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Build Your Library of Content for Daz Studio
Fantasy Castle by Animated Heaven
Have you ever wished that when the default figure auto-loads at DAZ Studio start up that it would not be naked?  Or perhaps starting up DS with no figure at all?  Or even better yet, how about starting up with a base scene?  The technique discussed herein can be applied to DAZ Studio to custom fit it to your needs. We will demonstrate how to change the default figure or scene that is loaded when you start DAZ Studio.  In instances where you do not want to use it, start a New scene.
    During this course, you will learn many of the techniques required to import and use 3D models in Wavefront OBJ format with  Daz Studio (DS). This tutorial demonstrates how to import the Fantasy Castle by Animated Heavens into DS and apply all of the original texture and bump map images. The Fantasy Castle model is available for free subject to its own licensing terms. We will show you where to get it, how to import it, and how to turn it into a easily reusable DUF format Prop item in within your Content Library tab. This model is an awesome addition to your content library to be used in future projects. 
During this course, you will learn many of the techniques required to import and use 3D models in Wavefront OBJ format with Daz Studio (DS). This tutorial demonstrates how to import the Fantasy Castle by Animated Heavens into DS and apply all of the original texture and bump map images. The Fantasy Castle model is available for free subject to its own licensing terms. We will tell you where to get it, how to import it, and how to make it look good in DS. Lastly, we will explain how to save the Fantasy Castle as a Scene so it can be merged into future projects.
Pro-Pack PDF Overview
PDF versionof Build Your Library of Content for Daz Studio with Fantasy Castle
PDF Preview of  BYL for Daz Studio with Fantasy Castle

This fully rendered version of the Fantasy Castle in Daz Studio using the Iray engine was completed for this training course.
Daz Studio Iray Render of completed Fantasy Castle


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FULL TEXT VERSION
(without illustrations/graphics)

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End User License Agreement (EULA)
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This tutorial (including all text, graphics, and videos), herein referred to as the “work”, is provided as-is with no warranties of any kind either expressed or implied.  This work contains original copyrighted material developed exclusively by/for Winterbrose Arts and Graphics.  The publisher retains all copyright ownership and reserves all rights to this work.  This product is only available directly from the publisher or an authorized reseller.  If you obtained a copy from any other source, please visit the publisher's website to purchase a legal copy for yourself.  * There may be items required for completion of this training that are copyrighted and/or licensed by other entities (persons or organizations) by which you must legally abide with their respective copyright and licensing requirements.  The publisher assumes no responsibility for any actions taken by users of this work.  * You may publish links to this work’s online product page in your social media, in forums, or on other websites.  * You may not copy, post, share, blog, tweet, sell, or distribute copies of this work, in whole or in part, by any means or in any form without the prior written permission of the publisher.  You may not modify, change or create derivative works based upon this work in any form or fashion or by any method.  You may not claim authorship in any form for content of this work.  If you do not agree with any of the terms of this license, then do not use this work and leave this webpage. Use of any portion of this work constitutes your full agreement with all of the terms contained herein.

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Required Items
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1. Fantasy Castle Model:   https://free3d.com/3d-model/fantasy-castle-40715.html
2. Daz Studio version 4.9 or higher:   https://www.daz3d.com/get_studio
3. ZIP compatible utility (WinZIP, 7-Zip, WinRAR, etc)
4. TXT/PDF Viewer and/or MP4/WMV Player

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STEP-1: Download and Examine the contents of the ZIP file
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From this point forward, you must proceed at your own risk (see Warning below).  If you have not already done so, visit the link to download the Fantasy Castle ZIP file.  Don’t forget to scan it with your Anti-virus and Anti-malware as you feel necessary.  When you are ready, open the downloaded Zip file using whatever tools you have available.  Below is the warning we received when we initially opened the Zip file.

!!!  WARNING  !!!
Before downloading any files, ensure you have a good antivirus-type application running in protection mode, or that can be used to scan the zip immediately after download.

Once you open the Zip file, you can see that it contains a hierarchy of folders and sub-folders.  We do not need all of the files.  The files we will be extracting to use for this project are:
------  --------
FOLDER    FILENAME
------  --------
Castle    Castle OBJ.mtl
Castle    Castle OBJ.obj
Castle    Details.txt
Texture    Castle Exterior Texture Bump.jpg
Texture    Castle Exterior Texture.jpg
Texture    Castle Interior Texture Bump.jpg
Texture    Castle Interior Texture.jpg
Texture    Ground and Fountain Texture Bump.jpg
Texture    Ground and Fountain Texture.jpg
Texture    Towers Doors and Windows Texture Bump.jpg
Texture    Towers Doors and Windows Texture.jpg


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STEP-2: Locate "My DAZ 3D Library" Content folders
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a. On the main menu, select Edit : Preferences
b. In the Preferences popup, click the Content tab then click the Content Directory Manager... button
c. In the Content Sets panel, expand both the DAZ Studio Formats and Poser Formats. Look for the path to the "My DAZ 3D Library" which is everyone/public in each section.
*** You will need to remember paths for DAZ Studio and Poser later ***
d. Click Cancel button on Content Directory Manager & Preferences popups


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STEP-3: Legacy Runtime Folder Setup
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From its beginning, Daz Studio has utilized the Runtime folder hierarchy to maintain compatibility with Poser.  There are many parts to this structure, but for this training we will only be concerned with two folders:  1) where to store the object’s geometry data, and 2) where to store the object’s texturing data.  For the type of model we will be working with, the mesh data (model) will be placed in the Geometries folder and the texturing images will be placed in the Textures folder.  Please note that it is a good practice to create sub-folders to separate the works of one artist from another, and/or one 3D model from another.  Here are the two hierarchies that we will create for the Fantasy Castle to be used in Daz Studio:
     Runtime
         `--- Geometries
                     `--- AnimatedHeaven
                                     `--- Fantasy_Castle
     Runtime
         `--- Textures
                   `--- AnimatedHeaven
                                     `--- Fantasy_Castle

During our review of the ZIP archive, we found two mesh data files (.obj and .mtl), four texture images (.jpg) and four bump maps (.jpg).  Do not worry if you do not know what a bump map or what its purpose is, just be sure to include them when instructed.
* MESH DATA
  Castle OBJ.obj
  Castle OBJ.mtl
* TEXTURE IMAGES
  Castle Exterior Texture.jpg
  Castle Interior Texture.jpg
  Ground and Fountain Texture.jpg
  Towers Doors and Windows Texture.jpg
* BUMP MAP IMAGES
  Castle Exterior Texture Bump.jpg
  Castle Interior Texture Bump.jpg
  Ground and Fountain Texture Bump.jpg
  Towers Doors and Windows Texture Bump.jpg

Now it is time to create our new Runtime folders using the My DAZ 3D Library paths for Poser Formats that you discovered in Step-2.  Navigate with the file browser you normally use for your operating system (we will be using Microsoft Windows 10) to the Runtime folder.  Within both the Geometries and Textures sub-folders, create another sub-folder titled “AnimatedHeaven”. Inside each of these new sub-folders create yet another sub-folder titled “Fantasy_Castle”.  When you are finished, these are the two paths that we will use to store our 3D Model:
  My DAZ 3D Library : Runtime : Geometries : AnimatedHeaven : Fantasy_Castle
  My DAZ 3D Library : Runtime : Textures : AnimatedHeaven : Fantasy_Castle

From the ZIP file, extract the mesh, texture and bump files into their appropriate folders. If you have already extracted these files from the ZIP archive into a temporary folder location simply copy (or move) them to the new folders.
* Runtime : Geometries : AnimatedHeaven : Fantasy_Castle
  Castle OBJ.obj
  Castle OBJ.mtl
* Runtime : Textures : AnimatedHeaven : Fantasy_Castle
  Castle Exterior Texture Bump.jpg
  Castle Exterior Texture.jpg
  Castle Interior Texture Bump.jpg
  Castle Interior Texture.jpg
  Ground and Fountain Texture Bump.jpg
  Ground and Fountain Texture.jpg
  Towers Doors and Windows Texture Bump.jpg
  Towers Doors and Windows Texture.jpg

Everything we need to create our Daz prop is now contained within the proper folders.


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STEP-4: Import Model Into Daz Studio
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When importing any model into Daz Studio, just remember that not all models are created equal.  In other words, because there are a wide range of 3d modeling applications available for creators to use, you will have to experiment with which parameters to use when importing other models into Daz Studio.  However, for the purposes of this training we have already determined the necessary parameters needed.  We will start by importing the Fantasy Castle into a Daz Studio scene.  On the main menu, select File : Import.  In the Import File popup, be sure the file type is set to Wavefront Object.  Browse to the location where you saved the mesh data (.obj and .mtl) for the Fantasy Castle, select the obj file and click on the Open button.  In the OBJ Import Options, change the From: field to Custom and the Scale to 5000%.  The Lateral X, Vertical Y and Depth Z should all be the same direction (X=X, Y=Y, and Z=Z). Do not check any of the Invert boxes.  Below those, be sure to check all of the Read boxes: Read UV Coordinates, Read Groups, Read Surfaces, and Read Material Library. Click the Accept button when finished.  You should now see a new Node in the Scene tab titled Castle OBJ. You will also see the new model appear in the Viewport (don’t worry if it appears too large to see it all).

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STEP-5: Analyze Model and Support Files
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Before we apply any texture or bump maps to the object within Daz Studio, it will be monotone (colorless) with simple grayscale shading.  Before we move on, let’s go ahead and rename our newly imported object to match what we want.  Click on the “Castle OBJ” node in the Scene tab and rename it “Fantasy Castle”.  We know from our previous work that we have four texture files and four matching bump maps.  It was very helpful that Animated Heaven used the same basic name for each image in those pairs (texture and bump).  Now all we need to do is determine which set goes with what parts of the Fantasy Castle.  With the Fantasy Castle node still selected in the Scene tab, open up the Surfaces tab.  If your installation of Daz Studio does not show the Surfaces tab in any panel, you can access that tab from the main menu by selecting Window | Panes (Tabs) | Surfaces.  If you had to find the Surfaces tab, please be sure that the Fantasy Castle node is still selected in the Scene tab. If there are any surfaces assigned to a model, they will appear in the Surfaces tab when that node is selected in the Scene tab.  When you want to apply a material or shader to a surface, it must be selected in the Surfaces tab.  If you select the Fantasy Castle in the Surfaces tab, you will see that all of the texturing parameters become available.  To see all of the assigned surface names, you will have to expand the entry by clicking on the small right-facing arrow located just to the left of the icon on the Fantasy Castle line.

You can see in the expanded listing that there are four assigned surface names for the Fantasy Castle model:
  lambert9SG
  lambert10SG
  lambert11SG
  lambert12SG.

In review, our list of image pairs for the texture/bump images are:
  Castle Exterior Texture
  Castle Interior Texture
  Ground and Fountain Texture
  Towers Doors and Windows Texture

As you can see, there is no immediate or apparent correlation between the surface names and texture images.  In cases like this, the best way to determine which texture belongs to which surface is by experimentation.  The method we will be using is the select and test technique.  This works by first selecting a surface name in the Surfaces tab and then applying texture images to that selection until we find a good match.  Fortunately, the texture image names are descriptive enough to make this task much easier.  Let’s start by selecting the surface named “lambert10SG” in the Surfaces tab.  Now find the Diffuse Color parameter and click on the RGB Color Bar to change the color to something noticeable like bright Yellow in the popup and then click the OK button.  The next step is to look closely at the model in the viewport and see which area has been changed to Yellow.  For the lambert10SG surface, it appears that the ground and the portion of the fountains that is visible changed color.  We can immediately figure that the texture and bump images titled “Ground and Fountain Texture” are a match.

As easy as this was for this model, this is an exception to the norm and is not always the case.  Therefore, you would have to apply each available texture (and corresponding bump map) to each surface to determine which ones match.  On other models, you may have to rotate, zoom and pan the view to find the highlighted selection of the model. Now that we know which section we are working on for surface lambert10SG, we can return the Diffuse Color back to its original state.  You can use Edit | Undo Diffuse Color (if it is still available) or click the color bar and change it back to what it was originally (white or 255,255,255 in this case).

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Applying Textures
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It is time to find and apply the texture and bump map images.  For the texture image, click on the downward facing arrow located on the left-side of the Color bar and select Browse to use your default file browser to locate the texture image to apply (in this case we will be using “Towers Doors and Windows Texture.jpg”. For models which you do not know exactly which texture image to apply, you will have to try each one until you find the correct match. Hopefully you can see that you have a good match between the surface and texture image.

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Applying Bump Maps
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The effect of the bump image is usually not readily seen.  It should be visible in the final render of the scene, but you may have to zoom in to actually notice it.  You should take note of the percentage of strength and the slider bar position when you first apply any bump maps. In this instance, our image loaded properly but with a strength of 0.0% meaning that it will not be seen at all in your rendered images or animations. You will have to experiment to get the settings you desire, but start with 200% first.

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Surface and Texture Matches
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Through some experimentation, we matched up all of the texture and bump map images to the correct surfaces as shown below:
*  Surface lambert9SG
  - Description: Castle Exterior walls
  - Diffuse Color = Castle Exterior Texture.jpg
  - Bump Strength = Castle Exterior Texture Bump.jpg  with 100% settings
*  Surface lambert10SG
  - Description: Ground and Fountains
  - Diffuse Color = Ground and Fountain Texture.jpg
  - Bump Strength = Ground and Fountain Texture Bump.jpg with 100% settings
*  Surface lambert11SG
  - Description: Towers, Doors and Windows
  - Diffuse Color = Towers Doors and Windows Texture.jpg
  - Bump Strength = Towers Doors and Windows Texture Bump.jpg with 100% settings
*  Surface lambert12SG
  - Description: Castle Interior Walls
  - Diffuse Color = Castle Interior Texture.jpg
  - Bump Strength = Castle Interior Texture Bump.jpg with 100% settings
Once you have finished applying all of the texture and bump map images, you should see the complete Fantasy Castle ready to use.


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STEP-6: Saving As Scene
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We finally have a complete fully textured model, but do not want to go through all of this work again.  So we will save our new creation as a Scene that can be reused without having to reconstruct the Fantasy Castle node every time.  Once you have successfully imported the OBJ model and applied the texturing images, you can save all of your work as a Daz Studio Scene.  On the main menu, select File | Save As | Scene.   In the Filtered Save popup, browse to the location where you like to save your Daz Studio scenes and sane this one as “Fantasy Castle”.  Whenever you want to use this scene, you can either open it or merge it with an existing scene from the main menu using File | Open or File | Merge.  Now load any scene you previously created (preferably with a character figure) and merge it with your new Fantasy Castle scene to see how smoothly and easily it works.  You now have all the tools you need to easily use the Fantasy Castle in your Daz Studio projects!  But wait, there is more…

Genesis 2 Female (G2F) successfully merged with Fantasy Castle in Daz Studio

Ready To Learn More?  Want Full-color Illustrations and Screenshots?

If you want to go even further and explore the creation of Fantasy Castle as a Daz Studio DUF prop with its own thumbnail, then please consider purchasing this complete Pro-Pack training package available from our online store which contains all of the BASIC  material along with the following BONUS material:

- Thumbnail Preparation in Daz Studio (DS)
- Prop Folders for Saving in Daz Studio (DS)
- Data Naming Conventions in Daz Studio (DS)
- Testing Your New Prop in Daz Studio (DS)

During this course, you will learn many of the techniques required to import and use 3D models in Wavefront OBJ format with  Daz Studio (DS). This tutorial demonstrates how to import the Fantasy Castle by Animated Heavens into DS and apply all of the original texture and bump map images. The Fantasy Castle model is available for free subject to its own licensing terms. We will show you where to get it, how to import it, and how to turn it into a easily reusable DUF format Prop item in within your Content Library tab. This model is an awesome addition to your content library to be used in future projects.

The complete training package includes full-color watchable and readable formatted media:

* BASIC Instruction MP4 Training Video in High-Quality 1600x900 format
  - Learn how to properly import and configure OBJ model for Daz Studio
* BONUS Instruction MP4 Training Video in High-Quality 1600x900 format
  - Learn how to create Daz Studio DUF Prop in Content Library
* Fully Illustrated PDF Training Guide clearly written with color graphics
  - Step-by-Step explanations of the complete prop creation process

Fantasy Castle model loaded as a DUF Prop right in Daz Studio.
Fantasy Castle loaded as a Prop.

The complete training package covers all of the following topics regarding the use of the Fantasy Castle in Daz Studio:
* BASIC: Required Items and step-by-step instructions
   - STEP-1: Download/Examine contents of ZIP
   - STEP-2: Locate "My DAZ 3D Library" folders in Daz Studio (DS)
   - STEP-3: Legacy Runtime Folder Setup in Daz Studio (DS)
   - STEP-4: Import Model Into Daz Studio
   - STEP-5: Analyze Model and Support Files
     -- Applying Textures in Daz Studio (DS)
     -- Applying Bump Maps
in Daz Studio (DS)
     -- Surface and Texture Matches
   - STEP-6: Saving As Scene
* BONUS: Creating the DUF Prop
   - Thumbnail Preparation
in Daz Studio (DS)
   - Prop Folders for Saving in Daz Studio (DS)
   - Data Naming Conventions in Daz Studio (DS)
   - Testing Your New Prop in Daz Studio (DS)

During this course, you will learn many of the techniques required to import and use 3D models in Wavefront OBJ format with  Daz Studio (DS). This tutorial demonstrates how to import the Fantasy Castle by Animated Heavens into DS and apply all of the original texture and bump map images. The Fantasy Castle model is available for free subject to its own licensing terms. We will show you where to get it, how to import it, and how to turn it into a easily reusable DUF format Prop item in within your Content Library tab. This model is an awesome addition to your content library to be used in future projects.

Your purchase of the complete training package helps to support the Artist(s) who created this product, and promotes the creation of further training packages for quick and easy solutions to building your 3D content library.
 
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ALL CONTENT OF THE ABOVE DOCUMENT IS THE COPYRIGHTED PROPERTY OF:
Winterbrose Arts and Graphics
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Copyright (c) 2014-2017, Winterbrose Arts and Graphics. All Rights Reserved.