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How would you texture Space Shuttle heat tiles in Substance Painter?

New Here ,
Apr 17, 2023 Apr 17, 2023

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The heat tiles on the Space Shuttle and similar patterns have always stumped me when texturing. It's easy to create and apply a tiling texture, but that doesn't come close to matching the many differently angled areas, unique shapes, and irregularities in real-life tile patterns. It seems like creating each tile by hand would be the only option, but I imagine that wouldn't be very precise and would require making thousands of tiles.

 

So what is the standard way to do this? How do you create a pattern that has both extensive repitition but also small, precise details and devitations from the pattern?

 

Not actually looking for Space Shuttle texturing advice specifically, but it's the best example of this kind of pattern that I can think of so, that's why I put it in the title.

 

And this isn't actually a Substance Painter specific question, if there's other software that better for this that's fine. Would be curious to know how this could be done in Mari as well since that's what I'm currently learning!

 

space-shuttle-discovery-heat-shield-tiles-space-shuttle-discovery-steven-f-udvar-hazy-center-smithsonian-national-215887329

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Adobe Employee , Apr 19, 2023 Apr 19, 2023

If your goal is to set up a material fitting the mesh's specificities, a solution would be to take a generic base material and to make some sort of mashup trough multiple layers and masks to build the chaotic order you're looking for.

 

Chaotic Order.png

 

You could also import the mesh in Substance 3D Designer and make everything procedural, but if you're not familiar with Substance Designer, it can become tedious.

 

Best regards,

 

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Adobe Employee ,
Apr 18, 2023 Apr 18, 2023

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Hi @Taliesin5E6B,

 

Thanks for the interesting question.

 

This kind of complex materials are easier to build inside Substance 3D Designer. If you have an Adobe Substance subscription, you have access to Substance Designer and you will find many tutorials about tiles. I am pretty sure the Tile Random node would be a nice start to achieve the space shuttle material.

 

Tile RandomTile Random

 

 

Still if you have an Adobe subscription, you also have access to the 3D assets library, where you can download a Space Shuttle material. You can even download the .SBS and check how the material was built or make some variations to the graph.

 

As you suggested, you could also paint everything by hand with Substance Painter, but this seems like a really tedious and destructive workflow.

 

Tell me if you need anymore guidance.

 

Best regards,

 

Cyril Dellenbach (Micro) | QA Support Artist | Adobe

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New Here ,
Apr 18, 2023 Apr 18, 2023

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Thanks! But what I'm wondering is how to create a pattern like this that is NOT random, which is why I gave the space shuttle tiles as an example - there are many very specific shapes and angled areas of tiles that have to match up with other elements of the vehicle, and that's what I'm wondering how to create!

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Adobe Employee ,
Apr 19, 2023 Apr 19, 2023

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If your goal is to set up a material fitting the mesh's specificities, a solution would be to take a generic base material and to make some sort of mashup trough multiple layers and masks to build the chaotic order you're looking for.

 

Chaotic Order.png

 

You could also import the mesh in Substance 3D Designer and make everything procedural, but if you're not familiar with Substance Designer, it can become tedious.

 

Best regards,

 

Cyril Dellenbach (Micro) | QA Support Artist | Adobe

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