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Old May 20, 2010   #1
Eddy
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How To Create Quality Bumpmaps
Introduction

This tutorial is the process used to create decent looking bumpmaps for your textures using GIMP. Bumpmaps created using this process are not ideal, but will usually make a fairly nice bumpmap for most of your needs. This tutorial purpose is to provide a easy to follow step-by-step instruction to create normal maps.

Getting Started

Download and install the following applications if you have not done so already.

How to install

To install the plugin, extract the normalmap.exe file to your GIMP plugins directory.
This directory is usually located at:
C:\Program Files\GIMP-2.0\lib\gimp\2.0\plug-ins

Then extract the 3 dll files to your GIMP bin directory.
This directory is usually located at:
C:\Program Files\GIMP-2.0\bin

Loading Your Image

After downloading and installing all the applications you are now ready to begin. Let’s get started!
First, you need to have a texture that you plan on using for a normal map.
You have now chosen a texture to use as a base for a normal map.
We will now need to load this image in GIMP, our image editor.
Load GIMP by double clicking the desktop link or clicking Start\All Programs\GIMP\GIMP 2
Click File\Open (CTRL+O), and choose the texture that you have choosen.
The image you chose should appear in the image window.
Now that you have your image open, you will need to make sure your image has been flattened, and run the normal map filter.
Make sure that either you have nothing selected, or that you have the entire image selected. Selecting only parts of the image may cause problems.
Go to Layers>>Transparency and click on "Remove Alpha Channel". If this option is not available, then skip this step, as the image you loaded already does not have an alpha channel.
Go to Filters>>Map and select "Normalmap"
You should get a dialog that looks like the following:



All these settings are correct, except possibly the wrap option (see appendix)
Using the settings from the image, you can start making modifications from there. For the most part, the only other setting you should change is the scale, which often is too low to be noticeable at "1.00000". I generally go with a scale between five and fifteen to get a noticeable effect. To get an idea of what your map will look like in-game, you can click the "3D Preview" button, and you should be able to rotate the plane in the 3D window by left-clicking and dragging your cursor, to see the effects light will have on your texture. You can also change the preview to look like a sphere (head), a cylinder (legs) etc.
When you are satisfied with the level of detail, exit the 3D preview and click "OK" in the Normalmap dialog.
Once you have done that, you should be essentially done! There is still one more thing that could be done to your normal map though, but is not necessary. If there are many sharp edges on the normal map (lots of high contrast areas or lines), then you may want to run a blur filter over it to smooth things out a bit. You can do this by going to Filter>>Blur and selecting "Blur".
Now that you have finished your normal map, all that is left to do is save it.
Congratulations! You have successfully made a normal map. Check it out in the game (If you can do the bumpmaps work in the game) or some render programs like Pov-Ray to see your work come to life.

Appendix

You can create deeper or shallower textures in the Normalmap Window by adjusting the various parameters. I suggest you play around with them to see what they do. Below is a brief explanation of how they will effect your Normal Map.

Filters:

4 Sample – Very grainy. Use for rock or other rough textures.
3x3 – Grainy. Use for scratched metals or other rough textures.
5x5 – Smooth. Use for smooth metals and wood.
7x7 – Smoother. Use for cloth and furniture.
9x9 – Very Smooth. – Use for polished metal and gems.
Sobel – Not much used.
Prewitt – Not much used.
Minimum Z: The lowest texture height. Increase this to set the minimum height on the Normal Map.
Scale: This is the biggest factor in creating texture depth. 1-2 is smooth, 5-8 medium, 10 – 15 rough.

Options:

Wrap – Might need to be checked for textures to be applied to meshes, although I have never had a problem not doing so.
Invert X/Invert Y – These invert the shading on the specified axis. Selecting both of these will fix a texture that seems to be inside out.
Swap RGB – Not used on Alpha Channels.

Well, thats all, hope it helps
Originally Posted by XPaD View Post
For exemple, how it looks on Pov-Ray:

Head Texture:


Bumpmap:


Pov Ray render:


Also, thats a free head, so don't sell it e_e'


Last edited by Eddy; May 20, 2010 at 05:39 PM..
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Old May 20, 2010   #2
XPaD
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Correct download link:
http://code.google.com/p/gimp-normal...2.zip&can=2&q=
You forgot it:
How to install:
To install, extract the normalmap.exe file to your GIMP plugins directory.
This directory is usually located at:
C:\Program Files\GIMP-2.0\lib\gimp\2.0\plug-ins

Then extract the 3 dll files to your GIMP bin directory.
This directory is usually located at:
C:\Program Files\GIMP-2.0\bin
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Old May 20, 2010   #3
Eddy
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Oh, thanks, added to the first post.
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Old May 20, 2010   #4
XPaD
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Examples, how i looks on the Pov Ray:
Normal head: http://i48.tinypic.com/2j67qiv.png
Bumpmaped: http://i47.tinypic.com/6pcf9w.png
Pov Ray render: http://i48.tinypic.com/m7yowi.gif
Also, a free head, please, don't sell it e_e'

Last edited by Eddy; May 20, 2010 at 04:55 PM..
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Old May 20, 2010   #5
Eddy
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Thanks again, added to the first post
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Old Jul 15, 2010   #6
EgyptCentral
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My head is blue, no color, isnt a problem?
Add me +Rep!
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Old Jul 15, 2010   #7
Digits2012
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nice tut, also i never can get the pov ray to work
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Old Sep 16, 2011   #8
haioko
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My head don't have color , how do I color?
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Old Sep 20, 2011   #9
kevin909
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Nice it really looks cool in-game
Balance is key.
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Old Sep 22, 2011   #10
PUFFPWN
 
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Whenever I do it, it ends up completely white with the bump, never with the colors of the ordinary textures, any help?
"Or maybe we're each other's dads?"
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