Lego in Cycles

Hiya there thanks for reading the thread.

Basically I wanted to produce a nice Cycles render of some lego strewn across a floor.

Way to go, the moment I go past the bit I’m good at (modelling and texture making/unwrapping) I fall. I have no idea what to do with mix shaders lol.

So what should the material settings be for a lego head in blender?

I need to keep my texture on there.

Currently I’m using a diffuse with an image texture and a glossy but it doesn’t produce the nice glossy reflections I’m looking for.

Thanks!

You must read shader tree from right to left.

Surface - mean “photon hit surface, what next?”

Mix closure - it model microfacet material with 2 different materials. Fac (factor) control how much fraction one material take more microfacets, sum always be 1.

Tecnically it select random value from 0.0 to 1.0, compare it to Fac, and go next node depending of comparison result.

For example If you mix 2 Diffuse BSDF with diffetent colors, set Fac 0.2 it mean your surface have 20% of first material and 80% rest. Of course you better use single Diffusion BSDF with 0.2*(first color )+0.8(second color), it take less CPU and faaster render, but it work same way.

More interesting setup if you Mix absolutely different materials, like Diffusion and Transparent, and even more, if you use Fresnel or Layer Weight as Fac input. It model Dielectric surface that use proper Snail reflection rule, masking completely reflected light from parts that penetrate surface.

Yes I know how to use it, I just can’t find a node setup that works for lego.

I’ve been looking for a how to do this, too. I came across http://www.blendercycles.com/misc/materials2/ which has a plastic material that you can re-use for the lego bricks. But the results I got very not too convincing. In fact, what would be awesome to have is a Cycles Lego Material Library based off http://www.ldraw.org/Article93.html

I’m new to Blender but I think the material is just half the bet. In order to get good results, it is the lighting that will make the difference. I recently watched “Rendering a Sports Car in Cycles” from Jonathan Williamson which talks in-depth about the material and illumination. The result is stunning. I did not have time yet to translate all his knowledge into lego bricks but if I get to it and something useful comes out of it, I’ll follow up here. :wink: