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View Full Version : Tutorial for Beginners on how to Texture Models like a Pro Quickly and Easily



Chernoby
07-30-2014, 11:48 PM
Made a tutorial today for the Lightwave community. It deals with texturing models (mainly hard surfaced, angular models like vehicles, cranes, architecture, etc) using an atlas UV map with photoshop to make a highly detailed model in about 10 min. The final product can serve as a base to further add more detail if you want to take your objects to the next level.

End result looks like intermediate or expert level detail but the method is simple so beginners can take to it like a duck to water.

Quickly and Easily learn to: define a pattern in photoshop, create an atlas UV map for the entire object with a single button click, apply a texture to the atlas map and surface bake it in seconds, tweak the surface baked image in photoshop to add panel and edge details that normally take a long time to make.

http://youtu.be/hdEjQbIaziA?list=UUWGCzpslgmxnwW2_XsVisOA

ncr100
07-31-2014, 12:04 AM
Thanks for posting this!

I'm imagining for making panels distinct on the UV map a simply plugin or macro (?) could be used to shrink the polygons by 10%.

raw-m
07-31-2014, 07:39 AM
Some handy little tips for non-beginners, too!

Exporting from LW as a png 32 and with a unpremultiplied alpha may help avoid having to mess around with Channels is PS.

BeeVee
07-31-2014, 07:42 AM
It would make it even better if you told users not to be content with merely a color map, but to use the same technique (and even same image, to some extent) to make maps for diffuse, bump and reflection too.

B

djwaterman
07-31-2014, 08:52 AM
This is what we need, more of these quick and simple beginner tutorials, nice work.

Chernoby
07-31-2014, 09:34 AM
It would make it even better if you told users not to be content with merely a color map, but to use the same technique (and even same image, to some extent) to make maps for diffuse, bump and reflection too.

B

ncr100: I think atlas allows to increase gap separation but the way atlas creates the map I have not figured out a way to do it other than manually. setting mouse to "selection" instead of "mouse" could speed things up since you would not have to center the cursor, just click and drag anywhere in UV map display and the polygons shrink according to their grouped center

raw-m: I think you are right. Didn't even think about that. A PNG does import with "clear" regions

BeeVee: Definitely good idea. I'll do a part two on just that. Maybe combine it with that "occlusion" node trick for added rust in grooves.

scallahan1
07-31-2014, 08:05 PM
Quack-quack! I'm all in. Fantastic.

Steve-o

adrian
08-01-2014, 02:41 AM
Thanks for the tutorial, I've never managed to get my head around using Atlas for UV's so this is a big help to get me started.

ncr100
08-01-2014, 11:11 AM
ncr100: I think atlas allows to increase gap separation but the way atlas creates the map I have not figured out a way to do it other than manually. setting mouse to "selection" instead of "mouse" could speed things up since you would not have to center the cursor, just click and drag anywhere in UV map display and the polygons shrink according to their grouped center .

<3 will try this out - thx again for the tute.

djwaterman
08-01-2014, 12:19 PM
Change the relative gap size percentage in the Atlas map settings.

Chernoby
08-01-2014, 02:12 PM
Gap size will separate obvious panels, pieces that are angled away from each other, but atlas will have no way of knowing if a certain large flat area of a model should be broken up into panels, like the top of a tank's body. It will do great at separating the sides from the top but if you want the look of different panels on the top, "within" a larger surface or piece you'll have to do it manually.

ncr100
08-01-2014, 04:17 PM
So does Atlas need need a 'part grouping threshold angle'?

Chernoby
08-02-2014, 09:27 AM
I don't know exactly. I think it would be impossible for atlas to divide a large surface into panels that are grouped bc the divisions would be mathematically arbitrary (same reason why there has not been a decimator tool that can convert triangles to quads). It's simple for us to make these selections but really hard or dang near impossible to find an algorithm or set of coding that would address it.

GoatDude
08-02-2014, 10:05 PM
Thanks for the wonderful tutorial. Very helpful.

djwaterman
08-03-2014, 01:35 AM
Gap size will separate obvious panels, pieces that are angled away from each other, but atlas will have no way of knowing if a certain large flat area of a model should be broken up into panels, like the top of a tank's body. It will do great at separating the sides from the top but if you want the look of different panels on the top, "within" a larger surface or piece you'll have to do it manually.

What about using the 'segment by surface' or 'segment by part', would this help do what you want?

Chernoby
08-03-2014, 10:23 AM
What about using the 'segment by surface' or 'segment by part', would this help do what you want?


I don't know exactly. Maybe. But assigning different surfaces just to break panels would add more work when this technique is a quick, sloppy way to get a decent texture on a model.

The best way to make it more detailed (but with more time) is to make more than one atlas map, just pick polygon sections of the first map that are seprarted by the sections of map two (Pick what you would choose to be every other panel section), create map, go to "selection" and choose "invert" then make another uv atlas map. Doubles the workflow, but still quick. Allows for twice the detail. Also using nodes instead of layers allows the image on the UV Map to be repeated or mirrored however many times you'd need. Making it repeat 8 times will give the model 8x the detail. Also in photoshop the "pattern layer" is scalable. So that will make things more detailed as well.