Texture experiments in Cinema 4D Lite

With Cinema 4D Lite now included in After Effects I've been getting back into producing more 3D motion graphics work. As a little side experiment I wanted to test out some texturing within Cinema 4D to see what is and isn't possible.

I created the text and textures in cinema 4D then imported them into After Effects via Cineware.

The first texture I wanted to create was a grungy steel look - something with a nice reflection accompanied by a rough surface.

steel cinema 4D texture

The next texture I wanted to try and create involved using a photograph of a wall to introduce a brick texture. It's a technique I've used in the past for my old University video: The Tower - however that was using Maya rather than Cinema 4D.

Cinema 4D brick texture far away

A key aspect of the brick texture is how it's mapped onto the text, by default Cinema 4D sets the texture mapping to UVW mapping which, because of the photograph, didn't really work in this instance. Instead I switched to cubic mapping which worked much better!

Ideally for a good wall texture you need a decent displacement map, because I'm using Cinema 4D I unfortunately don't have access to the 'Sub Polygon Displacement' option which meant that I couldn't really get the definition I wanted on the wall texture. The image below shows a close up of the text, although not a bad look, you can see it would benefit from a bit of depth.

brick texture close up

Moving on from the uniform brick texture I wanted to play around with using noise to create a more random pattern - the result was this pebble dash effect:

pebble dash texture effect

Finally I decided to look at the steel texture again and this time add a little transparency into the mix. The result was pretty close to an icy block effect:

Ice texture 3D text

A close up of the ice - it would be great to see what this texture would look like with a little sub polygon displacement map on it.

3D Ice texture close up

Overall I'm pretty happy with the renders I've produced, it's really helped me get to grips with what is an isn't possible in Cinema 4D when it comes to texturing.

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Rewilding the planet with animation and motion design

We've only got one planet, and right now it needs all the help it can get. Climate change and biodiversity loss are massive challenges that we need to tackle head on.

That's why, for every animation project over £1000 a donation of 2% of the total budget will be made to the World Land Trust, on your behalf.

The money will go towards WLT's "buy an acre" programme; buying up and protecting vital habitats around the world, and helping fight against climate change.

Any projects under £1000 will have a tree planted on your behalf.

Acres saved so far:

Thanks to my wonderful clients and the animations we've produced, enough money has been donated to save around 12 Acres of vital habitats around the world.