Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Exterior UV Mapping and Texturing - Tree Bark

As I had already done the leaves I figured I might as well do the rest of the tree and get it finished, the trunk and branches were easy to UV map and unfold and I encountered no problems at all. I've started a habit of creating all of the textures the same way, by using a photograph from my camera and then working into it on photoshop, getting rid of any details I don't want to show and making sure it meets the visual design style we're aiming for.

This is the texture map for the main tree trunk, the textures for the branches will identical and will share the same source photograph. Because of the scattered pattern of the tree bark it is safe to re-use the same photo as the audience will not be able to see repeated textures, however if the photo was more basic and had a simpler design then this may not work.

This is a render showing the texture applied to the tree trunk, however the branches still only have the checker pattern applied along with the treehouse itself.

Once I applied the textures to the branches and took a render pic (shown above), I noticed a problem. The leaves directly above the treehouse look transparent as you can see the tree branch through them. I had no idea what was causing this and was starting to worry because if it was seen like this in the final film then people would notice it and question it immediately. I asked around and did lots of research online but couldn't figure out why I was having this problem, after fiddling around and trying extensively to fix the problem I finally found out what was causing it; the scene file I was working on had previously been worked on by James and he had set up different render layers, so as well as having the default 'masterlayer' which I thought I was working on already, there was also a 'Beauty' layer and a 'ambient occlusion' layer. I was working on the beauty layer, so the textures I had applied to the objects needed to be assigned to the other layers as well, once I did this I took a render and the problem had been solved.

The render above is the fixed problem, as you can see compared to the previous render, the leaves just above the treehouse are no longer transparent and work correctly. It was a huge relief to fix this problem as I thought I had done something wrong with my work, but luckily that was not the case.

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