Saturday, October 15, 2011

rudimentary planet in Blender, also video texture

Today I made my first Planet. Instead of creating three spheres etc as given here, (which seems to be the same tutorial as given in Issue 9 of BlenderArt magazine) I made a single sphere, just to see how it comes out. With the default 32 segment 32 ring UV sphere, the aliasing was obvious. I bumped it up to 128 x 128 and then used the Earth texture from here, and the result was not bad for what I want to do, which is a flyby.

Things to remember:
  • UV mapping means wrapping the texture around the object - U and V are used to describe the 2D mesh since X and Y are already taken!
  • For the planet, the mapping used was Co-ordinates = Object, Object = Sphere, Projection = Sphere. (Not Co-ordinates = UV!)
  • Smooth shading: as given in Ron Proctor's tip here, using smooth shading makes the sphere look much better. Accessed from Object tools - T after selecting the object.
Also animated a plane with a video texture. For this,
  • The plane could be of the same dimensions as the movie, so for a 4:3 movie, a plane of dimensions x=4 and y=3 is good.
  • In such a case, the texture mapping to use is Co-ordinates = Generated, Projection = Flat, and Extension = Clip.
  • For ease of placement of camera(s) and the plane, the N key which brings up the properties allows numerical entry of values.
  • As mentioned before, Emit=1 and Specular=0 are good for video textures.
  • In some tutorials like this one, the rotation animation is done by entering a value like 3600 degrees for 10 turns. But when I tried entering a value of 360 for rotating the camera a full circle, it did nothing. When I tried 340 or 370, the camera moved only by 20 or 10 degrees respectively. So I settled for 180 degrees in my test.

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