Cat Food for Cats

This isn’t regular cat food, but what cats really want! Modeled from scratch with a physical can of a popular cat food in hand. Label made in inkscape, closely following the real can’s label, but some differences. A few details are missing, mainly a bowl of food under the yellow “Brifkies” banner. I have a list of other “flavors” which will be familiar to cat owners everywhere.

I’m pleased, at the moment, with the can metal material. Diffuse plus two Glossy shaders. The real can has an anisotropic look, but the anisotropic shader doesn’t do it the right way. If I hold the can under a point light source, I see a stretched out reflection in the top. If I turn the can while keeping the angles of illumination and viewing the same, the reflection turns with the can. The anisotropic shader made a radial pattern, like I’ve seen in shiny metal knobs on electronic gadgets, or bottoms of pans. I’d photograph the can, if I had a working camera. I think I’ll ignore the anisotropic shininess, since the main point is humor and the can looks enough like a can.

This test image has no environment, just a couple flat light sources, and that quickly done surface. The cans don’t yet have much to reflect but each other. But more cans are coming…

But what do you think? Do the cans look canny enough? Maybe the mesh has more polys than truly needed, given that subsurf is being applied. Not a real problem if I’m not animating or using in a real-time game.

Ultimately, the five or six final cans will either be on a grocery store shelf, or a kitchen counter, or possibly elsewhere.

If you attach a tangent node to the anisotropic node, you can control the direction of the grain using a UV layer, so that you can do more linear patterns.

That being said, I think it looks very canny. Absolutely not uncanny.

If an image of a metal can looks close enough to a real can to be judged as a real can, but fails subtly in a bothersome Polar Express kind of way - would that be Uncanny Valley or Canny Valley?

The shadows make it appear that the cans are floating above the surface. Was that intentional?

Yes, the are indeed floating. That’s just happenchance, with the board originally for another scene, and the cans merely moved into the camera’s view. Once I’m done modeling cans, I’ll make it look like a kitchen countertop. No magical levitation will be involved.