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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.
With our castle properly toned, the crenelations don't look so great, so let's take care of that next. We'll be adding some more adjustment layers. So in order to stay organized, let's rename the curve that toned our castle, castle curves. We have the light side and dark side crenelations on different layers. So using a regular layer mask on the adjustment layer will work better than a clipping mask like we used to tone the castle in the last lesson. Let's start by creating a selection from all of the dark side crenelations.
And this will require some fancy selection loading like we did in the form section. Load the selection from the crenelations one layer by Cmd or Ctrl clicking into the layer thumbnail preview. Get rid of all of the light side crenelations on this layer. And then we need to intersect with the layer mask which is Cmd or Ctrl plus Option or Alt plus the Shift key. Click on the layer thumbnail preview for the mask. Now we have all the dark sides crenelations on that layer in a selection. With that selection active, create an empty adjustment layer at the top of the all of the crenelations.
Just to stay organized, let's cal this dark side curves. We still need to add the dark side crenelations from the front of the bridge. Load the crenelations three selection. Subtract the light-side crenelations above the door and the one going out to the side tower. Intersect it with the layer mask. Make sure that the layer mask from the adjustment layer is selected. Put white in the background color picker and press Delete. That adds the bridge to the layer mask. We still have the back of the bridge on the Crenelations two layer, so load that selection.
Subtract the light side crenelations. Intersect it with the layer mask and press Delete to add the selection to the Adjustment layer, layer mask. I think that's all of the dark side crenelations, so let's start pulling the curve. First darken it since it is much too light. We want the crenelations to roughly match the walls of the castle. So pull down on the green curve and again we get that awful maroon, and the blue curve to balance it out. Zoom in so we can see them match with the walls better.
A little more adjustment to the various curves is necessary then pull a little bit of the red out. Pulling the red curves makes the castle both darker and less saturated. One final adjustment to lighting the crenelations overall a bit, and that looks good for the dark side. Go through the process of creating a selection from the crenelations one layer of the light side crenelations. Subtracting the dark side elements, intersecting it with the layer mask and creating a new Adjustment layer.
Like before on top of all the crenelations. Name this one light side curves. There are still a few things missing from this right side curves adjustment layer. The crenelations above the doorway and the ones leading out to the side arm, and intersect that with the layer mask to clean it up. Select the Curves layer mask and hit Delete to edit to the selection. This curve will be different since the light side will be lighter. So pull down a bit less on the white point of the RGB curve. Pull down on the green curve, and the blue one and that looks pretty good. Let's zoom in.
The front of the crenelations match nicely. The back sides of the crenelations still need to be adjusted, so load in the cream one back selection. Remove the front crenelation so only the left side of the castle is selected. And intersect them with the layer mask. You don't want to apply this correction to the front of the crenelation since they've already been adjusted. So subtract the crenelations one layer from the selection. Now add that selection to the light side curves adjustment layer.
The back sides of these crenelations are on the light side and right now they'll be too light, but we'll deal with that in a minute. We have a few more crenelation backs to add to add to the light side adjustment on the Cren two Back layer. So isolate them, subtract the Crenelations two layer from it. Intersect it with the layer mask, and add the selection to the Light Side Curves Adjustment layer. Do the same thing with the cren three back layer. Isolate the front bridge crenelations.
Subtract the layer mask and the crenelations three layer and add it to the light side curves. Let's do the same thing with the crenelations on the backs of the light side. Which will be added to the dark side adjustment layer since they're facing away from the light. This is getting repetitive, so I'm going to speed through this. The process is the same, load the selection, intersect it with a layer mask. Subtract the front crenellations and add the selection to the curve it's an adjustment layer. I should mention that you might notice fringing around areas where the curve's adjustment layer is applied.
If you've created the masks correctly this is a rendering error at Photoshop that occurs when you are not at 100%. When you zoom in all the way you see that there is actually no fringing. The crenelations are now matching nicely but they don't have any cast shadows on them. The cast shadows are on the castle base, since we retained them from the from project. But they aren't on our new crenelations, so we need to add another adjustment layer. Remember when we started this texture section, I told you to keep the files from your form project.
Scroll down and find your form group. Open it up but don't turn on the layers. All we need is the selection containing the cast shadows from the cast shadows layer in this group. Then intersect the selection with your light side Curves layer mask. And add a new adjustment layer above the other two adjustment layers toning the crenelations. Pool the rgb curve down, so that the cash shadows on the crenelations match the cash shadows on the castle. You probably won't need to do much color correction, just pulling down the white point on the RGB curve will give it an overall darkening.
And name the adjustment layer Cash Shadow Curves. That finishes the base toning of the castle and crenelations. Now we'll start adding and color correcting photographic textures from a variety of sources to make our castle really come alive.
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