159
Chapter 5
Materials, Bump Maps,
Lights, Projection versus
Normal Textures, Connecting
NURBS Surfaces, and
Layered Textures
N
,    a deeper look at some of the topics we have already covered,
starting with putting materials on objects. We will look at the dierence between a
material and a texture, and at creative ways that images can be used to create a material.
Because materials and lights are so intimately connected, we will also take a look at the
sorts of lights that are available in Maya.
And we will consider the steps involved in creating a complete environment and not just
an isolated model. We will build a road and a sidewalk.
In this chapter, we will take another look at NURBS modeling by putting two stairs
together. We will look at doing this in NURBS modeling and in polygon modeling. We will
go back to the topic of texturing by putting carpet on the stairs.
The Bottom Line
Materials will make or break a good model. It is not the wireframe that viewers see when
they watch your animation. ey see the materials—and they have everything to do with
the success or failure of your models.
160 3D Animation for the Raw Beginner Using Maya
WORKING WITH MAYA MATERIALS TO MAKE A TABLETOP
e Maya Soware renderer comes equipped with a number of textures. ey have very
suggestive names, like Wood and Tree Bark and Leather. But these names are only approx-
imations of their overall appearance; these textures rarely deserve their names when used
right out of the box. eir attributes must be manipulated to make them look good on your
model. You can also use these textures in very creative ways; don’t be limited by the name
given to a texture.
When using the mental ray renderer, remember that it also comes armed with a num-
ber of materials. e mental ray materials come equipped with many preset options,
and these presets can save you a lot of time. We will take a look at creating glass with
a mental ray material and discover that this material comes ready to model a variety of
sorts of glass.
Ways to Surface a Model
ere are multiple ways of putting surfaces on a model or sections of a model. We will look
at three of them in this book. e rst is to create a material object, oen called a “shader.
e second is to put a texture on a model without using a material. e third is to use the
Maya Paint tool to brush on a texture. We will start by looking at a commonly used and
very powerful technique: creating a material and then using a texture as an attribute of that
material.
Textures and Materials for the Maya Software Renderer
We have talked a bit about materials and textures. A material object is more complex than a
texture and is a way of organizing a set of other objects that make up the surface properties
of a model (or piece of a model). Maya comes packaged with two sets of materials.
e ones that are tailor-made for the Maya Soware renderer can be seen by clicking on
the word Surface near the top of the list on the le-hand side of the Hypershade. One of
them, Lambert, is used as the default material on an object that has not yet been assigned
a material by the modeler.
e second set of materials can be seen by clicking on the word Materials about halfway
down the list on the le side of the window. ese are intended for use with the mental
ray renderer.
Also, if you look below the word Surface, you will see a list of other things that can be
created in the Hypershade window. In particular, there are two kinds of textures listed
there: 2D and 3D. ere are three kinds of textures under these two headings.
e rst kind is 2D bit mapped textures, which are always listed within the 2D Textures
menu selection. ese are essentially images.
e second kind of texture is a 2D “procedural” texture, and this is code. A procedural
texture is a program that places the texture on a model mathematically, as opposed to a
bit-mapped texture, which is simply an image. e Maya interface does not carefully dis-
tinguish between 2D bit-mapped and 2D procedural textures. One bit-mapped texture that

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