Sculpting baking

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  11 November 2012
Sculpting baking

Hi everyone,

I am currently working on a character for which I used sculpting. It all worked really fine but now I have an issue with the bake function. Firstly I modelled my character and then unwrapped him in Body Paint, as I want to paint on it later. Then I sculpted all the wrinkles and other things on him and then I wanted to bake him.

If I am baking out the Displacement Maps in the RGB modus and the Normal maps in RGB Object space, it is working fine. But I wanted to render my character in VRAY and so I did some tests beforehand with a cube and baked out only the displacement maps intensity. That worked fine and I could just load the displacement map into my VrayDisplaceMat and everything was ok. But as soon as I am baking out only the displacement map intensity, it all goes wrong. Even if I am rendering with the standard renderer in Cinema. I am having displacement at places I don't want to have and where it should be it looks completely wrong. So I don't know if it is just a bug or if it is my character, as it worked fine with my cube.

I tried to use the RGB displacement maps in VRAY but that is also not working really well, it creates a big mess up in the geometry. Maybe I am also overseeing something important I have to do first.

Did anyone of you ever run about this kind of problem and if yes, did you find an answer to this?

Would be great if someone could help me and thanks a lot for your help

  11 November 2012
I have had a similar issue recently, and did not find a solution for it in Cinema 4D. I had to export level 0 and level 6 models to .obj format and take into Z-Brush in order to get proper displacement and normal maps.
  11 November 2012
thanks a lot for your answer

So it is still an common issue I am not owing Z-Brush so I cannot use this way

I kind of found another workaround after lots and lots of testing, only using cinema 4d, althought it is not perfect. I only baked the normal map and then loaded it into my VrayDisplaceMaterial. There I used as amount 1.6 and then for shift -0.8. The shift amount should always be the half of the negative amount. For texture type I used RGB texture and then I checked the Keep continuity box below as well. So that is working, as long as the amount is not set too high and I had to use my normal maps on my level 1 sculpetd object. But that is still ok, will just be annoying by setting the weights with more polygons than acutally necessary. This is working fine for the face, but the hands are too strong sculped so I have to lower the intensity of the single layers as well. I haven't done it yet, as I was testing some textures, but will do it maybe this evening or tomorrow
  11 November 2012
Well at least you could use level 1. I had to use level 2 in order to get a half way decent result. Anything lower, and the displacement looks AWFUL at render time. It actually looks NOTHING like you would expect.
  11 November 2012
I have been playing around with sculpting and have to agree that the process is not a smooth one. I get lines on displacement and if I do a normal map and displacement the whole duplicate wigs out. What worked for me was to chose the level 2 base with the level 4 sculpt. I also output to 2048 and supersamples of 4, but it's still not perfect.
  11 November 2012
So I guess we'll be buying another license of Z-brush. What utter crap to include a new feature like this when it doesn't work well.

We have run across more and more issues with Cinema recently, and have CONFIRMED bugs with Maxon - of course they call them limitations...but all of these really throw a wrench in the works when trying to do work for paying clients.

So frustrated with this software at the moment.

It's like a fiery red-head. So in love with it, but so sick of dealing with its issues. LOL
  11 November 2012
I actually think that it depends a lot on the object you want to sculp. My character worked fine in Cinema using RGB displacement and Normal maps. The baked object was very good. With intensity displacement maps it was a desaster. When I am only using a cube, the intensity displacement maps are good, except of that I am getting this fine lines, where the edges of the polygons are.

Only the workflow between sculpted objects in Cinema and vray is not that easy yet. I hope that there will be a quick in fixing it, as lots of people are using vray in combination with cinema.

On the whole I think that Cinema is really good even gets better from release to release and I really hope that they will fix the sculpting issues. I mean it is there first sculpting project and for that they have done a really good job

Then there is another thing, hope it is ok asking here. As said before I unwrapped my character in body paint and now I am putting hair on it and creating the geometry of the hair so that I can render it with vray. I put a normal colour on the hair and if I am rendering it, I am getting this check pattern where the polygons lie. It actually looks like the UVW pattern. Does anyone of you know why this happens? It never happened before.
  11 November 2012
Originally Posted by anna1: I put a normal colour on the hair and if I am rendering it, I am getting this check pattern where the polygons lie. It actually looks like the UVW pattern. Does anyone of you know why this happens? It never happened before.

There is a bug with Hair rendering with Hypernurbs that causes this 'checkerboard' glitch in the shading, I've ran into it too and reported it a while back. It's like the UVs don't get subdivided properly or something like that. Not sure why some models don't seem to be affected though. As far as I'm aware the only way around it is to not use HN with hair objects if it can be avoided, or use fur instead. I used the latter workaround on my last project where I needed hair on an animated character. It meant no dynamics on the hair of course, but I got around that by simulating an extra layer of longer hair in Maya, exported as cached splines (via Alembic) and just rendered those splines separately in Cinema and comped on top of the fur render in After Effects.

Of course if you are trying to do everything in Cinema that's not going to be practical, I guess the other obvious approach would be to bake the mesh down to a higher subdivision so the hair can be applied without needing a Hypernurbs to smooth the mesh. Something like Lennarts' 'Steadybake' plugin should work in that case.

Hopefully Maxon get around to fixing it though as it's kind of a PITA to have to work around however you do it.


Last edited by Horganovski : 11 November 2012 at 03:15 AM.
  11 November 2012
I see, thanks a lot. It is strange as it is only happening sometimes. I played a little bit more around with it and found out that I can reduce the checkerboard if I am turning the frizz intensity in the hair material up. Hopefully they will fix this bug very soon.

I am actually not only using cinema but it is my only 3D application and I am running with it really good. Are there any other 3d programms you would recommend? Except of Maya and 3DS Max. I definitely want to learn more programms at some point.
  11 November 2012
I'm pretty sure app comparisons are not really permitted on this forum but I guess I can say I use Maya, Cinema and ZBrush here mainly and they all have strengths in different areas depending on the kind of work you are doing. I guess the biggest advantage of using several programs is that you then have different options if there's a bug in one of them (they all have bugs of course) to work around it, like the poster here who used ZBrush to do the baking when it was not working for them in Cinema.

  11 November 2012
I didn't mean to ask for which software is better ^^ There are already so many threads about it and it is leading nowhere as everybody has other preferences. I was just wondering if there are any other programmes next to the already commonly known, which you would say are really good but not that often talked about. But I guess that might lead to these comparison discussion

So thanks a lot for your help
  11 November 2012
I guess it depends, for me Headus UVLayout and Topogun are both tools I'd really miss if I didn't have them, in those cases they are focused on specific tasks and do them very well, not that the same job can't be done in a more generalist package but they are more efficient IMO. I suppose most people have heard about those but may not use them depending on the kind of work they do.

BTW - I should have mentioned above - please report the Hair bug to Maxon if you can, I mentioned that I reported it but I'm just one user, and the more reports a specific bug gets the higher priority it gets for being fixed.


Last edited by Horganovski : 11 November 2012 at 04:53 PM.
  11 November 2012
sure, I am going to report it tomorrow. These two tools you mentioned sounds really interesting, especially the TopoGun. Thanks a lot
  11 November 2012
You're welcome, BTW just to add - most people assume Topogun is only for building the topology, but it also has great baking tools too so it could be used instead of ZBrush as an alternative way of baking displacment/normal/AO maps in cases where Cinema doesn't give good results as mentioned by the OP here.


Last edited by Horganovski : 11 November 2012 at 10:55 PM.
  11 November 2012
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