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I have a model with a toon shader and want to make the eyes glow like in the image/video below. But in Blender the eyes don't glow as you can see in the screenshot below. What should I do? I wish I could set the intensity like this.

anime character with glowing eyes

① I want to make my eyes glow Case (Unity) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t_M9YyH1h30

It seems easy with Unity, but I can't write it out well I hope Blender can fix it. However, I didn't know how to connect shaders and nodes. I wonder if I should set the material for N00_000_00_EyeIris_00_EYE (Instance).

My model and shader image. enter image description here enter image description here

When I asked a question on Bing, it came out as follows. I still had to fix it, but it didn't come out the same way. It's wrong, but I'll put it in the reference below for reference.

To make your eyes glow, you need to follow these steps:

  • Prepare MainTexture and Emission_Texture. The MainTexture can be a normal eye texture. The Emission_Texture makes the texture white only where the eye shines.
  • Connect a Mix node to MainTexture and Emission_Texture respectively. A Mix node is a node that mixes two colors. You can choose between the MainTexture or Emission Texture and a color for the input of the Mix node. For the color, use either color1 or color2. It doesn't matter which one you connect to, but either color1 or color2 must be black to be editable. The Mix node ignores black colors when mixing two colors. So you can't edit the color of the blackened one. Don't make the color you want to edit black.
  • Connect the output of the Mix node to Mtoon_universed. Mtoon_universed is a node that sets the eye material. In addition to MainTexture and Emission_texture, there are various items in the input of Mtoon_universed, but only EmissionColor and EmissionIntensity are used this time. EmissionColor is an item that determines the color that the eyes glow. EmissionIntensity is an item that determines the intensity of the eyes shining. Emissioncolor is connected to the output of a Mix node that mixes MainTexture and Emission_Texture. Enter a number for EmissionIntensity. The higher the number, the brighter the eyes.
  • Connect the output of Mtoon_universed to the Main node. The Main node is the node that outputs the final material.
  • Here's how to make it stand out. The texture may not have changed in the Unity video, but I think that's because the creator of the video already prepared a whitened texture. If you also have a whitened texture, you don't need to change the texture.

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  • $\begingroup$ I don't know what your MToon_unversion node group exactly does but to me Emission_Texture looks like a mask. What does your model look like when you connect the yellow output of the Emission_Texture node to the Material Output's Surface input slot? I would expect that the eyes get white (=glow) and the rest will be black. -- What color is EmissionColor? Expand the node to check it. It must not be black. $\endgroup$
    – Blunder
    Jun 1, 2023 at 16:08
  • $\begingroup$ And yes, is the material in screenshot 2 actually the material of the iris? -- Last but not least it's not clear what value the glow intensity/emission strength has. I can't find an input slot that seems to define this. $\endgroup$
    – Blunder
    Jun 1, 2023 at 16:10
  • $\begingroup$ Thank you so much. I uploaded blender file. $\endgroup$
    – abc
    Jun 2, 2023 at 13:06
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Thanks for the blend file. I'm going to check it. I think your first sentence ("I would like to keep an eye on this model.") is a translation error because "to keep an eye on someone" means "to watch them/to keep them under careful observation" ;-) $\endgroup$
    – Blunder
    Jun 2, 2023 at 15:35
  • $\begingroup$ Understand.Thank you! $\endgroup$
    – abc
    Jun 3, 2023 at 5:43

1 Answer 1

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To get the eyes to glow like in your reference picture, you need to do at least 2 things, maybe even 3:

  1. enable emission for the eyes in the shader to make them glow
  2. tone down the skin color to simulate a dark environment. Of course, you need to do this also for the hair, clothes, and so on.
  3. optionally, increase the emission strength and activate the Bloom option in the Eevee render setting if you want to make the eyes glow like a spotlight.

examples of an anime head with glowing eyes

The first thing to mention is that your toon shader, like most toon shaders, uses Emission Shader nodes to get the cartoon/anime style. This means, the head is a light source and emits light. For this reason

  • it is not or hardly(*) influenced by light. Even if you set the world color to pitch black and remove all lights, you will see the head in the same color as in a bright world/environment.
  • it does not get any shadows cast by other objects
  • additional emission light can be added in the toon shader node group

Keep this in mind for point 2.

(*) Note: actually, depending on the toon shader's settings it will be affected a little bit by light.

1. Enable Emission for the Eyes

If you check out the material for the eyes "N00_000_00_EyeIris_00_EYE (Instance)" and expand the Emission_Texture and the EmissionColor nodes then you will see that the image Shader_NoneBlack is actually pure black and the color is also black. This means that there is no (additional) emission for the eyes.

toon shader default settings

To fix this,

  1. set the EmissionColor to a non-black color. Try yellow
  2. change the image texture. You can unplug the Image Texture node (Emission_Texture) and choose just the white color. But then the pupil is also affected by the glow and becomes grey. It's better to create an image as an emission mask and paint it to control where the emission should occur.

Let's create an emission mask. Remove the Shader_NoneBlack image with the [X] button in the node, and create a new image with the [+ New] button. Create a small image (512px x 512px should be fine, no Alpha channel needed).

new image texture for eyes

Now you can paint the model in the Texture Paint workspace. Note that the eyes have their own material but share the UV map of the head parts. The UV map has overlapping UV islands from all the head parts. This results in the head being painted when you paint the eyes and vice versa. This is not technically a problem, but if you accidentally paint the eyelids or the head, it can mess up the pupils that you just carefully painted. Use the painting mask option to avoid over-painting. Don't forget to save the image.

painting the mask

2. Darken the Skin Tone

This can be done with the settings of the toon shader node group. Select the face material ("N00_000_00_Face_00_SKIN (Instance)") and choose a grey color for the Diffuse Color and ShadeColor, and/or try the ShadeTooy setting.

toon shader settings

3. Emission Strength and Bloom

The Bloom is just a checkbox the Eevee render settings. But to see the effect, you need to increase the emission strength, which is 1 by default. It's in the shader node group. I recommend creating a new input group, then you can control the strength from outside the node group and it won't affect any other materials. Use the Tab key to go into/out of the group.

emission strength slot

I used the Node Arrange add-on that comes with Blender to properly align the nodes, and then created the new input ("Emission Strength ") by dragging the Strength input into the empty Group Input slot. Then I renamed it in the side panel and moved the new slot below the EmissionColor slot.

Now you can control the emission strength in the material. Have fun with glow in the dark!

controlling the emission strength for bloom

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