And also, how do you use textures that are transparent in some areas?
To use displacement, apply a texture to an object’s material and in the “Map To” panel, select “Nor” or “Disp.” Nor will make the texture affect the object’s normals (I’m pretty sure lighter makes it go up when it’s not inversed), while Disp will move the vertices “randomly.” See here for more information.
To make a texture transparent, apply it to “Alpha” in the “Map To” panel (light parts will make give it more alpha when not inversed, I believe, but I may be wrong).
To use displacement click the disp button in the map to buttons, you’ll need a dense mat of verticies or have it subsurfed a few times for very good displacement to be seen. For transparency in textures, the alpha box like he said would only work if you had an alpha value set for the material itself in the main buttons, you use that if you want something to be part alpha part opaque.
Yes, now things are working.
Soon the manual should be complete and you will all be free of answering the questions that people like me produce as quickly as we do carbon dioxide.
Guh? Displacement doesn’t move the verts “Randomly” and Normal (bump-mapping) isn’t even displacement at all…
Nor maps simulate displacement by changing the lighting, that’s all - the geometry is unchanged, and if you look along the face you can see that it’s still completely flat.
Disp maps move the verts in and out according to the texture - white moves out, black moves in, gray stays still.
Displacements are difficult to get right with Blender because it requires such a high density mesh. Micro polygon displacement in some external renderers is much better because it autotessellates the geometry to fit the map.
Bump mapping is used because of the lower render time and it generally gives better quality output easier than displacements so long as the object is not viewed from the side like phlip said - it’ll look flat.
For transparent textures, you normally use textures that have an alpha channel. Files that support this include PNG, TGA, TIFF. JPG does not. To do leaves on a tree, don’t model the leaves as the geometry will be too high. Just use simple planes with 4 vertices.
In a 2D program, add an alpha channel to a leaf image and mask out the background. Then map the leaf onto the mesh, use alpha and put the alpha slider to zero. When it renders, you only have low geometry but you get a perfect leaf outline.