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Stay at Home Session – Introduction to Substance Designer

June 11 from 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Cost: Free (Member Discounts Available)

We’re excited to share that this free series continues into June, this time covering Substance Designer, the cutting edge 3D material creation software used by professional animation and game development studios all over the world.

This workshop will be aimed primarily at beginners but can also serve as a good refresher for those who haven’t opened Substance Designer in a while. Preferably viewers will have a familiarity with the concept of black and white masks and/or Photoshop Blend Modes but it’s not required.

 Learning Outcomes

  • Learn the Basics of the Substance Designer UI
  • Know how to set up their first project
  • Become familiar with frequently used nodes
  • Create exposed parameters for efficiency and flexibility in their materials
  • Know how to create .sbsar files to use in Substance Painter, UE4 or other software that supports .sbsar file types.
  • Create their first material!

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Session 1: Introduction Substance Designer – Learning the Basics of the UI and Getting Familiar With Nodes (June 11th)

In this first session, we’ll focus primarily on becoming familiar with the software. This session will cover UI basics and introduce the concept of a node-based workflow. Emphasis will be on a foundation that isn’t dependent on a particular tutorial of a particular material. We’ll focus on frequently used nodes and useful node combinations to hopefully give you the tools to solve various unique problems.

Session 2: Introduction to Substance Designer – Starting Our Material, Creating Node Groups, Exposing Parameters (June 18th)

In session 2 we’ll put the things we’ve learned from the first session into practice by starting our first material, focusing on generating the height to get all of our forms in place. We’ll cover creating node groups and go over the steps for exposing parameters to give our material efficiency and flexibility.

Session 3: Introduction to Substance Designer – Finishing our Material and Next Steps (June 25th)

In this session, we’ll finish our material by adding roughness and look at techniques for adding colour. We’ll cover exporting maps and publishing your material into a .sbsar file for use in Substance Painter or other software that supports .sbsar files. Time permitting I’ll demo bringing these files into Substance Painter and Unreal Engine to show the first steps once your files are imported.

Our Stay at Home Sessions are designed to keep you learning and engaged until in-person sessions are possible again. The best news, though, is that they are 100% free. An incredible month of game dev lectures to take your skills to the next level.

Just fire up the computer, grab a coffee, and head over to un to follow along. The stream will start at 6.00 pm and last roughly an hour and a half. Can’t make the show? We’ve got you covered. Recordings of each stream will be available on our archive so there are no excuses.

Instructor Bio

Brenna Blackman is a Senior Surfacing Artist at Tangent Animation. She specializes in 3D modeling and has a passion for creating environment art for games. From creating modular kits to detailed one-off’s, her goal is to make engaging and visually appealing spaces. Brenna loves any opportunity to be challenged by learning something new or getting a little technical.


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