Making Textures with Project Dogwaffle
for use in 3D Rendering & Animation
|Part 1 - Making Textures, Painting Textures|
In this tutorial we'll explore several ways and tools to make textures, for use in 3D programs such as Caligari's TrueSpace.
click to enlarge >>>Take this simple scene for instance. A ground floor object, a small podium. Two walls in the back. One IBL (Image based light) around it.
We might want to add objects to this, perhaps a piece of fine art, a statue, a vase on display or a sculpture made of glass.
We will want to use the material editor to apply textures. We can make our own texture maps, and apply them to color channels, bump channels or reflectance info. We can leave the 3D program running, no need to exit.
Here are some of the textures we'll make:
Click on part1, part 2, etc to jump to the corresponding section of the tutorial.
Start Project Dogwaffle.
You will be promted to select the size of the buffer. This is the drawing area, or canvas.
Enter the size (in pixels), or select a preset from the list. Note that the presets come from a text file which can be edited in Notepad if you wish to make your own presets. For example, a few square sizes such as 512x512 or 1024x1024 would come handy if you plan on making lots of textures.
click to enlarge >>>Tip: the file is: Def_Res.txt and it can be found in the folder where you installed Project Dogwaffle (typically C:\Program Files\project dogwaffle )
Controls. New with version 2 are a set of 4 mini-icons in the
Tools panel which facilitate interactive viewing. A set of nested boxes
indicate the zoom in/out tool. Just click and drag from that icon, and
you will see the white drawable canvas change size. Move the mouse to
the left to zoom out.
To the left of that zoom icon is the hand icon, for panning. Use it to navigate through the image.
You can also use keyboard shortcuts for panning and zooming. Hold the Shift and Control keys down together, and drag with left button down to pan. Drag with right button down to zoom.
The 100% icon will resize the image to full unzoomed state. Large images will not always fit in the buffer window.
The zoom to fit icon to the right of the 100% icon lets you see the entire image by scaling it to fit the size of your buffer window. Note that you can grab the cornmer of the buffer window and resize it. You can then fit the image into that window.
You will find other tools such as Zoom window tool in the Windows menu, or more in the Buffer menu.
We will now create our first texture.
Click the Filter menu, select 'Render', and select the 'Dread Plating...' submenu.
Check the 'Weathering' box, set the scale at 7, and click 'Go'.
|This is part of what the created
texture will look like. Click the image for more details. Note that in
the titlebar Dogwaffle shows the zoom factor and which buffer we're
looking at. There's a Main buffer and a Swap buffer. We'll get to
There are many plugins with filter effects which come with Dogwaffle. Some do more than one thing. This particular plugin had the weathering FX enabled, which is similar to applying the Wet paint fx after the base dread plating without weathering.
and Redo - u)ndo and a)gain
We can in fact 'undo' the most recent effect. Hit 'u' for undo (or Control-Z). You will see the weathering FX disappear. Hit undo again, and the dear plating is gone altogether.
Use redo to re-apply the prior fx. In Dogwaffle, that's a shortcut 'a' for 'again'.
We should be back now with the dread plating but without the weathring effect.
Still in the Filters menu, select:
menu: Filters > Artistic > Tarnish...
This is a tool for a different type of weathering effect, more like wear and tear.
|Select the maximum value for the
Then click OK.
|Apply the same effect several
times. Two or three times should get you to the desired level of
It's time to add a hint of 3D embossing to this texture. Select:
menu: Filter > Convolve > Color emboss...
|This is one of the faster
filters, and will show the embossing in realtime as you move the
click to enlarge >>>
Back to the wet paint effect. Something like this came originally as part of the weathring option in dread plating. Now we'll play with the filter directly.
menu: Filter > Artistic > Wet paint...
|The slider can be moved to left
or right. To the left, darker colors are 'dripping down'. To the right,
lighter colors are the ones dripping down and appearing wet.
power of the Gradient
Now that we have essentially a greyscale image, we'll want to apply a gradient over it to colorize it.
There are several ways to show the gradient tool. You can hit the shortcut: "p"
or right-click on the fill tool (paint can near upper-right of Tools panel) and select Fill Settings.
|There are four tabs in the
gradient which control the 4 channels - Red, Green, Blue and Opacity.
You could paint directly inside the colored area to change the
progression of the current channel from left to right.
Or you can start by exploring the predefined gradients. There are 8 in the set.
You can also click the 'Gradients' button to choose another set.
Select gradient #4 from the default gradients set. It goes from black through red/orange and yellow to white.
to current Gradient
We can now map this gradient, i.e. this progression of colors, to the pixels in the current buffer.
menu: Filter > Color > Map to current gradient
This can create many colorful results.
click the image for full view >>>
If you do like the type of effect but not the intensity of it, then you'll want to become familiar with the 'fade last action' feature. It;'s also called interactive undo. It lets you choose something that's between Undo or redo, i.e. between 0% and 100% of the most recent effect.
menu: Filter > Fade last action...
Use the slider to change the mix between 'fully applied' and 'not applied'.
Keep this feature in mind when you apply lens flares or other FX which come too strong and you want to blend them with the image prior to the effect, to make them fainter.
click the image for full view >>>
Let's now manually paint over this texture. The default brush is a large airbrush. We can also select it: Right-click on the brush icon near the upper-left of the Tools panel.
|Select the "Large airbrush" in
the Airbrush menu.
Now that we're about to experimentally and liberally paint over the texture, it might be a good idea to save the image to file. If you don't have time for saving, at least store a safe copy of the image in a placeholder. Select
menu: Buffer > Store buffer...
The image will be copied into memory and ready for quick restoring if we need to return to that image.
painting. Paint some graffiti!
If you hold the mouse or pen in the right hand, rest your left hand near the 'u' for undo key.
click to view larger >>>
There are several ways to select the fractal particle brushes. They are called Optipustics, and available from the Window menu.
The shortcut is "i" - does it stand for i)ncredible?
You can learn more about particle brushes here
|Near the bottom of the
Optipustics panel, click the Settings... button. You can choose from
presets for various types of foliage, grass, trees, waterfalls,
fireworks... Additional presets are available here
Select the Grass.opt settings
|Make sure the checkbox at the
top of the Optipustics panel shows that it's enabled. Then start
painting in the lower left corner of the image.
As you drag the mouse, particles are shooting out and changing colors against the settings in the gradient.
There are slight differences between the features in v1.2 (free) and the full Dogwaffle 2. The dark shading is a checkbox only found in v2.
|Add a few flowers - there are
some built-in FX brushes (not using particles. Right-click on the brush
icon and select Flowery from Organic effects. (this disables particle
|The brush settings for the
flowery brush have a random position, random hue and other attributes
such as changing the size based on mouse motion speed. Set the base
color for the brush from the presets or color wheels and you'll have
many flowers in similar tones.
|Return to the Optipustics
particle brush and select other presets. Dogwillow is pretty
impressive. So are pine branches. Notice how pine branches paint
"backwards", i.e. in opposite direction to the mouse. You start from
the tip of the bracnhes and work your way to the trumk of the tree.
|This is also one of those
scenarios where it's nice to be able to pan and zoom out so as to find
space around the active canvas where the image is. You can draw
"outside" of the canvas area, and optipustics branches from pine
branches will still appear to grow into the picture from outside.
click to enlarge >>>
Better safe than sorry. Let's save this current image. Use Ctrol+S often to save to file. Or use the menu: File > Save...
|The default file format is Targa
(*.tga). It supports 32-bit (with alpha). In this case we can save to
24-bit since there's no alpha in this image.
is the texture we've just created.
click to enlarge and save >>>
Back to TrueSpace - Material Editor
|It's time to map this newly
created texture to a material's color channel. Switch back to
TrueSpace, select the object (such as one of the back walls), click the
material editor, and click on the color icon in the top of the material
Then Right-click on the samecolor mini-icon.
|This will show a variety of
available color chaders.
Notice the one carrying the Caligari logo (in the upper right corner here), it's for a texture map. Click or double-click it.
|The Color Panel of the material
panel now shows empty or a texture. Right-click on the area to select
another texture map. Or Left click for a different dialog and file
selection method. Or click the file name button ('Caligari' in this
|Either way, you'll now be able
to select your newly created texture and
use it as the texture map in the color channel of the shader.
The free version 1.2 of Project Dogwaffle can save to Targa (.tga) and Bitmap (.bmp) files.
|The selected texture will appear
in the color channel of the material panel.
In the 3D view or upon rendering, if it appears upside-down, you may want to rotate the back wall 180 to tilt it.