Join Mikey Rogers for an in-depth discussion in this video Fine-tuning the shader of the wooden structure, part of Learning MARI.
- So we've built our supporting channels and we can go ahead and take a look at those real quick. This is our bump map that we've created. We have a roughness map right here that gives us some tonal variation between the paint and the wood that's beneath it, and then we have our spec map and let's load that up. So cool, we can see that we have sort of a tonal differentiation in all those, so that once we load up our shader, we can start sort of tweaking those values and seeing how it works, so let's load up our Arnold Shader that we built, and we don't see anything just yet, so let's turn off our standard lights here and turn on our environment, and still nothing yet.
But let's turn on our shading model here, and yes, this is going to need a little bit of work. (laughs) It's out of whack, but hope is not lost. The first thing that I'm noticing, obviously, is the specularity of this, it's just way too hot and doesn't even feel like it exists in this world. So let's go take a look, and so we're in our spec channel right now. Let's go down, make sure we're looking at our paint under the wood structure, so in our main structure, paint levels.
And if we go down, we have these output levels here, for white and black, and let's just see what happens when we bring the white down. It starts fading in a little bit more into that, like, kind of nice glossy painted look. And we can verify that by clicking this flat shaded model here, and you can see what that's doing, we were, like, way blown out here into these values, but subtlety is always key, we can see even when we're in this range here, we're still getting this variation between the paint and the wood, but it looks much more pleasing to the eye when we're kind of within this range here.
And it lets the wood bleed through a little bit more, like the underlying wood. Our bump map also kind of helps give us that sort of variation there. And that's actually looking a lot better already. We can take a look at the other maps and see if there's any other fine-tuning that we can do, but I'm kind of already digging that. Let's go over to our rough and see what we've got. And so let's go down to the same area of the paint, and just take a look at those levels and see if we can get any sort of similar results doing what we did.
There's not much more wiggle room. If we move our mid-tones here, we can kind of see variation and detail there. It's flattening it out a little bit more and it just makes it kind of dry, but I like that contrast that it creates with that sort of wet paint, and we've got that sort of dry wood underneath. We can go back under here and see the roughness map, so black means not as rough, and then white means a more rough specular highlight, so we can play with those values there and see how they look in our texture, but then always it's nice to go back to sort of our rendered view, and see how that will look once the shader is compiled.
So, yes, that's kind of nice, we can look at the bump map finally and just see how that looks. And so let's take a look at the levels here again, and get like a nice glancing angle. What we can also do is go back to our shaders and let's look at just the specular, so go down to Display Features and let's look at the Specular AOV, and see what that's doing. It's a nice way to just kind of like eliminate any diffuse distractions there.
And we can look in these areas over here for sort of contrast, and you know, I think it was in a pretty good spot already, I mean, there's not much more I want out of that bump map. We've got those striations in the wood underneath, and then those, paint is kind of bumping up because we've got the separate levels that will affect that. And you can always dial them in separately, like, if you want to take the paint completely off, since we have it in its own group, you can take that off and then go back to our wood over here, and this is just the underlying wood, and we can kind of just control that separately, so if we want like, maybe, a less bumpy wood, we can kind of smooth that out over here, and then start to dial our paint back in on top of it, and start playing with those values and make it a little bit more varied, and so we can have control over those different layers independently of each other.
The other thing we need to look at is the rope over here, and let's see, we can go ahead and turn our AOVs back on, just to see it in context, and it's probably too reflective, so let's go ahead and jump back to our specular over here, and go up to our levels that I created for the rope and maybe just kind of bring that down, and go to the roughness and we're going to want to kind of spread that highlight out a little bit.
You know, it's more of just kind of like a diffuse material. We can go back to our shader again just to verify and look at the specular and just kind of move around and see how the light plays off of that. You can see I'm just dialing in the roughness here, kind of making it sort of a diffuse reflection, and you want a little bit of a highlight to pop and break it apart, but we're using the setup that we had before, using that shared rope procedural just to kind of like drive those values and get some variation in there.
And then let's just take a look at the whole thing. Yes, I'm kind of digging that. The paint has a nice sort of specular roll-off to it. We're getting some nice variation in the wood, and here we're making sure that our values in this wood kind of fall in line with the wood that we have here. We want to make sure that if we have one wood painted, we want the values to kind of be similar in different areas because it all lives in the same environment. You can again come over here and just check out, play with the intensity a little bit, but usually I just leave it at one.
And then spin the environment around and just see how the light plays off of that. So let's call that wrapped up, and we'll move on to the roof.
This course will guide members through the ins and outs of this essential visual effects tool. Author Mikey Rogers, a CG artist who has worked on eye-catching spots for Nike, Google, and Sony, covers everything from initial model import and scene setup to channel and layer creation and export. He also touches on shader creation inside of MARI, which allows you to view your work in a physically accurate environment using HDR lights. The course closes with a series of projects that demonstrate real-world workflows for painting different wood and stone textures.
- Adjusting the cache and other MARI settings for best performance
- Working with adjustment and procedural layers
- Using and customizing the default MARI brushes
- Transforming and warping the paint buffer
- Using different projection modes
- Dynamic masking
- Making a tileable texture
- Repurposing diffuse maps
- Painting wood and stone
- Exporting channels
- Saving out and importing MARI archives