Author Topic: Viewing Handpainted Displacement While Painting  (Read 1078 times)


I was trying an idea with displacement in Substance Painter, but I am having trouble seeing the displacement as I paint.  It's there, and I can see if if I stop and move the camera back and forth, but I was wondering if anyone had suggestions for viewing the displacement better while I paint it (without having to stop and pivot the camera). 

So far the best technique I've been able to try has been changing my Base Color constantly to match the value of the displacement I'm handpainting, but eventually I'm going to have to hide those layers to paint color and I'll be back to wondering where I'm painting.  Wireframe view allows me to see how much I have displaced from the original, but not where the currently displaced mesh is.

Any ideas?  I keep feeling like I'm making this harder than it has to be.  Thanks for any insights!

Are you using parallax or actual displacement?  I recommend actual displacement...however, be aware that as you paint the displacement, the polygons will jump away from where you're painting.  It's almost like additive or subtractive sculpting when you set it up right.  (Not the parallax kind - the other...don't recall what it's called in Painter)

As far as I can tell, actual displacement.  Capture of the Shader Settings:

Additive (and a bit subtractive) sculpting is exactly what I was doing.  I turned my brushes down to low-flow, set the spacing to nil, and then varied the stroke opacity depending upon how much I was painting.  It worked very well with fill layers and masks for laying on effects.  First I would put down general large shapes, and then refine them, generally sticking with additive sculpting until it came to putting in finer details.  I'm not practiced with sculpting, but this worked for me.

Unfortunately, no matter what shader I threw on the mesh, it was incredibly difficult to see where I was sculpting without constantly pausing and rotating the model and/or environment.  It was very flat.  On the bright side, I did learn how to do this much more quickly by remapping the buttons on my tablet stylus and keeping my keyboard beside it, but it still would have been a real boon to be able to see the defined shape as I worked on it. 

I don't think it helped that the normal maps appeared to ignore the painted displacement.  Putting a "height to normal" layer didn't do anything, either, because I was painting in the actual displacement channel and leaving the height channel for smaller details baked into the substances I applied after sculpting was finished. 

I really did love sculpting in Painter, just wish it'd be easier to see!