View Full Version : Blending/Merging of image maps in Hash & New Stuff

02 February 2003, 04:35 PM
Hello all,

Just to let you know that the OBJ importer/exporter isn't the last thing that I am working on. I am now working on an exporter to the VirtuaLight renderer, and a plugin for Deep Exploration (the makers of Deep Paint) that will allow it to read AM models - along with Nick Porcino. That is what is upcoming...

A question. Hash has a great way of handling image maps (bump, diffuse, specular, color, etc). Each face can have any number of maps and each map per face has its own set of u/v coordinates for that map. As an example the females/brunette model on the CD has a colormap for the face, and a bump map for just the lips on the face - each having their own sets of uv coordinates per face. The problem is that most other programs can only have 1 set of u/v coordinates on a face. What that means is that I will have to "blend/merge" these maps together before exporting.

I seem to remember a plugin that did this in the past, but I can't seem to find it, or the source to do just this. Does anyone know of anything that did/does this from AM, and if the source is available? Or who to contact? Any help would be appreciated and will greatly improve my ability to fixup previous and future exporters...

02 February 2003, 04:39 PM
You don't mean the .act exporter, do you?

02 February 2003, 05:03 PM
No, I don't mean ACT or WildTangent (although those do what I ask). The problem with those is that they use the Genesis/WildTangent Bitmap library (which I shouldn't use in an app like this).

I actually do have the source to both of those, but they rely heavily on the internal functions in Genesis/WT to do the work...

Were there any other ones?

02 February 2003, 05:03 PM
I am now working on an exporter to the VirtuaLight renderer

This sounds promising! I've used the VirtuaLight renderer through Truespace and while not Mental Ray - it's not a bad render engine at all.

What kind of integration are you shooting for?

(of course with Martin's "perfect" renderer coming in 10.5 it may be for naught! )

My Fault
02 February 2003, 09:52 PM
How did Hash's ply exporter handle the multiple uv map issue? Could that be used at all?

BTW, sounds fantastic, where do I send my money? :thumbsup:

02 February 2003, 11:19 PM
Here is what I have found out:

I have found the export options in Hash that have Hash generate a combined bitmap. The problem is that this combined bitmap does not include bump maps (maybe some others as well). So, using the PLY exporter, I do get combined maps (with only 1 u/v coordinate), but that doesn't have any bump maps applied.

They (hash) are not going to do anything further with their generated maps on export (which I can't blame them for), so I need to find another way.

What I am considering is, on export, to build and combine all like maps (color to color, bump to bump, etc) together to form 1 map for each type for the whole model. Each map would have the same dimensions as the other maps and have the same u/v coordinates for each face on each map. The hard part is combining the maps together. If anyone knows of some bitmap utilities (code/libraries) that might do this or help, please let me know.

BTW: My Deep Exploration plugin works well with AM's PLY format (just doesn't show bump maps).

Also, if I get this bitmap merging done, I can add it to my OBJ exporter and be able to export full maps from AM in OBJ format.

02 February 2003, 03:20 AM
You may want to talk to Tony Jones at Avalanche ( - he wrote our OBJ exporter as well as our Maya importer - he may have a way of doing this as our models come into Maya with maps complete.

Just a thought...


PS - You know what really sucks? Deep Exploration *used* to be $40 shareware - until Right Hemisphere got hold of it. They jacked the price through the roof and didn't even change anything - thankfully, I still have the shareware installer. I guess that's the beauty of a capitalist market though. I'd love to see someone come up with a better app than Deep Paint and take their market - lack of competition has made them greedy and lazy.....

02 February 2003, 12:56 PM
I'm not sure if you found what you were looking for, but if you're using DirectX code, the following may help:

Bitmap Blending (

Bump Mapping (

You should be able to blend the files to a surface, and then save the resulting surface as a file.

Good luck on the Deep Exploration plugin! Right Hemisphere emailed me a while back too (along with the other A:M devs), but I didn't have time to work on it. Are you and Nick going to be able to export the other formats TO the A:M format? Or is it going to be import only?

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