superfly bump mapping



  • Having real problems getting anything from the superfly engine in terms of nice bump mapping. Whether I use easy skin and go through the Poser surface root, or manually craft a texture that uses a cycles root node, and even with strength and distance values at 1, I just get nothing at all. Am I missing something? Ignore the lips!

    0_1484878672516_superfly bump map.jpg

    0_1484878855073_bump nodes.jpg



  • From the looks of it, your not driving any bump at all. On the cycles root node, bump normally would go into the displacement node. You have also about mixed the bump map out of the equation as well.

    You don't have to use the cycles root node, and in some ways you have a bit better control using the Poser Root node.

    This is what I start out with in many of my renders skin wise. It looks really odd when you first look at it, but keep in mind I rarely use lights at all in Superfly, just the background node and an hdri.

    0_1484880636530_BumpImage.jpg

    And this is how the background node is set up.

    0_1484880943788_back node 1.jpg

    You can tweak both of these shaders to death, with very few nodes.
    You can add in SSS depth maps to the skin, change the contrast and brightness of the visible dome or the light independently, raise the light level, etc, as well.



  • Using the same shaders shown, you can get this using one light. Which style of light I use, depends on the scene, if I use any at all. It also depends on the number of levels encoded into the hdri image.

    0_1484882048809_gm40r banner.jpg

    All the rest of the light, is from the dome. It will work on dim, and bright scenes as well.



  • Thank you shvr, but I thought that if I put a bump map into the displacement connector that drives displacement?

    I find it really hard to let go of my desire to use cycles nodes and root to drive cycles rendering. I guess I'm a bit anal retentive but it feels like I ought to otherwise why bother with cycles nodes at all? Every fibre of my being screams at me to do it the "proper" way. :-)

    However, even using the Poser surface node (via an EZ skin sss conversion), I'm simply not seeing any bump mapping. Does your configuration about provide clear bumping? How would you incorporate SSS into that? Could you zoom in on the fcae pores please?

    And thanks in advance!



  • @matb bump

    0_1484883564186_bump.jpg



  • using my shader



  • @matb said in superfly bump mapping:

    Thank you shvr, but I thought that if I put a bump map into the displacement connector that drives displacement?

    The displacement input in cycles and super fly is misleading by the name. It should be called height, think of it that way.
    In your node setup, you used the bump node, which tells the render engine that is what you want to do with it.

    I find it really hard to let go of my desire to use cycles nodes and root to drive cycles rendering. I guess I'm a bit anal retentive but it feels like I ought to otherwise why bother with cycles nodes at all? Every fibre of my being screams at me to do it the "proper" way. :-)

    You can still do it the old way, using the Poser Root node.
    The Devs did an awesome job giving us the flexibility of using 3 different styles of root.
    Use which ever one your most comfortable with.
    As far as why use Cycles nodes, you don't have to if FireFly has an equivalent node.
    At the same time, there are far more node types in Superfly that are not in Firefly.

    If you wont to do something as simple as use a different texture for multiple things in FireFly, your sort of out of luck.
    My background setup just uses two. One for diffuse, and one for light.
    You could use more with more light path setups if you really wanted too.
    One for diffuse, one for light, one for reflection for example.

    Give me a bit and I will make some examples for you.



  • Consider this spaghetti mess of nodes.

    0_1484888808762_spaghetti.jpg

    All 3 are basically doing the same thing, just in a different way.
    Each using one of the 3 root nodes.
    No they are not tweaked to be exactly the same, but I am sure you get the idea.
    You can do basically the same thing, using any of the 3 root nodes.
    Each of the three roots uses a different approach.
    Some of the nodes setups, are basically the same between Poser and Cycles Root.

    The Poser Root, well we all know Firefly for the most part and it is still basically done the same way with a few exceptions.

    The Cycles Root, which is similar to the one in Cycles, but there are some differences. Some of these differences are to closer math Firefly procedural, etc.

    The Physical Surface Root, which is basically a PBR style root with exposed SSS controls.

    Each of these Root nodes is actually a hidden shader setup as well, just think of it as a compound node.

    Cycles Root, has just 3 inputs. That's it. So you have to add a lot of stuff to it to get it to do what you want.

    The Poser one, is basically the same as the one in firefly as far as exposed channels. But you still have to add stuff to it more often than not.

    The Physical root, is similar to many other PBR roots, and you can do tons with it, with 1 - 5 textures alone.
    (I only used two just to give you an idea of what I mean, and it will work that way as well for some things)

    Something else that my be an issue, is what your Poser units are set to in the preferences.
    I have mine set to inches, and there are a lot of options.
    Each option uses a different scale, so if you have it set to Poser Units, many of the numbers in my shaders will be wrong in Poser scale.

    If someone sends you a material file you should not have to worry about it. Poser knows what to do with that.
    But if you are copying it off of a screen, you need to know what the persons units are set to to get it to work the same way.
    Not all the numbers need converted, which can make your head spin figuring it out....



  • @matb In this style of shader connect bump to ALL surfaces nodes, not only Diffuse.
    OR to displacement input in root only. Cycles root switches bump/true displacement mode depending on what connect to it.



  • @shvrdavid Thank you so much for your extensive information shvr. I mean that most seriously. I'm really going to have to let go of my old way of thinking.
    I was kind of thinking that Cycles is better at PBR so I should do everything using cycles, especially as I wanted to use cycles for the eyes to get that reality in the reflections.
    But one thing you said there did raise another issue - "No they are not tweaked to be exactly the same, but I am sure you get the idea."

    So if I simply plug a texture in at the base level with no modifications, each node will produce a different visual end result?



  • @phdubrov said in superfly bump mapping:

    @matb In this style of shader connect bump to ALL surfaces nodes, not only Diffuse.

    Via the normal inputs?

    OR to displacement input in root only. Cycles root switches bump/true displacement mode depending on what connect to it.

    So I still connect a texture to a cycles bump node then connect that to the displacement? Is there any benefit/disadvantage to going via the displacement node, other than the obvious lack of additional displacement possibility?



  • @ghostship Ahh yes, I forgot about that (well, more accurately I was so committed to completing my own version!). Where is the latest version? That really ought to be pinned as a topic. Shvr - that's one that you might consider. Or perhaps an essential tools topic - no chatter, just links to essential free tools like Ghosts render node, EZ skin, EZ dome, the sss plug in, etc.



  • @ghostship Scratch that - found Uber shader 3. Thanks Ghost. Guess i'm gonna be building all my textures off that from now on!



  • @matb said in superfly bump mapping:

    @shvrdavid Thank you so much for your extensive information shvr. I mean that most seriously. I'm really going to have to let go of my old way of thinking.
    I was kind of thinking that Cycles is better at PBR so I should do everything using cycles, especially as I wanted to use cycles for the eyes to get that reality in the reflections.
    But one thing you said there did raise another issue - "No they are not tweaked to be exactly the same, but I am sure you get the idea."

    So if I simply plug a texture in at the base level with no modifications, each node will produce a different visual end result?

    Yes, there will be differences, not only in the 3 different roots, but also which way you render it (CPU vs GPU) Depending on the shader setups and material styles used. Some node setups might not even work the same way at all CPU versus GPU.

    Some things come out differently in many render engines that can use both, simply because CPU versus GPU usually use different algorithms to process your material shaders.

    Each of the 3 root nodes, are shaders in themselves, that is something that is often overlooked. So it isn't always WYSIWYG...

    The Cycles (SuperFly) root node, is fairly simple. You basically have to build everything. That's great if you know Cycles inside out, not so much if you don't. Not everything Blender Cycles applies either. Some things that can be done in Cycles, are actually a part of Blender, not the render engine itself.

    The Poser root node mimics what you would get from Firefly as close as possible. You don't have to add complex shader networks for certain things, others you do.

    The Physical root node is based on using multiple types of PBR maps. You can do diffuse/specular, diffuse/metal, etc. All from the same root node. Programs like Substance Painter, Quixel, etc. allow you to paint it right on the wireframe, and then the program generates the required maps to plug into the root node based on how you set up the export options. You can make materials for basically any render engine in those programs. Then basically all you need are the maps, and proper light levels and it works.

    I use the Poser root to do corneas, you only need one reflect shader plugged into alternate diffuse, trans at one, everything else at 0,
    Falloff adjusts the amount of relection (0 for none, 1 for max) and reflection settings within the reflect node adjust reflection quality.
    You can add refractions and volume absorption to it as well if you want too.
    Use a blender node mixing reflect/refract, plug a volume absorb into volume on the Poser root. Adjust accordingly to match which map/ eye color on absorb, etc and what is actually being reflected. The most important part, is having something to reflect in the first place that is at the right level to begin with.

    The benefit of having 3 root nodes, is nothing more than having more options setup wise, shader wise, and texture wise.
    Not to mention the style you are most comfortable building them with to begin with.

    The end result, is nothing more than the illusion you want it to appear to be.
    It doesn't really matter which route you used to get there.



  • This render is done using the shaders I posted earlier In the thread.
    I should have turned the trans bounces up a bit more, opps...

    0_1484947835363_Render 1bump.jpg

    There are no lights in this at all. All it uses is the background node. No dome, etc.
    It has shadows, and you can even make them appear more sharp using a few other node tricks on the background.

    Apply the shaders to the figure.
    Apply the shader to the background and rotate it so the hot spot casts light the right direction.
    Adjust the light level with a few test renders.
    Then just let it render.
    No complex lighting to mess with, no unwanted reflections, etc.
    Obviously some scene need more light(s), but your all but there already just from this setup alone.

    What can be much simpler than that?

    I take a drastically different approach to it than most, and with a few simple adjustments I can get the lighting right very quickly. And the same shaders still work...

    That's the advantage of having 3 root nodes as well.
    It gives you a lot more options, in how you go about it.
    And different materials and objects in the scene may use different roots, just to make it simpler to set up.



  • @shvrdavid Thanks shvr - you've given me a lot to think about. I've downloaded your node layouts to my tutorials folder. I suspect that I will be digesting and playing with this a lot more over the coming year!



  • @shvrdavid

    Thank you so much ^^