In this tutorial you will find some secrets and tips for making photorealistic materials.
Learn to Observe:
It's one of the most obvious things but most 3D Artists don't do: You have to imitate real world things how they really are and not how you think or suppose they are. This rule applies to everything not only materials also applies to modelling, lighting and so on.
Here is and example:
When you make a white wall material. How do you set the material? Most beginners 3D Artists make the following:
Interior Wall Material
That material is not accurate! Observe any white wall anywhere:
You will find out that they aren't perfectly smooth, perfectly white. Even the newest recently built walls aren't. So what do you see?
It's practically impossible to find a perfect white smooth wall. Only in 3D. Real world walls have imperfections; lot of them.
Interior Wall Material from Pro Materials Interiors
On the images showing materials settings you notice the big difference between them. Although it's just a smooth interior material. In the second one image there are nodes for:
Even for a Smooth wall material you have to add some "dirt" on it, so that it becomes more realistic. Pay attention on how the colors get darker on some areas. Also an irregular specular is present on this wall.
A closer look to the wall.
Those dirt imperfections normally are made with Seamless Dirt Alpha Maps (also known as Surface Imperfections Maps) that modify the diffuse color and are placed on the Specular Nodes.
Node Settings for Base Color (Diffuse):
Dirt Alpha Maps
Nodes for Controlling the Contrast
Mix Nodes for mixing Paint Color and Dirt Alpha Maps
Node Settings for Specular and Normal Map Nodes:
Normal Map for wall smooth grainy texture.
Coming soon there will be posts about secrets and tips for Modelling, Lighting and so! Stay tuned!
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