Want to watch this Tutorial?

Check out the about tab below and start learning on CG Cookie today.

Get Started

Building a Parametric Stamped Metal Material

  • Software:Blender 2.8x  ·
  • Difficulty:Advanced

Procedural VS Parametric

These terms are closely related in computer graphics and you can find their true meanings debated in various CG forums. We've taught a bunch of procedural material workflows but none that really qualify as "parametric" until now.

In short, this workflow teaches you to generate unique tileable patterns from Blender's built-in nodes - in this case a stamped metal pattern. While that may sound exactly like a procedural workflow, parametric represents a level up in terms of flexibility and complexity based on math that generates custom "parameters" for this pattern. Parameterization is also why Substance Designer can do the things it does.

What You Will Learn

Like procedural workflows, we start from standard Blender nodes to generate a texture pattern. But then we take a deep dive into math operations that you've likely never explored before. These enable us to generate custom tile patterns to suit our needs.

This is a powerful lesson in Blender's nodal shading capabilities. Don't miss it.

Let's explore some seldom used functions from the Maths node to generate a fully-controllable tiled texture! If you're allergic to mathematics, no need to worry: This tutorial is not a maths class but it will help you understand what some operations do in a CG context. To the math teacher that may watch this tutorial, I apologize in advance if the explanations are overly simplified!   -Thibaut