So quite a bit of progress to report on today! Today’s work focused mainly on texturing the guns and the engines of the Aerial Skirmisher. The aircraft is nearing completion. Once this one is finished, I will move on to texturing the Garud Mk. 1.
The engines are actually somewhat easier to texture than the rest of the aircraft. Since it’s basically a cylinder at the end of the day, it’s not super tough to unwrap. The major issue with texturing the engines was to ensure that the texture fit with the texturing of the rest of the model. To that effect, I tested several different textures on the engine. I tried steel, painted steel, a plastic PVC material, and a combination of steel and plastic PVC. Plastic PVC on its own looked far too strange, especially when combined with the aircraft itself. Pure steel was not the best way to go either, since pure steel engines would also clash with the rest of the texturing. If the entire aircraft is painted, it doesn’t make much sense to leave the engines as unpainted raw steel. I tried a combination of using steel layered with plastic PVC on top, then adding different wear effects in order to create a more worn out effect. However, this didn’t work either, mainly because the aircraft itself isn’t very worn out. So that left me with one option.
The painted steel worked best, especially when the paint was a darker color that matched the color scheme of the actual aircraft itself. Here’s the final results:
I added some more details to the base material as well. I added decals for radioactivity and flammable onto the side of the engines, as a sort of nice finishing touch. In each rivet, there’s also some cool bump map textures with an emissive in the center to create a nice, sci-fi, alien tech feel. After this texture was finished, this left me with one more aspect of the engine to texture: the nozzle/output part of the engine.
For the nozzle of the engine, I used just Substance Designer and created a planar UV map of the nozzle part of the engine to ensure good application of the texture. I designed a texture in Substance Designer that makes heavy use of emissives, pattern generators, and gradient maps. Here’s the texture from Substance Designer:
The idea generally was to create something really sci-fi and alien but at the same time, also a bit real world as well. The final engines on the aircraft looked like this:
The final texture on the aircraft engines came out quite nicely. You’ll also notice that I changed the control surface texture a bit as well to make it more well-defined.
The control surface texture has a lower emissive (to ensure that no detail is washed out) and a higher normal and height map setting so that the texture really pops.
Finally, I added textures to the guns. The guns aren’t anything too fancy. It’s a layer of steel with some burn effects on the tip (hand painted) along with some decals.
The burned metal effect was hand painted with a very low hardness and opacity. Again, it’s just there because why not. Here’s a picture of the guns attached to the aircraft:
I may come back to the guns again later and add some more details, but for now, I think I’ll keep them the way they are, move on to change a couple more final aspects of the Skirmisher, and then move on to my other aircraft model. The next aspects that need attention are the fan blades and the missile launch doors. After that, this model will be ‘done’ to an extent (until I find some other detail I need to fix).
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Here’s all the pics in thumbnail: