Blender materials and textures

July 21, 2009

I’ve spent a considerable time learning about the materials and texture system in Blender.  Here are some observations:

  1. There are 3 material system options: Texture Face, Blender Multitexture, and Blender GLSL.  Texture Face seems to be the older system.  Multitexture has the most options for material control—including ray traced renderings.  GLSL is the newest system and provides similar representations in the viewport, game engine and render.  Since my project will potentially use the game engine as well as the internal renderer, I will use GLSL for my materials.
  2. The assignment of materials to objects or meshes can be tricky with the system of linkages through data blocks.  One surprise that I discovered yesterday is that if you apply a textured GLSL material to an object and switch to Multitexture mode, you cannot change the material on the object.  It is necessary to unlink the material in GLSL mode first.
  3. In the trueSpace design, every material had its own texture map.  So there were dozens of small and large files to maintain.  I now believe that it will be more efficient to combine multiple texture images on to a few texture maps that are always square and power of two in size.  Objects will link to the material with associated master maps for diffuse, normal and spec parameters.  The object’s UVs will link the mesh to the appropriate images on the texture map.

Still working on the workflow details.

San Fernando Cathedral

July 14, 2009

Today’s accomplishment was to accurately locate the San Fernando Cathedral relative to the Alamo model.  This will allow me to paint an image of the church on the horizon of the skydome.

The Cathedral in 760m from the Alamo Church.  The elevation is 1 m lower than the elevation of the Alamo plaza.  The Cathedral sits on a line drawn from the church entrance through the SW corner of the compound.


July 10, 2009

Options for a realistic sky:

Advantages Disadvantages
Skydomes Work in BGE Seams
Skyboxes Work in BGE
Fewer vertices
Angular maps Seamless Don’t work in BGE

There are also two options for skydomes: UV and Ico spheres.


In the beginning

July 9, 2009

Here is my starting point…Alamo 1.0

I want to make a model that is significantly more realistic using Blender.