A piece of bread

When working on Northern Light images, I started experimenting with a new workflow to create food items, especially bread and other baked goods. After finding a relatively laborious but clean and effective approach, I decided to build a small, heavy carbohydrate bakery library. So I thought about posting some of the test images.

First thing: the modeling process. Each activity begins with a real loaf by scanning using my Ipad and Autodesk 123D Catch (formerly known as PHOTOFLY). The free app can build faithful and completely structured 3D models from a series of photos. After doing the capture, processing a set of high-resolution photos of the loaf under a neutral light as possible, using my DSLR.
Only then, I ate it.

3D scanning is obviously not usable as such. We will not have a proper subdivision, or the correct unwrapping, and the plot is too low in resolution and there are too many lights and shadows. But it is a good basis on which it is possible to remodel well, using 3ds Max, with tools that allow you to draw a mesh on any surface. Once I have a low-resolution all-quad with a POLYFLOW model, conform to the scan, making sure that the topology is as close to reality as possible.

Then follows the laborious work of UV-unwrapping and texture-painting in Photoshop, using high resolution photos joined together in a large map (after a lot of render-tests, tests and errors). The final model is rounded in Max (using the Viewport to delete seams in the weft) and in Zbrush to give more detail, which is then converted to displacement and normal maps. Returning to Max, the activity is given by a 2D Vray shift modifier, to report the level of detail obtained in ZBrush in rendering.

Here the scene that appears in Max (caustics, the lighting comes exclusively from VrayDomelight):

Here is a rendering showing the wire (a previous version of the scene, so the model is positioned differently). Note the black bread on the right is the whole composition. This is a previous workflow, which I have now abandoned. The network was made in ZBrush from scratch, and exported with average asset weight. Making the scene very heavy. The others, all-quad.

The “clay rendering” shows the impact of the displacement modifier, using high and medium-res, map texture (2k, 4k for the large loaf and donuts).

For donuts, I used the actual geometry for poppy and sesame seeds and used different widespread maps to create variations in five copies of the same. The seeds are scattered on the geometry using Itoosoft Forest Pack Pro. I used a B & amp; W image where to place the seeds and cooked in a poly mesh, once I was happy with the result. The seeds are given by a slight variation in color. I used MassFX to place lo-res proxy of donuts in the bowl. The towel around the bowl was made and draped in Marvelous Design. I use a VrayHDRI map for the weave of the fabric (in turn an 8-bit JPG) as I find that it generates much more strength, and beauty, than a basic bitmap image – for some strange reason I can not understand.

A snapshot of the materials as well as the material settings. As you can see nothing spectacular.

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