It’s been almost a year since I last wrote using the “f” word.
You almost got away with nigh-on a full year with nary a mention. If only I could have just kept quiet ten more days. Sadly, however, I can’t; and for that you can blame two people: Oren and Ilan over at Kitely :D.
You see, back in November they introduced materials processing support into Kitely, with a further update at the start of December. Given the nature of Fallingwater – notably the stonework in the build – I had to hop over and give things a go.
So, as and when I can, I’ve been spending time jumping into Kitely and adding normal and specular maps to Fallingwater. I still have areas in the build – noticeably in the stucco finish and with the ceilings – where I need to re-scale the repeats; with the addition of normal and spec maps the patterning is a little exaggerated and somewhat overbearing (as seen in some of the images here). This is going to take a little more time to fix, and time is one thing I’m fast running out of with the holiday season tap-dancing its merry way ever closer to me.
I am, however, reasonably satisfied with the look of the stonework, where I think the additional maps really bring things to life. I’m also pleased with the stone flooring as well, where the specular map helps bring the polished shine of the original to my build – although I still have yet to get the texture suitably tinted to match the original a little more closely.
As to how materials works on Kitely, there’s an easy answer: “exactly like they do on Second Life”. I did have some issues with applying maps across multiple faces, wherein maps would fail to apply to some faces; however, I’ve found this to be a problem elsewhere within OpenSim when using diffuse maps, so don’t see it as a problem specifically with Kitely’s implementation of materials.
Materials also helped m bring a little more life to the water passing by under the house, where a specular map helped me to create the impression of the house lights being reflected in Bear river. Again, it’s not perfect (the ability to independently animate the specular map from the diffuse would help) and entirely dependent upon windlight settings, but the result works reasonably well under the region’s default lighting (Bryn Oh’s Mayfly). A specular map also brought a “wet” sheen to the rocks of the falls as well.
There’s more I’d like to do with the place in the future. Not only sorting out the stucco finish, but things like raising the level of the house so I can correctly scale the falls themselves and try to re-created a more accurate look to the rocks of the falls. But that kind of work is going to have to wait a goodly while until I have the time I need to devote to being in-world in Kitely. Sadly, that’s not likely to be any time soon. Or perhaps that’s fortunately for you, as you won’t have to put up with more of my witterings about the place :).