compositingHow to do Camera Mapping

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Tags - VFX
Software:
  • Blender 2.66a
Discover How To:
  • What camera mapping is
  • How camera mapping can be used with stunning results
  • How to camera map any still photograph

Chapter Marks (Full Length )

modelling icon33.28modelling icon38.20icon-texturing13.13icon-texturing20.00modelling icon350.48
Software:
  • Blender 2.66a
Discover How To:
  • What camera mapping is
  • How camera mapping can be used with stunning results
  • How to camera map any still photograph

Chapter Marks (Full Length )

modelling icon33.28modelling icon38.20icon-texturing13.13icon-texturing20.00modelling icon350.48

I’ve actually already made this tutorial once before. About 2 years ago infact. But over time, the tutorial became outdated, due to the “sticky” texture coordinates being removed from blender.

Since then, I’ve been bombarded with requests to re-do the tutorial. In the last month I think I must have got 10 or more separate requests. Crazy.

So in order to appease the masses (and end the emails) here’s the updated camera mapping tutorial.

Finished Result

Download the finished .blend

Resources

Further Inspiration

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial. Make something cool? Post it in the comments below :)

Summary

1. Delete the default cube and lamp. Position the camera front on to the grid as shown:

 

2. Add the original image to the background:

 

3. Set the render resolution of your scene to match the photo’s dimensions:

 

4. Set the camera’s focal length to match the scene. If you don’t know the focal length, you’ll have to experiment.

 

5. Position and rotate the camera so that the grid floor is in line with the floor in the background image. These are the settings I used, but usually you’ll just eye it:

 

6. Add a cube to the scene and resize to fit the basic size of the room:

 

7. Make every face a separate object, and delete the ceiling.

 

8. Resize the walls to fit the image:

 

Mapping the floor

1. Open Photoshop or Gimp. Load in your image and using the lasso tool, select the floor as shown:

 

2. Copy and paste the floor onto a separate layer, on a transparent background:

 

3. Using the Clone Brush tool, carefully paint away over the middle column till it vanishes.

It should look like this when finished:

CLONE BRUSH: Not just for fixing military mistakes

Once finished, save it as a PNG with transparency.

 

4. Return to the scene and with the floor selected, subdivide it a good 10 times. This is important, as blender needs geometry in order to deliver accurate mapping.

 

5. From the camera’s viewpoint, press U, and select Project from View (this replaces the old “sticky” texture coordinates).

 

6. With the floor still selected, add a new material, go to the node editor, and create this setup using the image texture we just created:

If you render it out now, you should see this:

First object complete! Now for the walls…

 

Mapping the Walls

1. Jump back over to Photoshop and using the Polygonal Lasso tool, select the left wall:

 

2. Copy and paste the wall onto a separate layer:

 

3. We need to get rid of that wall in the foreground, so select a portion of the left wall as shown:

 

4. Copy and paste it, then resize it till it fits on the wall, effectively blotting out the front facing wall:

Save this image as a transparent PNG.

 

5. Repeat the above steps to do the same to the right wall:

 

6. Repeat the steps again for the backwall:

 

7. Return to blender and just as we did before, select the wall, subdivide it then unwrap it using “Project from View”.

 

8. Do the same for the right wall:

 

9. And the same for the back wall:

 

8. Give each wall it’s own material and texture, using this node setup that we created before:

You should now have this:

 

Mapping the doorway

1. Jump into photoshop, and just as we did before, crop the front face, paste it onto a new layer, then save it as a transparent PNG.

 

2. Go back to blender, add a plane, then rotate and position it so it’s line with the front wall in the photo:

 

3. Go into edit mode and create the basic facade by extruding the plane:

 

4. Model some basic steps into the mesh to reflect the original image (modelling this will make it look more accurate when the camera moves):

 

5. Finish modelling more detail into the mesh as shown:

 

6. Create several loop cuts in the mesh (for more accurate mapping) then UV project from view:

 

7. In blender, select the front wall mesh and assign the same material with the new texture we just created:

You should now have this:

 

Mapping the Ceiling

1. To create the curved ceiling, add a cylinder and position as shown:

 

2. Delete the unimportant parts of the mesh and align it to the background image:

 

3. Create some loop cuts (for more accurate mapping) then UV project from view:

 

4. Go back to photoshop, isolate the ceiling and remove the girders as shown.

This one will probably be the hardest to achieve since there’s a lot of girders. All it takes is time, patience and a clone brush.

 

5. Assign the texture to the mesh as per usual and you should have this:

 

You should now have this:

Resize your image dimensions to 1920×1080 and you’ll have this:

 

To make an even more believable illusion, add finer detail to your scene like support beams, cords and little raised surfaces on the floor and walls. This is all optional, but it’ll really help to sell the animation.

 

Eventually you’ll have this:

Now go ahead and animate that camera!

 

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