Tutorial:Hard Surface Texture Painting


wow! fantastic work combined with a clear presentation makes for a winner:thumbsup:.

thx for sharing!


thx a lot for sharing ur knowledge. this is very nice tutorial for us.


Thanks for the really clear, easy to follow tutorial! :slight_smile:

Here is a PDF of it (Created with permission). I hope the link works for everyone.



Thanks for the tutorial, it’s extremely informative. But I was wondering if you could expand on the custom brush creation. I’m assuming you adjust the jitter amount and some of the other dynamic settings, but it would be really cool if you could go into more detail on that.

Also, I’ve been doing a lot of Ambient Occlusion passes in Max lately using the Ambient Occlusion (MR) setting, but I notice that no matter how much I increase the sample settings I always get ugly jagged edges in the render. So I’ve been rendering at double the size I need and then scaling down in Photoshop to get more anti-aliased edges. Have you run into this problem or do your AO renders look okay?


is there a way to render an AO pass of the UV templet in Maya/ mental ray?
I guess I could import it into zbrush and pull a cavity map out of zmapper for the same effect…but should be a way inside maya

thanks for the info, good stuff.


cool…good to see this well received:thumbsup:
,& big thanks to scottsch for making a .pdf

hi j

I think the baking render settings are tied to you general render settings…so it might be as simple as switching AA on.or try a different filtering method.
also while I’m using the mr option I’m usualy rendering it with Final Render Stage 1,
…& as your already doing, rendering at double size & scaling down is a good way to avoid using any AA

I didn’t go too indepth with the baking as every app uses different terminology & methods for baking.

for custom brushes,check out this tut:
& do a google for more,that’s a pretty indepth subject…& something I’ve only ever crashed my way through :slight_smile:
there is a tonne of options for customising brushes in photoshop

clodhopper…sorry I dont use Maya,you’d probably need to ask in a maya specific forum about ‘texture baking’…I’m fairly sure maya,xsi,c4d,lightwave etc all offer texture baking,but my knowledge of it starts & stops with 3dsmax :slight_smile:



Hey Stefan, that’s one fantastic tutorial. I’m a big admirer of your work and I really appreciate you sharing your knowledge. Many thanks!


Nice one. Thanks for sharing.


thanks for the tutorial, very much appreciated.


Awesome tut man…Just the kinda thing i was looking for. I never rendered a AO pass with the uvw template. How do u go about this?..


Great tutorial Stefan, and really nice presentation it :thumbsup:


I can get the UV map out and into PS7 using texporter but how the hell do I do a AMBIENT OCCLUSION (MR). I’m using max7. I can do texture well, but the way you done this is a far simplar way and would help loads…

I’m using max7…


Thanks for the great TuTs


the first thing is to change renderer from scanline to mental ray(or final render if you have it,)…that way the occlusion element becomes visible.
I’m fairly sure the render to texture settings are tied to your general render settings so set them up as you normally would…then open the ‘render to texture’ dialog.
most of the settings are self explanatory…usually the only adjustments I make are to the size of the render.

rendering uv templates is an option that came with 3dsMax8,found in the uvw editor



O boy.

Had a look at “Add texture element” AMBIENT OCCLUSION is missing,Nooooooooooooooooo. I does’nt seem to come with max 7.Is there anther way around this or a plugin, hell max 7 cost an arm and a leg, and I have no plans on updating right now. Also when I render to texture a complete map it the UV layout I’d done for the model gets a new UV layout. How can I render to txture and keep the sam UV layout…

Thanks for any advice


Stefan-Morrell, thanks for sharing your knnowledge and techniques. Im gonna read over this tutorial agian when I get a chance. Your willingness to give insight into your workflow is what makes this forum such a valuable tool for everyone, Thanks agian.

Pixelgen heres a tutorial demonstrating AO with max 7, and I think there is a option in the render to texture dialog that will fix your uv issue. Its use automatic unwrapping or use existing uvs, or something to that effect


Thanks for the link Squirmy. A good tut on AO, but it doesn’t go into rendering a uvw template with AO. I tried render to texture…but it automatically unwraps all the sides to different planes. It doesn’t keep the shape of the geometry. I know there’s just 1 lil step i’m missing, but can’t figure it out. Thanks…


Squirmy thanks on the UV issue, it was right in front of me…

All you have to do to use your UV unwrap is as follows

1 Open Render to Texture.
2 Simple scroll down to mapping coordinates and under objects, mark use existing channel.
3 Then simply setup the rest and Render to Texture… done

But I get a fine black line where’s the odd seem is:


Many thanks to The Master of Textures!:thumbsup:
this is the coolest


Thank you for this great tutorial stefan :thumbsup:


Awsome Tutorial! Its been a huge help in my work flow. Texturing is something I love doing- and you’ve helped stream line my efforts into a lean, mean hard texturing machine.

Your head is juicy egg full of knowledge! Thanks for crackin’ it open for us.

Id love to see some more texturing tutorials from you maybe on other subjects like making realistic lights (i.e. Headlights or floodlights) ect.

You rock!