Rock material with subtle sparkle (Cycles)?

I am interested in making a material that reproduces the subtle surface sparkle that is seen in some types of rock. It’s a kind of glitter in appearance - flecks of something within the material. Specular Hematite is an example of this, or anything with flecks of Mica.

Does anyone know of a method to create very small “sparkles” that only reflect light at certain angles (this way it could be used for animation)? Alternatively, a version that could be used for single images would be good too (i.e. any reasonable approximation of some sparkling effect would be great).

Is this likely to be a compositor thing?



just add a noise texture channel on top of your rock texture channel, and set it to affect the reflectivity value, and the ray mirror value in the influence panel. if you are using cycles you would have to do this with nodes.

Here is a similar rock, this uses a particle system with an icosphere set to flat shading. Feel free to ask any questions or do whatever you want with it.

Modified gold shader, originally created by elbrujodelatribu, used for the flecks. Packed textures, including environment lighting.


Thanks, that sounds like it will work. I will try it out tonight.

Thanks, I wasn’t intending to create flecks that have volume, but that is an interesting idea anyway. I have bookmarked it for possible future reference.