|Painting a Dinosaur in Deep
Carl E. Schou
November 31, 2001
Dilophosaurus of Lynx Lake
Here we go again with the dinosaurs.
The last tutorial covered the modeling of a Dilophosaurus in
Organica. In this tutorial, we're going to paint that model using
Deep Paint 3D with Texture Weapons. We'll also be making the eye
maps in Bryce using procedural textures. The picture above,
"The Dilophosaurus of Lynx Lake" shows a Bryce rendering of
the painted model against a background of pine trees which were
common in the early Jurassic period. If you haven't already
built the Dilophosaurus model, you can probably find something
similar on the Internet using your favorite search engine. The
techniques used here, V.A.M.P. mapping and Projection Painting, can be
applied to a wide variety of projects in DP3D.
Overview of Painting
Build or get the model you want to
Import model into DP3D, VAMP map the
model, pack the map.
Produce or get image to use as brush
and load it into DP3D.
Projection Paint the model in DP3D.
Produce or get image file to use for
Apply image to eye objects.
Flatten texture layers, save maps and
Import OBJ file and maps into Bryce for rendering.
VAMP Your Model
A nice feature of DP3D with Texture
Weapons is the ability to apply V.A.M.P. UV mapping to the model.
V.A.M.P. (Variable Angle Multi Patch) mapping allows the user to
paint without distortion on nearly any surface. This is a far cry
from simple spherical, cylindrical, or planar UV mapping.
model from the last tutorial that we’ll be using is called
DilophosaurusUV.obj. If you’re going to use a different model,
substitute the name for your model in the rest of the tutorial and
you’ll be good to go.
First we’re going to load our model
into DP3D, V.A.M.P. map the model, and then pack the map. This can
be slow, particularly if your model is fairly large. Start up DP3D
and load your model by selecting File> Open>
DilophosaurusUV.obj. Click OK on the Materials Import pop-up
window to accept the defaults. Add a color channel by selecting
Elements [F7], clicking the Layers tab, and clicking the C box to
the left of Base Layer. The Add New Channel pop-up will open.
Click on the Color button. A pop-up will ask for the image
resolution. Enter 2048 by 2048 pixels. You can always scale it
down later if it’s bigger than you need. A color picker pop-up
will open to allow you to select the overall background color of
your model. I picked a dark brownish green color. Click the Map
button at the top of the screen to open the Mercator UV window and
you should see something similar to the screenshot below.
||Click the Select
All button, then click Map. On the Map Selected pop-up, click the Analytic
V.A.M.P. button. On the V.A.M.P. Parameters pop-up, accept
the Distortion Allowed default. When the mapping is done,
you should see something similar to the image at below left.
Click the Pack button to optimize the resolution of the texture maps you're
going to produce. On the Pack All Options pop-up, click
Better (slow!) and accept the values by clicking OK. After
the packing is done, your screen should look like the image at
below right. Now it's time to save your work by clicking
File> Save As> DilophosaurusVAMP.dp3. You will also be
asked whether to save the image files in the TIF or the BMP
format. For most applications, the TIF format will work fine.
Prepare the Image Brush
For the skin surface texture, we’re
going to create a new brush with color and bump channels by
loading a suitable image into DP3D. The few skin imprints
found have shown a pebbly scale texture, similar to lizard
skin. After some searching, I found several good images of lizard skin
at http://textures.forrest.cz/ under the Skin and Fur section.
There is a Lizard Skin brush included with DP3D, but the scale
texture doesn't really work for a dinosaur.
To create a new brush
preset, we're going to make a bump image from our original
image. Then, we're going to copy a similar brush and use it
as a template for the new brush. First, take the image you're going to use and defocus it
using the blur filter in DP3D or Photoshop. Save the defocused image
for use in the bump channel. In DP3D, select the Presets tab
[F5] on the Command Panel, go into Skins, Fur and Hair and select Lizard Skin. Click on
Save As and save the brush as Lizard Skin 2. Under Brush and
Paint Settings [F6], click on Texture > Texture Channels.
You should see the image for the original Lizard Skin
texture. Click on File in the Color row and use the browser
to select your new image. Click on File in the Bump row and
select the defocused version of the same image. Under Behavior > Advanced Behavior
set Hue to –194, Saturation to 68, and Luminosity to 31.
Save your new brush.
Paint the Overall Texture
Now, we’re going to Projection
Paint the model using single-sided and double-sided
painting. We will rotate the model as we paint since any
parts that are at an angle to the viewer will be distorted unless
the view point is rotated.
Make sure the 3D window is active by
clicking on its border and set the view for the right side (Shift
+ R). Create a new image layer on top of the base layer,
give it color and bump channels, and name it Lizard Skin.
Turn on Projection Painting and set it to Paint Hidden Pixels
Also. Click on the brush in the Toolbar and paint a single
sample stroke on the side of the model. You’re going to
want to adjust the color, size, and rotation of the image
brush. Make the adjustments in the Brush Settings palette,
then click Edit>Undo (CTRL + Z) to remove your sample brush
stroke. After a couple of adjustments, you should be ready
to start painting the entire skin surface.
Paint only the areas on the side of
the body that are directly facing you. When
this part is done, select Paint Visible Pixels Only. Rotate
the model until an unpainted surface is facing the viewer, then
paint. Continuing this process, you can cover the whole
surface with scales. You will need to adjust the
scale and rotation of the brush as you work so that the scales
follow the contours of the body. This is particularly
important around the eyes, mouth, and head crests.
Paint the Details
To paint the claws, create a new
layer with color, bump, and shine channels and call it
Claws. Select the Human Skin brush preset and set Hue to 0,
Saturation to -170, and Luminance to -78. Projection Paint
is set for Visible Pixels Only.
To paint the tongue and inside of the
mouth, create a new layer with color, bump, and shine channels and
call it Mouth. Select the Human Skin brush preset and set
Hue to -15, Saturation to 7, and Luminance to 15 for the
tongue. For the inside of the mouth, set Hue to -15,
Saturation to 78, and Luminance to 15. If you want to get
fancy, you can sample the color from the mouth of a crocodile and
use that to paint only the color channel. This way, you'll
still have the bump and shine information from the human skin
preset. I found a picture of a Caiman on the Internet with its mouth open. I opened the picture in
DP3D, used the Eyedropper to sample the color, and painted away.
To ensure proper dental hygiene,
create a new layer called Teeth with color and shine
channels. Use the Simple Medium brush set to an ivory color
and a strong white shine channel. Projection Paint as needed
and don't forget to floss.
One feature you see on a lot of
dinosaur models and pictures is the presence of broad scales going
down the front of the shins. In birds, these scales are
called the scutellate tarsus. It’s not known for certain
if dinosaurs had these scales, but they add a nice touch and
people expect to see it. To make these scales, we’re going
to use double-sided Projection Painting and take advantage of the
distortion that occurs when you paint over the edge of an
object. Create a layer with color, bump, and shine channels
and call it Scutellate Tarsus (or Shin Scales). Use the
marquee tool to select the leg you're going to work on
first. Click on Show Only Selected Faces to hide everything
but that leg. Adjust your viewpoint so you're looking at the
leg from the side. Click on Paint Hidden Pixels Also and try
painting from the middle of the leg to the front. Rotate the
viewpoint to see what the front of this leg looks like.
Again, you’ll have to adjust the brush size and image scale and
rotation till you get something that looks right. When you’re
finished with the first leg deselect everything (CTRL + D) and
click on Unhide All. Now rotate the view to repeat the whole
process on the other leg. This process of Projection
Painting across an edge is illustrated in the images shown below
right and below center.
Finally, lighten up the underbelly by
getting out of Projection Paint mode and using the Lighten brush
in the Image Processing presets. This is shown in the image
at below right.
Textures in Bryce
Since dinosaur eyes are generally
assumed to have been similar to lizard or bird eyes, we're going
to take a different approach so we don't end up with regular
looking human eyes. We’re going to generate an eye image as a procedural
texture in Bryce. Because we’re making an image of a
textured sphere, the spherical distortion is already in the flat
image, allowing it to be used for Projection Painting onto a
Start up Bryce and create a sphere. Set the
viewpoint to a top view and zoom in until the sphere nearly fills
the screen. Delete the ground plane and set the Sky for a
simple black background. Adjust the position of the sun so
the light is pointing straight down at the sphere. Click the
little arrow next to Edit to bring up the Materials window.
Select Abalone2 in the Wild and Fun materials group. Enter
CTRL + M to go into the Materials Lab and set the controls as
||Open the Deep
Texture Editor and modify the settings as shown below. This
image also shows the Noise and Filter settings for the first of
the three texture components. There is no Phase contribution
to this texture.
below shows the settings for the second and third texture
components. As in the first component, there is no Phase
contribution to the textures.
||The size of
the pupil is controlled by the vertical (Y) gain of the
sphere. The picture below shows the final rendering of the
eye texture saved as a JPG file.
Back in DP3D, we’re going to
incorporate the eye image we just generated in Bryce. The
method we’re using, dropping the eye image onto the eye object,
works well unless you zoom in for an extreme close-up of the
eye. To do that, you’ll need to refer to the manual and
re-map the eyes separately then apply a higher resolution
image. An alternative is to map the eye image onto a sphere,
then use the new eye object to replace the old one inside of Poser.
Open the eye image you just
created. It will pop up in a new 2D window. Select the
whole image by pressing CTRL +A, then copy it into the buffer by
pressing CTRL + C. Make
the 3D window active again by clicking on the border. Create a
new layer with color and shine channels and call it Eyes. Set
the view for the right side and zoom in with the eye centered in the
screen. Click on the Objects tab under Elements [F7] and turn
off everything but the eye that is facing you.
Now enter the Projection Paint
mode. Paste your copied image into the 3D window by pressing
CTRL + V. The Move Options window will open. Use the
controls to adjust the position and size of the image to fit the
eye. When you think you have it, write down the position and
size settings you used and press the Drop button. Rotate you
viewpoint and see how the eye looks. The black border should
be a thin even line around the edge if the size and position is
right. If you need to make adjustments, just clear the Eye
layer, return to Projection Paint mode, and try again using your last
settings as a reference. When your satisfied with the
placement of the eye texture, switch to a standard brush with only
the shine channel active, and paint on some highlights.
When the first eye is finished, set the
viewpoint for the left side and use the selections under the Objects
tab to make only the other eye visible. Repeat the process to
apply the texture to the other eye. You should be able to use
the same size settings as before but the position will probably be
If by some miracle you’ve gotten this
far without saving your work, you’ll really want to do it
now. If you don’t, your ability to backtrack and fix
individual layers will be lost in the next step.
Flatten the Layers
If you’re satisfied with the
appearance of your model, it’s time to reduce the number of maps
to make the textures easier to apply in other programs like Poser
or Bryce. Click on the Layers tab and select Flatten Layers
and save the result as a new DP3 file. Next, save the OBJ
file you'll be using for posing and final rendering as
DilophosaurusDP3D.obj in the new DP3 folder. The image below
shows the model ready for export into Bryce.
Let it Loose
Now we're ready
to release our toothy friend into a
Bryce generated landscape. Open up Bryce and click File >
Import Object and use the browser to select
DilophosaurusDP3D.obj. Open the Materials Lab and assign the
TIF image maps to the Color, Bump, and Specularity channels.
M0CM0.TIF is used for the Color Pict image and M0CA0.TIF is used for
the Color Alpha image. Similarly, M0BM0.TIF and M0BA0.TIF
are used for the Bump channel and M0SM0.TIF and M0SA0.TIF are used
The Rest of
The picture at
the top of this tutorial, "The Dilophosaurus of Lynx Lake", shows
the painted model rendered in Bryce against a backdrop assembled in
Photoshop. The image of the pine trees was taken at Lynx Lake
in Prescott, Arizona, a few hundred miles south of where the
original fossils were found. The sky in the picture didn't fit in so
it was masked out in Photoshop using Mask Pro. A sky image
with clouds was generated in Bryce and imported into Photoshop where
it was placed in the layer underneath the tree image. The
composite image was exported as a JPG file back into Bryce where it
was applied to a finite 2D plane to create a Pict object for use as a
Well, that's it
for the painting phase of this project. Next time, we'll pose
the model in Poser Pro Pack so it won't look like it's getting ready
for gym class.
yeah, remember to floss after rendering.
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