Material, Mapping, and Vertex Color Utilities

The topics in this section describe various tools and utilities for managing materials, maps, and vertex color.

  • Viewport Canvas

    Viewport Canvas provides tools for painting color and patterns onto any bitmap in an object’s material in the viewport. You can paint in multiple layers directly onto a 3D object, or on a 2D canvas superimposed on the viewport. Viewport Canvas can export the painting in PSD format so you can modify it in Adobe Photoshop or a compatible program, and then save the file and update the texture in 3ds Max.

  • Render Surface Map

    This dialog provides a set of tools for creating bitmaps based on an object’s UVW mapping. The bitmaps display certain surface properties of the object. There’s also a Bitmap Select function for selecting sub-objects based on mapping attributes.

  • Assign Vertex Colors Utility

    The Assign Vertex Colors utility assigns vertex colors based on the material assigned to the object and the lighting in the scene. The utility applies a VertexPaint modifier to the object when Assign To Selected is clicked. Once the VertexPaint modifier has been applied to the object, go to the Modify panel or click Edit to access the VertexPaint tools.

  • Channel Info Utility

    The Channel Info utility gives game artists and others direct access to objects' channel information that might not otherwise be easily available. All objects in 3ds Max have mapping channels, which hold information pertinent to texture mapping as well as vertex color, illumination, and alpha. Mesh objects also have geometry and vertex-selection channels. The Channel Info utility lets you view an object's channels, give them meaningful names, delete unused channels, and copy information between channels.

  • Clean MultiMaterial Utility

    The Clean MultiMaterial utility parses Multi/Sub-Object materials and displays any that contain sub-materials are not assigned to any material IDs in the scene. You can then choose to remove any unused sub-materials, thus consolidating your Multi/Sub-Object materials.

  • Instance Duplicate Maps Utility

    The Instance Duplicate Maps utility searches an entire scene for materials that have duplicate Bitmap maps and give you the option to instance them. If your scene has different materials that use the same texture maps, creating instances will reduce the load on your video card, which can improve viewport performance.