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This page provides a tutorial on how to create a hardwood floor.


The way objects look in the real world depends on the substance they are made of as well as on the micro-structure in which this substance is organized. The micro-structure affects how clear or blurry the objects’ reflections and refractions are. The VRayMtl is perfect to create realistic surfaces, such as wood flooring.

In this tutorial, we show the simplest way to create a realistic hardwood floor with VRayMtl.

Since V-Ray 5.0, Beta 1, VRayHDRI texture has been renamed to VRayBitmap texture.



Step 1: Create a VRayMtl

Let’s start with creating a VRayMtl material and assigning it to a simple plane.

Open the Material Editor and drag-and-drop а VRayMtl in the active view.

Select the plane in the viewport.

Then, in the Material Editor right-click on the new VRayMtl and select Assign Material to Selection.

Keep the default values of the parameters in the Basic parameters rollout.


Step 2: Add a Diffuse Texture

The hardwood floor can reflect and absorb light waves which result in reflection and a diffuse color. We use texture maps to specify these parameters.

Let’s first assign a VRayHDRI map to the Diffuse map slot of the VRayMtl and choose an image that best represents the floor we need.

In the Color space rollout of the VRayHDRI texture, set the color space to From 3ds max so that the gamma is controlled by 3ds Max. Thus, the data is converted correctly.


Step 3: Adjust the Floor Tiling

The next step is to adjust the tiling of the hardwood floor based on how densely we want the wooden planks to be lined.

This can be done by selecting the floor in the viewport and then inserting a UVW Map from the Modifier List.

In the UVW Map's Parameters rollout, select the axis to which the tiling will be aligned. In our case, we select the Y axis.

Set the Length and Width to preferable values.

The floor tiling can be set in the Coordinates rollout of the VRayHDRI texture instead of the UVW Map's Parameters rollout. Higher values increase the density of the planks, while lower values make them appear larger in size. Note that the UVW Map modifier settings don't affect the VRayHDRI map tiling on other objects in the scene but they affect how all maps using the specified mapping channel are tiled over this exact geometry.




The images on the right show how the Tiling parameter changes the render. The Tiling in the first image is set to a value of 20. See how wide the wooden planks are.

In the second image, the Tiling is set to a value of 60. Thus, the size of the wooden planks is reduced and they are lined more densely.



Step 4: Add a Bump Texture

Floor surfaces are not entirely smooth, they have some bumps. To simulate tiny bumps, we can use a VRayHDRI texture and link it to the Bump map slot of the VRayMtl.

Note that the bump map is just a shading effect and does not change the original geometry, only the way it looks.

In the Color space rollout, set the type to None. The Bump map we are using is black-and-white and does not need color correction.

In the Maps rollout of the VRayMtl, reduce the Bump value to 8.

When map tiling was not specified with a UVW Map modifier but in the Coordinates rollout of the diffuse map, then copy these tiling values to the bump map as well.





Let's check out how the Bump map changes the floor's appearance.

The first render which we produced with Bump map multiplier of 30 is good but the surface looks too rough and the space between the individual wood planks is too pronounced. We need to reduce the fine details a little.

In the second render we use a Bump map multiplier of 8. See how the floor is slightly smoother and resembles a wooden surface. The space between the planks is smaller.



Step 5: Adjust the Reflection

Let's make the floor look polished by adding reflection to it. We use the same map that we assigned for bump. We only make it darker to adjust the reflection strength. For this purpose, use an Output node to link the Bump map to the Reflect map slot of the VRayMtl. Then set the Output Amount to 0,5.
Set the Reflection Glossiness to 0,7 to reduce the wet-floor effect.

Now that the floor reflects more light its overall appearance is a lot brighter. Link an Output node to the Diffuse texture and adjust the Color Map Curve. This darkens the Diffuse color and makes the reflections stand out more.



Final Result

Here's the final result of our floor:


Recommended next:

How to Make Translucent Fabric