I have two high poly objects, both with a displace mod and their coordinates set to global, their direction set to 'RGB to XYZ', the strength set to 1 and the midlevel set to 0 but they both use a slightly different texture map that's actually a movie. my goal here is to get some really jagged points based on the texture from some of the geometry and point them all towards a specific vector from where they're grabbed from. the thing is my first one is angled exactly how I want but the other one cant seem to 'mirror the first ones angle. what I thought I should do is go into the Material settings > Colors > Clamp and disable it and then make the Colors > RGB values negative numbers but this doesn't seem to work despite the tool tip in the Clamp bool implying as much. I've tried several things, including trying to use some nodes which I know nothing about and never even got close, and I'm still not sure how to reach my goal. My main questions are:

  1. Dose the clamp work like I'm using it?

  2. Is there a way to combine two displace mods that doesn't stretch the points along two axis being used for each direction?

  3. Can I get any advice on how I could achieve my goal?

All help is greatly appreciated and ill give more info as its needed.

The blue line represents the orientation I want.

  • $\begingroup$ can you provide your blend file? $\endgroup$
    – Chris
    Mar 26, 2021 at 10:38
  • $\begingroup$ @Chris Please encourage new users to go through other methods of describing their issues before requesting blend files as per this meta post. In this case, I think just a simple screenshot illustrating what OP wants would be much more helpful than a blend file. $\endgroup$
    – PGmath
    Mar 26, 2021 at 12:16
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Separate XYZ node and multiply the desired channel by -1? Or perhaps invert node $\endgroup$ Mar 26, 2021 at 14:37
  • $\begingroup$ @PGMAth: my personal opinion is, that you can help best with a blend file, because then you can be sure it is the solution for the problem, because you can try it out. With images you can only guess what it might be - but you can never be sure. And i think it is much easier for every beginner to provide the blend file than lot's of images or even gifs. I am speaking out of my self experience ;) and i hope the most important is here to help the people and not to follow guidelines. I just wanna help, because i got lot's of help here. Just my 2 cent. $\endgroup$
    – Chris
    Mar 26, 2021 at 17:47
  • $\begingroup$ @Chris if you have concerns on the policy please bring them up on the linked meta thread. $\endgroup$
    – PGmath
    Mar 26, 2021 at 17:53

1 Answer 1


I have solved my issue using nodes rather than a modifier thanks to the suggestion @Allen Simpson commented. I'm fairly new to the workflow and application of shader nodes but I will try to explain in more detail.

My issue was that I needed to turn my texture map into a Vector Displacement node to point my displaced geometry in a consistent direction something the Displace Modifier can also do using the textures RGB values. the only issue is the modifier method requires you to set RGB values in the Texture Properties > Colors > R,G,B and it only accepts values 0-2. you can use the strength value in the Displace Modifier to multiply that value even in the negative direction but it applies it to all 3 RGB values equally. not sure if there is a way to do what what I needed via the modifier but that's ok.

After giving the shader nodes another go I found the Separate RGB node and everything clicked from there. After feeding it my color from my Image Texture nodes output I fed the R value, which represents the only axis I wanted to modify, into a Math node and multiplied by -1 and fed the output and the G and B into their respective X, Y, Z values in a Combine XYZ node. Then I dropped that output into a Vector Displacement node to give the displacement its direction.

enter image description here

With this solution you can easily build a vector by adding a Math node to each of the other values on the Separate RGB node before combining them as XYZ!

Also to answer my own other questions;

  1. Clamp works like Clamp in the Mirror Modifier in that IF there are any values below 0 and Clamp is turned on, it reverts to 0 but it does not automatically grant your colors RGB values to go below 0. No such thing as a negative color value after all. Not sure if there is a way to get the negative values for the Displace modifier but its not that way. Nodes do a good job of letting you take a value from the color and then mod it as you need. Much easier imo.

  2. Not sure but it seems like a harder way to do this, but it would be good for getting a different effect. I think it can make really psychedelic kaleidoscope like geometry animations?


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