So I was telling Jonny how to make a displacement map for creases in jeans, but it works for anything with creases, such as terrain.
- So, I found a texture of denim, and I picked one with creases already in it. That way, you can use them for a reference to draw on.
- Open your denim texture photoshop, then create a layer above that.
- Now get the brush tool, select a soft edged tip shape, and half the opacity or so. The colour will be black but we want it to darken as you layer it on.
- Now set the brush size to the size of your crease. If you're copying creases you have a guideline, but if not, you will have to make it up. Try to be as realistic as possible, and remember it will be layered.
- Draw over the crease in one click of the mouse.
- Next, shrink your tip size and then draw down the middle of the lines you drew, and repeat this step maybe once or twice more.
- When you are done, delete your denim texture layer and it will leave you with a greyscale image.
- This method produces an inverted map, at this stage you might want to invert the colours, but you can also set the displacement value in max to a negative number for the same effect.
- Save the image, transparency isn't necessary so JPG will do fine.
- All there is left to do is to apply the textures to something in 3DS max. Your displacement map is entered as a bitmap to the displacement map slot in a standard material. The default displacement setting is 100. You will need to make it a negative value if your creases are done in white. You might also want to lower the value to make the creases more subtle.
Below is the texture I used and displacement map I produced.
I tried to make an even better one, so you can see what happens if you put more effort in.
Here I used the smudge tool in PS to create even softer edges to the creases, but you can see it doesn't necessarily make it look better!