Advanced Substance for Environment Art | CG Master Academy

2021 | Winter Registration now Open!

Registration for our 2021 Winter Term is now open!

Advanced Substance for Environment Art

A 3-week course further discovering the power of Substance and creating complex organic materials for all aspects of environment art

Course overview Course overview

Course Overview

Create complex organic material

In this advanced version of Intro to Substance for Environment Art course, students will learn the context of material creation by importing textures into Unreal Engine 4. Students will learn the process of setting up Master Shaders, including vertex blends and exposing our own parameters to drive interesting effects for our 3D worlds. Students will round up learning how to present and render our final materials and textured assets in interesting and striking ways. Inside Designer and Unreal Engine 4, you will be taught how to create believable realistic materials for all aspects of environment art. Students will start the course by creating a complex organic material for blending in the later weeks. In the second week we will tackle vertex blending, which is a technique used commonly in game production to interpolate between materials on larger surfaces. Students will learn how to create complex Master Shaders, which feed directly into your environments and can be used across multiple projects. We will round up the advanced course by delving into blending multiple Designer graphs directly inside of Substance. Tackling a new material and to complete the course, a new final blend incorporating everything we have learnt across the three weeks. At the end students will render the final output in Marmoset to create professional portfolio images. NOTE: completing the Intro to Substance for Environment Art course before enrolling in this course is strongly recommended. For the Advanced Substance for Environment Art course (i.e. a 3-week-long course), there are no refunds or transfers allowed


Course Format:   Standard
Lecture Type:   Pre-Recorded
Feedback:   Individual Recordings
Duration:   3 Weeks
Assignment:   Due each week. Expect to spend 10-20 hrs/wk viewing lectures, q&a, and assignments
Q&A:   Once a week
Materials:   Substance Designer, Substance Painter, Marmoset, UE4
Skills level:   Intermediate to Advanced
Prerequisites:   Knowledge of Unreal and any 3D modeling package such as Maya/Max/Blender etc. Recommended prereq: Fundamentals of Substance for Environment Art

Advanced Substance for Environment Art WHAT YOU’LL LEARN

What you'll learn

The more you know, the better.

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In this week, we will create a reference pack for our material. We will create all aspects of the organic material including; height, normal, roughness and diffuse. The homework assignment will be to recreate your own version from the tutorial or choose your own material to create from scratch
In this week, we will start with an introduction to Unreal Engine 4, correctly exporting and packing texture channels from Designer and creating vertex blend shaders. We will learn how to build master materials and tweak the parameters for a project use case. We will polish and refine our results until we have a great shader. We will utilise the materials we have already created to get great looking results. The homework will be to recreate your own shaders.
In this week, we will start by sourcing reference. We will create another transition material and revisit our previous designer file to expose parameters. We will demonstrate the variations you can create from one material showing the power of Substance. We will then work on our final blend material before rendering the result in Marmoset. The homework will be to create your own final blend material and create compelling final renders.

Igniting your Imagination

Ben is currently working as a Senior Environment Artist at Rocksteady Studios in London, UK. He has worked on numerous environments on various AAA productions and projects for over 6-years. He's worked on titles such as EA's Need for Speed franchise, Sony's VR worlds with PlayStation VR, and on Halo Wars 2. His work has been featured on the Algorithmic homepage, Polycount, and CryEngine forums.


March 12th!

Winter TERM Registration

Oct 26, 2020 - Feb 1, 2021




March 12th!

Pricing & Schedule

Even though our courses are the most affordable for the quality of education.

These Finance Options allow you to focus on your goals instead of the barriers that keep you from reaching them.

Employer Reimbursement

Animation Guild CSATTF

Payment Plan

Companies that hire our students

  • Naughty Dog
  • Luma Pictures
  • Google
  • EA Games
  • DreamWorks Animation
  • Blizzard Entertainment

environment design Benefits


What makes this learning experience unique?

Personal Feedback

Receive personal individual feedback on all submitted assignments from the industries best artist.

1+ Year Access

Enjoy over 365 days of full course access. This includes all lectures, feedback, and Live Q&A recordings.

Certificate of Completion

Earn a Certificate of Completion when you complete and turn in 80% of course assignments.

Flexible Learning

Learn anywhere, anytime, and at your own pace with our online courses.

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