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One of the simplest ways to bring some extra life to any piece of 3D art is to add colour and texture to it. There are a variety of names given to this process, adding shaders or materials or even textures. A rule of thumb is that a 'texture' is an image that is used to drive a property of a 'material', which defines the basic properties of the surface of the object. This itself is the child of a 'shader', which is effectively a holding group for all the various elements – some software can blend materials together to give the appearance of rusting metal, for example.

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Mike Griggs

Mike Griggs is a veteran digital content creator and technical writer. For nearly 30 years, Mike has been creating digital artwork, animations and VR elements for multi-national companies and world-class museums. Mike has been a writer for 3D World Magazine and Creative Bloq for over 10 years, where he has shared his passion for demystifying the process of digital content creation.