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Making Of 'The Art Nouveau Room'

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Date Added: 12th March 2010
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Texturing in Photoshop

After unwrapping all the objects, I had to get the UVs into Photoshop. Because I was working with 3Dsmax 7 which doesn't support exporting the UVW template, I had to either use the texporter plug-in or just take the screenshot of the Edit UVW dialog with the print screen button. I decided for the less accurate but faster and easier PrtScr button method. So I had to resize the saved screenshot in Photoshop to the size of the base texture which usually meant a decrease in quality of the UVW screenshot image. But that didn't bother me as you can always adjust the UVs later on in max if the finished texture doesn't match perfectly.

The two most important objects in the scene that required most attention in terms of texturing were the walls and the floor. These two objects had the most impact on the general feel of the room. I wanted to create a nice and cozy atmosphere, so I chose mostly warm colors, orange for the walls and brown for the floor. I actually had the most problems with the floor texture and had to change it a couple of times, before I got it right. Eventually I got a fence texture made out of wooden boards and cut out the most straight boards (about 6 or 7 different ones) and multiplied them according to the UVW map, then painted some differences on each of them just to get rid of the repetition. On a new layer I filled some areas brown with the help of the paint bucket tool (playing with the tolerance option) and the option "Fill all layers" turned on (thanks to Jure Zagoričnik for that great tip). That way I got a nice layer of plaster and set it to 70 % opacity.

Picture 4: Wooden floor texture

The wall texture was a little easier and I made it a lot faster, although it consists of several layers and masks in PS. The scheme below tries to explain the basic steps of the process of creating it in Photoshop.

Picture 5: Process of making the walls texture

Picture 6: Final diffuse and bump maps for the walls

Texturing and Shaders

It is important that you know what you want to achieve, when it comes to textures and materials.

I will start with the wooden floor texture, because I think its creation best describes the basic principles I used at creating other textures for this scene as well.

The trick was to get the part of the floor where the plaster is a lot more reflective than the washed out part. To achieve that effect, I used the reflection map and also the reflection glossiness map. The reflection or specular map is used to define the area where the material reflects more and where it reflects less or doesn't reflect at all. The reflection glossiness map defines the areas where the reflection is more or less glossy and adds a lot to the realism. Both mentioned maps use the same color range as the bump map, from black to white. By the specular map, white means 100 % reflective and black means no reflection at all. Similar goes for the reflection glossiness map, but for the glossiness of the reflection of course. You may notice that at the wooden floor material the specular and reflection map are the same - this is because I wanted the parts that reflect less to also have less glossy reflections.

Picture 7: The floor shader and maps

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