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Simple and Cool 3D Part 3

Yet more easy graphic creations with Cinema 4D By Ko Maruyama
Simple and Cool : Part 3

Cool Texture Materials that are a snap to apply.

There are differences between Shaders and Materials which are best left for a more "intermediate" explanation.  However, suffice to say Shaders behave differently in the manner by which they are created and mapped.

While Material textures and BhodiNut SLA Shaders tout several different available features, both offer immediate gratification, even if applied using defaults.  In Cinema 4D R9, Shaders' parameters appear in an open attribute window like any other feature, which will help you compose the shader of your choice.  I made some allusions to the shaders in the golf tee tutorial, which can be found on CreativeMac.com.

Cool Material: Fresnel (pronounced fra-nel')

Sporting the name of the French physicist, Augustin Jean Fresnel, who supported the wave theory of light, the Fresnel material is a gradient like no other, and produces some interesting results when implemented in different material channels.

In the color channel, the material appears to be no more than a gradient shader.  However, it's much more than that.  Derived from Fresnel's transverse wave theory, another French scholar found that the center of the shadow of a diffracting disk would be illuminated.  Hmmm.  Who cares.  Show the cool.

This is cool - It's all about the diffraction of light.  As we all know - no matter what level of 3D creation we're at: our scene consists of camera (default or not), an object, and light (default or not).

The fresnel shader derives its value from the angle by which it is observed.

The proof is in the pudding.  So let's look at some applied fresnel materials.

Here is a simple setup I created for the purpose of looking at some applied materials.  Although there is a light in my scene, I'll render both with and without so you can see the effect of fresnel materials.

Next to create a material.  In the 'Materials' window, select New Material. (Note: If you want to use the hot key cmd-N, make sure you have the proper window ('Materials') selected, or you'll wind up with a new project)

In the Material Attribute, in the Texture selection area, use the right arrow icon to bring up the texture options.  You'll see Fresnel in the first section of applied functions (immediately after 'Load/Create').

Apply this to each of the objects in your scene, and you'll come up with something like this when you render:

With and without lights...

Now, try the same fresnel default in the transparency channel.  Deactivate the color channel. (If you need help with this step, check the manual, or contact the DMNForum Cinema 4D Board)

Next, isolate the same default fresnel process in the reflection channel.

And finally in Luminance Channel:

There are many more ways to use fresnel, including changing the gradient within the fresnel values.  I hope you have a chance to play around with this easily accessible texture, and become familiar with other material formulae in Cinema 4D that will make a simply made object look even better.  A simple texture can change the appearance of your scene quickly and easily.

If you need help with this or any of the Cinema 4D tutorials you find here on MacAnimationPro.com, or elsewhere, be sure to check in the Rob Garrott on the C4D Forum, where he'll be checking in when not teaching motion graphics and Cinema 4D at Art Center in Pasadena, CA.

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Ko Maruyama is a freelance animator in Los Angeles.  In addition to working on film and broadcast animations, Ko teaches at Pasadena's Art Center College of Design - focusing on motion design.  When working, writing or testing software allows, you can find him lending a hand in the After Effects board and lurking among the Cinema4D, Visual Effects and Photoshop posts within the DMNForums.
Related Keywords:MAXON, Cinema 4D, 3D, Graphic design, Matrix Extrude, 3D Camera

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  • Simple and Cool 3D Part 3 by DMN Editorial at Sep. 23, 2004 4:29 pm gmt (Rec'd 4)

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