let’s apply a reflection color map to the material:
Now there is a blank texture in the reflection color channel. In reflection color channel we paint matte areas with black and shiny/reflective areas with white. Let’s paint some drool:
Let’s make the texture more interesting by adding a reflection glossiness map and a bump map:
Now the material is complete and we go on with the lighting and rendering.
We’re going to use a basic three-point lighting setup to illuminate the monster. Since this is essentially a texturing tutorial I’m not going to go through the lighting in detail but I’ll give you the exact settings you can use:
Let’s adjust the sampling settings to get a polished render. Go to the render setup and increase antialiasing quality by increasing Mental Ray’s sampling values ():
Finally change the background color to black () and hit render. Below you see the final rendered image. I made some color correction in Photoshop as well:
Thanks for reading!
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