How to create a tileable texture

I have written this tutorial following a suggestion coming from jackieteh, a frequent reader of this blog. If you have any suggestions regarding what I should write about, feel free to post a suggestion,

There are several ways to prepare a tileable texture starting from photos, but from my experience the method that I’m going to show you will work in 99% of the cases.

Preparation
Regardless of what method you will chose to create your tileable texture, there are some things that you need to keep in mind.
-the first advice that I give you is that if you have the chance to take the photos yourself,  DO IT!
-when taking the photo of the material sample, try to place the camera as perpendicular as possible, so you won’t have to work more later on it to correct the verticals.
-the light must be as uniform as possible over the entire surface of the sample. Avoid highlights or shadows because these are difficult to remove.
-if the material that you need to prepare is reflective, try to avoid placing it close to objects that might cast a reflection on it. This can be quite difficult, but try to do your best because it’s really important.

Making the texture tileable.
Here is the image that I started with (click on it to view a higher res version).

Open the photo in photoshop, click on “Filter”, “other”, and “offset”.

In the fields next to “horizontal” and “vertical” type a positive value equal to half of the dimension of the photo. For example, if your photo has a dimension of 900×900, make an offset of +450 on both dimensions.

If you take a close look, you will notice that there is a visible separation both on vertical middle and horizontal middle of the image

This can be adjusted easily using the clone stamp tool, with various parameters under “hardness” and “master diameter”.
Here is the final result (click on the image to view a higher resolution texture)

Although this tutorial has been written especially for 3d artists, I think it can be useful for webdesigners and graphic designers in general, that need to create seamless textures for backgrounds, wallpapers or other similar stuff.

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4 Comments
  1. jackieteh says:

    Hurray!!!
    Thank you for your tutorial,
    i will practise according to your tutorial.

  2. Mathew says:

    Thanks for the tutorial Alex! It is very helpful!
    I have also looked at your company website and I must say I really loved the renderings in your portfolio, especially the interiors.

    Since you have asked for suggestions regarding what tutorials you should write, I would love to know how you obtain those clear white walls in your interior renderings. Every time I have a red carpet or something like that in my scenes, the walls and the ceiling turn red as well.
    If you can write a tutorial about that, it would be really helpful to me.

  3. Thanks for the feedback and suggestions Mathew!
    I will see what I can do about the tutorial you’ve asked for.

    Best regards,
    Alex

  4. pep says:

    you make the clearest/easier to understand anything….

    very appreciated!!

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