PLAYING AROUND WITH PROCEDURAL SKIN IN CARRARA (CONTAINS NUDITY)
Not many people know about Carrara's procedural shader abilities. We didn't know about them either for the longest time. Then one of us read the manual and thought a try at making a procedural skin shader should be done.
Here are the skin's basic settings so far. We'll be using a multi channel shader for this project. A highlight of 6% and a shininess of 3% have been chosen so far. Note also that there is a bump amplitude of 15%.
The color is the main ingredient for this shader. Here is an expanded view. As you can see, many levels are being used to make this skin look as real as possible. The first level of our procedural skin is a base skin pigment. It is a mixture of two colors with noise used for blending them. A brightness of 250 is used here so that the lighter pigment is dominant. A value of 100 will mix the two pigments evenly. NOTE: A global scale of 1 is used here to tighten up the noise pattern and shrink the color variance down to pixel-size.
On the same level as the base skin pigment is the vein color. It too is a mixture of two colors with noise used to blend them.
Mixing both the veins and the skin pigment together using a global scale of 1 here creates the look of translucent skin that's covering the veins.
Next we'll make a fractal pattern that our veins will follow. Then we'll cover them with another layer of our base skin pigment. The higher the contrast setting, the more pronounced the veins are. Note that "Invert" is checked off here. Set the blender to none to remove the veins.
We'll then use a turbulence generator to add freckles to our skin. A global scale greater than 2 will produce larger freckles. Set the blender to none to remove the freckles.
Some fractal noise will be used for our final procedural skin level to create moles. Turning up the brightness will create larger moles. Using a darker brown color will make darker moles. Set the blender to none to remove the moles.
Now use cellular bumps to add more realism to your skin and you're done.
When rendering, use best anti-aliasing and 1 pixel accuracy for both object and shadow.
Here is a test body with the skin shader applied to it. The settings for this skin shader work best on figures that are 5 to 6' tall.
If you want to remove the goose bumps and make them into skin pores instead, change the cellular bump settings found in the basic settings for the top shader to a scale of 6% and a bump amplitude of -15%.
A pale base skin pigment was created for this front shot.
And the same skin under different lighting. The skin looks totally different now even though the same skin shader was used.
With lighting provided by both a dimmer distant light and a low-res HDRI background, the skin blemishes in the shader become noticeable.