This is a series of 8 tutorials to introduce you to the power of the Adobe 3D tools and how to the integrate. Throught the videos, I'll cover everything from building custom materials from photos to the final render.
I think is fair to say that for the amount of time/effort that we put into creating this pottery scene, the results are pretty cool. However, you can take your materials a step further if you tweak additional settings. For instance, if you want to create a ceramic piece with very thin walls, you can play around with the 'sub-surface scattering' attribute of a material to allow the material to absorb and scatter some of the light.
Take the jug from this tutorial as an example. I have assigned a plain material with no textures at all, just a brown colour and a bit of roughness from the sliders. The one on the left has no translucency and the one on the right has sub-surface scattering enabled in the material:
Keeping in mind that I'm exaggerating the effect for illustration purposes, the one on the right looks a lot more interesting and realistic (for a thin translucent material).
This type of material attribute can be tweaked to an extent from the texture set in 3D Painter but in order to really see the effect, this is something that usually happens or is adjusted at render time (in 3D Stager for this example). In 3D Stager, the sub-surface scattering or SSS effect is within the 'Interior' tab where you can change the actual interior of the material... in other words what 'stuff' is the material made out of. for instance, a metallic material won't have any translucency whereas a wax material might have a lot more.
By default the translucency in the interior tab is set to 0:
But you can totally change the look and composition of the material by changing the translucency slider. This is how it looks with a value of 1 and an absorption colour that is slightly more saturated and brighter than the brown colour I chose for the base colour.
Depending on the material you are trying to recreate, this is a property of the material that might be very subtle and that will be accentuated but the actual position of the light source. Think about looking at someone that has a strong light source behind them... the translucelcy of the ears will be more evident and they will look red.
In 3D Stager you can also controll the distance that the light needs to travel before reaching the absorprion colour by changing the 'absorption distance' slider. So with a value of 6 this now looks almost like a candle. This absotrion ditance is a setting that can tweake to change the density of transparent materials like a heavy glass.
Now the 'real deal' for this type of more organic material is the actuall SSS which is the next sub-tab in the 'Interior' section. I have assigned a blue scattering colour to make it more evident but this is what you can tweak to change the colour underneath the surface that any scattered light will produce.
You can go even deeper here and control how far specific rays will behave. So if you increase the 'red shift' to 1 you can tell 3D Stager to allow the 'red light' to travel further than the rest of the colours. This is basically what I would adjust for skin materials and achieve that nice SSS effect on areas like the ears of a character.
Hopefully this serves as a reference to fine-tune your materials.