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I dont understand workflow AT ALL


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This is not working for me.

I import an OBJ with UV. I then subdivide it using res+. I put some sculpt on it on few layers. But I am unable to extract a displacement based on my sculpting, as I would in Mudbox. In Paint /Textures/Texture Baking Tool . I set Smooth Mesh ON, normals and displacement map. 4096X4096 . But after OK, no map is generated. What am I missing. I am actually somewhat baffled as to workflow logic. From single imported mesh, there separate objects for painting, sculpting, UV. I don't get it, I want to work on a single object that I am sculpting , and painting.

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I think I got part of the whole picture. As I got a displacement map out. But here is something that keeps biting me. In Sculpt I use layers, and I am always carefull to have the desired layer layer selected. But for unknown reasons a sculpt operation would be applied to base layer zero in addition to selected layer. Other random operations, the sculp would be applied only to base layer zero. Worse still a sculpt op would be applied to all the layers. This is not acceptable. The last somewhat irritating issue is that I am unable to use Wacom eraser as eraser to erase sculpt operations on a selected layer. I really appreciate that 3DCOAT can render to Prman directly and I feel for the Ukrainian guys, and want to support them. But I need to understand this app, and its not quite clicking. What I need it for is to be an in-line sculpting and displacement map app for Houdini work flow. So a polymesh with UV is exported out of Houdini as OBJ or FBX, then imported into 3DCoat, sculpted, then displacement  and normal maps are extracted and used back in Houdini with PrmanRIS. As an option the original resculpted mesh is exported out with its UV's and point numbers intact to be used as blend shape target. Or a higher res subdivided sculpted mesh is exported out and brought into Houdini. In Houdini, I then transfer P, N, UV, V attributes of lower rez base mesh onto subdivided mesh. So that sculpted sub-divided mesh does not need to be rigged. But thats getting a bit too technical for this post. 

Thank you 

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Hi 

View each room as a “mini-application” connected through and through. The structure helps you to concentrate on one operation at a time and make your entire working time as productive as possible.

When you need to provide your model with high levels of “actual” displacement by means of sculpting or “painting” this displacement, the best mode to use is the “Microvertex” mode.

In Micro-Vertex mode, you can go to the FILE Menu > EXPORT > High Poly Mesh. That will bake the displacement down to the mesh.

//edit

Go to Edit > Preferences > Brushing and turn ON Treat eraser as pen

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I actually need to bake displacement into any common image file format, but 16 bit .tif seems to work best. That seems to be done from Paint module. I get the modules. What I don't get is paint object, sculpt object, uv object, voxel clay object, polymesh object, microvertex object, etc... I like to if possible, work on a single object, on which I paint, sculpt, and export. I am most used to using Mudbox to sculpt and paint displacement + normals, and then paint color, roughness, etc.. in Substance3D Painter. Into both Mudbox and Sub3D Painter a mesh with UV is brought in, and off I go. In Mudbox I can subdivide then go and down sub-d divisions. But not in Coat.  Once I Res+ a mesh, it won't go down a level.  Something is getting by me, and I don't understand what. The sculpt tools for voxel SDF clay are different then sculpt tools for imported mesh surfaces. Fine as long it works. So if I sample SDF clay from mesh surface with existing UV, imported into Coat, then what happens to those UVs when SDF clay is sampled from that mesh. This is kind of confusing, and having sculpt tree separate from paint tree and different objects for each, the process gets away from me, and I loose control and understanding of what is happening. Sorry but the YT vdeos don't do it for me. Then there is all these messages, and backround operations that destroy, or seem to destroy, workflow. If sculpting gets too heavy then puting hirez version destroys layers and freezes all prior work into layer. Why and when that happens is confusion. Then even with layers, some tools destroy layers. The sculpting tools applies tool to all layers, frozen or not, then some tools apply to hidden layers others do not.  There are some ops I will never use in Coat, specifically retopo and UV. I am sure they are great, but that is not what I need sculpting app for. I need it to paint sculpted displacement with undercut export capability, and tangent normal maps for PrMan 24 out of Houdini. BTW I really like direct render from Coat via Prman! Very nice.

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Posted (edited)

Yeah, thats what I don't quite understand with Coat. The workflow logic. All right so I bring in polymesh with UV. I then res+ 3 levels which gives me a fairly high density sculpt mesh to work with. Now in View menu there Low Poly [6] display option. Sounds great, but activating Low Poly does not appear to do anything to high rez geometry display. OK so what is that for?

So I sculpt what I need. Now I need to export displacement baked texture. I hide the paint object, as it is not needed. Leaving only the  sculpted mesh. I then bake the texture. But no texture is baked. Nothing happens. 

If I leave the paint object visible and export. I get plain white maps. No displacement. 

Kind of confusing as to what is the correct process to get a baked displacement texture?

3DCoatTexBake.png

Edited by Dave_ah
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8 hours ago, Carlosan said:

Hi 

View each room as a “mini-application” connected through and through. The structure helps you to concentrate on one operation at a time and make your entire working time as productive as possible.

When you need to provide your model with high levels of “actual” displacement by means of sculpting or “painting” this displacement, the best mode to use is the “Microvertex” mode.

In Micro-Vertex mode, you can go to the FILE Menu > EXPORT > High Poly Mesh. That will bake the displacement down to the mesh.

//edit

Go to Edit > Preferences > Brushing and turn ON Treat eraser as pen

There is no High Poly Mesh export option.

I gotta say. I am disappointed. Whoever designed this process as it is in 3DCoat , kind of well ...   Either it is unnecessarily difficult or it is insufficiently described and thus confusing. I thought that individual painting and sculpting tools are pretty good. But sense I am unable to extract usefull textures that I can use, Coat is not much use to me.  Basic question remains. How do I get the displacement texture out of 3DCOAT?

3DCOAT_File_Export_HighPolyMesh_missing.png

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You can only sculpt on Sculpt Room. 

Any model imported in Sculpt loose the uvmaps (if any), 

So in Retopo Room import the LPmodel with UVs, on Sculpt room import the HPmodel. 

When sculpt process is finished switch to Retopo room and Bake using this option

image.png

Once bake process is finished, tThe model with the textures is automatically sent to the Paint Room, here you can paint and add more details if you need.

Use Textures > Export to get displacement texture.

 

Understanding 3DCoat Mesh Types

In this videos we are going to look at the three different mesh types that exist in 3DCoat they are associated with the three primary workspaces paint, retopo, and sculpt. It's important to know the differences between them.

The Tweak room and the UV room are companion workspaces to the paint workspace in the sense that they work exclusively on paint objects.

 

 

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Layers on 3DC

- What is layer 0 in 3DCoat ?

Think about layers as you think about Photoshop layers. Layer0 is like Background in PS. 

The Layers Panel changes depending on which Room you are working in. A layer is not per object base, but kinda a scene layer.

Layer0: Avoid using it for any purpose but transparency.
It contains mesh data and a “base coat” of paint for baking.
If you erase the paint things still bake just fine, however the transparent areas created will be baked as alpha/trans.
Also if you hide Layer 0 it bakes fine, and entirely with alpha/trans. where any other layer doesn't contain color data.

Displacement is always based on Layer0.

But positions of vertices on exported OBJ file depend on your choice. It is better to use such combinations of export checkboxes:

- set 1:

[x] Use source positions
[ ] Pick positions from Layer0
[ ] Coarse…

Use it if Layer0 was not distorted

- set 2:

[ ] Use source positions
[x] Pick positions from Layer0
[x] Coarse…

Use it is Layer 0 was distorted. Pick from layer 0 will save new positions, coarse will prepare it for further subdivision.

But if Layer X was not normally distorted then just displacement export will not help. You need to re-bake mesh to get normal displacement or use vector displacement.

----------------------------------------------------------------------

In the Paint Room, Layers are used much like you would in Photoshop or other painting applications, where aspects of each Layer can be controlled independently, such as blending modes and opacity but with additional control over how Depth painting affects the Layer in question.

On Sculpt room, instead of colour information it has deformation information per layer. So for example one layer could be for large sculpting deformations and then another could be for fine details, etc.

To bake the sculpt-layer deformation, resampling the mesh should achieve that.

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Hope you find this helpful. I made a short video going through the process of creating, baking and exporting a displacement map from the sculpt room to the paint room and viewing the exported displacement map.

 

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"

 

So in Retopo Room import the LPmodel with UVs, on Sculpt room import the HPmodel. 

When sculpt process is finished switch to Retopo room and Bake using this option"


Does not appear to function. What is supposed to happen? I still did not get displacement map? Something ain't working here. I am missing something basic. What is an LPModel? What is HPModel?

To recap. Here is what I am looking for. 

I import poly geometry that has UV's via OBJ or FBX.

I sculpt on the surface.

I extract displacement texture to use back in host application. In my case Houdini. 

It appears I am unable to do it in 3DCoat. Likely becouse either I am missing some basic knowledge or not understanding in how it works, or less likely is that is something is not functioning as expected in 3Coat. I find it appalling that it is so difficult to do in 3DCoat. A ***** moment here for me?

3DCoat_sculpt_retopo.png

3DCoat_paint_retopo.png

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Posted (edited)

OK, let me see if I can walk through this. Sorry if I'm missing something or if this is already something you did or know.

  1. You have imported an OBJ mesh with UV's already made.
  2. from there you can send that mesh over to the sculpt workspace using one of the options under the Bake menu.
  3. Take subdivided paint mesh into Sculpt Room (This is the one I usually use)
  4. Now add any additional sculpting while in the sculpt room
  5. When done adding sculpted details, jump into the Retopo Room. You may see your Paint Object in the Retopo Room along with your sculpt. I would hide the paint objects using the Paint Object panel (if you don't have that docked somewhere then open it from Windows>Panels>Paint Objects)
  6. Now you should only see the sculpt mesh in the Retopo Room.
  7. Bring in the low poly model, either using the Mesh>Import option or using the Mesh>Take mesh from Paint Room option.
  8. Now you should see your low poly mesh with UV's.
  9. From here you can Bake your new sculpt mesh onto the low Poly mesh using the Bake>Bake w/ Normal Map + flat displacement
  10. Just be sure to set your outer scan depth large enough to cover your new displacements.

I hope you find this helpful.

Cheers!

Edited by alexn007
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Posted (edited)

Yes, that is what I do. But it ain't working. LIkely I am missing a complete detailed recipe that I can follow rote. Step by step.   I suspect that there is a detail that is not mentioned, or numbers settings which appear meaningless but are important. I see Inner Scan Depth and Outer Scan Depth. Based on brush units. That is a completely meaningless explanation. A 'brush unit'? WTFis that? So I just use defaults. 

I import sub-d poly shell via OBJ or FBX. Geometry has UV

I bring it into Sculpt room and Res+ three times to give a high but not very high poly count mesh.

I sculpt on various Layers and set the Layer depth as desired.

After sculpting I need to export the displacement texture. This part is NOT working for me. This should be simple Export.

I have the original OBJ and the Coat project to upload if anyone cares to take a look. But I need a working recipe in Coat, or I have to move on, and just remain using Mudbox. This has been a disappointing counter productive evaluation.

Edited by Dave_ah
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Posted (edited)

So after the step when you sculpt, and want to export your disp texture, are you jumping into the retopo room? Make sure if you are seeing your paint mesh in there to hide it using the paint object panel. This way you can import your UV'd obj mesh into the retopo room and then begin using the bake tools.

I would like to try this with your project files if you're up for sharing them, just so I can verify the steps. I know this can be frustrating. It will get sorted out. We all went through this with pretty much any new program at some point, I'm sure. :dash2:

Edited by alexn007
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5 hours ago, alexn007 said:

So after the step when you sculpt, and want to export your disp texture, are you jumping into the retopo room? Make sure if you are seeing your paint mesh in there to hide it using the paint object panel. This way you can import your UV'd obj mesh into the retopo room and then begin using the bake tools.

I would like to try this with your project files if you're up for sharing them, just so I can verify the steps. I know this can be frustrating. It will get sorted out. We all went through this with pretty much any new program at some point, I'm sure. :dash2:

"way you can import your UV'd obj mesh into the retopo room a" I think this is where the problem lies  What do you mean import UV obj into retopo room? Do I re-import the OBJ from file, or point to some node already in 3DCoat scene?  I already did that when I imported the original unsculpted geometry into 3DCoat for sculpting.

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47 minutes ago, Dave_ah said:

"way you can import your UV'd obj mesh into the retopo room a" I think this is where the problem lies  What do you mean import UV obj into retopo room? Do I re-import the OBJ from file, or point to some node already in 3DCoat scene?  I already did that when I imported the original unsculpted geometry into 3DCoat for sculpting.

This might be your issue...you have to import the UV'd mesh into the Retopo room separately from the the sculpt room and then bake onto that UV'd mesh.

If you bring the mesh into the sculpt room directly, it is used as a stamp or cookie cutter to make a sculptable mesh.

You could also import in the first place directly to the Retopo room and then there is an option to copy the retopo room mesh into the sculpt space as a stamp, in which case a copy would remain in the Retopo room.  To do it this way, you'll want to first bring the mesh into the Retopo space and then switch to the sculpt space and use the Import tool (pick from Retopo button) on the left to bring in the Retopo mesh as a stamp in the sculpt space.  There will be no connection to these two meshes at this point...but there is a way to have the retopo room mesh 'follow' the shape changes you might make on the sculpt mesh if you check the 'Conform Retopo' mesh option at the top.

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This might be your issue...you have to import the UV'd mesh into the Retopo room separately from the the sculpt room and then bake onto that UV'd mesh.

OK, what is the precise recipe for doing this? 

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If the OBJ has UV's already, then you would import it directly from the Retopo Room from the Mesh>Import option located on the top section next to the Bake option. Once it's imported you should see your Obj with the simple UV checker pattern sitting on top of your sculpt mesh (in the Retop room). Then proceed with the baking process.

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Dave_ah

As other member already said, you need to change thinking way to manage 3d coat..  I understand, it was difficult enough, but if you often do same things, you will feel  it is not so un-usual process and maybe reasonable way to manage each process...

1.   You need UV mesh in retopo room (non sculpt and usually low poly + UV)  (it become bake target, so if you hope to bake some textures of sculpted mesh to UV mesh, you need to import UV mesh in retopo room or 3d coat can not bake anything.. (though you can paint high poly mesh in paint room with vertex painting. but it is not what you consider for current your purpose)

retopomesh.thumb.JPG.2fccdc6f8c0a315d72cc180bf8c9afe4.JPG

highpolymesh.thumb.JPG.3a23be1c60bb04b8f12ad840ff4b91be.JPG

 

2. if you simply import mesh in sculpt room then start sculpt,  you need to re import non sculpted Mesh with UV in retopo room , and set retopo groups name as same as volume name in sculpt room meshes. Then 3d coat will consider, each "Poly groups" are for each "volume" part  (sculpt room) bake target (with UV) 

(though I seldom try it,, I usually import retopo mesh in retopo room/paiint room first..then in sculpt room, use retopo mesh in sculpt)

As mentioned, if you will try same thing (bake texture with sculpt to UV mesh), you may better import mesh in retopo room first. then pick the retopo room object to Sculpt room, it is recommended process.  use this function in sculpt room.

useotherroommesh.thumb.JPG.c68ae821c511b9bf14de4360ffe02930.JPG

Then start sculpt in sculpt room. (now you have 2 different mesh in each room)   Each room use individual mesh. it is 3d coat concept,, so it is sometimes complex until understand theory.

If you actually follow these things,, (you have same poly groups mesh in retopo room as sculpt room sculpted mesh volume)then bake map .

bakestart.thumb.JPG.4a368351cb73e2df97c5f8ff61278d0e.JPG

it will open cage setting view (under pic) , then you adjust Inner and outer Scan depth, along with sculpt mesh first.

with swap show inner/outer shell.  (so if you increase Scan depth out-side,  outer shell expand (along with normal basically, sometimes corrupt though)

Inner cage need to be under sculpt mesh. outer cage need to be over sculpt mesh. (but should not get too large margin)

outshell.thumb.JPG.3dda72ceebd23e056d02b9d55a56cb35.JPG

For some part, you may try scan depth altering  tool (with this menu open, current tool work as shell deform brush, it only change inner/outer shell shape)

After finish to adjust shell depth (or scan depth/ cage depth ), simply click ok. then you will see (texture import setting window)

texturesetting.thumb.JPG.ed0c00e4cc5421b90965643050ae3b46.JPG

The complex part is,,  you can not directly save baked texture, ,but once generate new mesh in paint room with paint layers (which include color, depth infomation separatelly)

You may get new paint mesh + paint layers like this.

Paint mesh, when you need displacement map, you may better set initial sub-division (eg 3 times, or 4 times if you can) as same as you sub-D in sculpt mesh)  >> oyu can get clean displacement. 

  (if you had imported mesh in paint room, you may see double mesh, with many layers,  so usually untill bake textures,

I remove paint mesh first,,, anyway, once you bake textures ,, you may see new paint mesh in paint room like this.

paintmeshgenerated.thumb.JPG.f790891ac3d1d3db6b408f834f0f2b15.JPG

Then you can save normal/disp texture as image, from Paint room menus. if you see somehow wrong, remove paint mesh, and try bake again with adjust shells  and initial sub-D setting..

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  • Carlosan changed the title to I dont understand workflow AT ALL
16 minutes ago, Dave_ah said:

FH! "You need UV mesh in retopo room (non sculpt and usually low poly + UV)  "

HOW DO I GET UV MESH INTO RETOPO?

image.png

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No joy! Someone who knows Coat has to take a look at project file.  This process workflow is convoluted and difficult. This has become obvious. As it seems to be difficult to be described as rote process.

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