In this tutorial, we will be taking a detailed look at each of the Constant nodes found in Softimage's Interactive Creative Environment. Each video in this course is a self-contained tutorial centering on one of the nodes found in ICE within Softimage. This means that these tutorial can be viewed in any order you wish, allowing you to jump straight to the content that is most relevant to you. These tutorials will take a detailed look at each of the nodes found within the Constant section of ICE and we'll learn how they can be used to speed up our workflow. Software required: Softimage 7 and higher.
Introduction and Project Overview The 2D Vector Constant node will output a vector that has only 2 dimensions inside of it. So like the name suggests, 2D, 2 dimensions, only 2 pieces of information will be stored in the vector, X and Y information, or U and V for example. So we're going to see how we can use the 2D vector to define the UV information on these rockets, so we can have all of these rockets sample a color from the no icon image to define their basic color. So as opposed to using material overrides which can be cumbersome, it's actually quite as simple to use ICE to distort the UV so you can get a color information or a pixel sample from an image instead, and use that as the color. So let's apply this, we'll drop in a simple Null, and this null will store the ICETree that will affect the UV information on these rockets. So with that null selected, create a normal ICETree, and now all we have to do is set the data of the UV information on these parts here, or on these rockets. So let's grab a capital S, SetData node, drag and drop that in, and connect it into the Execute. Now in here, double-click the Set Data node, and let's use the Explorer to hunt down the rocket's UV information. So it's going to be under rocket1, Polygon Mesh, open the Clusters, open up the Texture_Coordinates_AUTO cluster, open up the Texture_Projection, which is going to be storing explicit UVWs on these rockets, open that up, and now select the UVs ICE attribute. And now we can set the data of every single UV on this rocket here. It's actually interesting, but if you were to grab any other rocket and press Alt+7 to bring up the Texture Editor, you would see the texture shape here. If you were to grab any other one, all the UVs are stored down here, because all the points are bound to whatever value we're setting. So that value can be defined with a constant for ease of changing or ease of use. Let's grab a 2D Vector Constant, and connect that into the UVs port. And now we can just simply choose the value in here, let's try something like. 5 and. 5, so we can grab the color at the center of the image, which happens to be green in this case. And now we can repeat the steps for the other rockets. Something interesting we can do, we can plug or add a new value by plugging in the constant in the New port. Now it's going to have an empty Reference, we can copy the original one, paste it in, and then just change the name here to the second rocket, because they're all duplicates of each other, they're also going to share the same clusters and the same UV properties. Now we can grab another 2D Vector, connect it in here, and we can once again set the value in a constant, so we can visualize where we're sampling the colors from. So for example, maybe in this case we want to get it from U. 2, and maybe Y at 0. So now we have a purple coloring. And now we can rinse and repeat to get the colors of these other objects. I'll do that so we can round out this particular session, just connect that in here, and connect one more time, and let's paste, and set this one to rocket3, and last but not least, paste the last one reference into rocket4, and now we can simply use other Constant nodes, grab another one, connect that in, and now in here we can choose maybe. 9, and maybe. 6 to get a different color, so let me try. 2 in here, still going to get us purple, let me just scoot up,. 3 for blue, and now, one more time I'll just copy, paste this node in, duplicate it, and now let's just set this one to. 7. So that way we can sample the different colors on a texture to shade our objects differently by simply distorting their UVs in such a manner.