What a truly amazing thing a surface is. Each tree bark, each flower petal, each animal pelt is unique. They are all familiar, yet we can, using graphic programs, transform those usual expectations into creative and unexpected alternatives. In this tutorial I will share some of my techniques for making textures, and more importantly, a different viewpoint for possibilities. Its great fun to give your imagination free rein, with no boundaries for props, body parts or surfaces. Ive used everything to create textures: tiny flames for teeth, writhing snakes for human eyes, to famous paintings for skins. The graphics program Deep Paint was used to create both the background and the body texture for my image Victorian Afternoon. I started with a white background and randomly filled the space from a variety of Deep Paints brushes, presets, cloners, and textures. The resulting collage reminded me of a colorful cluttered Victorian room. I imported the collage as a background into Poser 4, and posed a reclining female figure. Using a camera viewpoint from above made the figure appear to be resting on the floor in the background. A regular face texture was used for the head, and the Deep Paint background collage was imported again for the body skin and body bump. In the Poser program, under Materials for the body skin, the Deep Paint background was loaded into the Texture Map and Bump Map.
Now for the fun! Once the background was made in Deep Paint, it was
turned into a body texture in Victorian Afternoon. I also used it
as a layer for a stacked background in the Renderosity website Card
Deck contest. Then the same image was used as a texture for a hand
on a card (Right brain-Left brain theme), and finally as a texture
loaded for the reflection for Legs in a surreal swirl.
For most Poser situations [the body, the square for the stacked
card deck back, and the hand figure], the Deep Paint background was
loaded as both the Texture Map and the Bump Map.
In the case of the legs, nothing was loaded for the Texture and
Bump Maps; instead the Deep Paint background was loaded as the
Reflection Map, with both the Multiply Through Lights and
Multiply Through Object Color boxes checked Yes. I created a
single set of legs that was rendered with several different light
sets to obtain different reflective effects. I then took four
renderings and layered them in Photoshop7 in a circular twirl. The
final step was to use the Liquefy filter in the center of the
legs group to pull them all together.
Anything can be used for texturing on human figures, animals, and
props. Digital camera images, interesting scanned items, and
fractals, are only a few of the possibilities. An excellent example
is my image Three faces.
The first face uses a collage made from the fabulous triptych
painting, The Garden of Earthly Delights, by Hieronymus Bosch. I
took areas from the painting, and cloned them onto Daz3ds
Victoria2 model texture template. The eyes were also created from a
resized area of the painting. The second face uses my Renderosity
card deck image as the face texture. The third face uses a tree
bark image cloned onto the Victoria2 template. The eyes were made
from a reptile stock image.
I hope these images will give you some ideas for your own
experimenting. Even more than the specifics of any technique, Id
like to convey the sense of delight in the potential of textures
that I find in the world around me. Every day artists create things
of beauty and infinite interest from the raw materials that come
from imagination and experience. When we look at our surroundings
in a new and different way, new ideas and possibilities inevitably
follow. Happy hunting!
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