Substance Painter - Master Thread

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  • Nosslak
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    Nosslak polycounter lvl 12
    I bought Substance Painter in the recent sale (about two weeks ago) and I think it's great so far. It has mostly replaced Photoshop for me as I think it's a lot handier to be able to paint in 3D and have layers update across all the different maps in real-time (in addition to the substance effects and particles). However there have been a few things that have perturbed me about Substance Painter that I think could be improved. Here's a list of both big and small improvements that I'd like to see (in no particular order):
    1. Drag&drop substance effects directly to layers and masks (and stacks if you've already got one of those). Just drag the effect to the thumbnail of the layer or layer mask, instead of forcing the user to click through the 'Add Effect'>'Add Substance Effect'.
    2. Hex value input for the color picker (like in Photoshop). It boggles my mind that a texturing program doesn't support this from the get go, but it's not the first time I've seen it.
    3. Multilayer substance and/or substance effects on groups. For instance I would like to be able to desaturate multiple color layers for a sun bleaching with a single substance effect.
    4. Adjustment layers (brightness/contrast, hue/sat, levels) without having to just apply them to a specific layer.
    5. Ability to export renders with transparent backgrounds (similar to Toolbag).
    6. Shortcut presets based on other applications like ZBrush and Photoshop.
    7. Ability to delete resources (like textures) from the project to clean up unused resources.
    8. Connect maps in the Textures panel to the ones under additional maps (so if the normal map is updated the one used on the model and in the substance effects are too). Right now you need to first update the texture in the shelf and then the one used on the model, which is at least one step too many. Auto-updating the textures as they are modified would perhaps be even better (similar to Toolbag).
    9. Ability to paint on the mirrored side of an object with offset UVs
    10. Quick way to change between two preset colors/materials when you paint (especially for layer mask painting as it can be tedious at the moment). Photoshop has this and it makes it a lot more enjoyable to paint masks in my opinion.
    11. Better support for non-square UV-layouts (substances effects seem squashed, 2D window is too). Substance designer doesn't seem to be able to bake non-square textures either.
    12. Re-arrangement support for stacked substance effects (preferably drag & drop). Would be useful for some stacked layer mask effects.
    13. Hide quick masking effect (but keep the mask useable). Masking is useful for painting dirt and other effects but with the current system it's impossible to tell how it looks before you clear the mask as the mask effect is just way too intrusive. This in combination with not currently being able to use undo for masking makes them almost unusable for me (I know you're working on undo support for masks though, so that's great).
    14. Masking based on the baked maps (for the quick mask tool), so that you can mask by curvature, AO, colormap, etc. in a similar fashion to ZBrush.
    15. Double-click resources in shelf to use them (double-click alpha to apply them to the brush, double-click substance effect to replace the currently selected one).
    16. Ability to view a bigger version of the textures (not just the thumbnails). So that you can easily identify problem areas without first finding it in explorer and then opening it in Photoshop. You could perhaps view them in in the 2D view.

    The list is quite long but that doesn't mean that I hate Substance Painter. On the contrary I think it's great, but I just feel that it could use some streamlining and that there are a few missing (mostly small) features. Thank you for creating a great piece of software!
  • PLyczkowski
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    PLyczkowski polycounter lvl 9
  • Froyok
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    Nosslak wrote: »
    I bought Substance Painter in the recent sale (about two weeks ago) and I think it's great so far. It has mostly replaced Photoshop for me as I think it's a lot handier to be able to paint in 3D and have layers update across all the different maps in real-time (in addition to the substance effects and particles). However there have been a few things that have perturbed me about Substance Painter that I think could be improved. Here's a list of both big and small improvements that I'd like to see (in no particular order):

    Let me answer point by point :
    Nosslak wrote: »
    1. Drag&drop substance effects directly to layers and masks (and stacks if you've already got one of those). Just drag the effect to the thumbnail of the layer or layer mask, instead of forcing the user to click through the 'Add Effect'>'Add Substance Effect'.

    That's a good suggestion, we also have some other improvements planned regarding the drag'n'drop of resource to reduce the time requested to perform those task.

    Nosslak wrote: »
    2. Hex value input for the color picker (like in Photoshop). It boggles my mind that a texturing program doesn't support this from the get go, but it's not the first time I've seen it.
    True, I'm adding this suggestion too since we also want to add the possibility to work in sRGB if need with the color picker.

    Nosslak wrote: »
    3. Multilayer substance and/or substance effects on groups. For instance I would like to be able to desaturate multiple color layers for a sun bleaching with a single substance effect.
    Unless I missuderstood what you want to achieve, you can already do that by adding an effect to a layer/group and set its blending mode to "Pass Trought", this will therefore apply the effect to all the layers below in the layer hierarchy.
    Nosslak wrote: »
    4. Adjustment layers (brightness/contrast, hue/sat, levels) without having to just apply them to a specific layer.
    That's planned. No ETA yet unfortunately.
    Nosslak wrote: »
    5. Ability to export renders with transparent backgrounds (similar to Toolbag).
    That's planned for the coming month ! :)

    Nosslak wrote: »
    6. Shortcut presets based on other applications like ZBrush and Photoshop.
    That's something we could considerate indeed.

    Nosslak wrote: »
    7. Ability to delete resources (like textures) from the project to clean up unused resources.
    It's already possible by doing File > Clean. this will remove any resource unused in the project (once you will save the project). However I would agree that being able to do it more manually would be more handy in certain situations.
    Nosslak wrote: »
    8. Connect maps in the Textures panel to the ones under additional maps (so if the normal map is updated the one used on the model and in the substance effects are too). Right now you need to first update the texture in the shelf and then the one used on the model, which is at least one step too many. Auto-updating the textures as they are modified would perhaps be even better (similar to Toolbag).
    It's planned. Again, no ETA.


    Nosslak wrote: »
    9. Ability to paint on the mirrored side of an object with offset UVs
    Also planned, but not in a short term because of technical reasons.
    Nosslak wrote: »
    10. Quick way to change between two preset colors/materials when you paint (especially for layer mask painting as it can be tedious at the moment). Photoshop has this and it makes it a lot more enjoyable to paint masks in my opinion.
    Also planned, this is a request we receive a lot. The problem is that contrary to Photoshop where the color editor is global, in painter it is contextual. You can edit the color of a brush but also the color of a substance parameter. So we are still thinking about the best way to add this functionality.
    Nosslak wrote: »
    11. Better support for non-square UV-layouts (substances effects seem squashed, 2D window is too). Substance designer doesn't seem to be able to bake non-square textures either.
    Baking non-square texture is planned for Designer. Regarding the substance effect I think we could update them with the ability to specify a ratio to generate the effect properly.

    Nosslak wrote: »
    12. Re-arrangement support for stacked substance effects (preferably drag & drop). Would be useful for some stacked layer mask effects.
    Definitively planned (that's something that bother me a lot).

    Nosslak wrote: »
    13. Hide quick masking effect (but keep the mask useable). Masking is useful for painting dirt and other effects but with the current system it's impossible to tell how it looks before you clear the mask as the mask effect is just way too intrusive. This in combination with not currently being able to use undo for masking makes them almost unusable for me (I know you're working on undo support for masks though, so that's great).
    Noted, the quick mask need some improvements indeed.
    Nosslak wrote: »
    14. Masking based on the baked maps (for the quick mask tool), so that you can mask by curvature, AO, colormap, etc. in a similar fashion to ZBrush.
    Wouldn't using a bitmap mask on a layer be more convenient ? (Especially for re-edition)

    Nosslak wrote: »
    15. Double-click resources in shelf to use them (double-click alpha to apply them to the brush, double-click substance effect to replace the currently selected one).
    I agree, that's something I would like to see too.

    Nosslak wrote: »
    16. Ability to view a bigger version of the textures (not just the thumbnails). So that you can easily identify problem areas without first finding it in explorer and then opening it in Photoshop. You could perhaps view them in in the 2D view.
    Agreed too ! :)
    Nosslak wrote: »
    The list is quite long but that doesn't mean that I hate Substance Painter. On the contrary I think it's great, but I just feel that it could use some streamlining and that there are a few missing (mostly small) features. Thank you for creating a great piece of software!
    Don't worry, those feedback are always welcome. Thanks for taking the time to create this list !
  • Nosslak
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    Nosslak polycounter lvl 12
    @Nosslak

    Beside posting here, you can also submit/vote on those on https://allegorithmic.uservoice.com/forums/261284-substance-painter
    Thanks for the link, I didn't know there was an official place for ideas and feature requests. The website doesn't seem to work in Firefox for me though (could just be some of my plug-ins interfering), but it worked well in Chrome at least.
    Froyok wrote: »
    Unless I missuderstood what you want to achieve, you can already do that by adding an effect to a layer/group and set its blending mode to "Pass Trought", this will therefore apply the effect to all the layers below in the layer hierarchy.
    Alright, I didn't know you could do that already. It seems to work pretty much exactly like what I needed.
    Froyok wrote: »
    6. Shortcut presets based on other applications like ZBrush and Photoshop.
    That's something we could considerate indeed.
    I should've expanded more on this but kind of forgot. What I would be most interested in would be similar viewport navigation to ZBrush as I think that has the simplest navigation to use from a tablet. I recently had to re-install my OS so I can't really compare them right now, so I'm just going by memory there.
    Froyok wrote: »
    It's already possible by doing File > Clean. this will remove any resource unused in the project (once you will save the project). However I would agree that being able to do it more manually would be more handy in certain situations.
    Alright, sounds pretty similar to how Blender does it as well. A manual option would be handy but I guess that it's not as necessary if we already have this.
    Froyok wrote: »
    Also planned, this is a request we receive a lot. The problem is that contrary to Photoshop where the color editor is global, in painter it is contextual. You can edit the color of a brush but also the color of a substance parameter. So we are still thinking about the best way to add this functionality.
    Yeah, I can get that. It is an important feature so I'm glad to hear that you're looking into it.
    Froyok wrote: »
    Baking non-square texture is planned for Designer. Regarding the substance effect I think we could update them with the ability to specify a ratio to generate the effect properly.
    That's great, I also noticed on some material that you couldn't change the scale of the texture so that should take care of that problem as well.
    Froyok wrote: »
    Wouldn't using a bitmap mask on a layer be more convenient ? (Especially for re-edition)
    Could be in some cases but what I wanted to do was to be able to paint some dirt specifically on a single selection from my color map. To do this I would need to be able to use the quick mask tool in conjunction with the color selection effect.
    Froyok wrote: »
    Don't worry, those feedback are always welcome. Thanks for taking the time to create this list !
    That's great to hear as I really didn't want to sound too harsh when I do like the program and where it seems to be heading. Thank you for the speedy reply and being open to criticism.
  • EArkham
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    EArkham polycounter lvl 9
    Does the photoshop export in Substance Painter not work correctly?

    When I use it, it outputs a PSD with a flattened diffuse and specular.

    I can get individual layers if I hide everything I don't want in that layer, but again I'll end up with a PSD with a flattened layer (no alpha). It's tedious, but I can get weathering effects and seam paint outs doing this, but I'd expect the PSD export to seperate out the layers by default.

    Maybe I'm missing a setting somewhere?
  • PLyczkowski
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    PLyczkowski polycounter lvl 9
    >flattened diffuse and specular.

    Is it actually possible to export unflattened in the future at all? As a fill layer can be a substance that is dynamic, I can't imagine how would that work.
  • Jerc
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    Jerc interpolator
    The current PSD export flattens all layers per channel. Having a full PSD export is complex as each channel uses its own color space and format, it needs a lot of design and thinking before it happens. It is on our roadmap though still.
  • haiddasalami
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    haiddasalami polycounter lvl 10
    Is there a possibility of creating my own Shelf tab for my own organization?
  • Froyok
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    Froyok Polycount Sponsor
    Not for the moment.
  • haiddasalami
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    haiddasalami polycounter lvl 10
    Froyok wrote: »
    Not for the moment.

    Ahh shucks :( Hopefully there will be support for this in the future.
  • Froyok
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    We plan to improve the shelf in many ways of course. :)
  • JohnnyRaptor
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    JohnnyRaptor polycounter lvl 11
    zacvrono wrote: »
    How in world did you get the bandage to dynamically absorb the blood as it dripped?! that's amazing!

    The bandage soaking up the blood caught my eye too. would be interesting to hear how you did that.
  • Jerc
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    Jerc interpolator
    The bandage soaking up the blood caught my eye too. would be interesting to hear how you did that.

    It's a rather simple effect actually. I have a mask that tells me what is cloth and what is skin (cloth= white, skin = black).
    The diffuse input is where I paint my simple particles.

    I use this mask to drive a Non Uniform Blur after adding a little bit of noise to it. This effectively allow me to blur the blood trail whenever it reaches cloth, creating the illusion of the bandage soaking up the blood.

    qoWNlzI.png
  • JohnnyRaptor
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    JohnnyRaptor polycounter lvl 11
    Thanks for sharing that Jerc, very clever and effective!
  • arvinmoses
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    arvinmoses polycounter lvl 8
    Hi guys,
    Finished up a chainmail for use with characters. My first material for character texturing.

    In case you guy haven't seen I started a site where I'm giving away free sbsars.

    Here is the chainmail mat:
    http://substance.arvinmoses.com/product/chainmail/
    screenshot0041.jpg
    screenshot0051.jpg
    screenshot006.jpg
  • xtrm3d
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    xtrm3d polycounter lvl 9
    that chainmail look really cool !!!


    just finished a quick step by step video about texturing an assault rifle in substance painter





    [ame="
  • arvinmoses
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    arvinmoses polycounter lvl 8
    Thanks Christophe, and thanks for the share!

    By the way did you ever work at DNA? I thought I heard your name in passing with one of my colleagues. You used to be a big XSI guy right?

    Actually I forgot you used to do a bunch of npr and you did those look/dev style compositing projects in Designer. I'm trying to get a hand painted look out of designer... Would you happen to have any ideas?

    screenshot000-1024x576.jpg
  • xtrm3d
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    xtrm3d polycounter lvl 9
    ""Thanks Christophe, and thanks for the share!

    By the way did you ever work at DNA? I thought I heard your name in passing with one of my colleagues. You used to be a big XSI guy right?""


    yes i did work on the ant bully from 2004 to 2006
    ""big"" xsi guys..well let say .. that their might be some truth to that

    as for npr out of designer .. did you check my other videos ?


    [ame="

    [ame="
  • arvinmoses
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    arvinmoses polycounter lvl 8
    Thanks Christophe! Ill check them out.

    Update btw -- getting close but man I'm about to strangle myself. It's almost like I've almost got it, then I tweak something and it all goes wrong. I think I need to reorganize and gather my thoughts.

    screenshot005.png
    screenshot004.png
    screenshot003.png
    screenshot002.png
  • Popeye9
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    Popeye9 polycounter lvl 12
    Any word on when we will be able to maximize the painting area. Would love to be able to have a hot key that hides the UI as opposed to having to dock it of on the next screen.
  • PLyczkowski
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    PLyczkowski polycounter lvl 9
    @arvinmoses Nice, that chainmail looks really great.
  • PLyczkowski
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    PLyczkowski polycounter lvl 9
    Just published 2 new mats in my Gumroad shop.

    https://gumroad.com/plyczkowski


    shot_150112_225402.png?dl=0


    Big thanks to Arvin Villapando (arvinmoses) for letting me use his model to showcase them.
  • Vieczyslav M Kutasovitsch
    I love those materials and I love the presentation ball, kinda reminds me of something:)
  • PLyczkowski
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    PLyczkowski polycounter lvl 9
    Vieczyslav M Kutasovitsch Thanks. Here is a new presentation ball for cloth materials, textured in SP using the Ancient Metal. Modeled in Blender.


    shot_150113_145442.png?dl=0
  • arvinmoses
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    arvinmoses polycounter lvl 8
    Love the new mat ball! Metal looks great! Great job!
    Love it on the gun!

    Thanks again for using it for your mat showcase.

    screenshot0002.png
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    Some stuff for environment artists.
    Available for free here: http://substance.arvinmoses.com/product/rocky-ground/

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r78F_o8Cop8&feature=youtu.be
  • WarrenM
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    WarrenM Polycount Sponsor
    Really great stuff, thanks!
  • rodstone
    I don't know if anyone can help answer this but I find the rotation in the viewpoint incredibly frustrating. I am used to Blender, where the camera rotates around the entire object, whereas in SP it seems to rotate around the face I am working on (or some point close to it)

    If I was working on a cube for example, it means to change to another face I don't only have to rotate but I have to translate and often zoom in/out. In Blender I only have to rotate.

    I find it very disrupting for my workflow, especially when using my wacom tablet


    And the reason it bothers me the most is a while ago when I tried the demo of SP, it was working how I liked it.

    I can't seem to find any kind of setting to change this, and web searching has come up with little help
  • rodstone
    Also SP is cool but I don't really care for using it with "substances", I use it more as a simple painter because the rendering viewport is so good
  • Jerc
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    Jerc interpolator
    The rotation works the same way as with zbrush, it is easier to work on specific parts of a mesh this way. We could consider adding an option for an origin centered rotation.
  • rodstone
    Jerc wrote: »
    The rotation works the same way as with zbrush, it is easier to work on specific parts of a mesh this way. We could consider adding an option for an origin centered rotation.

    I would personally appreciate it, although I can see why others wouldn't want it (I'm doing more work on the object as a whole, not zoomed in). If I recall correctly the demo version I used rotated around the centre of the object.

    For the time being I will try to get used to it :)
  • Froyok
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    Froyok Polycount Sponsor
    rodstone wrote: »
    If I recall correctly the demo version I used rotated around the centre of the object.

    I don't think we ever had this behavior, at least not in public releases (open beta and later versions).
  • Bertmac
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    Bertmac polycounter lvl 13
    I always just click in the middle of the model and it works
  • Jerc
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    Jerc interpolator
    New version 1.1.2 is up!
  • xtrm3d
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    xtrm3d polycounter lvl 9
    new video
    character in substance painter show and tell
    [ame="
  • dzibarik
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    dzibarik polycounter lvl 6
    A little thing that irritates me a lot - I can't zoom in and center on a corner of 2D UV space like I do in Photoshop. The window is limited by UV space. Sometimes I need to paint small details on some islands in a corner and it's not comfortable without centering on them.
  • Froyok
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    dzibarik wrote: »
    A little thing that irritates me a lot - I can't zoom in and center on a corner of 2D UV space like I do in Photoshop. The window is limited by UV space. Sometimes I need to paint small details on some islands in a corner and it's not comfortable without centering on them.
    Are you zooming with the mouse wheel in the 2D View of Painter ?
    If yes, that's a bug (waiting to be fixed in our database). If you zoom by using "ALT + Right Click" it should work like in the 3D View (based on the mouse position).
  • dzibarik
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    dzibarik polycounter lvl 6
    Froyok wrote: »
    Are you zooming with the mouse wheel in the 2D View of Painter ?
    If yes, that's a bug (waiting to be fixed in our database). If you zoom by using "ALT + Right Click" it should work like in the 3D View (based on the mouse position).

    thanks, it worked!
  • Nosslak
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    Nosslak polycounter lvl 12
    How do I import a model containing two different meshes with two different texture sets? I want to import both a rifle and the mount for it where both of them use different textures. I know you can do it as that is pretty much the case with the Hans model but I can't seem to do it on my own model.
    I don't know if it matters but I'm trying to export this from Blender and have tried exporting both as FBX and OBJ but it imports with a single textureset every time. So how would I go about importing a model like this?
  • Froyok
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    Texture set are defined by Material ID in Substance painter. Simply assign a different material for you second mesh and then export both in the same FBX file. That should do it, careful with the Material name however, if you rename it you will lost the associated layer stack if you reimport the mesh.
  • Nosslak
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    Nosslak polycounter lvl 12
    Froyok wrote: »
    Texture set are defined by Material ID in Substance painter. Simply assign a different material for you second mesh and then export both in the same FBX file. That should do it, careful with the Material name however, if you rename it you will lost the associated layer stack if you reimport the mesh.
    Alright, thank you. I thought I had tested that already, but I must have just tried that with OBJ with limited success.
  • EArkham
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    EArkham polycounter lvl 9
    Is there any way to adjust the falloff of a brush?

    It seems like I can only scale it up or down, but sometimes you want a larger scale brush but with lower falloff so it doesn't wrap around curved surfaces or on sharp edges.

    I tried to find it, but I'm not seeing this feature if it exists.
  • Froyok
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    It depends of the alpha loaded in you brush (look for a parameter named "hardness"). Currently the setting is dependent of the substance. We have yet to implement a global setting that would work with everything.
  • final_fight
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    final_fight polycounter lvl 5
    Is there a PBR shader for specular/glossiness workflow?
  • EArkham
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    EArkham polycounter lvl 9
    Froyok wrote: »
    It depends of the alpha loaded in you brush (look for a parameter named "hardness"). Currently the setting is dependent of the substance. We have yet to implement a global setting that would work with everything.

    Hm, hardness is useful, but doesn't seem to handle what I meant.

    What I'm looking for is an angle falloff, so when I'm painting on a cylinder or sharp angle, I can minimize the amount that it "streaks" perpendicularly to the brush. Any plans to add a feature like that? Mudbox has a falloff setting like that.

    Also, is there a way to import a different object while keeping the rest of the scene settings? Sometimes I want to change to a different model but keep the same materials/brushes/imported images/viewer settings/etc that I was working with.

    I might be blind and not seeing the option, but the only way I can change the object is to just start a new scene, which of course resets everything in the scene.
  • Froyok
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    Froyok Polycount Sponsor
    You can use the backface culling I believe. I think however that your are looking for something that handle the "depth", like the dry brush in Mudbox, right ?
  • final_fight
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    final_fight polycounter lvl 5
    Froyok wrote: »
    You can use the backface culling I believe. I think however that your are looking for something that handle the "depth", like the dry brush in Mudbox, right ?

    Falloff feature in Mudbox he's talking about is designed to prevent painting on non-specified normals. For example, default value is 60 degrees - so you will able to paint on surface normals which angle is no more than 60 degrees relatively to camera.

    Simple box example:

    mud.jpg
  • Stromberg90
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    Stromberg90 polycounter lvl 9
    EArkham: Go into edit then project configuration there you can chose a new mesh but keep everything else.
    I often do that when texturing something in the same style, by saving a copy first.
  • EArkham
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    EArkham polycounter lvl 9
    Falloff feature in Mudbox he's talking about is designed to prevent painting on non-specified normals. For example, default value is 60 degrees - so you will able to paint on surface normals which angle is no more than 60 degrees relatively to camera.

    Yup, that's it exactly. I was wrestling with how to word it.
    EArkham: Go into edit then project configuration there you can chose a new mesh but keep everything else.
    I often do that when texturing something in the same style, by saving a copy first.

    Ah hah, thanks for the tip!
  • Froyok
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    Froyok Polycount Sponsor
    Falloff feature in Mudbox he's talking about is designed to prevent painting on non-specified normals. For example, default value is 60 degrees - so you will able to paint on surface normals which angle is no more than 60 degrees relatively to camera.

    Simple box example:
    EArkham wrote: »
    Yup, that's it exactly. I was wrestling with how to word it.

    Right, so what you are looking for in indeed the backface culling in the properties of a brush ! :)
  • final_fight
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    final_fight polycounter lvl 5
    Froyok wrote: »
    Right, so what you are looking for in indeed the backface culling in the properties of a brush ! :)

    Indeed. I didn't know there are advanced brush controls!
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