First  of all what it is seamless texture?
Basically it is square image that can be tiled/repeated many times where you wont be able say where it begins and where it ends : ) Seamless textures are commonly used in games for creations of large terrains.

To learn how to create such textures I was following tutorial: link,  and based on that I would like to write PIPELINE for texture creations : )

  • TAKE PHOTO
    1st thing that you need start from is get some quality photos. It is recommended to do own photos to avoid any copyrights issues. Internet provides a lot free textures, but often even called “free” have something written in small print what define it as copyrighted. However there is one website which can be trusted and it is CG Textures.When you decide to take own photos there is few things that you need take care of.
    a) lighting is super important  and taking photos that have consistent light
    b) angle shoot all you texture photos  at a ninety degree angle so they face straight to the camera
    c) details avoid any extra details so it wont be as repeatable element in our texture example: rubbish in grass, graffiti on wall and so on. For more tips check out:
    Five Tips to Improve Your Photography for 3D Textures, Digital Tutors (link)
    12 Tips & Tricks for Shooting Great Textures, Tuts+ (link)
  • OPEN PHOTO IN PHOTOSHOP and EDIT IT:
    Once you have your photo, open it in Photoshop and edit it.
    It is important that texture that you create will have in dimensions “pairs of two”. Most popular size for textures is 2048 x 2048 pixels/inch. Tutorial that I mention above explains everything nicely how to make it work and create seamless texture.
  •  CREATE CUSTOM 3D TEXTURE
    When you want to create texture that actually do not exist in environment. You can make it by creating custom 3D environment texture. For that you will need use program like 3Ds Max and Zbrush or Mudbox.
    1. Create texture layout in 3Ds Max (.max) and prepare it for work in next software. Once all you have set up export your model as .obj file. (.obj)
    2. Import file in Zbrush (.ZTL) or Mudbox (.mud) subdivide it in order to start custom sculpting. When you finish export high poly sculpture as .obj (.obj)
    3. Import high poly objects created in Zbrush/Mudbox back to the 3Ds Max and set up all correctly, in order to RENDER:
    a) Diffuse Map (Selection Map) (.tga)
    b) Normals Map (.tga)
    c) Height Map (.tga)
    d) Lighting Map (Ambient Occlusion) (.tga)
    4. Open all 4 maps in PHOTOSHOP and make all necessary adjustments/edits. (.tga)
    5. Save your seamless texture as a png file.(.png) and use texture on your 3D models : )

~ All information bellow are just for my own record : ) just in case if I forget something.

My own precious notes:

In Photoshop:

  • Ctrl + T to select all then hold Ctr+shift to adjust texture by dragging one of the corners
  • Filter->other->offset +1024  to check/fix any seams that appear on texture (if you want back to previous look of texture repeat action with same settings : ) )
  • Every time when you want to enlarge picture use : bicubic smoother (best for enlargement)
  • If reduction use: Bicubic sharper (best for reduction)
  • Ctrl+J to duplicate layer

In 3ds Max:

  • Set up in grid and snap settings grid for 16/8/8 -> Make sure that unit set up you have set for Generic  units
  • Create blocks in 3ds max -> on plane that have size of grid 16/8/8 (plane u don’t use later)
    each block have to be set up as editable poly and contain vertices along grid patent so it can be subdivided later evenly in Zbrush/Mudbox
  • Before exporting to Zbrush/Mudbox attach every element to each other and
    ->select top vertices, hold shift (if u have older version of 3Ds Max) and click polygons, deselect all sides by holding alt and dragging cursor ove  them, holding shift click edge mode and then create magic by -> chamfer : ) -> select top vertices-> target wield (adjust number to max 2.0 to get rid of triange polygon created in “L” shaped block)Capture3Capture6Capture8Capture9Capture10Capture11Capture12

In Zbrush:

  • Import -> polygroups-> auto group (show in colors)
  • geometry ->crease all -> then subdivide xx times
  • to select one object and hide rest -> hold ctrl+shift and click object that you want work on (F to frame it) to show again all use same combination just click on background to see all objects againCapturebCaptureaCapture13

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Back to 3ds Max:

  • import:
    Capture16
  • make sure that each texture is overlapping
  • project on the plane
  • add skylight (white)
    RENDERING:
  • render to texture (click 0) (make sure that u have PLANE selected!
    1. Render Diffuse Map with settings:
    Capture16b
    Capture16cCapture16d
    Capture16e
    Capture17resetCapture18

    2.Render those maps with settings:
    Capture19Capture20
    Capture21Capture22

In Photoshop:

  • place all layers in correct order and duplicate them on canvas 2048 (it makes 4 tiled textures)
  • add multiply effects whenever it is necessaryCapture23Capture24
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Unfortunately my texture didn’t turn out as texture from tutorial. I find out that my render had way much more whites. Question is if  I should reduce light or create more texture on my objects? Definitely I will ask Steve about it because I could not figure it out by myself.

Texture created by Joshua Kinney :
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