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SAMPLE MATERIAL: DARK MARBLE
Our material for this tutorial is a form of dark marble. We are looking to produce a smooth basic stone, marked with veins of another colour. We are going to do this without using Poser's own Marble node. Figure One shows the material we will produce here.
The aim of this tutorial is to show you what results you can get just by combining a few of the standard material nodes provided in Poser. It uses no maths and makes no changes to any of the main surface settings. Here, we are using a Wood node to combine two other nodes - a Turbulence node that is providing the smooth shiny part of the marble, and a granite node to provide the speckles.
First, the wood node. We are using other nodes to provide the colours here, so set both wood colours to white. Increasing the scale to 3.6 increases the width of the light and dark bands in the wood, giving us our veins in the final stone. Increasing the turbulence to 2.6 produces a nicely random looking result (or will once we have colours again). Finally, I've used the Improved noise type simply because I prefer the result.
In this example I have used a completely unmodified turbulence node to produce the dark wood colour. This provides our main pattern. Finally, I have used a Granite node to produce the speckles. With the scale set to 1, the granite node works like an enhanced noise node, producing four shades of almost random colours based on the base and spot colours. All I've done here is change the base colour to black and the spot colour to yellow, to get our speckles. If you increase the scale, you will see more of a camouflage pattern emerge.
Even though the Granite and Turbulence nodes occupy roughly the same amount of the final material, it is the Turbulence that dominates (if you swap the two inputs around you will see the same result). This is because the turbulence has a pattern, which the noise produces by the granite breaks up, but does not hide.
You will probably need to alter the scale and turbulence settings on the wood node to make this material work on much larger props, where the pattern of the wood can become too visible. Decrease the scale to compensate for large props, and alter the turbulence to taste.
There is plenty of potential to improve this material with different specular settings, or some gentle displacement.