Displacement Mapping in Maya: Creating a roll-up garage door

I always forget where the displacement mapping is in Maya 7. They have bump mapping and texture mapping in the attributes window when you select the object, so why not displacement? Anyway, let me just jot it down so I won’t forget…

What I wanted to use the displacement mapping for is to make a garage door. I thought, rather than modeling the crinkles, I’ll just use displacement map on a plane.

This is what I’m talking about:

3D house exterior
3D house exterior

I created a polygon plane and created a new Blinn material for it using the texture file below.

garage door texture

To add the displacement map, I opened Window –> Rendering Editors –> Hypershade. From the left column of Hypershade, I middle-mouse dragged the displacement node onto the Work Area tab.

disp1

This opened up the displacement attribute window on the right so I clicked on the checkered box to add the displacement map.

garage door displacement map

The Hypershade window now looked like this.

disp2

I selected the plane in the workspace and and hit Graphs –> Graph materials on Selected Objects in the Hypershade window. This is what appeared in the Work Area tab:

disp3

I middle-mouse dragged the displacement shader node I created earlier from the top tab on top of the garage Blinn material. A menu will show up so select ‘displacement map’. The Work Area tab now looks like this.

disp4

Rendered, it didn’t look very good:

garage door - before fix

To fix it up, I changed the number of subdivisions of the plane from the default 10 to about 20 for the width and 30 for the height. And it looked like this.

garage door - after fix

Increasing the number of subdivisions and smoothing the displacement map image file will make it more smoother. Compare it to the garage door with no displacement mapping:

garage door - no displacement

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