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Blender how to make material transparent

Working with materials in Blender

Hi, my name is Sergey Mingulin, I am a 3D artist and teacher on the creation of stylized 3D characters in XYZ. You can look at my projects here. This is the first article from the cycle on visualization in Blender.

Today we’ll talk about how to configure materials and what additional programs and extensions will facilitate the work. And closer to the finale, I will give a small tutorial on creating an interesting glow effect on the example of the Illytsians of the Mutant. outgrowths on the head to lure prey.

Substance Painter-a program for texturing 3D models or creating textures/texture maps for them. In the course of work, we will import textures from here.

Node Wrangler is an addon that contains a variety of tools for improving and accelerating Vorkflow based on Node-Based Workflow.

We go to the Edit tab, go to the Preferences settings and in “Add-Ins” we put a checkmark on the corresponding tab. For convenience, we are looking for an add.on through the search line.

After the desired model in Blender has been ported, we find the Editor Type tab at the top and select Shader Editor. We are transferred to the menu.

SURFACE (surface). we can connect the usual BackGround here (turned on by default) and change its color or add HDRI texture (delete the BACKGROUND NAD and add ENVIRONMENT TEXTURE via Shifta). I stopped at a regular background.

Volume (volume). here I added Shader Principled Volume, which is responsible for the “fog” or conditional transparency of the atmosphere around the object.

Editing objects with which we will work today.

To create a GCD, click Shift-a-this hotkei causes a panel with the settings tabs. We can both manually look for in the tabs of interest to us, and enter the name into the “Search” line, after which the NOD will appear on the menu.

To create new material without name and settings, click the Material Properties tab and click “”.

Here we press “New”, and we have basic nodes: Material output and Principled BSDF, with which we will conduct changes.

Important: do not forget to activate Node Wrangler.

We highlight the basic shader and click ShiftControlt. The combination will open the file selection menu for us. Select the textures we need and load.

If by default in the title of the texture file there is a postscript with its purpose, the program itself attaches the corresponding files to the parameters.

Cycles & Transparent Materials in Blender 2.8 (updated)

You can edit these postscribes (or suffixes/tags) on the menu:

If the value was determined incorrectly, you can change the binding yourself by combining the Output Nod and Input Shader.

In addition, the texture can also be manually pulled from the window to the program and linked.

You can assign material for the model by moving to 3D Viewport again. We highlight the desired object, and the package is assigned automatically. If we need another, press the cross, and then the “New” tab or select from the existing saved.

It is worth making a reservation that it will talk about the Hikeol model with a high density of the grid, which is designed to illustrate the skill of the designer as part of the portfolio.

In this regard, the geometry allows us not to use a separate card for Subsurface Scattering, but simply to set the real value of dispersion in the corresponding parameter, based on the dimensions of the model.

How to make a TRANSPARENT DISPLAY in Blender

Metallic, Transmission and Transmission Rouness We do not use on the body at all.

The further process can be divided conditionally into 2 stages: work on materials for the body and teeth and tuning Ilitsyes.

To configure body material, we use the usual PBR material with Metal-ROUGH WORKFLOW or Pipes. We export the cards from the Substance Painter mentioned at the beginning of the article.

Our material consists of the following nodes: Albedo or Base Color, Rouness and Normal Map. The latter is used for small detail.

What you need to know when working with the material?

Texture maps that do not transmit the color of the material should be in linear space. Therefore, in Color Space, we put:

Non Color, or Liner. for ropehhness, Normal, etc.D. depending on your assembly

Also, depending on which Payplane we worked in the Substance Painter and what extracts for the export of textures (under the OpenGL or DirectX), it may be necessary to “flip” the green channel in Normal Map.

To do this, click Shift-a, find the Separate RGB and connect the output color to it. As the name implies, this NOD gives us the necessary manipulation with one of the channels (Red, Green, Blue). Now, in order to invert the green channel (G), add the NOD invert with the FAC “1.000 “and connect back via Combine RGB.

We then connect this design to Normal in Principled BSDF. Ropehness (black and white card, does not require manipulations with channels) is connected to the appropriate Schaider slot, as well as Albedo (Base Color).

This is how the finished assembly of the material will iron:

In the case of the tune teeth, all the same. Also flip, if necessary, the green channel in normal.

Illitius. a special hunting outgrowth (“fishing rod”) on the top of the head of the bony fish of the detachment, which serves to lure prey. Our model has something similar.

Consider how to distribute the glow along the entire length of the Illytsias. from the greatest intensity to the smallest.

the lower layer. ovals inside, giving the main glow at the ends;

the middle layer. also luminous tubes;

upper layer. the outer shell of Illyitsyev.

The lower layer Material Output consists of Principled BSDF, which goes to the Surface object, and Principled Volume connected to the “internal volume” parameter.

Since the geometry of objects is simple, we do not need Normal Map, and we leave its meaning “by default”. We will carry out the main manipulations with the above nodes.

The first is Principled BSDF. Here we set the Base Color with the value of HSV (Hue, Saturation, Value), leave the Rifehness by default and proceed to configure transparency. Since our object will be hidden under other layers, and the main glow will proceed from the internal volume, we put the value of transmission “1.000 “. this gives us a completely transparent object. And the Transmission Rouness parameter allows you to choose how matte or glossy will be the surface (the larger the value, the less gloss).

Setting up transparency and alpha channel textures in Blender Render

We go to the rendering mode of Bleder Render to configure model materials. Let’s start with a glass, that is, transparent material.

2.1 Settings of transparency in Blender Render

Since this texture does not have transparent areas, it is necessary to make it translucent. The transparency in Blender Render is responsible for the parameters “Transparency” (transparency) in the “Material” tab. We activate them with a checkmark.

2.2 Settings of the alpha channel in Blender Render

Now let’s move on to the configuration of the alpha channel texture of the cup holder.

Similarly, as in the previous case, we move on to the parameters of “Transparency” (transparency) in the “Material” materials tab and the “Alpha” value we set it equal to zero. After that, we go to the texture tab “Texture” and in “Influence” (influence) we activate the “Alpha” parameter with a value of 1. Ready, now transparency is not visible with a rendere.

Set up the material of the metal for the cup holder. In “Material” we will set the following parameters:

  • “Diffuse Color” and its intensity “Intensity” are 0.eight;
  • Specular Color and its intensity “Intensity” are 1, and the hardness value of “Hardness” is 10;
  • We activate the Mirror tab (mirror) with the reflective ability “Reflectivity” equal to 0.2, the depth “Depth” is 2.

Next, go to the Texture tab (textures) and in “Influence” (influence) we activate the intensity parameters of “Intensity” and Normal Normals. The first set the value of equal 1, and the second equal 0.015. Renderman and get the following result:

Separation of the scene into layers

Render is often performed with an alpha channel for subsequent editing this layer in any graphic editor. Create any three objects and move each to a separate layer (M): go to the Render Layers tab. Create two more layers and name them Layer1, Layer2, Layer3. Select the first layer (Layer1), in the Layer menu for the Scene parameter, note the first 3 squares. These are the layers that will participate in the render. And for the Layer parameter, mark only the first square. Thus, we indicate that on the first layer there will be only the object that is on the first layer. For the second and third layers, change only the Layer parameter to the 2nd and 3rd squares: complete the render and you will see only the object located on the first layer. In the UV/Image Editor window, you can switch between each of the layers.

Open the Node Editor window and duplicate the Render Layers NAD twice. For each node, select your Render layer: Now add the NOD File output and open the properties panel (n). In Properies menu, add two more entrances, name them, set the output format and the path of preserving images. This GCD will allow us to create 3 different images by pressing one button. Connect all three Nodes Render Layers to the corresponding entrances and press F12. Upon completion of the render, in the folder that you indicated 3 images will lie: Cube001, Cone001 and Culinder001. The numbers are attributed at the end for convenience during animation. With this nod, you can reward the long animation broken into layers.

The name Cube will create a Cube001 PNG file in the TMP folder. The name Cube/Layer1 will create a Cube folder in the TMP folder and the Layer001 PNG file will be placed in it.

Mirror reflection¶

Reflections settings in the Material tab

Static reflection¶

The surface reflects the same image, regardless of environmental changes. For activation, it is enough to use a mirroring map.

Dynamic reflection¶

The surface reflects the current arrangement of certain objects. Reflections from the plane and spherical reflections are supported.

When using nod materials, dynamic reflections will only work if the Noda Extnded Material is present in the nod tree.


Check the Reflections option on the Render Reflections and Refractions panel.

For reflecting objects on the Object Reflecters panel, set the Reflective option.

For flat reflections, set the Object Reflections Type in Plane. Add an empty object to set the Plate of the Add Empty Single Arrow reflection plane. Rename for convenience and indicate its name in the Reflection Plane field reflecting object.

For cubic reflections, set the value of Object Reflections Type in Cube.

For the necessary materials reflecting objects, set the value of the reflective ability of the Material Mirror Reflectivity.

Mirror Reflectivity Show Reflectivity is required to display reflection on objects in Blender’e. The engine ignores this option.

For the reflected objects on the Object Reflection panel, set the Reflexible option.

It is also recommended to enable the use of lighting from the World Environment Lighting environment.


The reflected image ignores a map of normal, shadow.

Frell’s effect to reflect¶

The effect of Frenel is manifested depending on the intensities of passing and reflected light from the angle of fall. If the angle of fall is close to zero (t.e. The light falls almost perpendicular to the surface), the share of passing light is great, and the reflected small. And vice versa, if the angle of the fall is close to 90 degrees (t.e. light falls almost parallel to the surface), almost the entire light is reflected.

The engine uses the close formula of the slalit:

R = R0 (1. R0) (1. cos θ) n. where

R. reflection coefficient,

R0. reflection coefficient in case of viewing at right angles to the surface (t.e. with θ = 0),

θ. The angle of fall (equal to the indoor angle under which the light falls into the camera) is calculated by the engine in real time,

N. exponent.


The effect of Frell is used for both static and dynamic reflection.

Degree of Frenel to reflect. Indicator of degree N in the formula of slalcing. The Blender package is limited from 0 to 5. If this parameter is zero, the effect of Frenla does not manifest, there is a complete reflection at all angles. If this parameter is greater than zero, when a surface is viewed at corners close to straight (almost perpendicular to the surface), the material becomes less reflecting. The larger this parameter, the greater the deviation of the angle from the direct, for which this effect is observed.

Frell factor to reflect. It is given to R0 in the slalit formula: R0 = 1. Blend / 5. The Blender package is limited from 0 to 5. This parameter shows the intensity of the manifestation of the effect of Frenel: the larger the Blend factor. the stronger the effect of the effect of Frell. If it is zero, the effect of Frenel does not manifest itself.


In the media of three.dimensional modeling, changing the color properties of the object is not the same as changing color in simple graphic editors. Here you add and set up the object not color, but the material, that is, what it is made of, as it were, it is made. The material can simulate green plastic, yellow sand, transparent glass, shiny metal, muddy water and so on.

Although the color of the object still plays an important role, many other visual properties appear: reflective ability, transparency, light fraud. Material configuration in Blender. extensive theme. In this lesson, the basic principles of working with materials will be considered.

In Blender, the same material can be applied to many objects. On the other hand, several materials can be applied to one object. For example, with each cube line you can tie your material. However, when you create the material, it is attached to the selected object.

To configure the materials, the Material Property Editor tab (the penultimate one) is designed. It does not have a camera and a lamp, but it has it from the interference objects. Just added bags do not have materials. However, the cube of the starting file has it. If you delete this cube and add a new object, then the contents of the Material tab will look like this:

In a large field, using a button with a plus sign, slots for materials are added. Each slot can contain one material, but the material in the slot can be replaced with another. Usually objects have one slot and, therefore, in one material. However, if several materials are applied to one object, then there will be several slots.

To add the material to the object, you need to press the New button, and then a new material will be created (and the slot, if it was not), or select the existing one from the list that turns when clicking on the ball icon before the News button.

Materials can be renamed both directly in the slot and through a block of choice/creating material. This block has changed. Now, if you need to create a new material, you need to create a new slot and switch to it. The button with a sign with two leaflets creates a new material in the current slot by copying the current material. The cross removes the material, and the on the button with the shield allows you to save the material, even if it is not used by any object. Note, until you closed the file, all unused materials are saved.

If you now choose another material or create a new way of copying, it will replace the former in the existing slot. If several materials are applied to the object, then each is added to their slot.

In the edit mode, the Assign, Select and Destlect buttons appear. Using Assign, the material of the selected slot is assigned to separate faces and groups of faces of the bags.

Next is the opening panel Preview. Its only purpose is to show how the material will look at one or another proposed object. Objects are listed in the column on the right.

blender, make, material, transparent

Next is the Surface panel. surface. It is proposed to immediately use the so.called nodes. So far we refuse this and turn off the Use Nodes button. After that, the number of material settings will decrease, and the Surface panel will take this type of:

Base Color parameter determines the base color. When you click on the field, a color disk appears where you can choose color. There is also an ALPHA (A) parameter that allows you to make an object transparent.

Metallic sets the surfaces metallic shine. She has a property of mirroring. You can see this by changing Metallic from scratch to one and looking at the preview. However, in 3D Viewport and with Render (F12) you will not see any mirror surface.

To draw the effect, it is necessary to change the settings of the rendering engine. This is done on the Render tab of Properties editor. In this case, it will be enough to install the Screen Space Reflections checkbox (reflection in the screen). You can also install Refraction (refraction).

The effect will be drawn both when rendering of the final image and in 3D Viewport when moving to a shading mode of Rendered (Z → 8).

Back to the surface settings. On the image above the plane, the property of Metallic is raised to one, and the ropehness (roughness) remains in value 0.4. If the roughness is reduced to zero, then the surface will become much more mirror.

Specular property determines the glare. The larger it is, the more a hard, well.visible reflection manifests itself on the surface. Reduction of value gives the surface mativity.

Course with instructional cards to some practical work: Android application, PDF version


Blender textures allow you to make materials more realistic, more similar to substances that consist of objects of the real world. In addition, with their help you can apply finished images on the surface, create relief maps, etc.

In the case of MESH objects, the texture is used as if on top of the material. Here you can not use the texture without tying the material to the object. On the other hand, several textures may be associated with the material. Each of them will have its own effect on the total result.

Texture settings in Blender are even more diverse than materials. For more complete coverage of this topic, a separate course is required. This lesson considers some points of work with textures.

In Blender 2.80 Work with textures, as well as with materials, underwent changes. Textures now cannot simply be created and applied to the object through the Texture tab Properties. Will have to master the work in at least one Blender editor. It will be Shader Editor. Shadeers editor.

We break the 3D Viewport area vertically into two parts and load shader editor into one.

In this editor, scaling, moving (with clamped and mouse wheel) also work as in 3D Viewport.

If the object is added to the object, then it will already have two nodes. The settings are the main, in this case, Principled BSDF, duplicate on the materials tab, if you do not turn off the Use Nodes button there.

GCDs have sockets. small points on the sides. A NOD connection occurs through them. So one node affects some property of another. If we want to add the texture, we need a node with a texture. You can add it through the Add → Texture header menu → Shift a also works.

Add Brick Texture and connect the node with the Base Color property of the main node. We seem to replace the color with the texture. To see the effect in 3D Viewport, do not forget to switch to Rendered (Z → 8) in it.

The Brick Texture Node has many settings that allow you to flexibly change the texture. However, it is impossible to make the bricks on all sides of the cube.

To do this, add another node. Add → Input → Texture Coordinate. In this case, connect its UV socket to the Vector socket to Brick Texture.

Consider the Node Image Texture. on the surface of your own picture.

Initial in the Node of Image Texture there are New and Open buttons. With the help of the latter, the finished image is loaded. After this, the Image Texture title changes addressed to the file.

If we simply connect the Nodes Image Texture and Texture Coordinate, we most likely get different effects of wrapping the object with a picture. In this case, you can do without Texture Coordinate at all.

If we want to somehow position the image on the faces, repeat it, then between the Texture Coordinate and Image Texture adds the mapping node (mapping, display; located in ADD → Vector), using the settings of which the image is adjusted to the side of the object. For example, the larger the value of the fields of Scale, the smaller the picture will be, and the more often it will be repeated. Location moves the picture on the verge, which allows you to combine its edges with the edges of the edge or level it in the center.

Course with instructional cards to some practical work: Android application, PDF version

Baking of procedural textures in Blender

About how to bake in one texture a procedurally created (nodes) material in Blender 2.8 and above. Baking using the “Selected to Active” option.

The example will be simple. Field with four materials:

blender, make, material, transparent

To bake the scheduled materials that you can have as much as you like at one object, in one texture, you should do the following:

In object mode, we highlight the original sphere with four materials and with the help of Shiftd we duplicate it, leave it in the same place. Now there are two spheres on the stage in each other (my original sphere is hidden. it is gray (hide/reveal visibility. Glazik next to the name of the object)).

blender, make, material, transparent

We delete all the materials from a duplicate by pressing a minus to the right of the materials, and add one new material, clicking on a plus.

Duplicate must definitely have a deployment.

blender, make, material, transparent

Click on “New”, introduce the desired resolution of the texture and click “OK”.

Please note that the method of displaying objects on stage I have “Rendered” (highlighted on top of the top).

Click on the indicated square and in the drop.down list we select the texture, which was created before.

Select “Diffuse”. Below we leave the box only on “color” (or select the right one, if you need to bake color with light).

We put a checkmark on “Selected to Active”. Below we set the baking parameters (value 0.01 most often suits normally, the main thing. not 0 and not super large value, otherwise. experiment if it does not suit the result).

Both objects are displayed on stage (now the original area is not hidden), which is why the “material in the material” is visible.

The first to highlight the duplicate of the original object by click.

And immediately after with the clamping Shift, click on the original object.

After some expectation (what the loading line in the lower part of the program will be discussed) all the materials will bake in one texture. If the texture does not update itself, in the UV editor click on the Image and further “Reload Textures” (for versions below Blender 3).

The Node “Image Texture” can be connected to the “Base Color” input to see how the baked texture looks at the object (do not forget to hide the original object, otherwise the display will look incorrect).

In order to preserve the changes that the shader system was nagged, to the texture and then transfer them to the game engine, for example. The blender has an extremely powerful procedural component, several noise sets. Using noise, you can create the texture of steel, skin, hair, wool, yes. Anything practically. But to transfer the complex and long columns of the shaders that are obtained inside the blender, in the same Unity or Unreal Engine will not work directly. over, the Eeevee Blender and Renderer of the same Unity are different engines that are not compatible with each other. But both of these engines know how to read textures. Therefore, in order to transfer your beautiful procedural fur generated by a shader in a blender, inside the unity, you must first bake this fur first. In several textures. And already transfer the textures to the game engine.

The baking is also used to optimize game asesets. So, for example, a game character may have several dozen materials in a blender. At least these are materials: leather, eye (pupil, protein), hair, nails, teeth, gums. If you take and put a character with such a number of materials directly into the game engine, sooner or later you will find that your scene cannot display more than 10 characters. Due to a huge number of reviews for the reaching. In turn, games like GTA can have more than a hundred non.game characters on stage. And at the same time, every non.heating character there has full hair, clothes and so on. What did the developers do? And they just stuffed all the character materials inside one single texture. And one, respectively, material. And therefore, drawing one character in GTA is very cheap in terms of performance. That is, baking will also be replaced in order to collect all the materials in one set of textures.

If the material was created in Blender (that is, the model there was “decorated”) and then the model with this material needs to be downloaded, for example, by 3D drains or to cram into the game engine, then for this.

If you have a conditional photogrammetry, then from the source you can bake phototexts on Lawopoli

either for the conditional last loode, when you should have a primitive, but you need textures not by Souther

What is Alt Z in a blender?

Alt-MMMB (click): Center the mouse cursor. Note. This is a performance increase for experienced users, designed as a quick alternative to a viewing manipulator or digital keyboard. alt-z: switch X-ray. Shift-Z: Switch the frame. Alt-SHIFT-Z: Switch on.

In the case of a refractive object, you should enable: in the rendering settings, Screen Space Reflections and, inside it, Refraction. Then, in the settings of the materials of each of the refractive materials, you should enable Screen Space Refraction.

Transparency and refraction

Corpuscular glass material from the Blend4Web library

Let’s look at the way of creating corrugated glass, where transparency with refraction is used. To create a refractive effect, a special node is required, which was developed by our team.

B4W_refraction. Special Node Blend4Web

All that is required of you is to connect normal geometry or Normal Map card to the input of the Noda B4w_refraction. The degree of refraction is indicated by the numerical value. Unfortunately, the action of this node is visible only in the Blend4Web blizzard.

Material with transparency using the node Refraction

In the figure above, you see the work of the node Refraction in its purest form. To get a more significant result, it is required to connect the Normal map.

Material with transparency using a map of normal

Now, thanks to the map of normal, it is clear how the contours of objects inside the ball change. For a complete reconstruction of the glass effect, there are not enough reflections with the effect of Frenel.

Material with transparency uses a map of normal and reflection with the effect of Frenel

The glass looks better, since there is a reflection and this emphasizes the irregularity of the surface. But, if you mix the color to the result of refraction, then we will get color glass already.

The figure below shows the final version of the core of the material. The color was created using the Colormix Noda and a pair of mathematical nodes to regulate the Frell mask.



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