Home > Articles

  • Print
  • + Share This
This chapter is from the book

This chapter is from the book

Using Workbench, EEVEE, and Cycles

Blender provides different methods to display and render images, each of them with their uses, pros, and cons. Let’s talk about them:

  • Workbench: This engine runs Blender’s 3D Viewport while you’re working in Wireframe and Solid viewport shading modes. It’s basic, but it has some level of control over how things look. It’s lightweight and simple, perfect for general work like modeling, rigging, and animation.

  • EEVEE: EEVEE has been one of the greatest additions to Blender lately, and it’s a real-time render engine, using technologies similar to those used in videogame engines. It can get good-quality results very fast (as long as you have a computer that supports it and can run it with a good performance), although it’s based on tricks and sacrifices many calculations to accelerate the render time. It’s good for rendering animations that don’t require high levels of realism and for previewing scenes and materials that would be rendered with Cycles later. EEVEE is used when you choose the Material Preview viewport shading mode, and it shows at its best in Rendered viewport shading mode (when EEVEE is selected as the active render engine).

  • Cycles: This realistic renderer is included in Blender. It provides high quality and realism, but it’s also much slower than EEVEE, as it doesn’t use tricks or sacrifice complex calculations to be faster: it performs all the calculations necessary to achieve the best result. If EEVEE could be compared with what you see in videogames, Cycles would be a render engine used for movies or general video, where render speed is not as relevant as image quality.

You can change the render engine that you want to use in the Render tab within the Properties Editor (see Figure 3.10). When you render the final image, as explained at the end of this chapter, the active render engine is the one that will be used.

FIGURE 3.10

FIGURE 3.10 You can change the render engine between Workbench, EEVEE, and Cycles from the drop-down menu within the Render tab of the Properties Editor.

Understanding Viewport Shading

Viewport shading defines how objects are visualized in the 3D Viewport, and it’s important to understand how they work before you start adding materials to the scene.

While working, you can change the viewport shading mode in the 3D Viewport to show Wireframe, Solid, Material Preview, or Rendered mode (see Figure 3.11), and different engines will be activated for different modes, although Rendered viewport shading mode will always display a result similar to the final render, but interactively and in real time, using the selected active render engine. Depending on what render engine you use, options for viewport shading will change:

  • Workbench Engine: Material Preview viewport shading will not be available, as Workbench doesn’t use materials (although colors and other properties can be added to objects); it’s meant only for general work and simple screenshots. Wireframe, Solid, and Rendered viewport shading modes all use Workbench Engine. A render taken from this engine would be like a screenshot, useful for quick playblasts to check your animations.

  • EEVEE Engine: Wireframe and Solid viewport shading modes will use Workbench, but Material Preview and Rendered viewport shading modes will use EEVEE.

  • Cycles Engine: Wireframe and Solid viewport shading modes will use Workbench, Material Preview will use EEVEE, and Rendered viewport shading mode will use Cycles.

Whichever render engine you’re using, you’ll see their options for rendering in the Render tab of the Properties Editor.

FIGURE 3.11

FIGURE 3.11 Viewport Shading and visibility options. You can find them in the right corner of the 3D Viewport’s header.

You can also find interesting options for how the image is shown by clicking the Shading arrow next to the 3D Viewport’s shading mode selector. For example, Material Preview Mode will let you change the environment to see how the materials behave under different lightings, and Solid Mode will let you choose different options for how objects are visualized.

Switching Viewport Shading Modes

To switch viewport shading modes, you can simply click the button for that mode in the 3D Viewport’s header (refer to Figure 3.11).

Alternatively, and to speed things up, you can use keyboard shortcuts:

  • Press Z to launch the viewport shading pie menu, and choose one of the options.

  • Press Shift+Z to switch between the current viewport shading mode and Wireframe viewport shading mode.

Managing Materials

Materials define how an object looks, such as what its color is, whether the object is dull or shiny, and whether it is reflective or transparent. With materials, you can make an object look like glass, metal, plastic, or wood. In the end, both materials and lighting define how your objects look. In this section, you see how to add materials to your objects by using both Blender Render and Cycles.

On the Materials tab (the red sphere with a checkered pattern icon) of the Properties Editor, you can add new materials or select existing ones from the drop-down list shown in Figure 3.12. A single object can have multiple materials, and these materials appear in the list at the top of the material properties. You can add and remove new slots for materials by clicking the + and - buttons on the right side of the list, and you can assign each of those materials to a selection of faces when you’re in Edit Mode.

FIGURE 3.12

FIGURE 3.12 Use this menu on the Material Properties tab of the Properties Editor to add materials. Keep in mind that the Material tab has been isolated for clarification; in the Properties Editor, you’ll find it within the rest of the tabs.

Adding and Adjusting Materials

Advanced materials require the use of node trees in the Shader Editor, but don’t worry; for now, I’ll keep things simple. Inside a material, you’ll find the Surface panel, which includes various types of surface shaders, such as

  • Diffuse: Creates a basic material with only color—no shine, reflection, or other special properties.

  • Glossy: Makes the material reflective and shiny.

  • Emission: Makes the material emit light into the scene.

  • Transparent: Lets light pass through the material.

  • Glass: Simulates a glass surface.

  • Principled BSDF: Includes many of the properties provided by the others, so it’s a very useful shader type, and conveniently, it’s the one you get by default when you create a new material.

  • Mix: Mixes two shaders to achieve a more elaborate effect.

Many surface shaders are available; these are just some of the main ones. Each of the shaders has different parameters to control how light affects that shader, such as color and roughness. Accessing nodes makes it easier to create complex and custom materials by combining the effects of some of the shaders and using textures. (See Chapter 10, “Materials and Shaders.”)

Remember that these materials are almost completely compatible between EEVEE and Cycles, so for simple cases, the same settings will work in both engines (even though there may be some differences in the result, given the different approaches that both engines used to calculate the final image).

To add materials with different colors to your scene, you just need to select each object and create a material from the Material Properties tab in the Properties Editor. Follow this procedure:

  1. Select the monkey head.

  2. Go to the Material Properties tab of the Properties Editor.

  3. Add a new material by pressing the New button and name it properly to make it recognizable.

  4. You’ll get the options for a Principled BSDF shader. Adjust the base color parameter to choose the color you’d like for the material. Play with other parameters of the material to see how it changes.

  5. Repeat the process with a new material for the floor plane.

  • + Share This
  • 🔖 Save To Your Account

InformIT Promotional Mailings & Special Offers

I would like to receive exclusive offers and hear about products from InformIT and its family of brands. I can unsubscribe at any time.

Overview


Pearson Education, Inc., 221 River Street, Hoboken, New Jersey 07030, (Pearson) presents this site to provide information about products and services that can be purchased through this site.

This privacy notice provides an overview of our commitment to privacy and describes how we collect, protect, use and share personal information collected through this site. Please note that other Pearson websites and online products and services have their own separate privacy policies.

Collection and Use of Information


To conduct business and deliver products and services, Pearson collects and uses personal information in several ways in connection with this site, including:

Questions and Inquiries

For inquiries and questions, we collect the inquiry or question, together with name, contact details (email address, phone number and mailing address) and any other additional information voluntarily submitted to us through a Contact Us form or an email. We use this information to address the inquiry and respond to the question.

Online Store

For orders and purchases placed through our online store on this site, we collect order details, name, institution name and address (if applicable), email address, phone number, shipping and billing addresses, credit/debit card information, shipping options and any instructions. We use this information to complete transactions, fulfill orders, communicate with individuals placing orders or visiting the online store, and for related purposes.

Surveys

Pearson may offer opportunities to provide feedback or participate in surveys, including surveys evaluating Pearson products, services or sites. Participation is voluntary. Pearson collects information requested in the survey questions and uses the information to evaluate, support, maintain and improve products, services or sites, develop new products and services, conduct educational research and for other purposes specified in the survey.

Contests and Drawings

Occasionally, we may sponsor a contest or drawing. Participation is optional. Pearson collects name, contact information and other information specified on the entry form for the contest or drawing to conduct the contest or drawing. Pearson may collect additional personal information from the winners of a contest or drawing in order to award the prize and for tax reporting purposes, as required by law.

Newsletters

If you have elected to receive email newsletters or promotional mailings and special offers but want to unsubscribe, simply email information@informit.com.

Service Announcements

On rare occasions it is necessary to send out a strictly service related announcement. For instance, if our service is temporarily suspended for maintenance we might send users an email. Generally, users may not opt-out of these communications, though they can deactivate their account information. However, these communications are not promotional in nature.

Customer Service

We communicate with users on a regular basis to provide requested services and in regard to issues relating to their account we reply via email or phone in accordance with the users' wishes when a user submits their information through our Contact Us form.

Other Collection and Use of Information


Application and System Logs

Pearson automatically collects log data to help ensure the delivery, availability and security of this site. Log data may include technical information about how a user or visitor connected to this site, such as browser type, type of computer/device, operating system, internet service provider and IP address. We use this information for support purposes and to monitor the health of the site, identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents and appropriately scale computing resources.

Web Analytics

Pearson may use third party web trend analytical services, including Google Analytics, to collect visitor information, such as IP addresses, browser types, referring pages, pages visited and time spent on a particular site. While these analytical services collect and report information on an anonymous basis, they may use cookies to gather web trend information. The information gathered may enable Pearson (but not the third party web trend services) to link information with application and system log data. Pearson uses this information for system administration and to identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents, appropriately scale computing resources and otherwise support and deliver this site and its services.

Cookies and Related Technologies

This site uses cookies and similar technologies to personalize content, measure traffic patterns, control security, track use and access of information on this site, and provide interest-based messages and advertising. Users can manage and block the use of cookies through their browser. Disabling or blocking certain cookies may limit the functionality of this site.

Do Not Track

This site currently does not respond to Do Not Track signals.

Security


Pearson uses appropriate physical, administrative and technical security measures to protect personal information from unauthorized access, use and disclosure.

Children


This site is not directed to children under the age of 13.

Marketing


Pearson may send or direct marketing communications to users, provided that

  • Pearson will not use personal information collected or processed as a K-12 school service provider for the purpose of directed or targeted advertising.
  • Such marketing is consistent with applicable law and Pearson's legal obligations.
  • Pearson will not knowingly direct or send marketing communications to an individual who has expressed a preference not to receive marketing.
  • Where required by applicable law, express or implied consent to marketing exists and has not been withdrawn.

Pearson may provide personal information to a third party service provider on a restricted basis to provide marketing solely on behalf of Pearson or an affiliate or customer for whom Pearson is a service provider. Marketing preferences may be changed at any time.

Correcting/Updating Personal Information


If a user's personally identifiable information changes (such as your postal address or email address), we provide a way to correct or update that user's personal data provided to us. This can be done on the Account page. If a user no longer desires our service and desires to delete his or her account, please contact us at customer-service@informit.com and we will process the deletion of a user's account.

Choice/Opt-out


Users can always make an informed choice as to whether they should proceed with certain services offered by InformIT. If you choose to remove yourself from our mailing list(s) simply visit the following page and uncheck any communication you no longer want to receive: www.informit.com/u.aspx.

Sale of Personal Information


Pearson does not rent or sell personal information in exchange for any payment of money.

While Pearson does not sell personal information, as defined in Nevada law, Nevada residents may email a request for no sale of their personal information to NevadaDesignatedRequest@pearson.com.

Supplemental Privacy Statement for California Residents


California residents should read our Supplemental privacy statement for California residents in conjunction with this Privacy Notice. The Supplemental privacy statement for California residents explains Pearson's commitment to comply with California law and applies to personal information of California residents collected in connection with this site and the Services.

Sharing and Disclosure


Pearson may disclose personal information, as follows:

  • As required by law.
  • With the consent of the individual (or their parent, if the individual is a minor)
  • In response to a subpoena, court order or legal process, to the extent permitted or required by law
  • To protect the security and safety of individuals, data, assets and systems, consistent with applicable law
  • In connection the sale, joint venture or other transfer of some or all of its company or assets, subject to the provisions of this Privacy Notice
  • To investigate or address actual or suspected fraud or other illegal activities
  • To exercise its legal rights, including enforcement of the Terms of Use for this site or another contract
  • To affiliated Pearson companies and other companies and organizations who perform work for Pearson and are obligated to protect the privacy of personal information consistent with this Privacy Notice
  • To a school, organization, company or government agency, where Pearson collects or processes the personal information in a school setting or on behalf of such organization, company or government agency.

Links


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that we are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of each and every web site that collects Personal Information. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this web site.

Requests and Contact


Please contact us about this Privacy Notice or if you have any requests or questions relating to the privacy of your personal information.

Changes to this Privacy Notice


We may revise this Privacy Notice through an updated posting. We will identify the effective date of the revision in the posting. Often, updates are made to provide greater clarity or to comply with changes in regulatory requirements. If the updates involve material changes to the collection, protection, use or disclosure of Personal Information, Pearson will provide notice of the change through a conspicuous notice on this site or other appropriate way. Continued use of the site after the effective date of a posted revision evidences acceptance. Please contact us if you have questions or concerns about the Privacy Notice or any objection to any revisions.

Last Update: November 17, 2020