Making a Displacement Map Technical paper

The programs used to create the displacement map for Tylosaurus are; Mudbox, Maya and Photoshop. Figure 1 shows the finished model ready for creating a displacement map within Mudbox.

Figure 1.
To make a displacement map select the objects tool under the select/move tools menu at the bottom left of mudbox then click on the body of Tylosaurus. The selected geometry will now turn yellow, then go to maps then extract texture maps then new operation. A box will appear then press displacement map and in target models choose add selected and do the same for source models as seen in figure 2. Change the method to subdivision and image size to 4096 x 4096 then save the file as a tiff 16 bit seen in figure 2, then press extract. Mudbox will begin creating a displacement map of Tylosaurus’ body.

Figure 2.

Open the newly created displacement map in photoshop and darken the curves and levels found under image menu then adjustments. Darken the map so it looks like the image in figure 3. When the desired effects are achieved save the image as a tiff with no compression.

Figure 3.

Within maya select the body of tylosaurus and add a new lambert material then go to the menu marked with a blue arrow in figure 4.

Figure 4.
Insert the file into the displacement map box then click next to it shown by a blue arrow in figure 5.

Figure 5.

Change the color balance alpha gain and alpha offset to those in figure 6.

Figure 6.

With Tylosaurus selected go to the window menu followed by rendering editors, then mental ray and approximation editor. In the approximation editor shown in figure 7 press create next to subdivision then press edit. In the attribute settings change approx method to spatial and the length to 0.001.

Figure 7.
Create a directional light and adjust it to the desired position, then open render settings and choose mental ray. In the quality menu choose production under quality presets and change the filter to mitchel. Under the common menu change the image size preset to hd 720. Press render and the outcome should look like figure 8.

Figure 8.

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