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DOCUMENTATION

HYPER-REALISTIC FABRIC MATERIALS

For BLENDER 3.0 and up

USING Eevee or Cycles RENDERING ENGINE

Introduction

First of all, we would like to thank you for being interested in this package of our hyper-realistic textile materials specially made for Blender software, compatible from version 3.0 and up.
Without going into any particular premise, we want to explain to you right away in the simplest and most practical way in what contexts it is applicable, and how to use these materials that are also customizable in many features.

Main Features

HR-Fabric Materials 465 Pro is a package of textile materials for Blender, which hyper-realistically recreate various real fabrics from Designs For Textiles converted for the 3D world.
The materials have been optimized for use with both the Eevee and Cycles rendering engines, although Eevee has some realism limitations that do not allow it to achieve the achievable result as with Cycles, and specifically the use of the displacement map is only functional in Cycles.

The package as can be guessed from the name, has as many as 465 different materials/color variants.
We have selected various types of designs and patterns with characteristics suitable for most possible uses, including just by way of example, for creating clothing, textile-type accessories, furniture and more.
In the package there are also 4 scenes/designs specially created to very quickly test each material for different standard uses.

Master Scene :
It is the master project where you find all 465 materials, divided into clear categories thanks to the asset-browser, in which you find a mesh of “base” fabric with various folds simulating the covering of a classic sphere.
This scene besides being important, because it contains all the materials, is very useful to be able to test each material on the fabric to see the general effect you will have on a basic fabric, i.e. without any particular application.

Pillows Scene:
This project is designed to test materials on objects, which like pillows have curvilinear shapes, and to quickly test the result in similar applications.
It is very suitable if you want to understand how each material will look, logically on pillows, and also on other objects with somewhat similar shape characteristics, such as sofas, chairs, and many other furniture objects.

Curtains Scene:
This project is perfect for testing any use of materials on curtain-like fabrics, or applications with close characteristics. Such as rugs with pleats, flags, and any type of use in which we have one or more sides of the fabric fixed and the others free to move due to gravity, motion, wind, etc.

T-Shirt Scene:
This project is clearly intended to test materials on clothing items, in our case we chose a feminine T-shirt that also allows two different types of materials to be applied on the same T-shirt, so we can also try combinations of different materials side by side.

Let us note right away that only the Master project has all 465 materials, instead for the other projects, in order not to make them too big as a file size, you will have to import from the master scene the materials you want to test. We will explain later in this manual how the import procedure is done.

The first thing to do after downloading/purchasing the package, which is in a single compressed ZIP-type file, will be to unzip it to any folder on your computer. Assuming that by now anyone who knows how to use a computer is able to decompress a ZIP file, we will not explain this probably already familiar step.
After decompressing the file into a folder of one’s choice, we will see this structure and set of files:

The first two files should NOT be touched or deleted, because they contain the information of the categories of the various materials. If you delete those files, you will lose the list of categories.
Also if you happen to want to move or copy the Master scene file, it is important to copy the first two files of the list (blender_asset.cats) to the new folder as well, to have the list in a different folder as well.
Blender does not currently allow any other procedure for copying the list of material assets.

The first project to be opened is the Master scene project, which, as already anticipated, is the project that contains all 465 different hyper-realistic textile materials.

You can do this two ways to open it: double-click on the file so that the system will load Blender and consequently the project.
Or if you already have a Blender session open you can do this by simply loading the file like any other Blender project.

After loading the project you will be faced with this screen (if you don’t see this screen, at least in a similar way, it may mean that there was some malfunction and you will have to try opening it again). In case you have any problems of any kind that you can’t solve we suggest that you contact us via the support page of our website.

In the top center you will see the black mesh of the fabric as if wrapping a sphere, at the bottom the alphabetical list of the various materials, via the asset-browser.
At the left bottom you will see the various categories open with the corresponding materials.

The macro categories present (with closed list) are:

Top right of the screen, as shown in the image below, you will have all the components of the scene:

At the bottom towards the right you will have the description of the material that is currently selected in the list of categories, with its name, any search tags. Also in the lens form you can search with keywords/tags for various materials.

Now we need to turn on Blender’s material simulation so we can see the result on the already applied fabric mesh. The project should already be ready in cycles rendering with all the correct settings for the best visualization.
By default we used the material with the following code/name: MT-VAR15-DT-00050-GP
As per the image below:



At this point you are ready to be able to make full use of all the materials.

APPLYING MATERIALS TO ANY MESH

Each fabric/material is very easily applicable on any type of mesh, whether with very simple shapes or complex figures.
Logically since the materials represent real fabrics, the best effect, as per the examples in the other scenes as well, will be on meshes properly created to represent textiles, with folds and other features of real use of textile materials.

For application, the quickest and most immediate procedure is via drag and drop. Take with the mouse from the asset list at the bottom any material, and bring it into the views window above the desired mesh, release the left mouse button, and immediately you will have the chosen textile material covering the entire surface of your mesh, or the part of the mesh you have previously selected.

MATERIAL CUSTOMIZATION

In addition to the particular realism of our materials, which are derived from real fabrics but recreated with different techniques devised by us, i.e., not with classic scanning that greatly limits customization, you have the ability to customize virtually any material in a unique way.

Before dealing with the various types of customizations, a brief premise about the real creation of textiles, which is often never explained in 3D by anyone, also because unfortunately often textile materials in the 3D world are simply adapted scans of any real fabric but not customizable, except in colors in global form, by classic post production methods or through complicated processing even manually with software such as Substance 3D painter and similar.
In our case, however, we also allow you to have fun customizing various features of each material, as happens in reality when they sell created real fabrics.

You have to know that in the real fabric world there are various types of textile techniques to creae the fabrics that you will then have on your clothes, or in your home and for everything else.
Without going into all the different techniques that exist now, we will mention two of the most widely used (not the only ones).
As you may know, fabrics have to be made by special machinery called looms. There are two main types of looms that differ in the type of technique used for weaving, those called heald looms and Jacquard looms.
The fundamental difference between the two methods is that the second one, the Jacquard, which is the one we also use for the simulation of these materials, is the one that allows us to create very varied and even large designs, thanks to a combination of weave and threads with changes in the colors of the various yarns.
Another method is to print the design on a smooth fabric of a neutral color, (usually light or dark), and this methodology does not allow for great visual quality effects, and also the patterns on the fabric have a fairly flat effect.

Only with the Jacquard method can the best effects also be recreated of high visual quality, as well as artistic quality.

Our materials therefore are the recreation, even in customizations, of the Jacquard method, the absolute highest quality weaving method still in existence today.
Generally, Jacquard fabrics in reality are also those of the highest value and cost.

Having said that we now move on to explain to you what kinds of customizations you can have with our materials, and how they work.

COLORS

Each material consists of various colors that can be changed independently.

This is one of the virtually unique features at the moment, which only our textile materials for Blender have, but also for other platforms that we are preparing.

Generally as we have already mentioned, the textile materials that are found for any kind of 3D application are created by starting from the scan of a real fabric, and then readjusted often manually with the various programs to make the textures, also devoting a lot of time to this phase.
With our materials, on the other hand, it is very easy to change the colors of each pattern and background as it happens in reality in the Jacquard technique, and all this in a very fast and intuitive way.
Before the practical explanation, let us warn you that each material has a number of different colors depending on the type of pattern it is made of, but the customization procedure is always the same for each color.

To customize the colors, you must have logically selected the mesh to which we have applied the material, as per the example below, and the mesh is selected when highlighted generally with the orange color outline. (We always use the fabric mesh from the master scene for the examples):

After making sure that you have selected the mesh with the material you want to customize, you need to change the display type, and select from the menu the window: SHADING.

Now we are in the shading visualization window, which should look pretty much like the image below (zone 2 depending on the materials might look quite different as nodes position and zoom):

Therefore, we have 3 pricipal areas:

1 – we can see our mesh and see the result of the customizations
2 – we have the node graphs to modify the various parameters
3 – we have the name and various details of our textile material

Now we need to turn on the rendering view so we can see the changes we will apply to the colors.

Now we have to zoom out zone 2 and adjust the various sectors according to one’s resolution/monitor to try to see the whole big node graph:

In zone 2 we can now see that the graph has a well-defined structure, and at the moment in terms of color customization we are interested in the zones highlighted in red called A and B.
The A zone group is the one that normally controls the pattern colors of each material, and the B zone, on the other hand generally controls the background color of the textile material.

Remember that each material has a different number of colors, the more colors there are, the more color nodes you will find.
Now let’s look at what the color nodes look like and see how to simply change each color:

For changing the color of a specific pattern, there are 3 nodes that can be changed:
1 – Change the brightness and contrast while leaving the color unchanged
2 – Edit the color properly via color wheel
3 – Modify the hue, saturation, and overall value of the respective pattern/color.

Logically, by changing the values of the various parameters you can modify the color in a very intuitive way. We recommend experimenting a bit, changing the values of the various parameters to get used to better understand how the color is altered.

This simple color change procedure is to be used for all color changes for both group A and group B.

Below is a short video in which we show some color changes.

AO MAP (Ambient occlusion)

Now we move on to the customization of AO MAP.
But first, for those who are not yet familiar with what AO MAP is, let’s give a brief explanation of it.

The AO map, has an important role in making any kind of material realistic, and basically it is that map that allows us to let our rendering software understand, how our materials will react in the areas of the mesh that have micro shadows, in our specific case, where the fabric will have its shadow areas.
So changing the AO MAP values, which are already optimized for the material anyway, can serve to change the way our material reacts with the shadows caused by the various possible folds in a fabric.
Remember that these folds are part of the mesh, and not part of the material.

To change the AO MAP simply vary the value of the node that handles this map, as in the image below:

In our node graph we find under the various color nodes, these two nodes (as per the image above), the first one is the AO Map and the second one is the range of change of the map, and how it affects the material.
Below is a short video demonstrating what happens when we change the range values of the AO Map.

Again, it is advisable to experiment a little to best understand how to change the range parameter of the AO Map.

Roughness MAP

The roughness map, is another important map for changing the appearance of a textile material.
It is very useful as it allows you to decide how much a fabric has a more or less matte or shiny appearance.

Normally Jacquard type fabrics, depending on the type of yarn used can be opaque or slightly shiny.
Usually when they are more opaque it is because they are made from yarns such as cotton, wool, and other similar ones.
When they are more shiny, we are dealing with fabrics made from silk yarns, or synthetic type yarns.
These are not absolute rules, because the luster and opacity of a real fabric may depend on various other factors, but in principle you can follow the indication we have recommended.
From what we have said, it is important to manage the level of opacity or gloss well to best simulate different yarns.

Having said that we now move on to the simple procedure of customizing the roughness Map:

Important to remember that we have already set for each material the correct value of roughenss map to best simulate the real fabric from which we started to create the material, but logically you can change the moodiness or opacity effect (within certain limits depending on the nature of the fabric), to have different effects.
In this case we have the only modifiable parameter that determines its intensity, which is the node highlighted in red in the image above.
The modification values are in a range between 0 and 1.

Below is a video in which we change the intensity of the roughness map in real time and see the results.

Normal MAP

The Normal Map is another very important map that can be customized.

The normal map is used to allow you to better simulate the micro-relief effects specific to each material.
Each material depending on the type of design logically will have a different normal map.
With the normal map you are able to give more realistic interweaving movements between the various threads that create the fabric, increasing the realism of the material.

The node group that handles the normal map is as follows:


Although it is always possible to vary other parameters of the various nodes of this scheme for the use of the normal map, we recommend, however, to modify only the values of the node highlighted in red as in the image above, since for a management of the modification of the appearance of the normal map, the best results are obtained by modifying the values of that node.

As in all of our material maps, even in this case the values we chose, even for the normal map, are already optimized for maximum rendering and realism, in relation to the real source fabric.
However as already mentioned also in this case it is possible to customize the final effect by changing the value of the mix node.

The range of value allowed by the node is between 0 and 1.

Below is a video where you can see an example of real-time modification of the normal map.

Displacement MAP

In our textile materials we also wanted to add a displacement map to increase the realism of the material even more.

Normally the most common use of a displacement map in 3D objects is to allow a more detailed three-dimensionality to a 3D object, using fewer triangles in the mesh and consequently keeping the 3D object lighter and faster to render.

In our case, the use was not really for this reason, but to give the possibility to simulate, in case there were, those greater depth effects of the fabric surface.
Using the Displacement map is very useful to have a more “wrinkled” or “crinkly” fabric appearance to better simulate certain types of fabric aspects brought about by the use of coarser yarns in reality.

Important to remember that in Blender the displacement map works in this mode only with the Cycles rendering engine and NOT with Eevee (at least until version 3.1).

The nodes regarding the displacement map, unlike the other nodes so far examined that had a vertical arrangement in the graph, are placed on the right side of the graph as per the image below:

Node 1 is the one that contains the displacement map and instead node 2 is the one where you can customize the values to change the intensity of the result.
Regarding this specific map we recommend to use for customization, the modification of only one paramenter of node 2 and precisely the one defined : SCAL

We also recommend to use values ranging between 0 and 0.150, as higher values generally start to distort the appearance of the fabric a bit too much making it lose its realism.

In any case for use of even any “fancy” you can also try higher values, remembering that however the appearance of the mesh will start to become very different from the original and moving away from a fabric effect.

Below is a video where we demonstrate the effectiveness of using the displacement map, and how interesting and relistic the resulting effect is.

With the displacement map customization we have concluded the type of customizations concerning the visual effect of the fabric for the realism of the physical features.

Now we move on to another type of customization that is very useful for modifying within certain limits the pattern and other features of texture position and repetition on the mesh surface.

Texture POSITION (pattern)

Thanks to the dedicated Texture position nodes, you can change the starting point of the texture applied on the mesh.

This is very useful when you want to adjust the position of the material very precisely with respect to the shape of the mesh.
Just as an illustrative example, let’s imagine that you are using a material with a floral effect and you want to position the start of one of the flowers at the left edge of a pillow.
Thanks to the modification of this parameter it is possible to do this.
The nodes involved in changing the position are located to the left of the graph as is visible in the image below:

Specifically, to modify a location position, we must modify one of the 3 values of X, Y or Z, of the area highlighted in red as we can see in the image above.

Attention: the modification of the Z value works only if a modification of the rotation value (i.e. higher or lower than zero) of at least one of the X,Y, Z values is active.

Below is a short video demonstration of how the texture can be moved.

Texture ROTATION (pattern)

Now let’s move on to see how the already intuitive Texture Rotation works.

By editing this paramenter in its X, Y or Z values, it is possible to rotate, relative to the default value, the texture of the material.
Again, like the texture LOCATION, the customization of the rotation can be used to deliberately place the design with a different rotation on the mesh.

It should be noted that the rotation in X and Y also allows a deformation of the design to realize in a few seconds different design effects, even very different ones.
The greater the value of the rotation, the greater the deformation.

Rotation in Z rotates on the texture axis without deformation. Therefore, to rotate the texture correctly you only need to use the Z value modification.

Below highlighted in red you will find where the values to modify in the node for rotation customization are.

To see the use of Texture ROTATION in real time, here is a short video

Texture SCALING (pattern)

The last group of useful paramenters for customizing this type of material characteristics, is texture SCALING, which in this case, as it is intuitively understandable, is used to change the size of the textile material design on a mesh.

Changing this value is very useful in all those cases where one wants to have a larger or smaller effect of the pattern, either for choices of one’s own taste, or for greater realism on meshes of “non” standard size, regarding the 3D environment one is building.

Normally the materials have all been created with dimensions as close as possible to that of the actual source fabric.

Highlighted below in red is the area in which to change the values to change the texture scale size:

We want to point out that in this case we will have changes in the appearance of the texture scale only by changing the values of X and Y, the Z paramenter has no influence.

Also it is very important, if you want to maintain a perfect proprotion between the dimensions in X and Y that the values of X and Y that you will change must be reasoned in proportion, because as you can see for example in the image above, you find in X a value of 0.025 and in Y of 0.500.
This makes that if to increase or decrease in perfect scale the sides in X and Y, the two values must be changed in perfect proportion.

Let’s take an example:

If we decide to start from the value of Y and increase it from 0.5 to 1, we know that we have doubled its value mathematically.
Therefore the value of X will also be the same to be doubled and therefore in this exact case we will also have to double 0.025, which will become:

0,025*2 = 0,05

Now by changing the two values with X = 1 and Y = 0.05 we will have the texture perfectly doubled in both sides.

Now a video where we can see the use of this function in action:

It is worth noting one very important thing, when we do not proportionally change the design in the scale logically happens an effect of changing the original appearance of the design.
This normal situation we can use it as a “trick” to create different effects from the same design, which we might not expect!

From this we start to talk about the last very interesting and curious customization possibility that is possible.

Fabric pattern DEFORMATION:

Thanks to the change of the rotation values in X and Y and also thanks to the change of the texture scale in non-proportional mode, it is also possible to deform and modify the design of the material, thus being able to create new designs even very different from the original one.
This possibility adds even more customization possibilities to each material, recreating new design shapes using your imagination.

The deformation can be performed on any material even if it is recommended more on those fabrics that have geometric designs, fantasy, because other types of design, such as floral ones could give very strange results and perhaps not suitable for the characteristics of a design for fabrics.

Below is a demonstration video that shows for example what can happen using this technique.

Importing materials into new project

As anticipated at the beginning of the instructions for using the textile materials included in HR-Fabric Materials 465 Pro, we now also explain how importing materials into a new project in Blender works.
The procedure is actually very simple.
When we have created a new project and we want to import materials, such as those in the project : Master scene, for example, we must first click on the menu : file

Select the menu item : Append

At this point the window for uploading files will open. Go all the way to the path where the Master scene project is located, for example:

Select the file by clicking on it and confirming the upload with the – Append button.

At this point after a moment, folders will appear in the same upload window that correspond to the various types of elements that can be loaded into Blender, and are present in each project, as shown in the image below:

Click on the Material “folder”, and after a few moments the entire list of materials present will appear.

Select one or more materials that you want to import as, for example, we did in the next image.

Click Append, and after the time it takes to import the chosen materials, we will find the various selected materials in our asset-browser.
One important thing to remember is that the append function does not import the various categories of the original project but only the separate materials, for obvious reasons.

Now you are ready to use the materials you have chosen in your new project!

Please note: the asset-browser window does not appear automatically, in case it is not part of the layout you have active at the moment, you have to go and activate the asset-browser view as per Blender’s documentation.

Now you are ready to use 100% of all the materials in HR-Fabric Materials 465 Pro.

Compatibility

HR-Fabric Materials 465 Pro was made for Blender 3.0 and higher versions, but is theoretically compatible with older versions that are not too old. However, we do not guarantee full compatibility with older versions of Blender.

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