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More color options for Carrara 5

Author: DanaC78

Tools Needed

  • Carrara 5
  • Image Editing Software
  • A picture (provided for this Tutorial)

Support Files


You are building a room, and you decided to use a Procedural method rather than Texture when you are making your shader. Only are stuck for a color. Maybe you saw a photo on the internet that you like the color for it, but not sure how to replicate it. Well, my friend, all you need is a picture, Image program like Paint Shop Pro or Photoshop, and some math ability (OK, OK, you can use calculator). As with all my tutorials, I am going to disclaim that you are familiar with Carrara User Interface, the Texture Room, and this merely a new technique to help you further your creation.:)

Step 1: Picking a Picture

For exercise, I am going to use the picture supplied in the support files, and open it up in Paint Shop Pro. Open it up in your image editor, and we shall be off.

Step 2: Capturing a Color


Click on the eyedropper, and use that to click on a color you would like to see the scheme. Double click on the foreground, and you will see a lot of colors as well as numbers. The numbers are what important.


The first one we will go through is Hue/Light/Saturation, then Red/Green/Blue, and we will also do HTML Code.

Step 3: Applying Color, HLS

In Carrara, I would like you to create an object, any object, and head into the Texture room. As you can see, once you made the object, it created a Shader for you. That is perfect.


What I would like you to do now is select the Color channel, and by default it should be on Color already, but if it doesn't in the future, just select color. Next thing I would like you to do is to select the Color, and you will get an option to come up.


By default, you should see HLS wheel come up. I will show you how to work this first. A bit of a note, it is easier for me to PaintShop Pro information then Photoshop 5 LE, but if you know how to adapt the information to Photoshop, cool.


Let go back to PaintShop. Remember those numbers? What we will be doing is apply the Hue/Light/Saturation values. However, you will notice that this one are done in numbers while Carrara uses percentages. Not to worry. Merely take the number you see in there, and divide it by 255, and you will get the percentage to place in the HLS wheel, like below.

Step 4: Applying Color, RGB

This is actually a way that applies to a lot of paint programs, but involves one more set of clicking. What I would like you to do is click on the down arrow like below, and select RGB Sliders.


WHOA! It actually uses numbers. No division needed ;) Just enter the numbers between your paint program and Carrara, and you are home free.:)


Step 5: Applying Color, Web Colors

There is one more option you can use. There may be some out there who have design websites, and are familiar with hexadecimal values for colors. This one for you.

As above with the last two steps, click on the arrow and select Web Colors.


Type in the HTML code to the Field Carrara Provides.



Step 6: Side Note

This is a little trick I did while working on a picture, and using material that is actually paint. It is useful if you have a picture of a painted house, and you wanted to simulate that. Now you can.

To those new to the world of Shaders, and wondering why go through this rather then Texture maps? While realism value can be found in texture maps for certain objects, however, for others, you can simulate it by using various in-program effect which saves you memory. For every texture map you load into Carrara, it takes a bit of memory from you whereas Colors are not as bad.