Join Henry Santos for an in-depth discussion in this video Preparing your object, part of MODO Essential Training.
- [Instructor] In order to paint onto a 3D model, image maps are used as wraparound virtual canvases. MODO automatically sets the canvas for its objects that are being painted, but there are other ways that we can set it up so that it becomes a little bit more efficient. Let's take a look at that. Right now, let's look at how MODO does it by default. We have our mesh selected here. I'm gonna go up to our shader tree. I'm in the upper right corner of the screen.
We have our shader tree there. It's under the shader tab. You notice we have a base material on this object. Now let's click on the airbrush tool that's on the left side of our screen. All of our tools are on the left side. We have the paint tools, airbrush, and let's start painting. But nothing happened. Or, did it? If we look on the right side of our screen in our shader tree, we see that a diffcolor_3, a diffuse color, was created. That is the image map that MODO places onto the object.
If we start painting on the object, sure enough, there it is. If we double-click on this diff color 3 in this shader tree, we see an image of it as if it was a flat canvas. If we keep drawing, we add to the drawing. This is the default way that MODO puts an image map. This is great. This is exactly what we're gonna use. The only difference is that with this diff color 3 that MODO creates, it's actually using a file format that makes a high quality, high resolution image.
The important thing is to have what's called an alpha channel. That's the invisible channel where you can see through into the material properties of that mesh. For example, if we click on this base material and change the color, it changes the color of the overall material, but that diff color has a transparent side to it that is called an alpha channel.
Let's take a look at a different method of creating this image map. We go up to our item list. I'm gonna go to 0802. This file is the file I'm gonna be working on, and that's available in the chapter 8 folder in the exercise files. Here is our fancy dancy living room scene. I'm gonna select this rug and now, after I've selected it here, I'm going to the shader tree again.
That's in the upper right corner of the screen. Right next to the item tab, there's a shader tab. I click on that. There we have our rug material. That's an actual material that is placed on the rug. I'm gonna click on this and notice we have the material there. Let's go ahead and change that color just so we can set that. That's gonna be the base color. Now, just like in the previous example that I showed, we had a texture map.
But this time we're gonna make it instead of just waiting for MODO to make it and use the targa file. We're gonna go to add layer. It's in the upper right corner there. There's a pull down. Click and drag and go to image map. We're gonna create a new image map. There it is. By default, it'll go to your project that you have established inside the images folder. I'm gonna change the type to PNG.
I'm gonna click on this targa file. This targa.tga file has the alpha channel and it's high resolution and it's a very large file. The PNG file, the portable network graphic file, the .png, also has an alpha channel, but it's not very large. It's kind of like a jpeg. It's a little bit larger than the jpegs. They're designed for the web, but they also are designed to have an alpha channel. I'm gonna copy over this rug paint file that was there already so I'm just gonna copy over it.
I click on that and the name shows up on my file name. You can name it whatever you want. Hit save. Yes, I will replace you. The resolution is 2048. We can keep these defaults, but just for good measure, we're gonna shrink this down so it's a little bit leaner 'cause it's not a whole lot of detail we're adding. 1024 by 1024 is plenty. We'll hit OK. There you go. Now we have that image map there, if we go back to our paint tools, and click on an airbrush, and start painting.
Just to verify that it's showing up on that rug, double click on the rug in the shader tree and very subtly you can see a little bit of color there. Let me just add more color. Boom. If I had time, I'd paint happy trees, but this is an example of how we can start setting up our files to be painted on and have it be a lot more efficient than if we just started painting on the mesh itself.
In the next movie, let's take a look at the paint workflow.
- Building simple 3D models
- Working with primitive and preset objects
- Using deformation and duplication tools
- Subdivision (SubD) surface modeling
- Understanding replicators
- Creating a fusion model with MeshFusion
- Adding lights
- Shading with materials and UV mapping
- Painting and sculpting
- Animating your scene
- Rendering and exporting renders