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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.
The first thing you'll want to do on your castle is to add a base texture. One of the main reasons this castle looks like a plaster model, rather than a real structure is that it's too perfect. It's doesn't have any of the underlying noise that anything photographic will have. So we'll create a base stone texture that we'll apply all over the castle. Here's a stone texture that will work well as the base, but it's too pristine, it doesn't have any of the flaws that a stone wall on an old castle would have. So let's use transfer modes to give it more texture and character.
All of the files are used in this section will be available to Lynda.com premium members in the exercise files. You might want to go out and photograph some stone walls yourself, to use on this. Or, there are a lot of examples available on the internet. Try to find one that is at a reasonable resolution, at least a couple of thousand pixels wide, so that your wall will be nice and crisp. This one is 3,600 pixels wide. So it'll yield excellent results. Also, find something that is shot straight on, so that it doesn't have any perspective in it, since we will be adding our own perspective to the stone as we apply it to the castle.
Notice that my base stone wall has all of the stones lined up horizontally, not at an angle. An that's what you want for the base. Here are two other stone walls that should work well to dirty up our base. This one doesn't have a regular stone pattern. It has a lot more variation in it. Copy it out of the file and paste it on top of our regular stone wall. Set the feather on your lasso tool to 30 so you don’t get hard edges and grab sections to randomize the stonework. This is a little too small to cover the entire wall but by duplicating sections of it all around, it will not only make it fill up the wall but it will also mix it up a bit more.
Set the Layer Transfer mode to overlay and lower the opacity a bit to say 60%. With the Eraser Tool, you can go through and get rid of any areas you aren't happy with. Here's another stone wall with some nice strips and splats on it. Let's copy that out of the file and paste it into our base stone wall file. And again, copy and paste sections around and randomize it. I particularly like this drippy area. So I'm going to spread that around and just get full coverage on the file.
Let's set this layer to color burn. Now that looks terrible. It totally overwhelms the stone wall. But turn the opacity way down to say 20%, and let's see the result. That looks better. And with a little erasing to get rid of the bits you don't like. You'll have a nice randomized wall that should work great for this castle. So select all, copy merged and return to our castle file, and paste it in. Let's name this layer Stone Texture. And we're ready for the next lesson where we'll distort the stone texture into position.
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