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Old 17-10-2004, 02:56 AM   #1
Decipio
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Hi all! Figured I would just pick something pretty easy and slowly add on to it as I learn more about maya..

I have a picture in my head of a midievil goblet on a table top, with red wine in it, maybe a ruby or two on the table beside it, and a dagger sticking out in the edge of the frame, after playing for a while with maya today, I have only managed to make a goblet!

I will include a picture, I know its not much but its my first thing ever!

My question is this kinda... I modeled the goblet, its very basic, but its the only thng I can handle at the moment. If I wanted to texture it as a brass goblet, what would I go to next to do it? Shaders? How do I make an effective looking brass? ( I have searched the forum and did not find much) I did find a site that lets me download shaders, but its not helping me a whiole lot, I dont even know how to apply them yet (Still looking thru maya help files)

What would be everyones approach to a basic scene such as this? Do all the modeling, layout of the scene, then move to all the texturing, lighting?

If anyone could give some noobie advice, would be appreciated again!
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Old 18-10-2004, 01:43 AM   #2
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This is rather omni-kind of question, but I'll try to answer

Since this is not a character this is how you would set-up your shading workflow:

- First you need to determine what would the object look like in certain light conditions (the way you wan't to light the scene)...since you've already opted for brass, here's what to do (applies for other tyes of materials also)

you need to think in layers...first observe how to real brass looks like (see the picture - from google images)...

There are several components you can see in the picture..

- there is a base color (somewhat brownish) - in this case uniformly scattered around the object (means it's a single color material or close to it)
- then there is a really broad specular component which reacts to light in this instance from head-on situation...but it also gives us a clue (if you look at other brass pictures) that it has a rim like quality from low angles
- possibly a reflection layer that is really dim and blurry

now, you need to apply those observations into maya material... first you would start with:

- blinn material as a base

now let's apply our observation from real brass to our material:

- adjust blinn color to brownish hue (you could use color picker in photoshop to detect simillar color)
- then adjust specular component to be very broad and have kind of strong center with strong halo around it (just play with settings on specularity untill you reach something visually plausible)
- last step would be to add reflections and play with blurry reflections, but we'll talk about it in the next reply which discusses another important topic, lighting your scene
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Old 18-10-2004, 01:53 AM   #3
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It is really important when you make materials for your object/scene that you have kind of neutral lighting situation in the scene, because lights tend to affect material in weird manners, which is uncontrolable when you are in stage of developing material idea into practice..


Building from previous reply, here's what you will do next (if you was I that is ):

- you should put some long elongated planes outside of camera view and apply lambert material to them.
- set lambert material color to white 100% and incandescence color to 100% white also...

What you will get with this is so called reflection cards... they act as a form shaping light hints (speculars, but nevermind that) that will give mettalic quality to your object.

Now, return to your blinn material of brass and turn on reflection..set it to low percentage (I don't have maya here, so out of my head start with default 0.5 and take it from there)...

when you are satisfied with reflections...setup your lighting...
What you should do is bring on the main light (key light).. where you put it depends on your camera angle torwards object and scene situation...but if we're looking 3/4 qtrs. down to the chalice...let's play with standard 3-point lighting...

- place key light left of the camera and somewhat up torwards chalice (make the light spotlight)...play with radius and falloff...note that light should never be default settings... put something like 1.2 for intensity and make it slightly yellow (very slightly)

- then you should put in the fill light..if you have floor on which chalice is planted on, put directional light (so we get a broad type of even light) down from the camera, right - put it below floor and orient it towards chalice...set it's intensity at around 0.6 and put it's hue toslightly blueish...

now you will get some nice results...there is another key component tha's missing though..

- rim light...put another spotlight in the same height as key light but on the oposite side of the chalice (so that it is oriented towards camera)...make it's intensity really strong (like 2.0) and don't forget to turn it from white to slightly yellow

now you should get a good start for light in your scene...

this is the basic workflow of making up your scene... in the next reply I will discuss what improvements you may do, and what other steps you should do if this was a not-so simple object
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Old 18-10-2004, 02:03 AM   #4
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some improvements youcould do to the process:

- instead of making a blinn object one color, you could put in a color slot a noise texture with broad even distribution and apply two very simillar colors

- on reflection card you could make a radial gradient so that the edges of the ref cards are not as sharp as from simple 100% color material

- you could make a bump map channel to "carve in the details" which will catch specular lighting and, thus further emphasise metallic quality of the object


If this was a character or some other more complicated object...before material settings, I would do the following:

- define the UVs (with a help of lambert material and checker texture)
- if object was NURBS, then insteadof laying out UVs (we already have them since it's NURBS)... I would run a 3D Paint (inside Maya is just fine) and color the regions so I know where to paint what.

- after UV map, I'd make a color map.. and follow the process below

- after lighting is nearly finished, I'd jump in displacement and specular mapping

One thing to know, which kinda helps, is to try to lock down the camera angle first, and then do all of your work (lighting in particular)...since then you can measure what you are working on...because if you don't have camera set, you'll haveto light up your whole scene, which is a disaster - you can never light up your scene from every angle and make it look good from every angle

Hope it helps...

PS
Regarding simple stuff like assigning shaders..I suggest you really dwell into Using Maya User's Guide (comes on the CD as PDF also)...and start with several tutorials...

to assign a shader:

- open up a hypershade
- press little checker button (first on top left)
- select blinn from material section

- you should now have blinn material show up in hypershade
- drag blinn icon from hypershade with middle mouse button onto object in the scene

or

- select object in the scene
- press and hold shift and select blinn in hypershade (so that both nodes are selected)
- press right mouse button in hypershade over blinn icon and move your mouse over the top menu shown (I think it's assign material to selected or something...don't have maya here )
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Old 18-10-2004, 04:48 AM   #5
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Wow Keyframe!

Thank you for that response!!!

I truly appreciate it!!!

have it printed out next to my monitor!
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Old 18-10-2004, 06:17 AM   #6
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no problem
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Old 18-10-2004, 05:43 PM   #7
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Excellent explanation Keyframe, looks like a basic tutorial to me......good job
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Old 18-10-2004, 05:51 PM   #8
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I'd like to make a re-work of hot peppers tutorial from simplylightwave.com, but in maya...

I'll make it tonight and post it in the forum if anyone wan't it? It'll be as a series of pictures, since I have no idea how to capture good video from GUI

I chose peppers since it shows some things that are not quite obvious from the start in maya - that is, how to do them... twist, bend and several other things... it's a basic rundown of modeling, as well as lighting and rendering

I'll also cover CPS and MJ PolyTools, but I'll also show how to make it without those plugins?

Tell me if you wish so... if not.. I'll make a tutorial anyways
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Old 18-10-2004, 08:53 PM   #9
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Key, I would DEFINATELY be interested!

I am doing most of the tutorials I can get my hands on, and learning more every day... right now im trying to figure out how to do a realistic "Etching" technique to put on my goblet in the WiP Part of the website.. after That Trying to figure how to fill it with realistic looking liquid.
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Old 19-10-2004, 02:28 AM   #10
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Originally posted by Decipio
Key, I would DEFINATELY be interested!
Ditto.

I too have retained your instruction. Great response, greatly appreciated detail. Thank you.

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