FINDING TEXTURE RESOURCES

Good Morning Everyone!

In an effort to alleviate boring lifeless Blender models, about a week ago, I posted an article entitled, "Creating Your Own Textures for Blender, Marvelous Designer, Second Life, etc.".  In that article, I provided you with a couple of video resources to get you started, which included information about taking your own nature photos, a video how to make your textures seamless, and a video on making wood grain via Photoshop (or other graphic software packages). If you have done your research, you will have found more video "How Tos" than you will ever be able to watch or read!

This morning I want to talk to you a bit about using 'ready resources'  or "stock resources" on the web to assist you in creating your own textures in Photoshop, Gimp, or other graphic software programs to use for our 3D models. Luckily, in this digital age, others may have already started the texture creation process for us by providing stock photos, hand drawn or, digitally created images we can use as a starting point in our creative processes.

HOWEVER, please note, if you wish to SELL or GIVE away your texture creations, I would advise you to get out your camera and start taking your own photographs to be used as the starting point for your textures.  

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY RIGHTS


Before we start, I can't stress strongly enough the importance of reading Terms of Service (TOS) or End User License Agreement (EULA) and adhering to the terms and conditions set forth by the original creator of any image you may use to create your textures.  Read these terms carefully.  Actually, I would suggest you read them several times before you download any other creator's content.  Each creator has the right and do set their terms of use regardless if they are a free item or a paid item.  Also, terms of use are periodically updated by creators so be sure you are up to date with content use. 

Using and failing to adhere to TOSs or EULAs set forth by creators may find you in legal trouble for violating international copyright, trademark, or intellectual property rights. The legal terms for these violations are different around the world, which doesn't mean you won't be in legal trouble if you live in another country than the original creator and illegally use their work claiming it as your own.  This is especially be true if you are considering the possibility of selling the textures you create using the work of others.

If there is no TOS or ULA listed on a work you wish to use, contact the creator and ask for permission to use their work. Explain what you want to use and why and where it may be appear. If you have any doubts whatsoever, contact the creator of the work and ask specific questions, or, contact an attorney, in your country, well versed in international intellectual property rights before you use the work of others!

Value the work of others as you would have others value your work!  Failure to do so may effect your personal or professional reputation in the global community. 

 

FINDING RESOURCES


There are literally millions of images out on the web you may be able to use for your creations. Some images are better to work with than others especially if your graphic software skills are not as good as you would like but we will discuss that particular subject at a different time. I am going to provide you with a few resources, which may assist you in finding "stock" resources to use as a base to start creating your own textures.

I tend to stick with texture resources that I know and, there are some really great resources out there. But, NOT ALL "stock resources" are FREE.  Some resources may require you to purchase their "stock" images, such as Dreamtime.com, Shutterstock.com, ifototalia.com, Gettyimages.com, or many others premium services out there.  Usually, these paid for resources will allow you to use their stock for commercial use but again, READ CAREFULLY the terms of use or user licensing agreement before downloading content and using it. 



Textures.com is a long time reliable resource for texture stock, I would say it has been around to 10 years or more but was previously known as CGTextures.com. You can create a free account for a limited number of daily downloads or, you can purchase one of their "premium" paid for services to download more and of a larger size.  They have a pretty lenient TOS or EULA; however, you CANNOT use their stock to create texture packages, altered or otherwise for sale or free distribution of their work.  Most texture sources have similar provisions.

"May I use these textures for free? Do I need to pay royalties?"

"No permission is granted to sell or redistribute the textures as a competing product, even when the images are modified. Please do not redistribute or sell textures by themselves, or as texture packs, or as clipart, or as material packs, or as scrapbooking packs."

SPECIAL NOTE TO SECOND LIFE CREATORS

Textures acquired from Textures.com CANNOT be used in Second Life and here is the reason why listed in their Frequently Asked Questions section.

"Can I use your textures in Second Life?"

"Unfortunately no. After the 6th of September 2013 we no longer allow the use of images in Second Life or any other Linden Lab product. The Second Life Terms of Service claims unlimited and irrevocable rights to any work you upload to their Service, and this is not compatible with our own license. If you have used our images on builds uploaded before 6 September 2013, you can continue to use, sell, give away those builds just like before.

There was and is still continued controversy over this decision by Linden Labs.  This not only applies to Textures.com but ALL providers of "stock resources" including those textures you may create from scratch and upload to Second Life. 

While I understand their decision to legally protect themselves, I feel Linden Labs disrespects intellectual property rights of all creators whether residents of Second Life or the general world at large with their policies.



Another long time provider of FREE texture stock is Mayang.com.  They also have a fairly liberal TOS/EULA. Again, you CANNOT use their stock to create texture packages, altered or otherwise, for sale or free distribution of their work.

"What can I use the textures for?"

"You can use the textures in your school projects, to make CD sleeves, posters, in movies, in videogames etc - anything where you have added your own artistic effort.

You cannot use the textures for anything that directly competes with us.  This includes, putting the textures on your own website, selling them, or giving them away.  This restriction includes the textures themselves, as well as any minor modifications, for example, you may not make our texture seamless or tileable and then sell them."







I am not as familiar with the Pixabay.com, another "stock" provider, which allows others to upload their stock for public domain use.  HOWEVER, note that unlike  Mayang.com or Textures.com, they may not own all rights to the stock.

c) Certain Images or Videos may be subject to additional copyrights, property rights, trademarks etc. and may require the consent of a third party or the license of these rights. Pixabay does not represent or make any warranties that it owns or licenses any of the mentioned, nor does it grant them.

You will need to read their TOS and make your own assessment whether to use their images in your work or not. 


 DEVIANTART.COM http://www.deviantart.com/

Another useful resource for "stock" is DeviantArt.com.  The resources on this particular site is driven by individuals uploading their personal creations or art.  You need to be very CAREFUL about what you use and/or download for DeviantArt.com.  Each user/creator has their own terms for service!!  Some are totally free and nonrestrictive in terms of using their contributions while others are very specific in the ways of using their resource.



Between these 4 texture stock or image resources sites, you should have more than enough images to begin experimenting with creating textures for your 3D models! 

Hopefully, in the next blog post, I will be able show you how you can use these resource images to begin creating your own composite textures. I will be using images from Textures.com http://www.textures.com/ , who is graciously allowing me to use a few of their images for the tutorial. 

Happy Creating Everyone!
Morgaine Christensen

P.S. Yes, the above leaf is a texture created from using a piece of FREE clip art I was able to download from OPENCLIPART.ORG  https://openclipart.org/share

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