Texturing Madness - moving from lightwave...

Yep, I am back. And I am still trying to get into Blender, but it’s not so easy, as I keep hitting walls.

I am not really the “texture” sort of guy. In Lightwave, my models had “surfaces” (materials) applied, but I never got into texturing them, as I am not interested in learning photoshop or gimp or any other program like this.

The problem is… in lightwave, Materials (called surfaces) made sense, while in Blender it’s kind of a dead horse I am beating here-- let me explain: no matter what I do and how much I mess with the material’s settings, all my renders look like crap. The materials look either metallic or a glossy type of plastic…

I need a good tutorial and possibly some hints and tips from you guys. If somebody out there is familiar with lightwave, you’ll understand how different this is for me.

I agree with you 100%, I had a lot of issues with blenders materials…still do, lightwave has a much better system, you should head over to blender nation, there is a link to a whole bunch of tutorials and some on materials.

I learned some good things about Blender materials in this tutorial:


Good luck!

If you do not want to learn photoshop or GIMP, you can paint your models texture in real time 3D.

Turn the specularity down and that should soften it up a bit so It’s not so plastic like. I rather enjoy playing with all the material options it’s like an adventure.

Agreed. It’s actually better than Max’s or Maya’s. Blender would be a hundred times better if it stole these features from lightwave: the materials/surface editor and the solid drill/stencil tool, which is much better than using retopo. I’ve been using retopo to open holes, etc to meshes but it doesn’t give as much precision as necessary for, say, an actual/professional design.


I struggled at first, but actually, blenders system can easily give the exact same results as lightwave’s material system once you know how…

here’s my key notes:

Lightwave’s material system is based on the phong model but extended… so you may want to try changing the specular shader to “phong”

the other thing to note is that when adding a texture in lightwave, the first layer on any channel is blend mode “multiply”, then subsequent layers on that channel are equivalent to blenders “mix”

this is nice because adding a material to the “alpha” or specular slot will modulate the slider setting which acts as a “volume control”…

… where as “mix” is much less “punchy” as it averages the slider value with the texture value… in the case of alpha that defaults to 1 on the slider that means the texture has no effect… in the specular case that means the texture has white = 100%, black = 50%

with the default alpha value:
alpha mix gives textured values of:
black = 100% opaque, white = 100% opaque
No effect! :spin:

with “multiply” blend:
black = 0% opaque, white = 100% opaque
a full texture range:eyebrowlift:

With specular at default values (0.5) adding a texture with MIX gives:
black = 25%, white = 75%

Using specular multiply gives:
black = 0% white = 50%

Both are half the possible range, but the latter matches lightwave and is more punchy as some areas will have no specular …

All subseqent layers should use mix mode to match lightwave…

((slider value or base colour * layer 1 value) + (layer 2 value * col or var slider )+ (layer 3 value * col or var slider )…etc etc) / number of layers

As for solid drill, it ls a handy feature, but there are many many other advantages that blender brings over lightwave… all software has strengths and weakness…

It;s just silly to say you can’t do “profesional” design without that one feature…:rolleyes:

You sound like me…for the past 4 days. lol
After spending the whole day yesterday and today researching this, I came to this conclusion.
If you want to make good materials/textures in blender…you must have a few good lighting rigs made up in blender.
Or find on the internet. But really learn the lighting.
I am already seeing much improvement in my renders.

Another option I have been using…setting up my materials using b.m.p.s. shader setup…

Hope this helps.

-Use the cubic interpolation option
-Use blend modes other than mix
-Don’t use saturated colors
-Use the different diffuse and specular shaders

That’s what I can think of, don’t forget to use AO with a good light rig.