An Interactive Tutorial for Shading and Rendering in 3D Graphics

Mass Communication
Guanping Zheng

There are four modules in the pipeline of digital animation: modeling, shading/rendering, animation and dynamic simulation. Shading and rendering are the process of assigning surface characteristics to models and defines the color and texture of the output images. Shading and rendering processes are introduced in the introduction course (EMC 3300) and continue in the intermediate and advanced courses (EMC 3310, EMC 4300 and EMC 4910).

Creating sophisticated shading network (shading material) is a complex process that requires the understanding of the hierarchy of the shading structure and the mastering of various techniques. This project seeks to provide supplementary materials for learning the theories/concepts and techniques in building materials for various surfaces qualities. <p>Objectives of the Project:

To build a web-based interactive tutorial for shading and rendering in 3D graphics and animation <li> To present related theories and concepts visually and interactively

To provide resources outside the boundary of classroom teaching

Program Design:

This interactive learning material will be web based. The documents will be available online and can be accessed by students in our digital animation program and the professional community. The tutorials can also be accessed within the 3D Animation program (Maya) used by all the animation courses.

Structure: Main Menu Items: * --- Shading Network --- Materials --- Texture --- Lighting ---Shading Network, an introduction

Materials: Lambert, Phong, Phong-E, Blinn, Anistropic

The final output of each of the above material is defined by a long list of parameters. Students are often confused byt what parameter needs to be manipulated to get the desired result. Detailed interactive illustration will be given in the tutorial. Please see the attached illustration One.

Texture; Procedure Textures, Bitmap Images, Procedures of Texture mapping

Normal mapping and Projection mapping, UV mapping for polygon surfaces. Students are often confused byt different projection mapping methods. Detailed interactive illustration will be given in this tutorial. Please see the attached illustration two.

Lighting: Types of lights: Directional Light, Point Light, Spot Light, Volume Light, Shadow

Students often have difficulties understanding how shadow is calculated in 3D program. Detailed interactive illustration will be given in this tutorial

Sample Material: Metal, Glass, X-ray shading, Dirt, Grass, Car Paint, etc.

Samples of shading networks will be illustrated and relevant images will be rendered. Please see the attached illustration three.

Procedures: All the materials will be built in Maya and assigned to appropriate models. 3D images will be rendered out corresponding to each material. Snap shots of the working screens will be taken to illustrate the procedures. Key concepts will be discussed via links to my own notes or to the online documentations. QuickTime movies will be used where appropriate to explain the concepts or present the shading results.

Timeline: This project will demand a lot of work involving numerous screen shots, image manipulation, procedure documentation and web authoring. I will finish most of work by the end of the summer and put the beta version to work for the Intermediate Animation class (EMC 3100). Further improvement will be made through the fall semester and beyond.

IMPLICATION FOR INSTRUCTION ENHANCEMENT (Including method of project evaluation, expected results, etc.) The created materials (images and QT Movie clips) can be used for lectures and can serve as supplementary references for students to access. It will certainly benefit all the digital animation students. Its visual and interactive feature will help students to under