Digital Matte Painting Essentials 4: Texturing
Illustration by John Hersey

Digital Matte Painting Essentials 4: Texturing

with David Mattingly

Video: Creating a photographic crenellation

Next up, we'll take a photograph from, This crenulation at the top of this arch has some nice detail, but the Press Cmd or Ctrl+J to copy the selection onto a new Layer.
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  1. 1m 51s
    1. Introduction
    2. Using the exercise files
  2. 44m 5s
    1. Why did we wait so long to use photographic textures?
      1m 55s
    2. Prepping the form study for texturing
      5m 32s
    3. Transfer modes
      9m 4s
    4. Color basics
      4m 45s
    5. Creating a stone texture
      3m 26s
    6. Adding the dark side's base texture
      3m 57s
    7. Adding the light side's base texture
      3m 40s
    8. Rounded textures and the Warp tool
      6m 33s
    9. Websites for matte painting reference
      5m 13s
  3. 30m 12s
    1. Creating a photographic crenellation
      7m 30s
    2. Creating a line of crenellations
      3m 27s
    3. The Vanishing Point tool
      4m 54s
    4. Adding crenellations using the Vanishing Point tool
      3m 4s
    5. Trimming the crenellations
      7m 9s
    6. Adding back sides to the crenellations
      4m 8s
  4. 29m 36s
    1. Levels and Curves anatomy
      5m 26s
    2. Camera Raw
      3m 33s
    3. Using Levels and Curves
      4m 55s
    4. Color correcting individual RGB channels
      3m 19s
    5. Toning the base castle
      5m 35s
    6. Toning the crenellations
      6m 48s
  5. 32m 25s
    1. Adding photographic elements
      4m 19s
    2. Distorting the dome and rectangular faces
      5m 18s
    3. Relighting the dome
      5m 59s
    4. Color correcting the dome
      1m 52s
    5. Adding more photographic details
      5m 57s
    6. Relighting the new details
      3m 50s
    7. Color correcting the details
      5m 10s
  6. 51m 33s
    1. Extreme color correction
      3m 36s
    2. Adding a photographic sky
      6m 27s
    3. Adding background mountains
      5m 32s
    4. Integrating the details
      7m 30s
    5. Collapsing layers and more details
      5m 13s
    6. The final paint layer
      6m 28s
    7. Lights and glows
      7m 16s
    8. Smoke and flames
      9m 31s
  7. 33s
    1. Goodbye

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Watch the Online Video Course Digital Matte Painting Essentials 4: Texturing
3h 10m Beginner Nov 07, 2013

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

A crucial step in building a realistic digital matte painting is texturing your scene. This course shows you how to add light, color, and texture to a basic form using photographic references and the tools in Adobe Photoshop. Author David Mattingly starts the lessons where Digital Matte Painting Essentials 3 left off—with a fully shaded 3D form—but you can also jump straight into this installment to learn more about texturing. Start now to learn how to add crenellations, color correct your form, distort and relight photographic textures, and add glows and special effects that make your painting convincing.

Topics include:
  • Preparing your form study for texturing
  • Adding dark and light side textures
  • Making rounded textures with the Warp tool
  • Creating photographic crenellations
  • Using Levels and Curves for color correction
  • Adding photographic elements
  • Relighting details
  • Adding glows, smoke, and flames
3D + Animation Design
David Mattingly

Creating a photographic crenellation

Next up, we'll take a photograph from, and use it to create a photo realistic crenulation. You want to take the time to design a really interesting distinct crenulation, and use it throughout your castle as a unifying design element. Let's take a look at the photo. This is very high resolution, and has some nice elements that can be used as the base of the crenulation. This crenulation at the top of this arch has some nice detail, but the castle in the concept sketch has pointed triangular crenulations that I'd like to keep.

Using the marquee with the feathers set to 0, select two triangular shapes within the existing crenulations. Press Cmd or Ctrl+J to copy the selection onto a new Layer. We'll be duplicating these into a line of crenulations, but having at least two different brick patterns will help make the duplication's somewhat less obvious. Let's add a bit of finish to these triangular crenulations. Select the sides of the triangular points. Grab a warm grey from the flat area between these crenulations, and paint some plaster at the top of these bricks.

Then select the light side color from the stone between the two crenulations, and add a top to the plaster. The line between the light and dark side came in kind of heavy, so set the brush to 50% and go through and soften that edge up a bit. And paint a little shadow, where the mortar meets the bricks to give it some additional dimension. Let's zoom in, there's some shadows under the bricks that you should paint out. I'm going to use that chalk dynamic brush to paint it. You can stay very loose while painting this.

It doesn't have to be exactly accurate. But change your color often, so that you get a lot of variation in the brick, as you work. We've lost some of the definition between the brick. So I'm going to choose that Drawing Line Brush with just a little bit of scatter on it. And then go through and firm up some of these edges a bit, and sketch in a little indication of the cracks between the bricks. You want to keep the spaces between the bricks absolutely straight, so hold down the Shift key while drawing either horizontally or vertically. The space between the crenulations looks a little wide, so I'm going to pull them closer together.

Now we need to turn these two crenulations into repeating sections. So trim each side, then select the section and Cmd or Ctrl+Option+Alt+Shift drag the section over to duplicate it on the same layer. We have a little mismatch between the two sides that we need to repair before we continue duplicating. Again, you can stay very loose while doing this. If anything, if you get too fussy, it'll look less photographic. And hop around and define these bricks a little bit better. Now that we've patched the paintings so that the two sides join properly, we need to grab that little section of painting, and move it over to the left edge, and then delete that original duplicated area.

If we've done our job properly and we Cmd or Ctrl+Option+Alt+Shift drag it over to the edge of the original, they should join perfectly. That does it for the repeating crenulation section. Turn the original image back on, and let's add some detail underneath the crenulations. This interesting arch form will work well, so let's go ahead and select two of them with the Rectangular Marquee Tool. Select the original image and Cmd or Ctrl+J to Copy it onto a new layer, and turn off that background image.

The undersides of these arches have hard cast shadows that need to be removed. Let's try color correcting the shadow bricks to match the light side bricks. With the Lasso tool set to a two pixel feather to keep it a little softer, marquee around the area of the shadow. This doesn't have to be perfect, we're going to have to patch this with some painting when we're done. This is just for a gross color correction. Then set the feather to 10 pixels, and subtract from the selection right under the arch.

It'd be nice to keep a little shadowing under here. Open up curves, Cmd or Ctrl+M. We'll cover color correction in great detail in an upcoming section. But for now, just pull up on the middle of the curve, and pull in on the white point at the top right corner. This won't be perfect, but it'll get us most of the way there. Now, paint in the areas where the join isn't quite right. Once again, I like that chalk dynamic with a little more scatter on it for this.

That way you can rapidly paint in some tones to blend the shadow, without getting fussy about it. Just continue scribbling some tone to hide that join. Let's open up the brush, and add some more scattering to it. This will make it even more random. And some more scribbling in, varying the tone and some of the color from that lighter brick. We'll have to restore the indication of the cracks between the bricks a little later on. And choose that soft round brush. Using that scatter brushes made the tones a little bitty, and this allows you to smooth them out.

Now we need to do some painting, so the right and left sides join properly. So Cmd+Option or Ctrl+Alt+Shift drag the section over to create a new layer. We need to paint the join between the two sides, so that it will seamlessly duplicate. Also, with that color correction to get rid of the cast shadow, we've lost all of the definition between the bricks. So, this gives us a nice opportunity to paint them in. However, you don't want to spend a lot of time on this, this can be done very quickly.

I know the section will be scaled down to match the triangular crenulations, so stay loose and sketchy as you work on this. Let's start to look pretty good. Now we need to marquee of the section that has the perfect join on the edge, and Cmd+Option or Ctrl+Alt drag it over to the left edge. Make sure it's lined up. And you can delete that right side copy, we only needed it to paint the join. I'm going to double the speed of painting the center section of bricks, since it's just like painting the other side. And clean up this top a little. Let's zoom out and move this close to the crenulations.

In the next lesson we'll join this arch detail to our triangular crenulations, and make them into repeating line ready for use on the castle.

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