Maya Rendering Nodes Reference Library: Color Utilities

Discover a detailed exploration of the specialized attributes and best-use workflows for each of Maya's color utility nodes. Software required: Maya 8.0 and higher (project files created using Maya 2010).
Course info
Level
Advanced
Updated
Dec 3, 2009
Duration
53m
Table of contents
Description
Course info
Level
Advanced
Updated
Dec 3, 2009
Duration
53m
Description

Discover a detailed exploration of the specialized attributes and best-use workflows for each of Maya's color utility nodes. Learn the fundamentals of common attributes found in each material type. Quickly and easily brighten or darken certain parts of a texture or material. Explore various techniques to blending between color values. Efficiently fix distortion when gamma correcting an image. Software required: Maya 8.0 and higher (project files created using Maya 2010).

About the author
About the author

Kyle was one of the first authors for Digital-Tutors (now a Pluralsight company) and has been a part of the team for over 10 years. Kyle began his career in computer graphics education as a college instructor and worked as a Digital-Tutors rendering tutor and curriculum manager since 2002.

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Section Introduction Transcripts
Section Introduction Transcripts

Introduction and Project Overview
[Autogenerated] and his list, we'll explore some new functionality found in the blend colors. Utility note. All right, so, really, as the name suggests, this blend colors note is one that will allow us to blend between any two color values. Although, as we'll see here in just a moment, we can actually use this for a very wide variety of effects so we can find this inside the cover utilities. So we'll go ahead and drop this in, and we take a look in the attributes for this. Go in. Just getting this a little bit closer. Really, we only have a handful of attributes to work with. We have color one color too, and the blender. So if I were to take this and put this into something like a surface shader, we could just put this straight into the color. So if we need to, we can just take output and put it into the out color, and you can see we get a little bit of a purple result for this surface shader. And that's because right now we have a 50% mix of this red and blue. So if we were to take the blender all the way down to zero. We get the full amount of color, too. With the blender all the way up to one, we get the full value of color one. Now we can use this for any kind of solid color value. Or we could plug in any texture into either color one or color, too. Now, where this really becomes useful is we can actually plug an entire shading network into either color winter color, too. So what we can start to do is use this blend colors note as a way of completely switching our shading network on a piece of geometry. So if you take a look inside the start file for this, I have a couple of shade. Er's already set up this blend one and blin, too. So if I were to take either one of these and drop these in, you can see it's a complete shading network. Each has its own color and bump map connected to it. If you wanted to, we could always take a look at the output connections for these as well. We can see exactly what we have here, just a simple crater that's connected into the color that's loop through a bump map and that gives us this particular Shader. So let's go ahead and we'll take this surface shader that we had before. Let's take our blend one and blin too. Go ahead and drop both of these in here and what we can do is take just this entire blin middle click and drop this into color. One do the same for color to just middle click. And there we go. Now we're using a surface. Raiders are output. It will actually go ahead, inherit all of the bump mapping information all of the speculum colors from the blin, and we'll go ahead and just pass that right through. So we could actually have two completely different materials something like a blend. When that may be a lambert or a subsurface scattering shader could be run through this blend node and as long as they're connected to a surface shader, the output will look just fine. So in this case, you can see we're getting kind of even mix of both. If we take the blender all the way down to zero, we get the full effect of this blin. The blend goes all the way up to one and now we get the full effect of this particular blin. Now, we could actually do some really interesting things. As far as this blender attribute is concerned, we can do more than just a simple ah blend or a transparency between the two. We actually use other attributes from other textures and materials and ah, nodes to control this blend. So, for example, if we would take a look inside the texture, I have a stucco material. And if we were to just middle click and drop this in, you can see I have the color set to black and white. We take a look at the color balance. Right now I have the Alfa gaining the Alfa offset, both set to 100% ______. That pretty much gives us this black effect now clear to move through time. You can see I actually have some key frames set on both the Alfa gain in the Alfa offset or the color gaining the color offset rather so you can see as we progress through time, we start to get brightening effect where, as we start to get further and further through time, we pretty much get a value that is entirely white. Now, what we can do is actually use this and control the blend. So if we were to take this and connect the Alfa, go ahead, make sure that the alphas loom in its options checked on and there we go. So now what we should see is a CZ. We start to progress through time. Once we start to get to keep frame of one where this is set to 100% black, you can see that we still have a little bit of of this two different notes or these two different shades that kind of peeking through. So we needed to We could actually take something like he clamped node and run this through here. But let's actually try instead of connecting the Alfa, let's go ahead and just connect this to color. So in the stucco, let's go ahead and just scroll down. We'll look for out color out color. Either RG or being either one should work. Connect this to the blender again. We'll just check our result here. There we go. So that starts to now give us something a little bit cleaner than the Alva was giving us. So if we go down this, uh, frame one, you can see the blender set to 0 100% black. As we start to progress through time, you can start to see that this animated texture is now driving this blender, which is letting more of this kind of peek through. And as we start to get further and further through time now, we have the full value of this secondary shader. Although, if you take a look at the blender, you can see that we actually have some values that are above one. And that just has to do with this particular shader. So if we run into this problem, we could use something like a clamp to actually, uh, constrained this. If you want to learn more about this clamp, no, we can actually refer to the lesson that deal's entirely with this particular node. Let's take this stucco will go ahead and take the out color into the input. There we go, and we'll go ahead and make sure that we set the maximum toe one and the minimum to zero. So that way a SZ faras This clamp goes, we won't be able to output any color values past the value of one. That's really what we want. So now let's just take this clamp, connect that into the blender and we just take the output. Are since we just need one color value or really, any of these are g or be should work. There we go. And now he's in this clamp. We could make sure that we don't get any color values passed a value of one. And that's really what we want to be able to get out of this. All right. Very nice. So now all that's left to do is to just take our surface. Shader, Just drop this on to our object that we were too. Then render out the sequence. We should get something that looks like this where at the beginning of our animated sequence, we have this one shader that it's showing through this blin. And then as we progress through time, you can start to see this stucco texture which is controlling the blending between our green blue material in this red one. Now you can start to see we get kind of this animated transition from one material to the other. So if we were to play this back, we should get something that looks like this. All right, so some really, really neat things that we can start to do by using this. Blend colors. Note as a way of switching either between solid colors or completely different shade er's as we progress through time.