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Making Metallic Hair

Author: Vadlor

Tools Needed

  • Poser 6
  • Any Hair Model


In this tutorial I will show you a way to make metallic hair all within Poser 6. This technique should be adequate for any hair out there, so let's get going.


Step 1 - First things first.

Load the hair you want to turn silvery as usual. Load a texture of your choice, depending if you want a dark metallic hair or if you'd prefer a light metallic hair. In this example, I'll be using the Wedgecut 2 Low Res with a dark blonde texture, to make a silvery hair.


Step 2 - Preparations.

Enter the material room. Copy the texture and the transparency nodes from your hair, (do not copy the Posersurface node or you will lose all your work when you paste it back). Then, delete all nodes. Note that if the hair has more than one texture map or transparency map (like in this case) you will have to do this step in every material of the hair, so do not delete all at once. Now we will create a silvery material for our silvery hair.


Step 3 - Setting the Color for the silvery material.

Create a new node: Lighting/Diffuse/Clay. Keep its KD and Roughness values as they come by default and then set its color in a light beige (R250, B247, G239) and connect it to the Diffuse color, set its color to white and its value to 1.

Now create another clay node just like before and change its color to a light blue (R223, B252, G253). Now connect it to the specular color, set it black (note that usually we would set this color in white, to optimize the reflection effect, but since we are going to work with transparencies we must set it in black to avoid “ghosts” around the hair) and set the specular value in 1.


Step 4 - Adding some Bump.

Make a new Turbulence node (3D Texture/Turbulence) with the x, y and z scales setting in 0, 25; the octaves in 6, 0; the bottom in 0 and the bias and gain in 0, 5.

Connect that node to the gradient bump and set it to 0, 25; then connect it to the alternate diffuse and set its color to a dark grey (R56, B65, G68).


Step 5 - Adding reflection

Create a new Reflect node (Lighting/Ray trace/Reflect). You might keep the default settings. Connect it to the reflection color, which will be white and set the reflection value in 1.


Step 6 - Reconnecting the hair texture and transparency.

Link the transparency node to the transparency value, set the value to 1 and the translucency color to black, as it usually is in any hair that uses trans maps. Then create a new HSV node (Math/HSV). Link this new node to the color settings of both clay nodes, then connect the texture node to the color setting of this node and set the saturation value of the hsv node to zero.

If you want to add more specularity to the hair, you can change the Specular Color to white and connect the Transparency map to the Specular value. That should get rid of any ghost around your transmapped hair.


Step 7 - Final Notes

As said before, you can use this technique in any hair you like, because it uses the original textures. Also, not only for silvery, but for any other color you would like. Mapps has a very wide range of metallic materials in his freestuff, you can use them as reference.

This also works for making grey hair for those hairs that don't have a white hair texture. Just disconnect the reflection and set the beige Clay to white.