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jamesinsincity

Procedural Shaders - How Do They Work?

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  • I just purchased Enhanced 3D Shaders for C4D and I'm at a loss on how to use them.

    There are alien terms like "FBM," "Nutuous," "Voronoi," "Ober," etc. that have no meaning to me - are these some German slang terms?

    I'd like to know some simple facts - like - if I want to get a good look ocean shader effect - use .... and play around with x controls...

    But short of spending months dissecting every shader - I'm trying to find some tips....

    Thanks for any advice,

    Jim

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    as i understand it proceedurals are basically functions ( or procedures ), so i guess the names come either from a mathematical algorythm or function that was used to generate them or the specific surface they emulate .... in the first case i don;t think they have a specific purpose, it's mostly up to you how/where they go

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    I second that! The names are usually coming from the algorythm's names or from the shape they produce.

    roflmao.gif hahaha, German slang terms... that's a good one!

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  • What is greatly needed then is some book of recipes, an accumulation of many 3D artists findings, that have done the experimentation and have come up with something usable. I would expect that recipe book would be high on the list of shaders merchants - since we artists could employ their products without learning curves or months in testing - ergo increasing shader sales dramatically.

    Jim

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    shader skills are pretty hard to gain, the few that master them might be reluctant to share, i'd buy a dvd about medium->advanced shaders any day, but there doesn't seem to be any one trying to record it :(, sad too, because c4d has tuts in allmost all areas of the software except this

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    I dont know if a dvd about this stuff would be useful because I find that every project demands different textures and shaders and what may have worked well in one scene doesnt really work in another and needs adjustment or a completely different solution, so a "one size fits all" shader instruction and information dvd might only be useful to beginners to c4d shaders. I generally find playing with the shader settings and noise, falloff, gradients etc to be one of the genuinely fun parts of 3D and I dont want to follow anyones formulas. I think people can always learn from other peoples materials if they want to figure out how to make new ones, just look around for a good material and see what theyve done and try and make it from scratch if its possible. I have noticed some shaders are programmed to have extra specular channels etc, I dont know how people do that but theyre pretty cool too.

    like for moving sea water I might use a large FBM noise shader or layer 2 noise shaders in bump channel with a small amount of animation and put a copy of it into the luminance channell with high contrast and colour it whiteish for a bit of foam/highlight and then tweak the transparency and reflection settings...then render tests over and over again until i have what I want. Experiment! smile.gif

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    Guest dataflow

    if you want to get a good start on shaders download the shaders from following site and just have a look.

    you'll see how its done

    the button that says "telecharge" is the download button on each shader.

    or you could just use a site translator

    site is (french)

    http://www.lev-communication.fr/component/.../limitstart,15/

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    do you really find it that hard to use the shaders? i mean, you have a preview of your material, even animated, and you can see changes instantly.

    I've been playing around with these shaders for ages, i think, and there are always coming out new shapes and movements. but that's more a playing around with it - the main characteristics are pretty straight forward to me.

    Don't let the names bother you, just have a look at the noise-type preview, they're all in there!

    smile.gif PhloH

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  • It's not hard for me to play around with shaders and all of their controls - even if I'm not sure what they do - but I often have clients breathing down my neck and in their mind they're not paying for my experimentation...

    And I'm not looking for an exact prescription to create X effect: just a general direction.

    Maybe if the names of these shaders were not in Klingon I'd have a better inkling as to what they do and how.

    For example - I've got a nice sea shader developed by Paul S. on here - now I'd like to get some spray and foam effects as well. Realflow will actually generate separate geometry for these types of water splashes - but I'm still charged with coloring them and making them somewhat convincing that they stem from the underlying ocean wave itself.

    Hey Silver Talon - your recipe sounds brilliant - but I'm a beginner - I'd need it broken down in small bite-size bits!

    Best,

    Jim

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    Guest dataflow

    thats what 3d is all about is experimenting.

    and you cant name something that has thousands of uses

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    Try this for an overall C4D Noise Reference & Description.

    You should be able to narrow down the most appropriate noise for any purpose.

    Cheers, Alan.

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    Yup! It's a goodie worth book-marking. spoton.gif

    Cheers, Alan.

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