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Thread: using blender sculpt in LW

  1. #1

    using blender sculpt in LW

    Today I've been playing with the sculpt tool in blender, and looked for some tricks to use the result in lightwave.

    What did I wanted to end up with: the cage object to animate, a nice displacementmap of your sculpt work to ad to your sub-poly's.

    Here's what I found:

    load your cage-object in modeler.
    create UV's for your displacement-map, atlas-style works fine.
    Save a subdivided version of your object in the resolution you want to sculpt on.
    Open blender, load that object, sculpt on it (do not use multires, just the highdensity mesh from LW) save as new lwo object.
    Open layout, load the highdensity mesh with and the one without the sculpting, morph the original into the sculpted one with the classic "morphtarget" system.

    Now comes the trick to convert the displacement into a useable imagemap:
    Open surface editor:
    go to the surface of the morphed object (I'm assuming there's only one default surface) open the node editor.
    now you need 3 nodes: spot info, vector substract and vector ad.
    Connect "spot info's" object Spot to "substract's" B-input,
    Connect "spot info's" world Spot to "substract's" A-input,
    Use the "add" node to ad 5 to each channel (XYZ), this is to make sure all the values are positive, you may need other values depending on the scale of the object.
    Connect this result to the color channel.
    Use surface baker to bake everything to a hdr-type image, you want this to have floating-point precision and voila, here's your displacement map, load the cage-object, set the subpatch level to the same level you used to make the highdensity mesh.
    Open the displacement node editor, load the image(don't forget to use the UV map) and substract 5 from the result to bring the poly's back to their origin.

    Now you have the sculpted result of blender on your sub-polygons.
    You can also use this technique to make all kinds of displacementmaps, only with the use of modeler (a morph2UV plugin would come in handy, but i didn't find anything that does this)

    If someone has a more straightforward technique please let me know

    Cheers, Wim

  2. #2
    Javis Jones: Night Crew geothefaust's Avatar
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    Hey there.

    That seems like a lot of work.

    I'm assuming that blender can generate a displacement or normal map image. I'll take a look tonight.
    Last edited by geothefaust; 12-02-2008 at 09:12 PM.

  3. #3
    Javis Jones: Night Crew geothefaust's Avatar
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    Check this out

    It's a link to the Blender Wiki. It has a tutorial for baking out a normal map, it's similar to what you're doing.

    I can't find a tutorial on how to generate/export a displacement map from blender, or I'd post it.

  4. #4
    Javis Jones: Night Crew geothefaust's Avatar
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    Well, I gave it a look. But I just couldn't figure out how to export out a displacement map out of Blender. Doh...

  5. #5
    Thanks for taking the time, anyway, I think every 3D modeling software should have a sculpting tool these days, you know, it's like every 3D software has a bevel and extrude tool...

  6. #6
    Javis Jones: Night Crew geothefaust's Avatar
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    Completely agree... Hopefully we'll have something soon in LW. Blender's anisculpt is amazing.

  7. #7
    Motorball Champion thekho's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by geothefaust View Post
    I just couldn't figure out how to export out a displacement map out of Blender. Doh...
    Me too! I do know how to use normal map on blender 3d but i have no clue to use bake displacement on blender 3d!

    Honestly, i never played with sculpt program (like Zbrush, Mudbox and 3dcoat etcs) before so i thought why not use blender 3d cos of this program is free! I've been playing with blender for the first time a couple of weeks ago! I was impressed with their sculpt which was so awesome! (See below)
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  8. #8
    mucho mojo nikfaulkner's Avatar
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    hey forton,

    any chance you can post a screen shot of your node setup? or better still a scene?

    i'm having problems getting it to work

    thanks
    yeah alright.... we won a BAFTA http://littleloud.com/work/bsr/

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by geothefaust View Post
    Well, I gave it a look. But I just couldn't figure out how to export out a displacement map out of Blender. Doh...
    Nice tutorial may help to workflow Blender-LIGHTWAVE sculpting

    Vector

    PS: WOW! Sorry, I just noticed the date of these posts... too late!!

  10. #10
    mucho mojo nikfaulkner's Avatar
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    cool i shall check it out

    ive been using this, works well

    http://www.lwplugindb.com/Plugin.aspx?id=1e88b941
    yeah alright.... we won a BAFTA http://littleloud.com/work/bsr/

  11. #11
    Nice link , till we have a sculpt tool in LW, Blender is the best choice for those that canīt spend money buying Zbrush or 3DCoat

    Vector

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