5 Tips for Better Materials
Shading (the process of setting up materials) is an often over-looked step in the CG pipeline. I used to just play with the material settings until it looked a bit like what I was trying to make, and then move onto texturing thinking that that was all there is to it. A wood texture slapped on a diffuse shader. Bleh. However, in my never-ending quest for realism I’ve come to realize that shading is in fact the most important step in creating something believable. Of course modelling, texturing, lighting and all the rest are also very important, but shading is what determines how tangible your surfaces appear – it shows your audience what it might feel like to touch; how soft, sticky, or flexible it might be, and what it might be like to live in this new world that you’ve created with your render. Now that’s a much more interesting surface! Lets take a simple ceramic teapot for example. OK, so it looks to be pretty much like a diffuse surface with a glossy coating right? So what is it? PS.