Chapter 15. Creating and Applying Standard Materials


  • Using standard materials

  • Learning the various shaders

  • Exploring the Material rollouts

  • Creating textures with Photoshop

Now that you've learned the basic material properties and acquainted yourself with the Material Editor, this chapter gives you a chance to create some simple original materials and apply them to objects in the scene. The simplest material is based on the Standard material type, which is the default material type. Several external tools can be very helpful when you create materials. These tools include an image-editing package such as Photoshop, a digital camera, and a scanner. With these tools, you can create and capture bitmap images that can be applied as materials to the surface of the object.

Using the Standard Material

Standard materials are the default Max material type. They provide a single, uniform color determined by the Ambient, Diffuse, Specular, and Filter color swatches. Standard materials can use any one of several different shaders. Shaders are algorithms used to compute how the material should look, given its parameters.

Standard materials have parameters for controlling highlights, opacity, and self-illumination. It also includes many other parameters sprinkled throughout many different rollouts. With all the various rollouts, even a standard material has an infinite number of possibilities.

Using Shading Types

Max includes several different shader types. These shaders are all available ...

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