Join Joel Bradley for an in-depth discussion in this video Building the plastic, part of Substance Designer: Product Visualization.
- [Instructor] When working in production, the speed at which we can get a job done and done well is always going to be important. Because of this, if we can reuse work anywhere without harming the quality of our results, then we are onto a winner. With this in mind, let's make sure that we are viewing our metal substance graph, and then, with a left click and drag, let's select all of the nodes, and press the Ctrl + C keys, which will of course copy our selection to the clipboard, ready for us to use in a moment or two.
Before we do that, though, let's actually set up a material for the plastic version of our product, which we can do by right-clicking on the package name in the explorer window, and inside the list that appears, click to create a new graph. If we have not been using Designer since creating our original graph, everything should be set as we left it. Just to be safe, though, we can just make sure that we are using a metal-rough template with a resolution of 2K. Once we are sure that those settings are being used, we can name our new substance "plastic," and then click OK.
With our new graphing view, let's click and drag to select the current outputs, and then press the delete key. Once we have a clean graph, we can use the Ctrl and V keys to paste our nodes from the clipboard into here. We will again probably want to view our material changes as we make them, and so, be sure to right-click in the graph view, and then choose the View Outputs in 3D View option. And the first change that we will want to make here will be to the base color, and so let's select, and then delete the current grunge map.
After pressing the spacebar key, we can search for and add the grunge 007 map, which will just suit our plastic look a little better. And then, with it selected, let's add a blur node to soften the transitional edges by pressing the spacebar key, typing the word "blur," and then adding a blur high-quality grayscale node to the mix. We want our map to be softer, and so a value of 4.18 will do nicely. And we will also want to convert this over to color information by piping its output into the foreground slot of our blend node.
We will probably want to give this a different base color as well, and so after clicking on the already-existing color node, let's set it to a nice red, so RGB values of 0.64, 0.05, and 0.05 respectively. Again, though, do feel free to choose a color of your own if you would like. On the normal map side of things, we no longer need the transformation 2D node, and so let's click to select that and then press the delete key.
We can then add a black and white Spots 3 node, pipe it into the normal node, and then, to get the scale right, let's punch in a scale value of 8. As this is a plastic surface, we can probably stand to increase the intensity on the normal node to about 0.01. We will want our reflections to be spread out a bit here, and so after selecting the roughness color, let's set it to a value of 0.27 on the value slider.
Finally, we can add a different set of variations to the reflections by deleting the current grunge map, and then adding the grunge 015 node, either directly from the library tab, or by using the node search. Now after piping its output into the blend node, we can make sure that the blend is set to an opacity of 0.05 using the copy blending mode. To make our new material look like plastic, we will need to select the color node piped into the metallic output, and set it to black.
Reusing work during production will always be a balancing act between genuinely speeding ourselves up and potentially just being lazy in a way that can end up spoiling the quality of our end result. It's something that we can safeguard against if we make sure to give things some thought before we go ahead and start to copy and paste work.
- Building the materials
- Blending the materials
- Adding interactivity
- Adding logos, text, and surface choices
- Setting up the environment
- Rendering the visualization