Computer Graphics Systems Development Corporation released a new software product designed to help graphic artists recreate realism in graphics images. CGSD’s RealTexture Bump Texture Tools are plug-ins for Adobe Photoshop for preparing bump textures. Bump textures capture the properties of rough surfaces so that the surfaces look natural when viewed under varying lighting conditions in computer imagery.
Capabilities for using bump texture have been in animation programs for some time, but due consumer bump-mapping capable graphics cards only recently coming into the market, and the labor intensive barriers that make these rendering methods time intensive, the benefits of superior graphics bump mapping haven’t been used. The Bump Texture Tools improve both the speed and accuracy of pattern preparation.
Users provide a photographic image as input, and the Bump Texture Tools deduce the location of surface variations from the shading patterns in the image. Providing multiple photographs taken under different lighting conditions allows the Bump Texture Tools to resolve difficult cases in which the subject has a strong color pattern on its surface in addition to bump variation. The shading variations can be removed from the image, so that the bump texture will be correctly shaded in arbitrary lighting. A separate tool in the set allows users to preview results, and to allow touch up in Photoshop.
CGSD President Roy Latham commented, “The RealTexture Bump Texture Tools cannot automatically resolve every case of shadowed surfaces, but it is such a step up from past ad hoc techniques that we are likely to see a dramatic increase in the use of bump mapping, especially in games.”
The RealTexture Bump Texture Tools are available for $495.