Join Joel Bradley for an in-depth discussion in this video Importing resources, part of Learning Substance Designer.
- So far in our course, we've been working in part in a very important area of the Substance Design user interface. Namely the Resource Explorer. Perhaps this will be a good time then to explain just how we go about adding resources to our Substance Package. Well, we have already touched on the fact that some of the resources that our Package can hold would include substance graphs, image files, and 3D geometry. If we go ahead and right-click on our Aged_Concrete.sbs entry, you can see that we have options allowing us to create new resources, import them, or link them to our package.
As the option to create new resources should be fairly self-explanatory, let's focus for a minute or two on how and why we might go about importing them. Well, the why would depend on how exactly we want to handle the external resources that we are making use of. You see, importing actually creates a duplicate of any file type that we've selected, and then places that inside the Substance Package folder. To show this in action, let's choose to Import a bitmap here.
And then come into the Extra Assets sub-folder that resides inside the Exercise_Files download. In here, we should find a JPG image file, that if we click to select, automatically generates a Resource section in the Resource Explorer UI. Which, if we just click to expand, we can see now contains the Wood_Normal map image file. This of course has done much more than simply update the Substance Design UI.
If I navigate to the Substance folder, which of course, itself, is in the Exercise_Files folder, you can see that Substance Designer has automatically created an Aged_Concrete resources section. And if we click to jump into there, we see that we do indeed have a duplicate of the image file sitting right here. Coming back to Substance Designer then, What exactly is the difference between importing and linking the resource to the Substance Package? Well, linking, in much the same way that many non-linear video editing software works, simply creates a link, or connection, to the external file sitting on the start-up's drive.
The big difference here being that no duplicate, or copy, is created. Neither is anything moved or placed inside the package folder itself. As I always like to make my project as portable as possible, I would typically tend to move any resources that I will be linking into the package folder before creating the link. That way, if I move my Substance Package from machine to machine, I still always have access to the linked resource files.
Let's link a 3D Mesh to our package then, by selecting that option. Navigating to the Extra Assets sub-folder. And then clicking to select the Shader_Ball.fbx file. Straight away, we can see that the FBX file has been added to the Resources section. And we can even tell at a glance that it is a mesh because of the icon type that we see to the left of its name. All in all then, we can see that it is both fast and easy to add resources to a Substance Package.
Although, it is of course important that we keep in mind the difference in behavior when importing a resource to the Package, as opposed to simply creating a link to it.
- Creating a new substance graph
- Importing resources
- Setting up lighting
- Generating maps
- Creating material outputs
- Using generator nodes to create surface detail
- Using filters to create amps
- Publishing a substance
- Importing substances
Skill Level Intermediate
Q: This course was updated on 05/04/2016. What changed?
A: We added 10 new tutorials covering the changes in the most recent versions of Substance Designer. Check out the videos in the new chapter, "5.1 to 5.3.4 Update Highlights."