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CINEMA 4D Essentials 4: Materials, Texturing, and Lights
Illustration by Richard Downs

What is BodyPaint?


From:

CINEMA 4D Essentials 4: Materials, Texturing, and Lights

with Rob Garrott

Video: What is BodyPaint?

BodyPaint is a 3D painting application that's actually built right into CINEMA 4D. It can also be purchased as a standalone application, but you get it for free when you purchase CINEMA 4D, and every version of the application has it. I've got this character model here, and there's a texture applied to it, and the texture is called Spacedude. And the Spacedude material, if you look at the Basic Properties, has the Color and Specular. If I go to the Color property, there is a TIF file here, and this TIF file was created using BodyPaint.

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CINEMA 4D Essentials 4: Materials, Texturing, and Lights
2h 24m Beginner Sep 20, 2012

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

CINEMA 4D Essentials with Rob Garrott is a graduated introduction to this complex 3D modeling, rendering, and animation program, which breaks down into installments that can be completed within 2 hours. This course shows how to lend 3D objects color, transparency, and life with materials, textures, and lights. Author Rob Garrott explains how to create a variety of surface textures, from smooth and reflective to bumpy and flat, and how to add dramatic depth and shadows to your scenes with the different light types in CINEMA 4D. The final chapter discusses texturing in 3D with the BodyPaint module, which can also help hide UV seams.

Topics include:
  • Understanding material channels
  • Applying materials via projection
  • Limiting materials with selection tags
  • Texturing type
  • Using Falloff to limit the effects of lights
  • Working with visible or volumetric light
  • Painting on objects and textures with brushes in BodyPaint
  • Hiding seams with projection painting
Subjects:
3D + Animation Rendering Textures Materials Visual Effects
Software:
CINEMA 4D
Author:
Rob Garrott

What is BodyPaint?

BodyPaint is a 3D painting application that's actually built right into CINEMA 4D. It can also be purchased as a standalone application, but you get it for free when you purchase CINEMA 4D, and every version of the application has it. I've got this character model here, and there's a texture applied to it, and the texture is called Spacedude. And the Spacedude material, if you look at the Basic Properties, has the Color and Specular. If I go to the Color property, there is a TIF file here, and this TIF file was created using BodyPaint.

When you're texturing objects and you apply textures to the object, CINEMA 4D needs to look at something called a UVW map in order to determine where the textures show up. Now, UVW Map is simply a way of describing the texture space on the surface of your model. When the programmers were making the application, they needed another way to describe the texture space. X, Y, Z was already taken, because they were using that for the world space, and so they decided to use the letters U, V, W. Anytime you hear UVW it's relating to the texture space on the surface of the object.

So, what BodyPaint gives you the ability to do is to arrange the polygons on the surface of an object in a way that's very favorable to painting. Now, you can do this manually or you can use a Paint Setup wizard. I'm currently in the startup layout, which is the normal layout you see when you're working with CINEMA 4D. I'm going to go to my Layout menu and select BodyPaint 3D Paint. Now, the layout interface refreshes itself, and now I'm inside of BodyPaint. If you're opening this file for the first time, you may see different colors on the Colors tab, and the texture may have an X through it.

That's because I was painting on a file earlier with BodyPaint before I started doing the recording. So, don't worry about those slight differences in the interface; the file will behave exactly the same. Unlike the other layouts, the BodyPaint 3D Paint layout and the BodyPaint UV Edit layout change not only the arrangement of the windows, but they also change the menu structure as well. You can see that we have a very different arrangement of menus across the top here. All of these menus are oriented around painting and manipulating the UVs of your model. Now, what exactly are UVs? Let's take a look at those.

On the Texture palette here, I've got this large gray area. What I need to do is go to the Material Manager, and you can see the Material Manager has changed dramatically. It now shows me a list of my materials. I've only got one in the scene, but then it also shows the channels listed out here horizontally. I've only got one channel as well. When I click on that channel, I now see the material displayed in the Texture window. Now, I'm seeing these lines here, and these are the UVs. If you cannot see them, go to the UV Mesh menu and tell it to Show UV Mesh. When you do that, now you can see the UVs, and that's what the UVs are.

As you can see, I've done quite a bit of painting on this model, big blocks of color, and those blocks of color are associated with different parts of my model. If I go and look at the Layers palette, you can see that I've broken my texture up into layers. And these layers I can turn off and on, just like I would inside of Photoshop. I also have blending modes for the layers. I can adjust the opacity just like I would in Photoshop. I've also got brushes like I have in Photoshop, and I can paint on this layer. If I grab something like, say, a chalk brush, I can come in to my window here and I can paint.

Now, I'm painting with the red color now, so let's pick a color that's not the same as the color in the background. I'll go ahead and grab a nice white here. And now I can paint inside here. Because I painted outside the UVs, nothing on my model changed. You can see that it hasn't shown up here. If I go back to the window--and I'm going to paint something right on his leg. Let's paint right down his leg here and then go back to the model. You can see that on the side of his leg, I now have a paint mark. Let's hit Command+R or Ctrl+R. You can see that I painted a chalk mark right on his leg.

I can also paint right here in the Editor view. Let's redraw the window by hitting A on the keyboard, and I can paint right on the surface of the model. If I orbit around--let's paint something right here on his waist. I need to put my window into 3D Painting mode, and I'll click on this button here. And when I put the window into 3D Painting mode, I can paint right on the surface. And you can see, I'm making this brushstroke, and I'm painting right on the surface of the model. One of the limitations of painting right on the surface is the way the UVs are laid out.

There's a lot of seams in the UV layout on this model, and there's going to be places where those seams are problematic. One of the spots is on his hand. Let's orbit around here and take a look at that. When I orbit into his hand, as I paint through here, you're going to see the brush start to create a straight line there. Even though this is a chalk, you can see that it's making a straight line. That's because I'm trying to paint across a seam in the UV mesh. If we go back to the Texture window and look at the hand, you can see I was painting on his thumb, which is right there. There's a little bit of it there, and there's a little bit of it there.

We can use something called Projection Painting to correct that. Now, all of the movies in this chapter are oriented around getting you up and running quickly, but keep in mind that BodyPaint is a complete application built into it. It has got a lot of the functionality of Photoshop, plus a lot of additional functionality for manipulating the UV mesh. It is incredibly deep and way beyond what we can cover in an Essential Training course. But don't get discouraged. Play around with it, and you're going to have a lot of fun, and you'll have total control over the textures that you create for your models.

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