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Shading the text using materials

From: CINEMA 4D: Designing a Promo

Video: Shading the text using materials

Now I'm starting off with the scene file created in the previous movie. Now if you are following along and you haven't completed the first two movies, this file is not included in the project files. So you'll need to complete the first two movies in order to get to this point. Our underwater look is really coming together, but our type can use a bit more help. Let's do a quick rendering here and talk about what's going on. So when our scene renders, the Shark Zone type here is very, very flat. You can notice that especially here on the Z and the S. The face of the Z blends back into the sides.

Shading the text using materials

Now I'm starting off with the scene file created in the previous movie. Now if you are following along and you haven't completed the first two movies, this file is not included in the project files. So you'll need to complete the first two movies in order to get to this point. Our underwater look is really coming together, but our type can use a bit more help. Let's do a quick rendering here and talk about what's going on. So when our scene renders, the Shark Zone type here is very, very flat. You can notice that especially here on the Z and the S. The face of the Z blends back into the sides.

That makes the type a lot less legible than it really should be. Promo and motion graphics in general are really all about communication. You want your viewer to be able to absolutely read the type that's on screen. That's the most important thing. The shark is cool in all, but the promo is really all about the Shark Zone block. That's what this type represents. So I want to make this type very, very legible. What we're going to do is create a set of materials that are going to lift the face off the surface of the type and darken down the sides so that the face of the type really pops out of the scene.

I'm going to in the Material Manager create a new material. I'll do the File > New Material. Let's call this one text face. Now I don't need to add any color to this, because all of the color in our image is coming from the HDRI material that's surrounding our scene. So I can leave it flat gray. I'm going to punch up the Specular on it though just a bit. So it has a little more sheen to it, about there. I'm going to apply this to our Shark Zone type.

Now this is the face material. The next thing I'd like to do is create a material for the sides that is based on the text face material. So the easiest way to do that is to hold down the Ctrl key and drag a copy of text face right to the right here. I'm going to click on the Material and drag right to the right. See that thick white line indicates I'm dragging? And when I let go, I get a new material right next to it. I'm going to double-click and call this material text side. This text side material needs to be darker than the face because I want the face of my letters to really pop out of the scene.

So let's darken this down. I'll go to the Color channel and bring the Brightness slider way down in the 30% range. Let's apply this to our Shark Zone type as well. Drag across from the Material Manager onto the sharkzone Extrude NURB. The order of the tags here is very important. CINEMA 4D evaluates the materials here from right to left. So whatever materials on the right- hand side is what gets evaluated first. Everything else is considered underneath it. So right now, our side material is covering up the face.

You can see our Shark Zone type got much darker here in the Editor view. Let's reverse this order. When I do that, you see my Shark Zone type brightened up. But now if I render this, it still doesn't have the pop that I'm really looking for. The sides still blend into the faces. What I need to do is limit this material to only showing up on the face of the object. So underneath the Texture tag that's applied to the Shark Zone type, there is a tag property. In that tag property is a Selection field.

Now on the text object sharkzone, it's an Extrude NURB. There is a built-in Selection tag. The Selection tag allows you to limit how a material shows up on the surface of an object. There is a built-in one to the sharkzone Extrude NURB object. This is something that's particular to the Extrude NURB. If I type the letters C and the number 1 in that field, suddenly now my Shark Zone type will have a face that's brighter than the sides. Let's render that. You can see it really makes the face pop out of the background.

The sides of the type now are much, much darker than the background. So now that I've got that type to pop out a little bit, I want to add a little bit of edging to the letters to help them stand out a little bit more from the sides. So let's create a new material that's going to be called the bevels. We're going to limit that to showing up only in the bevels on the type, the edges that connect the face to the sides. So let's duplicate the text face material. I'm going to hold down the Ctrl key and drag a copy over. Let's call this one text edge. The text edge material now needs to be quite a bit brighter than the face.

So let's go back to the Color channel for that text edge material. You can see that the Brightness is set at 100%. There is really no way to get that brighter than that, except by changing the Color value here. So if I change this color, you'd see it's at 204x204x204. If I bring this to all the way to 100% white, it's going to get brighter. I want it to be even brighter still. So another technique I like to use is adding the Luminance channel to the mix here. So I'll go to the Basic properties and add Luminance.

My material goes completely white. That's normal. The Luminance channel in the situation will usually override the Color channel. When I select the word Color here in the Properties and hold down the Shift key and select Luminance, I can see both channels together. What I'd like to do is just dial down the Brightness on the Luminance so that it is much, much darker than the Color. That will give me the benefit of having a Luminance channel in there. So my material gets brighter, but it still has all the shading of the Color channel. So let's bring this down to about 10%.

Now let's apply this to our Objects. I'm going to drag the text edge over to the sharkzone. Remember now it's sitting on top of all my other materials. If I render this, my type will be a lot brighter. So what I like to do is use another one of those built-in Selection tags and to limit the material to only showing up on the bevels. That Selection tag that I'm going to use is called R1, capital R and the number one. They are case-sensitive. So it has to be uppercase R and the number one.

When I hit Return now and then render one more time, you'll see that my edges are now going to pop off the edge of the type. You can see that on the edge of the letter Z that my edge really stands out now. It makes the type much, much more legible than it was before. Even though the shark is really cool, and the whole promo is called Shark Zone, it's really not about the shark. It's about the type. It's about the message that people should tune into the Shark Zone. So it's really crucial to make sure the viewer sees our number one priority. Now with our shading in place, our type element really jumps out at you.

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This video is part of

Image for CINEMA 4D: Designing a Promo
CINEMA 4D: Designing a Promo

70 video lessons · 13619 viewers

Rob Garrott
Author

 
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  1. 5m 8s
    1. Welcome
      1m 7s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 24s
    3. Overview of the project template
      2m 37s
  2. 11m 12s
    1. Creative brief
      1m 57s
    2. Sketches and script
      3m 8s
    3. Understanding the graphic animation process
      6m 7s
  3. 25m 5s
    1. Understanding the animatic process
      2m 15s
    2. Importing sketches into After Effects
      6m 20s
    3. Timing out the animation
      10m 4s
    4. Adding onscreen timecode for reference
      6m 26s
  4. 40m 2s
    1. Creating text and logo elements in Adobe Illustrator
      6m 44s
    2. Importing Illustrator elements into Cinema 4D
      8m 24s
    3. Creating guide planes for modeling a rough shark
      6m 13s
    4. Creating a rough shark model
      12m 14s
    5. Preparing a dummy rig using a Spline Wrap object
      6m 27s
  5. 53m 17s
    1. Setting up a project file for the cameramatic
      6m 15s
    2. Animating the rough shark using the Spline Wrap object
      5m 14s
    3. Animating the camera
      6m 8s
    4. Duplicating an animated rough model to create a school of sharks
      11m 4s
    5. Creating a preview movie and importing it into After Effects
      5m 45s
    6. Assembling the cameramatic
      8m 34s
    7. Fine-tuning the cameramatic timing
      10m 17s
  6. 1h 9m
    1. Preparing for the modeling process
      6m 7s
    2. Outlining the shapes using the Knife tool
      9m 50s
    3. Creating the mouth using the Extrude tool
      10m 40s
    4. Adding eyes using the Symmetry object
      9m 57s
    5. Creating fins using the Extrude tool
      7m 11s
    6. Creating the tail and dorsal fins using the Extrude tool
      10m 38s
    7. Creating gums using the Symmetry object
      6m 45s
    8. Creating teeth and finalizing the model
      8m 6s
  7. 15m 5s
    1. Understanding the rigging process
      2m 0s
    2. Opening the shark mouth using the Morph tag
      5m 9s
    3. Using XPresso to link the jaw to the Morph animation
      7m 56s
  8. 33m 25s
    1. Using BodyPaint to prepare the model for texturing
      8m 22s
    2. Applying color to the shark using BodyPaint
      6m 45s
    3. Giving the shark character by painting in the diffusion channel
      5m 29s
    4. Roughing the surface using the bump channel
      4m 34s
    5. Texturing the eyes
      3m 51s
    6. Texturing the teeth and gums
      4m 24s
  9. 21m 24s
    1. Replacing the rough shark model in the intro shot with the finished model
      6m 47s
    2. Replacing the rough shark model in the transition shot
      3m 43s
    3. Replacing the rough shark model in the hero shot
      4m 28s
    4. Replacing the rough shark model in the end page shot
      3m 42s
    5. Updating the cameramatic with the final animation
      2m 44s
  10. 50m 27s
    1. Creating an underwater look using Global Illumination and atmosphere
      9m 47s
    2. Lighting the objects and creating shadows
      6m 54s
    3. Shading the text using materials
      6m 28s
    4. Creating a reflective floor for the underwater scene
      3m 58s
    5. Lighting shot 1: Copying and pasting a lighting setup from another project
      5m 49s
    6. Lighting shot 2: Pasting a lighting setup and making adjustments
      3m 57s
    7. Lighting shot 4: Separate elements in a shot (the shark)
      3m 13s
    8. Lighting shot 4: Separate elements in a shot (the text)
      10m 21s
  11. 22m 7s
    1. Preparing shot 1 for rendering to After Effects
      6m 20s
    2. Preparing shot 2 for rendering by saving and using render presets
      4m 45s
    3. Preparing shot 3 for rendering
      2m 37s
    4. Setting up shot 4 to render in two passes
      4m 4s
    5. Performing a preflight check to ensure clips are ready to render
      2m 9s
    6. Batch-rendering
      2m 12s
  12. 1h 13m
    1. Importing assets and setting up the After Effects project for final compositing
      6m 5s
    2. The intro shot: Using Photoshop elements and noise effects to add atmosphere
      8m 38s
    3. The intro shot: Compositing in stock video footage to add character
      4m 51s
    4. The intro shot: Adding text elements to the composite
      8m 32s
    5. The hero shot: Controlling the look using precomps
      7m 59s
    6. The hero shot: Using stock video footage to add character
      7m 19s
    7. The end page shot: Combining multiple passes to form a final composite shot
      2m 41s
    8. The end page shot: Adding text elements to the composite
      7m 44s
    9. Compositing the transition shots
      3m 47s
    10. Assembling the final composition
      9m 2s
    11. Adding the final audio to the composition and rendering
      7m 10s
  13. 21s
    1. Goodbye
      21s

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