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Modelling lesson 3 -- Shading and materials

In this lesson, we will cover shading and materials of objects.

The essence of shading in Blender is usage of nodes in the shading editor.
The following two videos explain how the nodes work. Although it is demonstrated on textures, do not omit it since it will be needed also in the texture lesson 😉.

The most important notes on the working with nodes are:
Before proceeding to certain material properties, we need to inspect on the important feature -- switching between flat shading and smooth shading. This is important since we want the round objects to appear smooth. This option is selected by right-clicking on the object and selecting either "Shade flat" or "Shade smooth".
Smooth/flat shading

The general shading node is the Principled BSDF shader which is basically an union of the several other shaders and most materials can be adjusted using this type of shader. However there are also other shaders available and used.
The detailed description of Principled BSDF shader can be found in the official documentation:
link Principled BSDF

One of the basic materials which is created solely by using the shaders is glass. It is done by mixing the Transparent shader and Principled shader (also simplified Glass shader may be used). Mixing is done using the special Mix Shader and enabling alpha blending in the materials tab. More details in this video (the part after 4:30 is optional 😁):

Mirrors in Blender are made in two ways -- using the screenspace reflections and using the mirror plane. All the details can be found in this video.

Assignment -- Materials


The aim of the assignment is to link your theoretical knowledge with the tools of the 3D modelling software Blender. The assignment is the result of the activity on the online lesson.
The second topic covers materials.

Modelling in Blender

Create a simple scene with several objects (e.g. sphere, torus, teapot, bunny etc.) and a plane, which serves as an underlay to these objects.

Each object has its own base color (set in Materials tab). The objects do not have to be textured.

Document structure

You will create a (.pdf) file with several dozens of figures. Each figure is described by few sentences describing the settings of a certain parameter, property or a object. Also, explain and show (if possible) the main principle, how the parameters are computed, or how they affect the scene.

Please, use separate figures (rendered images) and descriptions for each change of the settings of the scene.



Now the scene contains only one spotlight with the apex placed above the cube. The beam is characterized by the circular cone, with following parameters:

What has to be included and discussed

The front page -- includes the name of the project, your name, study program and academic year.
Smooth vs. flat shading -- show and explain the difference between the two
Discuss the following parameters of the Principled BSDF shader (e. g. explain what they do and demonstrate it on the different values):

Create a 3D model of a ring (e.g. torus + icosphere) and choose the specific type of metal for the torus (e.g. gold, silver, steel) and the specific type of stone for the icosphere (e.g. ruby, diamond, emerald). Try to achieve as realistic look as possible and describe in detail the used settings for each of the material.
Since the stone is supposed to be a glass-like material, demonstrate the usage of Mix shader to create a transparent material.

Compare the mirrors using the screenspace reflections and light probes. Discuss and demonstrate the effect of parameters of screenspace reflections and mirror planes. Include different types of mirror objects (planes, round objects) and compare the effect of each method.

Submission rules

Your (.pdf) file together with the original Blender file(s) (.blend) are compressed into a (.zip) archive and submitted using the following form:
file_upload Submission form

The deadline is set to 14 June 2020 or 3 work days before the exam.