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How can an object be to rendered using the cycles render engine so that it renders with normal maps, specular maps, etc, and shows wireframes of the mesh and the subdivision surface modifier? For example, - enter image description here

This is done with a texture, but is there another way?

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  • $\begingroup$ I see that this question is a little bit confusing (by the fact that there are no answers). What I am asking is - Is there a way to make a render with the original wireframe together with the subdivided wireframe? $\endgroup$ – Vladimir Jun 5 '14 at 16:04
  • $\begingroup$ Original wireframe = Original geometry $\endgroup$ – Vladimir Jun 5 '14 at 16:04
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I found a way to do it only in the Blender Internal render engine.

I add a subdivision surface modifier to the object. Then I add a new wireframe material and make it shadeless. Then I add a new material and assign it to the object. As long as the wireframe material is on top of the other materials, it will be shown in the render. Then in edit mode I hit E and then Mark freestyle edge. Then I click on Freestyle in the Render panel to enable freestyle and in the Render Layers panel I click only on Edge mark.

enter image description here

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There are actually several ways of rendering wireframes in Cycles, and you can layer them to create the different thickness/color.


Wireframe modifier:

This method actually creates a 3D wireframe with the wireframe modifier and assigns it a separate material.

enter image description here

First add a wireframe modifier and tweak the thickness to what looks good. Then set the material offset to 1.
enter image description here

Then in the materials tab add a new material for the wireframe.
enter image description here


Wireframe node:

This method simply affects the shading, it does not modify the geometry of the object. Then downside is that it uses the tris of the geometry, not just the edges that you see in edit mode.

enter image description here

To do this just take whatever node setup you are using for your material and mix in whatever node setup you want for the wireframe based on an input > wireframe node.
enter image description here


Freestyle

As of Blender 2.72 Freestyle NPR is now available in Cycles. This allows much more control of the settings for the wireframe, such as only applying the wireframe to certain edges. It looks like you already know your way around Freestyle so I won't go into too much detail here as there a a lot of settings.

enter image description here
In this render I only applied the freestyle edges to the basic Suzanne mesh and then added a subsurf modifier.

To do this go into edit mode, select the edges you want to be highlighted, hit Ctrl + E, and select mark freestyle edge.
enter image description here

Then go to the render layers tab and setup the Freestyle edges. Unfortunately I don't have space to go through all the settings here. But all I did was select only edge mark under edge types in the Freestyle line set rollout.
enter image description here

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  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for the answer! This is an old post, but I learn something new every day ;) $\endgroup$ – Vladimir Jul 23 '15 at 21:01

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