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Quick Tip: Create a Cool Looking Sugar Based Material in Modo

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Read Time: 4 min

In this quick tip, author Tomasz Lechociński will show you how to create a cool sugar based material in Modo 601 using fur. This type of procedural material is great for decorative (or Christmas) themed projects and was originally created as an entry for Luxology's preset contest, which you can find out more about in this thread from the Luxology forums.

Step 1

To start, download the default-preset scene from the Luxology forums, or you can search the Luxology forums for: "PresetScene-Yazan.lxo” to get the latest version (there are also videos available that explain it's usage). In the Shader Tree palette, locate the group 9ball and create a new group inside it by going to Add Layer > Group. Rename it "X-mas sugar ceramic”.

Add another group inside it and name it "painted ball”. Next add a Material to that group using Add Layer > Material [1] and Rename it "base”. With this material selected go to the Properties palette and edit it's Material Ref sub tab. Set its Diffuse Amount to 80%, choose a green color and check Conserve Energy for real world light absorption.

Set the Specular Amount to 10%, Fresnel to 0% and adjust the Specular Color to light green to tint the highlights. Set the Reflection Amount to 0% and the Fresnel amount to 0%, this will give us a painted matte surface. Change the Bump Altitude to 500um and the Displacement Distance to small value of 2 mm.


Step 2

Add a procedural layer to change the color base for the material's incidence angle. Go to the Shader Tree and Add Layer > Processing > Gradient. Set it's Blend mode to Multiply with an Opacity of 100% and then edit the gradient curve. To do so, press Edit Gradient, and you will see another window. On the left side, select the three color Channels (R,G,B) and Middle Mouse click to add a key in the middle [1]. With all three points on the curve selected [1], change the first key color to a light green, and the second [2] to a darker green.


Step 3

Break the surface and make it look a little bit distorted by adding a procedural material. To do so, go to Shader Tree Add Layer > Enchance:modo Textures > Noise> Lump. In it's Properties Palette, select the sub tab Texture Locator [1] and change it's Transform size to 19.7cm on every axis.

Change it's Projection Type to UV Map, and from the UV Map drop-down menu, select Texture. For the bitmap tiling options, leave the Horizontal and Vertical Wrap set to 1.0. In the Properties Palette, select the sub tab Texture Layers [2], and set the Noise Type to Perlin [3].


Step 4

Add a group for the Fur material, by going to the Shader Tree and Add Layer > Group. Now change it's name to “Fur”. And in it's Properties panel, change the Scope to fur.


Step 5

Next Go to the Shader Tree and Add Layer > Material and name it “plastic trans” and leave it's parameters unchanged for now. In the Shader Tree drop-down menu, choose Add Layer > Special > Fur Material and name it: “Fur - plastic drops”. In it's Properties Fur Material Sub tab [1], change the parameters as follows: Random Seed: 4568, Render Density: 600%, Spacing: 2.7mm, Length: 10um, Width: 49%, Offset: 0, Billboards: Off, Type: Cylinders, Max segments: 1, Strip rotation: 0%.


Step 6

In it's Properties Fur Shape Sub tab [1], change the parameters as follows: Clumps: 0%, Strays: 1%, Growth Jitter: 0%, Position Jitter: 0%, Direction Jitter: 0%, Size Jitter: 60%, Flex Amplitude: 0%, Root bend: 0%, Curls Amplitude: 0%, Fur bump, Amplitude: 0%.


Step 7

Now it's time to edit the plastic sugar drops material. Select the Plastic trans material and change it's properties as follows: [1] Diffuse Amount: 0%, Conserve Energy: Check, Specular Amount and Fresnel: 0%, Reflection Amount: 4%, Fresnel: 95%.


Step 8

Now edit it's Material Trans properties as follows: [1] Transparency Amount: 96%, Refractive index: 1.5, Subsurface Amount: 80%, Scattering Distance: 0 m.


Step 9

Your shader is ready. Now you can select the top group titled “X-mas sugar ceramic” and Right-click on it. Choose the Save Preset With Thumbnail ... option and Save your preset to disk. Next press F9 to render a full resolution preview.


Step 10

Open the Preset Browser by pressing F6, and navigate to the folder that your preset is saved to. Find the “X-mas sugar ceramic “ preset and Right-click on it. Choose Replace Icon with Last Render, and now your preset is ready to use. You can make some nice decorative Christmas bottles or even Easter eggs with it.


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