How do I make a heigth map

Hello All,

I have a carvewright CNC like machine that can take a gray scale jpg picture and carve wood using the shades of gray to tell it how deep to carve. I’ve used a Blender Tutorial ( as a guide about how to create a gray scale drawing where white represents the distance closest to the camera and black is the distance furthest from the camera. When I follow the tutorial using the monkey head the results are good.I get the same picture as the tutorial shows. I then created my own objects for a wood project I need to do (Blender Project.jpg). I then proceeded to follow the steps in the tutorial and got the picture Blender Output.jpg. Blender Output.jpg is the right drawing below.

The result shown by Blender Output.jpg is not good as the depth coloring is wrong on all objects except perhaps some parts of the lamp. White is nearest the camera, black furthest. The shield as drawn is flat yet it is colored lighter on the top and bottom. This will cause the machine to carve a dished out surface instead of a flat surface. The same problem exists for the 4 wood stakes the snake is wrapped around. In fact if you look at the coloring the stakes are, in some areas, behind the lamp and in front of the snake’s head. The end result of this depth of field rendering is that it is useless.

Does anyone know why the depth info is not working? Could the tutorial steps not work for multiple objects in a scene? I did also join all the objects into one though, just in case, but there was no change. Do I need to change some setting(s) somewhere? Could how I drew the objects make a difference? Please keep in mind I am not an expert blender user.

I tried contacting the tutorial author but got no answer so I am here for help. Ideas for me to try anyone?

Thank you all for your time.



Could you post the .blend file?

Sure. It is at

Thanks for taking the time.


It says 404 not found=(

OK, I see the problem. The space in the name cuts off the end of the URL if you just click on the URL. Not a good parser. I changed it to replace the space with an underline. Try this


the “” is not currently part of the link as posted

What about this approach.