Making Custom materials

I am just learning to use Rhino for mac, so I apologize in advance if my question is very basic. I want to use the program to plan large scale abstract granite sculptures and have been making good progress developing ideas. In the render materials I see that there is granite as well as sandstone, marble, and gravel. Is there a way to add custom materials to this. For example the granite color is grey granite and I would like to add pink, and some other variations to represent works that use a variety of colors. It would be ideal to photograph the actual granite colors and add them as custom materials. Is there a way to do that?
Thank you

You can add any image file (like a photo) to the color channel of any material added to the model. Either make a new material in the material editor or drag one from the standard materials over to the model materials to edit it. After you have something that works well, drag that material over to the custom materials section of the editor. This custom material will then be available in any new document.

The tricky part with using photos as texture maps in the color channel, is to make sure they are tileable. Otherwise, you’ll get a seam when they are repeated on a surface more than once. The texture mapping method for the model is also a factor. Display the texture mapping tool palette from the Window drop down menu to see the texture mapping options.

Thank you Brian,
I was able to add granite samples in the model editor. I haven’t had a problem with seams yet. Is there any way to adjust grain size? For example the design is 4 ft tall but has granite grain that would be on a one inch piece of granite viewed really close. I tried the brick in standard materials and the brick size would make it 10 ft tall. Is that what you meant by texture mapping? I was able to find the texture mapping in window but can’t see what to do after that.

Jesse Salisbury
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The textures inside any of the standard materials don’t have a specific real world size. There are two factors that work together to influence how the texture map is scaled on the model. The first is the repeat value for the texture map in the material. The second is the texture mapping method for the object being assigned this material. Texture mapping is how the image texture is projected onto the model. So in short, you’ll have to adjust the repeat value for the texture in the material and/or assign and edit a specific texture mapping method for the object.

Here’s a forum thread that covered some of this as well that may help explain.

Generally, the default scale of texture maps is controlled by the render plugin being used and how it defines materials. In Rhino 5 for Windows there are render plugins like Flamingo nXt and Maxwell for instance that work with real world scale but this is again relative to the image used in the material if you make something custom.

In Rhino for Mac, the Object Properties inspector on the right sidebar will have a texture mapping section where you can adjust the size of the mapping widget being used. I’d suggest using a box mapping method based on the description of your model and then Equalize the mapping widget so the scale is uniform. Adjust the size numbers for the mapping widget keeping the values the same until the size of the texture looks correct for the scale of your model. Use MatchMapping after that to make any new objects use the same mapping size.

For future reference, I also just filed this request for what’s called WCS mapping which allows for specifying the real world size of a texture map in a material.