Materials and Shaders for a Scene (Cycles Render)
This is an exercise submission on the exercise Create Materials and Shaders for a Scene
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Exercises are a great way to test what you've learned given certain restraints, while getting feedback from your peers. Plus, they're a lot of fun!
This is my first attempt at shading a full scene with materials, as well as my first render using cycles. (I've been sticking to Eevee because of speed.)
It was fun and frustrating in equal amounts. I need to learn more about cycles rendering, as the detail on a few materials seem to have been ruined by denoising (the computer case, the seat cushion and wall, mainly). Without denoising, however, there was too much noise and fireflies.
It's a shame, because the roughness and normal maps I used on them looked pretty nice in eevee; but they just appeared muddied in cycles. I preferred the lighting and glass shader in cycles, though, so I stuck with that.
- On the computer monitor, a familiar scene in the viewport. :) I put in an area light with a bluish white light for glow, as well as added emission to the image. It's not too strong, but gives enough glow to the edges of the monitor, and casts a backlight on the pencils and glass.
- I gave the post-it notes some transmission; not very noticeable, but the corner that sticks up has light being cast through it, rather than having it cast a shadow on the monitor.
- I was pretty happy with the wood texture on the pencils, but it's hardly noticeable, as they're in shadow. :-/
- I adjusted and unwrapped the UVs on the crumpled papers and gave them textures.
- I added emission to the letters on the keyboard (but not the keys) to give the impression of illuminated symbols. Not sure if the effect comes across, but it helped the white to stand out on the light blue keys. The emission was causing problems, and I noticed the keys had faces on the bottom, so I removed them and that cleared up the problem. I also raised them to give a bit of ambient occlusion/shadow. Again, I'm not sure how well it came across, but it looked a little better than earlier attempts.
- I wanted to go for more of a basement/dorm room look for the desk and wall. So I went with painted bricks and an unfinished wood for the desk. (I had a room like this.) The bricks looked great in eevee, as I'd mentioned, but just not after rendering in cycles. (200%, 2048 samples - 1.5 hours render time.) No idea why the loss of detail, as they were 4k textures.
- I added fingerprints or roughness variations on nearly every glossy or metal material; again, they were great in eevee but either subtle or not at all noticeable in cycles. I'll keep working at shading in Blender and learning how to make materials with nodes, although at the moment I prefer working in substance painter. :)
Anyway, I had a lot of fun putting all the materials on and trying different stuff, even if not everything came out as hoped. This course was great and I learned a lot. Like his lighting course, Jonathan really goes into a lot of detail explaining how things work.
(sorry for the wall of text)