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Texturing Image Breakdown: Slums

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(Score 4.35 out of 5 after 51 Votes)
Date Added: 14th January 2011
Software used:


This phase of the tutorial was the most involved part of the process and used two principal techniques: unwrapped geometry and Composite maps.

It is often useful to know the rough size of your final render in order to create templates that are a suitable size. For example; if the foreground wall was to be unwrapped, the width of the template should approximate the width of the render.

Having said that, it is worth creating larger textures initially as they can always be scaled down later, but if the textures are too small then it will cause a problem. If there is any chance that your work may be published then it is safer to create bigger templates which will then account for any printing issues.

When texturing I usually start with the most conspicuous areas first and then work my way down to the sections that are least noticeable. That is not to say that minor sections and details are not as important, it's just that these will have less of an immediate impact.

I began with the wall as this occupied a large proportion of the render. In order to control the details and grime fully I decided to unwrap this section of geometry.

Fig.04 shows the template in the centre of the image with some of the key textures surrounding it. I tiled the Base Layer to fill in the wall and then pasted in the remaining ones, which were color corrected and adjusted to blend in with the others.

Fig. 04

As I wanted a distressed and aged look I chose three textures from V19 - Total Textures "Destroyed & Damaged" collection, which proved ideal.

The next phase was to apply some dirt and grime, this time courtesy of V05:R2 - Total Textures "Dirt & Graffiti". I sifted through the library of images and selected a handful that was most appropriate (Fig.05).

Fig. 05

With each of these four textures I inverted them so that black became white and vice versa. Then I set the blending mode to Multiply. I then reduced the Opacity to between 40 - 60% and adjusted the Color Balance to add more red and yellow.

The bottom right texture was set at 100% Opacity where the dirt and grime has built up the most.

Another section of the scene that I decided to unwrap was the metal panels. The reason for this was that these are a distinct feature in the scene and I wanted to be able to create variety and detail across each one individually.

I sampled textures from a few of the Total Textures collections, which incorporated metals from V2 and V3 as well as some of the worn doors from V17 - "Urban Extras Textures". I overlaid one or two few dirt maps from V5 onto some of the panels and made sure that each was color corrected so that they looked consistent (Fig.06). You can see how they appear in the render on the right of the image.

Fig. 06

In the case of the buildings I chose to use a Composite map, as sections of the walls were covered by the panels and unwrapping seemed unnecessary. The great thing about using this type of map is that each texture can be positioned independently through the Coordinates section and color corrected within the editor.

Fig.07 shows the map used for the central building on the lower level. You can see that three of the layers are controlled by a mask with the upper two using a blending mode other than Normal.

Fig. 07

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Readers Comments (Newest on Top)
Jonatan on Thu, 13 January 2011 3:50pm
Cool! I think that's awesome. I see you are so classy to change 'Cut and paste' for 'crop and paste'
Azmy on Sun, 26 December 2010 7:22am
Gr8 Dude thnx
Dahri on Sun, 28 November 2010 3:17pm
its great to see in this way. fantastic fantastic ...
Stephen Cooper on Mon, 08 November 2010 3:31pm
Looks cool although the lighting looks abit flat across the front of the buildings. The light effect that is making your shadows soft is also taking the strength of that shadow across the front of the buildings. What is also making the lighting look flat is the buildings facing us seem to be at exactly the same angle. The light source you have is a very similar intensity because it lands at this similar angle. It seems like shanty buildings would be built at slightly varying angles; and its likely the windows would also not be such uniform square shapes. As a texturing expose its cool tho... :)
Munkybutt's Avatar
Rich-3DT (Forums) on Mon, 08 November 2010 9:39am
Thanks for the comments.The lack of human evidence is correct - it was my intention to put some laundry and pots etc in but didn't get round to it but it would improve the scene for sure. Was done some time ago now and can't remember exactly how long it took - I think around 3-4 days.Mountains were added in Photoshop using a few photos from the ref library.
AJ on Sat, 06 November 2010 6:16am
Nice work as always. How were the mountains in the back done?
BldRnr on Thu, 04 November 2010 9:01pm
Looks great, except a little sparse on the human elements eg: laundry hanging around ,plants posters etc. Would you care to comment on the time it took to put together this piece?
Omid123 on Thu, 04 November 2010 6:41pm
wow niccce...very good
Munkybutt's Avatar
Matt_3dtotal (Forums) on Thu, 04 November 2010 3:34pm
Dont miss out on our fantastic 50% discount off our Total Textures 19 DVD Bundle!!! Click the below image for more information.
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Lynette-3DA (Forums) on Tue, 07 September 2010 8:41pm
Flippin' 'eck, fantastic work Rich!!!! :)
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