Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Matcaps and You

Well, a couple of days ago I found myself trying to remember a cool little program for creating matcaps that I had used a year or so ago.  So I went a searching old Sculptris forum threads until I found what I was looking for.   It's a program called matcrea created by Taron of CG lore.

Now you might ask, "What is a matcap?" Well, a matcap is basically a CG trick made popular by ZBrush to fake a material on an object by taking a image of a sphere with a material on it and then using that data to simulate lighting and reflection on another object.   It's great for sculpting as it helps you see the forms of your sculpt.

Well, you might now ask, "Well, how do I use these in Blender?"   Well, here is your answer!
1. Set the Shading Mode to 'GLSL' under 'Display' on the properties panel (n-key)
2. Add a material to your object
3. On the shading panel of the material tab set the 'Shadeless' option to true.  This makes it so that lights on the scene don't affect your object.
4. On the texture tab select 'Image or Movie' under type and then browse to your matcap file.
5. On the Mapping panel select 'Normal' under coordinates.  This makes it appear as if lighting is coming from the viewer.  So, basically any which way you look at the object, it will appear lit up.
6. Enjoy the good viewing experience!

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