View model in different colors, based on materials used in model

Is there a way to view a model in solid colors based on the materials used in that model?

What I’m trying to achieve is to see the different surfaces materials as a color representation, to help during the post-production editing in Photoshop. If I could assign vastly contrasting colors in SKP, (automatically via an extension) then selecting complex surfaces later in Photoshop would be soooo much easier. I would export the materials view of the model and then the same view in solid (varying) colors.

Also, as my models primarily represent stainless steel materials, and their SKP grey tones of color, when the shadows are turned on, a lot of greys washout to white, and then telling the difference either visually or as mentioned, trying to isolate and select each same material surface is rather difficult.

Any thoughts would be welcomed.


Have you tried just selecting the Shaded face style?

Yes, I’m experimenting with that now.

My problem is I’m trying to get a semi-realistic render from Visualizer, and assigning names (and some synonyms) to the materials to get a decent buffed stainless steel effect. As visualizer relies on the materials names as much as the texture itself, working in shades of grey for the SKP render, is very hard to differentiate all the surfaces. one, to see if all my “Metal_Satin_Dull_Stainless Steel” material from my “Shiny_Glossy_Stainless Steel” material in the model itself…because in MAC color picker, those greys all look very close to the human eye.

Then sitting through a 45 min render, only to see i missed a surface that should have been “Satin”, or vice versa “Shiny_Glossy” etc…

Maybe the screen shots will help show what I mean

Notice how my grey metal surfaces in the SKP model are all very similar, because they are in fact the same color hue, but varying levels of finish…ie: Shiny, Satin, Refective, or Dull

I guess I could work in vastly different color hues in the model, export that to PSD as a shaded mode, for selection in PSD… then go back to the model and replace each bright color with the pre-made metal material, which would show as similar greys in SKP render, and then the final render in Visualizer.

And the reason I persist with Visualizer, is the super quick speed renders it can produce as we work through all the iterations to a concept model.

I would use different colors for the different surface finishes. Edit the names of the materials to reflect the finish you are after. (See what I did there? :smiley: )

haha, yes mate…though i think I would still need to alter not only the names of the materials, but change them back to grey tones, otherwise i’ll have “Shiny_Glossy_Metal_Stainless Steel” in a hue of green, or Satin_Metal_Stainless Steel in Orange etc…

I wish I knew more about writing extensions, as I would pay for one that assigned random colors based on all the instances of each material. Then my Glossy or Dull stainless steel would still be simialr in the SKP render, but easily differentiated in the Shaded mode view for export to PSD.

is there a quick way to replace a color with the pre-made and named ones? Can I drag and drop the new color (Metal_Shiny_Stainless Steel) onto its color representation? I know I can change the color through the color wheel etc…but actually replace all instances of it at once in the model with the required render material?

Probably the quickest thing would be to just edit the materials. Otherwise if all the faces you’re painting are in the same context, you should be able to replace them quickly enough. I believe on Mac you’ll hold Option while you click on one face. All other connected faces with the same material will get painted at the same time.

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Ok i think we have the procedure now…thanks for your help.

  1. color the same surface “finishes” in their own unique color
  2. export that as “Shaded” for post-edit in PSD
  3. Replace connected faces with pre-made, named and correct color hue stainless steel materials
  4. manually replace any non-connected faces - for Final Render

Another route for this workflow might be through Color by Tag/Layer. If you assigned your surfaces to different tags then when you chose “color by tag” from the upper right drop down menu in tags it will show every surface in an automatically chosen different color, you can also edit the tag color. It would require proper grouping and tagging of surfaces but is easy to turn on and off, and easy to assign multiple surfaces the same color (tag) for PSD editing.

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Thanks endlessfix…i knew there had to be some more functionality to the color tags. DaveR had managed to finally get me to understand the best-practice for TAGS, and now things are really starting to fall into place.

Yes, your method would require me to think differently about structuring my “Tags” as instead of completed groups or components, to make them surface material based instead. Create a Tag for “Shiny_Metal_Stainless Steel” use the random “color by tag” feature and boom…done!

Thank you both for the help…it changes my game for sure!