An idea to create static bateria growth textures/models

Browser_ICEBrowser_ICE Members Join Date: 2002-11-04 Member: 6944Posts: 698 Advanced user
At the office, I was thinking about how to create static bacteria growth to use as textures, overlays or models. I started to think how they look and I realized seeing something similar to this, landscape creation software.

If you think about it, it makes sense. What is bateria growth but some sort of landscape generation on microscopic scale (well not that small but you get the idea).

If you look at the result of a generated landscape from the air, use colors like green, red, yellow, brown and black. The higher the color would correspond to the highest growth peek and the black, to the lowest. Just isolate the water and remove it completly from the image. You then have a growth to use where the darkest colors would be the most transparent (where the growth is the weakest), the the lightest, the highest and most densed. Just isolate whatever color is used for the water and remove it. That would be where there is absolutly no growth at all.

For bumpmaps, normals or 3d heights, you could re-use the same image but using colors ranging from black to white.

Just change the water height of the landscape to generate the same growth but at different spreads in time.

I haven't tried it yet but that idea has been brewing in my mind for a while.

Any one care to try it out and post back results here ?

Now it got me thinking into geting Dreamscape 2.5 but since I do not know this software, I don't know for sure it will do this type of thing.
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  • SpaceJesusSpaceJesus Banned Join Date: 2004-07-02 Member: 29683Posts: 938
    That would work fine for bump maps, but to generate a 'true' normal map, you would have to apply that bump map to a plane in a 3D app (3DSM/Maya) and then generate the normal map from that geometry.
    Difference between a bumpmap and normal map being that bump maps only calculate the depth of the surface, and use a greyscale image to hold the depth data - normal maps contain data on the depth of the surface, aswell as the facenormals/position iirc for each pixel (RGB = XYZ values) which is why normal maps are stored in the RGB format whereas bumpmaps are stored in greyscale.
    They're basically the same otherwise, normal maps are just a somewhat improved version of bumpmaps.

    But yeah I agree it's a good idea in theory.
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