Creation of a cracked surface with jpg

Hello :),

I would like to create a bit of a cracked surface on the spherical object (just as the mossy one in the image) and apply a jpg map to it so the cracks on the image overlap with the surface.
Also I was wondering what would be best way to make the “tin pot” have this slightly soft rustic shape.
I have created a vessel like that but it looks very minimal.
I would be very grateful for help.

Eva :blush::rose:

And here is the file:

moss.skp (2.5 MB)

Are you using a rendering engine or do you want the cracks to actually appear as geometry in your model?

Hi eric-s,

Thanks for your reply. I was thinking of creating geometry. Do you think it’s not worth it?

Well depends on your end goal. It can be done quicker with Bump/Displacement map sent to render engine …with the added benefit of keeping geometry count down. I’ll see if I can try both methods and compare the result when I have a minute…unless someone else beats me to it of course…lots of smart people on this forum.

Ha ha.

Ok, so I may have mis-interpreted your original request. It sounds like you just wanted to use the moss texture and not actually want physical cracks to be modeled? If that’s correct then it’s easy to do.

  1. start by positioning and scaling the texture

  2. make sure the image has been exploded and select the image face and make sure it is set to ‘Projected’

  3. Then sample and paint bucket the texture onto your mound. If it’s grouped, may have to go inside of it to paint the texture correctly.

  4. for the tin bowl…use the same circle edge of the bottom of your moss mound and then draw a profile of the bowl shape you want with lip, etc…

  5. Use the FollowMe tool to extrude the profile around the circle and apply a metal texture to the whole thing.

  6. move your moss mound into your tin bowl. Id recommend dropping it down a bit as there is some texture warping as the material moves towards the bottom curve.

  7. bonus - if you are going to render it later you can add a bump map to the texture that then will pick up shadows for all the little cracks and surface details. See comparison of different rendered light directions:


That’s fantastic. Thank you so much. :star_struck:

For this object it is enough but I was wondering if I have to do an object with geometry that actually needs to follow the map is there a way to do it?
I have tried to model it with Artisan Organic: applied the map, added subdivisions a few times until I could move geometry up according to the mossy patches on map but it is not efficient way to do it and I won’t be able to do it for any other project.
I would upload the file but it is too big :(.

(I may need to re-apply the map on this one)

I have applied the map with ThruPaint by Fredo.

I see. That looks pretty good. Have you tried Bitmap to Mesh yet? Extension | SketchUp Extension Warehouse
Image needs to be just black and white. Black is low…white is high.

Here it’s doing the height or depth conversion.

Resulting surface cracks…very high poly though.

Then I line up the moss texture again and paste it over the mesh…you can see how the details line up now.

Detailed view of cracks. Would need to use something like Convexify to bend whole mesh to get it to match your curved mound.

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I have an easier idea…upload your Artisan sculpted model to dropbox or sim. and post link and I’ll test it out.

Ok, so tried it again with 200x200 png where a gradient was added to round out the surface without need of additional plugins. 200x200 pixel image needed to keep geometry count down when converting to mesh.

Here it is with texture off:

Again with texture on:

Lastly, added your smooth mound back inside the cracked one with soil texture applied to ‘fill in’ cracks.


Amazing! In both.

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You could also try Image To Lithophane [ ]. This can give you a dome shaped mesh - which is also very high poly. (Removing all faces but the top surface and maybe reducing the poly count is a good way of preventing your computer stalling or crashing if it does. You will need a behemoth of a machine if you want to use Artisan) I haven’t tried to project the same image onto a mesh -

the one in my image was done from a black & white image - but that should work also. If you like the method I can give you my work flow. With a bit of work in Photoshop (or just the right image) the gradients in the cracks can be manipulated also.

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Hi Eric, I am sorry I only ask this question now as I thought I will be able to crack it by myself. I did follow the first method with Bitmap to Mesh but I don’t know how to follow the second one. The result looks very realistic. It just I can’t work it out. It must be I am missing some piece of knowledge. For instance how to:
1)“round out the surface with 200x200 png gradient”
2) “keep 200x200 pixel image geometry count down when converting to mesh.”
Which extension/tool do you use with png as Bitmap to Mesh allow only bmp?

Hi splatcreativeau,

Thanks for your great post.
It is true that with Artisan this job looked a Herculean task.
To your question about workflow yes, please, I would be very interested.

To try to answer your questions:
1.) “round out the surface with 200x200 png gradient” - For now, just try the same PDF I posted earlier which is 200x200 pixels. I can tell you how to make that in Photoshop but let’s come back to that.
2.) “keep 200x200 pixel image geometry count down when converting to mesh.” - There’s no need for any other extensions. The Bitmap to Mesh extension’s name is a bit misleading as you don’t need to convert it to .bmp. Using the .png is fine.

See gif for the import process. For some reason it interpreted the transparent part of the png as a texture and therefore applied height to. This just adds an extra step that requires turning hidden geometry on and deleting the extra little outside bits we don’t want.

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I got it :). This is clever.

Sadly I am getting an error message in the process.
My Sketchup (2017) supports only bmp, so I have saved your png as bmp in Photoshop. It shows the dynamic part of raising pixels and I don’t get the geometry of “the transparent” but when I hit enter it gives an error message.

It works perfectly fine with maps with no gradient though.

Here’s my model if you want to finish cleaning it up :wink: