Surface Color Tutorial

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Viewport Colors

If you want to change the color of your geometry for organizational purposes (this has no effect on rendered output), you can change the color in the MeshInstance:

  • Start a new document.
  • Use the Create > Polygons > PolyCube menu item to create a cube.
  • Select "PolyCube Instance" in the Node List Panel.
  • In the Node Properties Panel, change the "Color" property. This controls the color of the polygon outlines when the node is unselected (you may have to deselect the cube to see this).
  • Use the "Selected Color" property to control the color of selected components.

Rendered Colors

Choosing a different surface material.
You can also create new surface materials.

If you want to change the color for rendering purposes, you need to alter the surface Material (continuing the same example):

  • Render the document with a RenderMan engine, and note that the cube is white.
  • Select "Material" in the Node List Panel.
  • Change the "Color" property to red.
  • Render the document and see that the cube is now red.

When you create a new document it has a single Material by default, and when you add new geometry, it uses the default material. To assign different surface properties to objects, you will need to create additional materials and assign them:

  • Use the Create > Polygons > PolyTorus menu item to create a torus.
  • Render the document and note that the cube and torus are both red.
  • Use Create > Material > New Renderman Material. Type a Material Name in the Material Manager window, then scroll down to Color in the Node Properties window. Click the white color button to show the color dialog. Use the color wheel / shade triangle, HSV, RGB, hexadecimal Color Name, or Palette to select a color, then click Close. A new material is created and assigned to the torus.
  • Render the document and see that the torus is now your new color.

To shade individual nodes:

  • Open a Node History window.
  • Select an entire node in the Viewport.
  • Select the instance component sub-item(s) in the Node History window.
  • Click the button next to Surface Material in the Node Properties window.
  • Choose your material from the drop-down list.
  • Render the document and see that the material selection has been applied.
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