PDA

View Full Version : Material Manager in 9.5


Blur1
11-21-2005, 02:38 AM
I've been on 9.5 for a few weeks but overall still just finding the time to learn Cinema. What I have noticed is that if I set the Material Manager display to "Layer manager" under the edit menu, and turn on the pencil for a material, then I sort of seem to suddenly be in Bodypaint's layering/material system, which is great. I don't know wether this is new with 9.5 or wether it existed before. Should I look in the Bodypaint docs to understand what's going on?

Is this a kind of seamless benefit of having the BP module, is there a problem with using the Layer Manager mode for general material/texture layer editing, it sure is great as far as interaction with layered psd's etc. Also the Layer Set option in the texture tabs is sweet. Generally, the texture layering system in Cinema makes programs like Maya seem prehistoric in this regard. A lot of control there and I'm enjoying getting my head around the ramifications of this for camera mapping and general texturing.

Michael

Per-Anders
11-21-2005, 02:46 AM
It's just one of the seamless benfits of the the integrated Bodypaint Module :) There's no problem with using any mode you want.

Blur1
11-21-2005, 04:44 AM
Great...one thing I noticed is that the transparency of a psd goes solid, so I copied the psd to the material's alpha and set it to output transparency as an alpha. I'm assuming that a psd always gets premultiplied and that you have to manually specify the transparency.

Per-Anders
11-21-2005, 05:01 AM
yes if you want a material to be transparent anywhere you have to use the transparency or alpha channels to do this. although you can use layer transparency in the layers shader to mix between the various layers and of course bodypaint layers do support transparency but as you've noticed transparency in a shader in the color channel wont translate to transparency in the material, just to a blending with a background color.

Blur1
11-21-2005, 06:15 AM
yes if you want a material to be transparent anywhere you have to use the transparency or alpha channels to do this. although you can use layer transparency in the layers shader to mix between the various layers and of course bodypaint layers do support transparency but as you've noticed transparency in a shader in the color channel wont translate to transparency in the material, just to a blending with a background color.

I'm wondering what the use of the layer shader is now. Is it superseded in functionality? By using materials as "layer objects" in a more expanded layering system, the layering arrangement is more explicit. So if you have a stack of three layered psd's on one object/group you would control them through three material tags. Good for multiple projections. Also, poly selections to limit projection only work on a per-material basis, not per-material channel, correct? Still figuring it out...

Per-Anders
11-21-2005, 06:26 AM
really it's more the other way arund. The layer shader is more modern and powerful than multiple materials on a single object, it behaves almost exactly like photoshops layers and allows you to mix procedural and bitmap textures, you have any number of blending methods and you can blend any channels easily this way, and you can have multiple projections if you want via the projector shader.

There is no right or wrong way of owrking in C4D though, but generally multiple ways to do one thing, each on ewhich might suit a specific situation or person better.

Blur1
11-21-2005, 07:53 AM
I had a look at the Layer and Projection shaders. Yes, very nice. Two things that are a disadvantage as far as I can tell:
1. No poly selection to limit where the projection occurs (need more than alpha control)
2. No camera projection available in the Projection shader

Of course both of these can be fairly specific to camera projection so as you say it depends on your usage. However it's good to know that within a material there are such good layering/blending options.

Per-Anders
11-21-2005, 08:22 AM
no there is no poly selection, however you can use vertexmaps which gives a nice smooth result instead as layer masks. and if you need poly seleciton then you can use the tag's properties and mix via the materials method.

at the end of the day it's all about flexibility and control. you can combine all sorts of owrkflows and techniques to make virtually anything.

Blur1
11-21-2005, 08:34 AM
no there is no poly selection, however you can use vertexmaps which gives a nice smooth result instead as layer masks. and if you need poly seleciton then you can use the tag's properties and mix via the materials method.

at the end of the day it's all about flexibility and control. you can combine all sorts of owrkflows and techniques to make virtually anything.

Just had a look at the Vertex Map shader....thanks for the tip. Usually I would make a poly selection and then refine it with a feathered alpha. The poly selection limits the projection and the alpha blends the edges nicely. However a smooth vertex map can do that in one step if I'm happy with the edges. Good to know.

CGTalk Moderation
11-21-2005, 08:34 AM
This thread has been automatically closed as it remained inactive for 12 months. If you wish to continue the discussion, please create a new thread in the appropriate forum.