Architectural Visualization with C4D and Octane: Creating the Hardwood Floor Shader

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Instructor Brandon Clements

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  • Duration: 10:17
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  • Made with Release: 18
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This video shows how to create a convincing hardwood floor shader in Octane Render and Cinema 4D.



In this video, we're going to continue creating shaders for our interior Octane scene. Specifically, we're going to be focusing on the hardwood floors. So I would like to go ahead and jump into our test shader scene, our very simplified scene that has basically the same type of lighting and setup as our other scene does. I already have a floor mesh for setup and we have the material tag setup as well. So we have an actual material that I just went ahead and created. This is just a standard Octane shader. So we're going to use the glossy material type and, for starters, we're going to go ahead and load up an Image Texture. And once that's loaded up, we can see it here in our view port. So this is kind of going to be a darker type of hardwood floor. And I think a lot of people underestimate just how difficult it is to get a hardwood floor to look very realistic just because, depending on the type of floor and the polish and finish, sometimes it can look a little too perfect, sometimes it can look just too dirty. So we've got to try to find a good in-between there, but we're going to carry on with the principles that we had learned in the previous videos to create physically correct shaders. So the next thing I'll do is go down to the Index. It looks I already have it set to 1.6. We can try at 1.8, if we'd like. This is going to be a value that I would like to mess around with as we start doing some test renders. We'll carry on to keep loading in texture maps. So I'm going to load in a bump map. Okay. So we got our bump and I'm going to go ahead and change that to float so we can conserve a little bit on texture memory, and load up a roughness map as well. And as I said before, I like to use a lot of the same maps over and over again. So I'm going to go ahead and use the invert of this. So you can see it's a little more shiny than it is rough. We're going to change the type to float so we conserve on texture memory once again. I believe we'll leave the Specular how it is. This may be something we come back to. And just from out of practice, from what I always try to do with my materials, I'm going to add a multiply and use a falloff map. So we'll add a falloff map and then we need to invert our falloff. Okay. So we get the glancing angles being very shiny. And I'll pull this down to around 1.8 or so. Okay. So once we get that set up, let's go ahead and turn on our live viewer and load the scene. Okay. So here we are and we can look at it from some different angles here inside of Octane. Now, like I said, it's very hard to try to get a hardwood floor that looks practical enough to be real hardwood floor. Right now you can see that it's very dirty in some of these indirect illuminated areas. And then like here in the direct illumination, it's looking still just a little bit too scuffed for our liking. So we'll actually go into the shader and we'll try to keep this on the same screen so we can see what we're doing. One thing we need to look at is the roughness right now. So we can basically add a clamp to this so we can rope this down so there's not so much variation there. So we'll go into our clamp texture and let's do something like 0.15 and 0.3. This is kind of like my area that I like to start in and then kind of progress forward from here. So it doesn't look too bad. We may want to go in and untick the Invert here and see how we're looking. Okay. So now you can see it's a lot more bumpy than it is glossy. And when I say bumpy, I mean on the micro detail level, the micro surface. So if we were to zoom in say with a microscope and see some of these areas that are a little more rough, there would be small bumps of irregularities on there. Maybe from dirt, dust, smudging from shoes, something like that. So you can almost tell a little story with your shaders that you're actually creating. So let's try something like 0.25 or maybe, let's see, let's go even lower, 0.2. So the closer these numbers are, the less variation we're going to get. So basically, if this number goes up higher, there's going to be more contrast in our map. So if we keep them relatively close to each other, we get a small amount of variation across the surface. Okay. So that's not looking too bad. Let's kind of adjust our camera to get a different view from a different angle. And you can see as we start to look at the floor at more of a glancing angle, let's go even further down, then the floor becomes very shiny and this is from our falloff map. So I found a great example on YouTube of the Fresnel effect. So if you look at it from a glancing angle, you can see that this wall almost becomes just like a mirror. And as we go back to the facing angle, you see that that mirror effect has kind of went away and it becomes a little bit more rough. So not only do we have a change in roughness, but we also have a perceived change in shininess on the material and surface. Now let's use that concept in the falloff shader insider of Octane for the floor. So let's demonstrate how can change that falloff map if we need to. So right now it's at 1.8. Let's go ahead and put it up to 5, and you can that it becomes more rough. So as we approach that glancing angle, it's going to become more shiny. So let's kind of split the difference from 1.8 and 5. We'll kind of comprise, maybe do something like 3.5. Okay. So it looks like, after playing around for a little bit, 0.8 is going to be a value that's going to work for us. If we look at it straight on, you can see that we are beginning to see that roughness variation from our maps coming through. Okay. So looking at it from this angle, we can tell that we have some areas that are looking kind of strange from our bump map. So what we'll need to do is just come in here, and let's add a clamp to this. And then we'll set the minimum to, let's say, 0.1 and the maximum to 0.2. And you can see immediately it diminishes that effect. Let's try 0.1 and 0.5, see how far we can actually push this. Because we want to able to see separation between the boards but we do not want those artifacts to show up again where it looked like it was unrealistic. Okay. So 0.1, 0.8, seems to be good right there. So now let's try to add some darkness there where the actual cracks are on the Diffuse. So I'm going to open the Node Editor to go ahead and just show guys a different way to work. I'm so used to using the C4D layers that sometimes I don't utilize this as much as I should, and it's a really great tool to be able to use. So I am going to basically use a multiply. So I'll drag out the multiply, and let's just connect this up to texture 2 and then we have our bump. So I want to reuse this, CTRL+C and then CTRL+V. So this is going to work really well for us because the places between the boards are black and the actual boards itself are white. So when we multiply this, the white is going to go away and it's going to keep that darkness there on the black. So we're going to connect this up to our Diffuse. And it may be a little bit hard to see, but it has definitely went in there and darkened that area up for us. Okay. So we have all of our channels set up how we want. The last thing I'm going to do is just kind of tweak our index number. Let's try 1.5. And then I also want to go ahead and place the color to 100% black. So when that's at 100% black, we can use this bar for the float to drive the Specular. So I'm going to probably leave this around 0.8 or so. And let's just kind of shrink our render window a little bit. Turn off… Oops, wrong button. Let's just go ahead and toggle the info and just kind of tumble a little bit and see how our shader is looking. Okay. So I think that will wrap it up for this video, creating hardwood floors inside of Cinema 4D and Octane for our architectural interior. Thanks for following along and we'll see you in the next one.
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