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Looking at detailed materials

From: After Effects CC Essential Training

Video: Looking at detailed materials

The process for creating detailed materials in Cinema 4D can get rather deep. So when you're first starting, I recommend that you use some of the presets. That way you can look at the presets and try and reverse engineer how they were built. Let's open C4D by selecting the Detailed.c4d file in our Project panel. Then you can press Command+E or Control+E to edit the original. Once you're in C4D, let's look at some of the material presets that we could apply to our logo. I'm going to go up under the window menu and choose content browser. Now there are all kinds of presets in here and it'll always remember exactly the last folder that you were in every time you open it. So I'm just going to back out, and start from the preset section. In the light folder, we have many different kinds of presets. So lets look at materials.

Looking at detailed materials

The process for creating detailed materials in Cinema 4D can get rather deep. So when you're first starting, I recommend that you use some of the presets. That way you can look at the presets and try and reverse engineer how they were built. Let's open C4D by selecting the Detailed.c4d file in our Project panel. Then you can press Command+E or Control+E to edit the original. Once you're in C4D, let's look at some of the material presets that we could apply to our logo. I'm going to go up under the window menu and choose content browser. Now there are all kinds of presets in here and it'll always remember exactly the last folder that you were in every time you open it. So I'm just going to back out, and start from the preset section. In the light folder, we have many different kinds of presets. So lets look at materials.

Materials of course are divided up into more subsections. So if you click through some of the different folders, you'll see different materials. Now if you want to see the materials in more detail, click and drag on the slider to make the materials a little larger in your view. Now I want to go to the Ice and Snow section. As we scroll through here, notice we have a couple different detail textures. I want to choose the snow and ice texture. So any of these presets, you can easily add to your projects by double-clicking.

So lets double-click on snow and ice. Now I can just close the content browser. To apply a preset, just drag it and drop it to whatever model you'd like to apply it to. Now, most materials typically look better when there are lights in the scene, so I'm just going to add one light by clicking the add light button here. I'll move the light up and then back slightly. Now if we render the scene here you can see I've got a ton of cool texture. Let's zoom in by holding down Alt on Windows or Option on the Mac, and then right-clicking and dragging to get a closer view of our material. If I got to render this, see how I'm getting all these bumps in the material? That was created by using some different effects generated from inside the material.

I'm going to go down to my material manager and double-click. This will open the material editor. Whenever I'm reverse engineering the material I first look at the different channels used to create that material so we can see we have a color channel and a bump channel and environment and specular. Now, there's something constant between all of these. And it's this kind of textured thumbnail. Any time you're in any specific channel, inside of the material editor, you'll see this texture area with a button.

Now, I want to go to the color section and see the texture area that we have defined here. If you click on the Flyout, we can choose different things to load. Now, I'm going to click off that pullout, because I already know that something's loaded. It's the Layer option. So if we go ahead and click on Layer, notice I've got a bunch of layers that were used to create detail in this texture. Now, I'm not expecting you to know how to add all of these different elements. I just want to explore some of the different settings. And then we'll build our own texture with another material. So if you go to the noise section here, click once on the little thumbnail next to the hard light pulldown.

That'll open up your shader. Now, this shader was used to create the noise. If you go to the noise section here, I can click on the pulldown. And all these different options are different kinds of noise. They create different patterns. In order to go back in the material editor, we'll go up the upper right corner and click this back arrow. That'll take me back to my layers. The easiest way to think of layers is think of them like a Photoshop document. We've got multiple layers that created this texture.

And we have different blend modes, just like the ones you're familiar with in Photoshop and the Transparency options. Again, just like the ones you're familiar with in Photoshop. The difference is each of these different things like the noise section, these were all generated locally inside the materials editor. So enough talking. Let's go ahead and create our own material. I'm going to close this material editor and go to Create > New Material. Now let's double-click our material to load our Material Editor.

Now, in the Color section here, I'm going to click on my texture flyout and go right down to Layer. By default, there's nothing in the layers, so let's click on the layer to open up our Layer Editor. Now, in here we have different buttons we can use to load different things. The first button will allow you to load external files, like JPEGs or Photoshop documents or what have you. The next button here, is the one that we're going to use. The Shader button. Go ahead and click on that. We have a number of different affects we can choose. I want to go to the Noise affect.

So, when we choose Noise, it's automatically going to get loaded as my top layer. And the default noise has been applied. Let's click on the thumbnail once to load the different options. Now just like in the preset material, we'll click on the pull-down for the noise. Let's choose a different setting. I'm going to choose this gaseous setting. See how it creates a different texture? Now obviously, there are a number of different options to change in this texture. I'm not going in to each individual one, let's just look at a couple. Let's start with the global scale.

If I click and drag up here, I can create the scale at a much higher level. This generally has kind of smooth out my texture. Now some of these other options like speed will allow you to animate this texture, so when it's applied It'll look like it's flowing over top of the object it's been applied to. Let's jump back to our layer options here by clicking the back arrow. I want to add another shader over top of my noise. So let's click under Shader and this time we'll add a color. So if we click on the thumbnail to open up the colors, let's go ahead and click on it and add a red color.

Now when I click okay it doesn't look like anything's happened. Well we need to go back to our layer options here and blend it in. So let's change our blend mode from normal to soft light. And then we can change the transparency down just to blend it a little bit less. Okay. I'm going to leave it at about 50%. The color is one way of creating detailed texture. But our other texture had a bump map. Let's take what we just created and apply it to the bump map. Inside of the material editor, you can click on any of these thumbnails. And if you start to drag to the different channels, it'll move that texture to that channel.

So once the bump options have opened, I'm still holding my mouse down. I can hover over top of this section in the texture area. And when I let go, it's automatically going to add that layer into the texture. Now the bump channel hasn't been activated to we need to go ahead and select that to activate it. Now the bump channel on black and white data, so I'm going to edit the layers just for this channel. I'm going to click on edit and turn off the color, lets turn the opacity all the way down and click the eyeball there. So now that its black and white I'm getting a little more detail in my bumps. To see our results, let's close our Material Editor. I'm going to click and drag my material and place it onto my model. Now, I'll go over to my object panel and select the original preset, and just delete it.

So now we can go ahead and render the scene. And as you can see we've create our own rather detailed texture. And all that was made possible by starting with a preset and just doing a little bit of detective work.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for After Effects CC Essential Training
After Effects CC Essential Training

110 video lessons · 50906 viewers

Ian Robinson
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 1m 8s
    1. What is After Effects?
      1m 8s
  2. 30m 55s
    1. Welcome
      1m 11s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 19s
    3. Relinking missing footage
      1m 54s
    4. Working with keyboard shortcuts
      1m 23s
    5. Updating After Effects with Creative Cloud
      1m 25s
    6. Different ways to use After Effects
      59s
    7. Exploring the interface of After Effects
      12m 0s
    8. Exploring important preferences and setting up the cache
      6m 20s
    9. Video terminology
      4m 24s
  3. 1h 0m
    1. The six foundations of After Effects
      11m 5s
    2. Understanding compositions
      10m 35s
    3. Creating and manipulating layers
      9m 49s
    4. Building animation
      6m 29s
    5. Working with effects
      7m 5s
    6. Introduction to 3D
      8m 45s
    7. Understanding how to render
      6m 48s
  4. 38m 54s
    1. Importing elements
      5m 53s
    2. Organizing projects
      3m 51s
    3. Building compositions with layers
      6m 17s
    4. Animating with keyframes
      10m 0s
    5. Adding effects and graphics
      8m 7s
    6. Output techniques
      4m 46s
  5. 44m 49s
    1. Exploring composition and project settings
      6m 48s
    2. Importing Photoshop files as compositions
      8m 39s
    3. Importing Illustrator files as compositions
      7m 41s
    4. Viewing files in the comp panel
      4m 42s
    5. Understanding Pre-compose
      4m 21s
    6. Positioning layers with snapping
      4m 55s
    7. Interpreting footage
      4m 0s
    8. Keyboard shortcuts for compositions
      3m 43s
  6. 1h 5m
    1. Defining layers
      5m 4s
    2. Creating type layers
      7m 38s
    3. Precise typesetting techniques
      5m 42s
    4. Creating layer solids and shapes with masks
      9m 6s
    5. Creating design elements with shape layers
      6m 10s
    6. Layer compositing: Masks, switches, and blend modes
      7m 35s
    7. Using track mattes
      4m 49s
    8. Precise compositing with variable-width feathered masks
      9m 24s
    9. Working smarter by swapping layers
      7m 6s
    10. Keyboard shortcuts for layers
      2m 35s
  7. 1h 27m
    1. Understanding animation
      6m 20s
    2. Adding and adjusting keyframes
      9m 52s
    3. Understanding keyframe interpolation
      6m 20s
    4. Adjusting keyframes in the Graph Editor
      8m 26s
    5. The power of parenting
      5m 26s
    6. Using null objects
      6m 46s
    7. Creating expressions with the pick whip
      6m 25s
    8. Creating and adjusting motion paths
      9m 56s
    9. Building complex graphics with Pre-compose
      4m 54s
    10. Preparing audio for animation
      8m 57s
    11. Generating graphics with audio
      9m 13s
    12. Working smarter: Navigating the Timeline
      4m 32s
  8. 58m 59s
    1. Understanding the order of effects
      5m 58s
    2. Generating backgrounds with effects
      5m 33s
    3. Generating a scribble effect
      8m 12s
    4. Animating strokes with effects
      6m 37s
    5. Using adjustment layers
      5m 52s
    6. Adding gradients and glows
      4m 30s
    7. Saving pan and scan presets
      5m 20s
    8. Fixing exposure with Levels
      3m 5s
    9. Fixing color casts with Color Finesse 3
      9m 57s
    10. Masking individual effects
      3m 55s
  9. 55m 24s
    1. Understanding 3D in After Effects
      9m 2s
    2. Intro to cameras
      7m 51s
    3. Intro to lights and material options
      8m 56s
    4. Animating cameras
      12m 39s
    5. Creating depth of field
      6m 48s
    6. Exploring the ray-traced 3D renderer
      10m 8s
  10. 1h 43m
    1. Understanding CINEMA 4D Lite and After Effects
      1m 32s
    2. 3D foundations
      10m 43s
    3. Matching CINEMA 4D Lite and After Effects projects
      8m 9s
    4. Understanding the CINEMA 4D Lite interface
      7m 31s
    5. Creating 3D projects from Illustrator files
      7m 28s
    6. Exploring modeling in CINEMA 4D Lite
      8m 8s
    7. Applying deformers
      5m 59s
    8. Understanding materials
      7m 32s
    9. Lighting your scene
      8m 14s
    10. Looking at detailed materials
      7m 51s
    11. Animating in CINEMA 4D Lite
      6m 51s
    12. Animating cameras in CINEMA 4D Lite
      5m 45s
    13. Working with CINEWARE
      9m 38s
    14. Render settings and the multipass workflow
      8m 38s
  11. 23m 35s
    1. Rendering with Adobe Media Encoder
      4m 45s
    2. Recommended settings for rendering graphics
      10m 21s
    3. Creating presets in the Render Queue
      4m 0s
    4. Prerendering with Import and Replace Usage
      3m 18s
    5. Working smarter: One render, multiple outputs
      1m 11s
  12. 29m 3s
    1. Creating type animators
      8m 52s
    2. Creating and animating type on a path
      5m 32s
    3. Animating shape layers
      8m 45s
    4. Animating brushstrokes with Paint
      5m 54s
  13. 23m 31s
    1. Retiming with Time Remapping
      8m 56s
    2. Retiming footage with Timewarp
      9m 10s
    3. Smoothing shaky camera footage with Warp Stabilizer VFX
      5m 25s
  14. 16m 6s
    1. Getting started with Keylight
      8m 43s
    2. Refining your key with Keylight
      3m 42s
    3. Cleaning up keys with masks
      3m 41s
  15. 26m 47s
    1. Rotoscoping with paths
      6m 47s
    2. Introducing the Roto Brush
      5m 58s
    3. Refining the Roto Brush
      6m 12s
    4. Using the Refine Edge tool
      7m 50s
  16. 27m 13s
    1. Creating a single point track
      7m 38s
    2. Applying motion with Warp Stabilizer VFX
      4m 29s
    3. Warp Stabilizer VFX: Reversible Stabilization workflow
      7m 47s
    4. Solving cameras
      7m 19s
  17. 6m 30s
    1. Archiving your projects
      3m 50s
    2. Removing unused footage
      1m 25s
    3. Moving compositions between projects
      1m 15s
  18. 2m 24s
    1. What's next?
      2m 24s

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