Advanced: Radial Wrinkles Tutorial

01. Overview

In this tutorial we will be showing how to add wrinkles in a radial pattern around soft goods tufting. This
technique will not work for deep or folded over wrinkles. You can download the texture assets for this tutorial here. The starting model is available here. Make sure to put the texture assets in a folder named “resources”, next to the .MAX file (i.e. in a single folder you will have the .MAX file and a resources folder, and inside the resources folder you’ll have the textures).



Supplier Photo – RDBL5145


After adding wrinkles


02. Create Radial Wrinkle Map

Create a texture map that will be used to inform the shape and pattern of our wrinkles. You can get the final files for this scene here.

Wrinkle Map

a. Open a new scene in 3DS max.

b. Create a box with the settings shown to the right (doesn’t have to be exact).

c. Now we will create a material to be used to make the wrinkle map.

i. Open the Slate editor, create a VRayMtl, and apply it to the box.

ii. Create a Gradient Ramp node and plug it into the diffuse of the VRayMtl.

iii. Select the Gradient Ramp node and make it visible in viewport.

iv. In the Gradient Ramp node, double-click the middle flag and change the color to 255 white.

v. Double click the right flag and change the color to 0 black.

vi. Adjust the rotation of the map if necessary so that the two short sides of the box are black and the middle is white.

Gradient Ramp settings and material shown on model.

vii. Create a BerconNoise node

viii. Plug the BerconNoise into the Flag#3 slot in the GradientRamp node.

ix. In the BerconNoise node, under the Parameters rollout, change the Size to roughly 0.05.

x. Increase the contrast of the BerconNoise by changing Low to 0.2, and High to 0.8. (Rough values. Adjust as desired).

xi. Under the Mapping rollout, select the Type dropdown and select “Explicit Map Channel 2D”.

xii. Increase the X or Y value under Size until the noise makes stripes.

BerconNoise settings and material shown on model.

d. Now to make the box into disc shape. The following steps are shown in a gif below for further clarity

i. Add a Bend modifier to the box.

ii. Expand the Bend modifier dropdown and select “Center”.

iii. Change the viewport to the Top view by pressing ‘T’

iv. Turn on Snaps 

v. Move and snap the pivot to one of the corners of the box.

vi. In the Bend modifier, change the Angle to 360 degrees

vii. Click through the bend Axis until the box is bent into a flat disk.

viii. Turn off Snaps and further adjust the Center as needed. Keep the hole in the middle of the circle small.

Adjusting the Bend modifier to make the box into a disk.

e. Finally we need to render the map.

i. Make a new camera to render from in the top orthographic view.

ii. Add the render element “VrayDiffuseFilter”. This render pass allows us to avoid lighting the scene and just get the wrinkle map.

1.  Hit F10 to open the Render Settings window.
Navigate to the Render Elements tab, click Add, click the

2. VRayDiffuseFilter then click OK.

Add render elements

iii. Hit render and save out the VRayDiffuseFilter pass from the V-Ray Frame Buffer window.

iv. Save the map out as a 16-bits per channel .tif

Save File Window

f. Adjust the Size settings on the BerconNoise node and re-render three more times to get a variety of maps.

g. Composite them all together in photoshop to get make the final wrinkle map.

(Pro Tip: In Photoshop, paint around the edges of each radial map with a black, low-opacity brush before compositing to make a softer transition to black. This will help avoid a hard edge showing up in the final render sku render where the wrinkles end.)

Composited Wrinkle Map


03. Add Wrinkle Bitmap and Test Material

Add the wrinkle bitmap and create a test material for use while UV’ing.

a. Create a VRayMtl – For testing purposes only

b. Apply material to model.

c. Load the wrinkle texture map into the Slate editor by dragging the file into the Slate editor window.

d. Plug the bitmap into the diffuse slot of the VRayMtl.

e. Adjust the bitmap settings as follows:

i. Map Channel: 2

ii. Uncheck the “Tile” checkboxes (this will make the area outside the 1:1 space black, which, later on, will avoid us displacing areas that we don’t want displaced.)

f. Make the bitmap visible in the viewport by selecting the bitmap and then clicking the button with a checkerboard and a lightbulb on the top of the Slate editor window.

Node graph in Slate Editor


Bitmap Settings


04. Create New UV Channel and Prep UV’s

Adding a new Unwrap UVW modifier on a separate map channel will allow the addition of wrinkles without altering existing UV’s.

a. Add an UnwrapUVW modifier to the model on which we will be adding wrinkles.

b. Set the Map Channel to “2” (figure 3) and STOP. If the area you would like to add wrinkles to is already a separate UV shell and looks similar to Figure 1 in the UV editor, then in the pop-up window, select “Move” and skip to section 05: Edit UV’s to Add Wrinkles. If the area you would like to add wrinkles to is not a separate shell, select “Abandon” and continue on to step ‘c’.

Desired area for adding wrinkles.

UV Shell in UV Editor window ready to add wrinkles. (figure 1)

c. Enter polygon selection mode in the UnwrapUVW modifier by selecting the red square icon under the modifier list (figure 3).

d. Select all polygons (hotkey = Ctrl+A).

e. Planar map all UV’s by clicking the Planar button at the bottom of the modifier window under the Projection rollout in the UnwrapUVW modifier

  Planar Map button

f. Align the viewport camera to be perpendicular to the surface of the model that you wish to add wrinkles to (doesn’t have to be perfect. See figure 2). Click the “View Align” button under Align Options. This will planar map the entire model using an imaginary plane perpendicular to the viewport camera.

  View Align button

Planar mapping the model (figure 2)

g. Click the Planar button again to exit Projection mode.

h. At this point, use what you have learned about UV’s to create a separate UV shell for the area that we wish to add wrinkles to. (see figure 1 on previous page for desired result)

Unwrap UVW Modifier (figure 3)


05. Edit UV’s to Add wrinkles

Using this new Unwrap UVW modifier, we can add and edit the size and placement of the radial wrinkles.

a. Pull all shells off the 1:1 space. Find shell for adding wrinkles and separate it. (figure 1)

b. Set wrinkle map to show in 1:1 space by selecting the dropdown in the top right corner of the UV Editor window and selecting the wrinkle map. If the bitmap is not listed there:

i. Select the dropdown in the top right corner of the UV Editor window and select “Reset Texture List”.

ii. Select the dropdown again and select the wrinkle map from the list. (figure 2). Result should look like figure 3.

Separate UV shell (figure 1)

Separate UV shell (figure 1)

Wrinkle texture map shown in 1:1 space (figure 3)

iii. Select each area around the tufting and break it out from the rest of the shell.

1. One method of doing this is to select two adjacent edge loops and convert the selection to Polygon (figure 4).

2. Grow the selection using the Grow selection button until all polygons in the middle are selected. Then shrink the selection using the Shrink selection button until only the desired area is selected (see figure 5).

  Grow and Shrink UV selections

3. Use the hotkey Ctrl+b to break the selection off into a separate shell.

Convert edge selection to polygon (figure 4)

Modify selection until desired area is highlighted (figure 5)

4. Move each new shell into the 1:1 space and align the center of the tufting with the center of the wrinkle pattern (figure 6). Try to pick different patterns for adjacent shells so repeating patterns are not seen in the final render. Make sure to scale each shell so that it fully encompasses each wrinkle pattern or else the mesh will appear to tear apart after we displace the mesh (see the Troubleshooting section at the end of this guide).

5.  When completed, the viewport, with the model selected, should look something like Figure 7.

6. When you are done, collapse the modifier stack up to the Unwrap UVW mod to finalize the edits.

Note: to view or edit the UV’s again, add an Unwrap UVW modifier and set the map channel to “2”. This time, select “abandon” on the pop-up window.

Completed tufting UV placement (figure 6)

UV’s in viewport (figure 7)

06. Add VRayDisplacementMod

The VRayDisplacementMod allows us to add wrinkle geometry without having to model them into the topology.

a. Select the model and apply a VRayDisplacementMod

b. Open the Slate editor and plug the wrinkle texture bitmap into the Texmap slot (defaults to “None”) in the same way you would plug the bitmap into a VRayMtl (click and drag).

c. Adjust the settings (figure 8)

i.Type: 3D mapping

ii. Texture Channel: 2

iii. Amount: -.05

iv. Keep Continuity: Checked on

d. At this point everything should be set up. Apply the final material to the model and render!

Note: the “Amount” value will determine the strength of the displacement. Set this value higher during testing to see the effect easier. A positive value will displace the white areas of the bitmap up from the original mesh. A negative value will displace the white areas of the bitmap down from the original mesh.

VrayDisplacementMod Settings (figure 8)


07. Troubleshooting

PROBLEM 01: The mesh separates at the edge of the UV

SOLUTION: Adjust UV shell to completely encompass the white areas of the wrinkle map

Before: UV is too small.

After: Scale the UV larger to encompass the entire white area.

PROBLEM 02: The displaced mesh clips through itself

SOLUTION: Bring the “Amount” value in the VRayDisplacementMod closer to zero.

08. Final Product

You can download the final model here! Make sure you’ve also downloaded the assets and put this final model next to the “resources” folder you created.