Using the Terrain Editor for Organic Modeling (like in Bryce)

edited December 1969 in Carrara Discussion

I want to create organic shapes and scroll like shapes. In Bryce theses difficult shapes could be easily modeled using the Terrain Editor. I would make a grey scale image in Photoshop then importing it into the Terrain Editor with a cropping mask and a model was made.

I noticed in the Carrara Terrain Editor there is no ability to import or create a "Cropping Mask" to achieve an organic shape.

Could this old Bryce idea be included into the latest Carrara Pro 8.5?

Comments

  • ManStanManStan Posts: 0
    edited December 1969

    You must have missed map/import in the terrain generator

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  • holly wetcircuitholly wetcircuit Posts: 0
    edited May 2013

    I think the OP is asking for a way to "trim away" the excess terrain, they way you would trim away leftover dough from a cookie cutter... importing a map will give the topography, but the remaining square of terrain is still there....

    AppleK, I think the solution is to use the map to displace the terrain as Stan shows abaive, but also use an alphamap in the shader tree to make the remaining square "trim" invisible.

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    Post edited by holly wetcircuit on
  • cdordonicdordoni Posts: 316
    edited December 1969

    The Anything Grooves plugin from DCG does not create polygons where the displacement is 0 if the "Zero is empty" box is checked in the modifier.

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 6,943
    edited December 1969

    I've done this twice, without getting the results I wanted - but further attempts may prove to work:
    Import height map to get the start
    Convert to vertex modeller
    select and delete the unwanted polygons

    I was also trying to decimate the heck out of it - so that might have been where my problems began.
    I didn't really spend much time with it... but the shader was still working on it.

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 6,943
    edited December 1969

    ManStan,
    I gotta say that I really like your interface colors. Looks great.

  • evilproducerevilproducer Posts: 7,687
    edited December 1969

    Using the terrain eitor, Holly's method seems the most elegant. However, it seems to me another possibility would be the Spline Modeler. Carrara has several different modeling functions, but it seems to me, that most people focus on the Vertex modeler and ignore the other powerful tools at their disposal.

  • 3DAGE3DAGE Posts: 2,025
    edited December 1969

    HI AppleK-Skylab

    Welcome :)

    In Carrara,. you have modelling options,.

    There are three different modellers,.
    The vertex modeller, the Spline modeller, and the Meta-ball modeller. (blobs which will connect together to form a surface) very organic.

    The vertex modeller and spline modellers can produce any shape you want,. and it can be smooth and organic looking. if that's what you want.

    Hope it helps

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  • evilproducerevilproducer Posts: 7,687
    edited May 2013

    I suspect the OP meant scroll work (as in iron scroll work) rather than scrolls for writing information. I read it as you read it at first and was confused about how that would be easier using an elevation map.


    To the OP: As I recall, people learned to use the terrain function for more complex modeling in Bryce, because at the time, that's all there was, except for a few primitives. I used to use Bryce w-a-a-a-y back in it's MetaCreation days and before. It's not because the objects were more organic (at least not back then), it was because if you wanted a motorcycle in Bryce, that's how you had to do it. I played around with it, and found the process rather cumbersome. This was before the masking function you mentioned, so perhaps now it is easier.


    The thing to remember is that Carrara and Bryce are different programs, with different tools and each with their own feel and way of doing things. Doing something that seems simple and intuitive in Bryce, may be frustrating in Carrara. The reverse is also true. The way each does it's own thing isn't wrong, it's just the way they work.

    Post edited by evilproducer on
  • Design AcrobatDesign Acrobat Posts: 432
    edited May 2013

    As ManStan wrote that's one way of doing it, using the Map Editor to import your design.

    If you want an intricate design like hedges formed into a design you will need to use a surface replicator.

    Use the map editor in the terrain, take to Photoshop and make a new layer, fill it with black, use screen so you can draw on it.
    Then make your design. Save that map and import it with the surface replicator to your design of hedges will be distributed.

    It's called a distribution map and in this case it distributions your design and objects on top of the terrain design so it follows the terrain and any other distributed map item you have (buildings, fountains, etc.)

    The image below is just from the map editor for terrain using an imported png.

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    Post edited by Design Acrobat on
  • head waxhead wax Posts: 2,913
    edited December 1969

    Here's sixpence from me. I think I know what is needed having visted Bryce for the same reason a few years ago,
    I couldn't get clean edges on a terrain so I did a displacement map on a high poly plane.
    The displacement map actually becomes the alpha map to hide the unwanted polys.
    Just a matter of starting with enough polys and giving carrara it's head with the displacement subdivision.
    Mind you isn't there something in the terrain editor to remove the polys at ground zero?

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  • holly wetcircuitholly wetcircuit Posts: 0
    edited May 2013

    head wax said:
    Mind you isn't there something in the terrain editor to remove the polys at ground zero?

    If there is I couldn't find it.... I will have a play with AnythingGrooves if that does.

    I've been looking for years for a program that could help me create rococco accents and architectural frillery... like this:
    http://search.architecturaldepot.com/hillsborough-rococo-molding

    I've gone through a lot of different techniques... height maps only go so far but would handle a lot of possibilities... There is a photoshop plugin called SuperBladePro at flamingpear.com that can do a good job at building a detailed heightmap out of a cut-out... if it could make normal maps that would be amazing....

    I think the spline modeler is the best bet for certain shapes.... It's hard to find any resources to use as guides or templates... Rococco still beyond most 3D I guess...

    Post edited by holly wetcircuit on
  • bighbigh Posts: 5,514
    edited December 1969

    head wax said:
    Mind you isn't there something in the terrain editor to remove the polys at ground zero?

    If there is I couldn't find it.... I will have a play with AnythingGrooves if that does.

    I've been looking for years for a program that could help me create rococco accents and architectural frillery... like this:
    http://search.architecturaldepot.com/hillsborough-rococo-molding

    I've gone through a lot of different techniques... height maps only go so far but would handle a lot of possibilities... There is a photoshop plugin called SuperBladePro at flamingpear.com that can do a good job at building a detailed heightmap out of a cut-out... if it could make normal maps that would be amazing....

    I think the spline modeler is the best bet for certain shapes.... It's hard to find any resources to use as guides or templates... Rococco still beyond most 3D I guess...

    if you have head on picture - I will give it a go in a program I have .

  • head waxhead wax Posts: 2,913
    edited May 2013

    head wax said:
    Mind you isn't there something in the terrain editor to remove the polys at ground zero?

    If there is I couldn't find it.... I will have a play with AnythingGrooves if that does.

    I've been looking for years for a program that could help me create rococco accents and architectural frillery... like this:
    http://search.architecturaldepot.com/hillsborough-rococo-molding

    I've gone through a lot of different techniques... height maps only go so far but would handle a lot of possibilities... There is a photoshop plugin called SuperBladePro at flamingpear.com that can do a good job at building a detailed heightmap out of a cut-out... if it could make normal maps that would be amazing....

    I think the spline modeler is the best bet for certain shapes.... It's hard to find any resources to use as guides or templates... Rococco still beyond most 3D I guess...

    yes I couldn't find it neither - must be my brain damaged brain....

    I spent a while last year trying to get vectors of BMP that I could export as ai to use in the spline modeller
    without having to trace the things by hand but couldnt get clean ai's
    Andy's favourite software Xara version 5 ? is free and I think it will export t he correct ai?

    link http://www.xara.com/us/specialoffers/designer/

    Post edited by head wax on
  • edited May 2013

    head wax said:
    Mind you isn't there something in the terrain editor to remove the polys at ground zero?

    If there is I couldn't find it.... I will have a play with AnythingGrooves if that does.

    I've been looking for years for a program that could help me create rococco accents and architectural frillery... like this:
    http://search.architecturaldepot.com/hillsborough-rococo-molding

    I've gone through a lot of different techniques... height maps only go so far but would handle a lot of possibilities... There is a photoshop plugin called SuperBladePro at flamingpear.com that can do a good job at building a detailed heightmap out of a cut-out... if it could make normal maps that would be amazing....

    I think the spline modeler is the best bet for certain shapes.... It's hard to find any resources to use as guides or templates... Rococco still beyond most 3D I guess...


    Yes that's exactly what I want to do in making a scroll like shape " accents and architectural frillery". I'm pretty good in the spline modeler and have made many shapes. and a few scroll like shapes but the accents and architectural frillery shapes I think I can dup in the terrain editor but I wanted to "cut out a die cut shape". Bryce did this simply

    Since Daz is still tweeking the Carrara 8.5 maybe thy could include this Exclusion Map in the Terrain editor in the final version.
    It's been around in Bryce since the beginning.

    Post edited by glenn_pruyn_3dc8ca7600 on
  • 3DAGE3DAGE Posts: 2,025
    edited December 1969

    EP :) thanks for the heads up,. ..now it makes a bit more sense...

    It's Scrolls,.. not Scrolls. ...Scrolls.

    Holly,. :)

    Have you tried displacement painting,. you could make you own brush shapes, and paint the details.

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  • edited December 1969

    Well i tried to use the terrain editor to make ornamental filigree with no success. So I tried the spline modeler and got this for a first attempt. The small shape on the left was the templet for the model

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  • evilproducerevilproducer Posts: 7,687
    edited December 1969

    Those look nice! Did you find the surface fidelity option? You can set it up to 400% if I recall.

  • head waxhead wax Posts: 2,913
    edited May 2013

    great work :)

    Post edited by head wax on
  • edited December 1969

    Those look nice! Did you find the surface fidelity option? You can set it up to 400% if I recall.

    No what is that? I'm working in the spline molder. Should I switch to the vertex modeler?

  • edited December 1969

    found it. set it to 1000 and it smoothed out nicely.

    thanx evilproducer

  • evilproducerevilproducer Posts: 7,687
    edited December 1969

    Glad you found it, and glad I could help! I was just about to post a couple screen shots.

  • head waxhead wax Posts: 2,913
    edited December 1969

    and thanks for making me think about this.

    It made me go and use my Xara 5 to do some ai's that I can bring into carrara spline room.

    Should make some modelling much easier.

    So thanks again :)

  • 3DAGE3DAGE Posts: 2,025
    edited December 1969

    Hi AppleK-Skylab :)

    that's a very nice start,

    You don't need to convert the spline model to a vertex model,. but it's an option if you ever want to convert it to a mesh and then add more detail.

    Hi Head Wax :)

    you can use your Xara 5 for displacement map brushes too.

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  • evilproducerevilproducer Posts: 7,687
    edited December 1969

    I'll usually convert a spline model to a vertex model if I need to define shading domains. A trick to remember while doing this is to have the surface fidelity lower because the higher it is, the more polys you'll get in the vertex modeler. You can always smooth the model in the vertex modeler which may be faster for rendering or navigating in the Assembly Room than having a really high poly model.


    The other thing to remember is that when converted from a spline model to a vertex model, Carrara will use triangles instead of quads. If you wish to clean up the model and use quads it will be easier with less polys. I hope that makes sense. ;-)

  • head waxhead wax Posts: 2,913
    edited December 1969

    3DAGE said:
    Hi AppleK-Skylab :)

    that's a very nice start,

    You don't need to convert the spline model to a vertex model,. but it's an option if you ever want to convert it to a mesh and then add more detail.

    Hi Head Wax :)

    you can use your Xara 5 for displacement map brushes too.

    thanks 3dage.
    That's a wonderful Urn.
    Who needs pottery lessons when we have Andy ;)
    I'll have a read of Xara's destructions.

    thanks for the heads up!

  • cdordonicdordoni Posts: 316
    edited December 1969

    3DAGE said:
    you can use your Xara 5 for displacement map brushes too.

    Hi 3dage,

    If your vase image used a displacement map from Xara, can you post it here too for reference?

    It is a good point that vector drawing apps can be very useful in making details through displacement map as well as texture maps, though the step of converting (rasterizing) the art to a bitmap might require a small amount of learning if someone is not familiar with it.

  • 3DAGE3DAGE Posts: 2,025
    edited December 1969

    HI cdordoni :)

    What I'm doing is creating the basic shapes in grey-scale in Xara, then placing them on a black background to export as a JPG or PNG
    then using those as displacement brushes to paint, or "Stamp" the displacement onto the model in the vertex modeller

    the Vase / Urn object has 2500 poly's, which isn't very high, but it's using 4 levels of subdivision smoothing, to create the displacement detail,. I suppose I could export that map from Carrara as one image,. but I'm just playing with the displacement and symmetry

    I'm using Xara Designer pro X,. but Xara 5 (Xtreme) will do the same thing,. as will any other image editor with Vector shapes.

    I'm really just seeing what works and what doesn't. also. the walls and floor are displaced too ;)

    pics from Xara,. and Carrara.

    if you look at the vase mesh you'll see the level of displacement detail,.. compared to the actual poly's.

    you could probably add a Normal map or Bump map to add some finer texture to it. ...but it's just a bit of fun :)

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  • 3DAGE3DAGE Posts: 2,025
    edited December 1969

    the step of converting (rasterizing) the art to a bitmap might require a small amount of learning if someone is not familiar with it.

    it's actually the easiest part,. once the vector art is done, you select and export it as an image format,.
    Xara will handle exporting to anything from a Layered Photoshop file to a Jpg or giff

    Xara also handles bitmap images in a way the rivals photoshop, and in some aspects,.. whips it silly, for example you can fill a vector shape with an image, and tile it repeatedly,. and scale it, and adjust the colours, levels, brightness, contrast etc..
    and you can use Photoshop filters like Eye candy,. as "live effects" on vector shapes,. so the effect changes if you alter the shape of the vector, ..in real time :0

    it's one of my favourite programs just because it's so easy to work with,. and so feature rich.

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