Shader Forge

Shader Forge

This course is an on-going series about constructing materials (shaders) for the Cycles render engine. With enough time and effort, materiality can breathe such life into a CG scene. On the other hand, lackluster materials can suck the life out of an otherwise high-quality scene.

Introduction

Watch this brief video to see what this course is all about.

3D Print Resin

Always on the look-out for a new way to present 3D models, in this lesson I explore a specific kind of 3D print resin that seems tailor-made to accentuate form and shape.

Bodies of Water

This chapter involves light refraction and absorption as characteristics of water collections.

Brushed Metal

A specific finish for metallic objects, brushed metal's key characteristic is the 'stretching' of reflections across a model's surface. It's common with kitchen appliances, jewelry, household accessories, and more.

Carbon Fiber

Carbon fiber is a great material that can be used anywhere from the trim on a fancy sports car to a scraped up sci-fi helmet. Since it can be molded into practically any shape and can be ten times stronger (and five times lighter!) than steel, carbon fiber goes well with anything high tech.

Car Paint

Vehicle rendering is one of the most popular uses of computer graphics. Car paint has a specific look and feel that leans heavily on the concept of "fresnel".

Clip Art

Sure it's not 1995 anymore, but turning your 3D model into clip art is totally cool! Plus this shader exposes you to some unconventional usage of nodes.

Dispersion

This is the optical phenomenon that occurs when light passes through transparent material causing the separation of the color spectrum.

Gemstones & Ice

Dazzling gems and crystals are relevant to jewelry, pirate treasure, a monarch's crown, and anything else that needs bedazzling. The emphasis in this chapter is on manipulating complex refractions despite an object's simple surface.

Gold

This precious metal focuses on reflection and bump texture as it's primary characteristics of surface quality. Additionally, the last lesson demonstrates the consolidation process of a node group.

Leather

Leather makes a good procedural candidate because it’s used often for things like car interiors, furniture, and clothing among others. So an artist’s material library benefits from having a flexible material that’s not restricted by image textures and UVs.

Marble

A natural stone that’s used often in architecture, countertops, tile, and statues/sculptures among other things.

PBR

Create a shader group node based on a modern standard.

Snow

This is the white stuff that falls from the sky during the winter time.

Speed Boost

A simple trick to speed up render times for materials using bump maps.

Wood

Expert-level lesson about procedural wood grain. NOTE: This is from guest author Bartek Skorupa.

Master Material Creation

This course is an on-going series about constructing materials (shaders) for the Cycles render engine. With enough time and effort, quality shading can breathe such life into a CG scene. On the other hand, lackluster materials can suck the life out of an otherwise high-quality scene. So shaders are very important and can be a powerful tool in the digital artist’s utility belt.

Lesson Questions and Answers

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  • Replies: 1

    I can’t believe how unorganized this course is. The individual lessons are numbered and named in some unorthodox fashion, with no clear-cut naming convention, and I can’t tell which source files go with which lessons.

    2 months ago

    • Replies: 1

      Okay, I figured out the weird naming convention, and turns out my VLC player would rename some of the lessons for some reason. However, I can’t find the source file for bodies of water.

      2 months ago

Project Files

Download any course files here.