Blender Tutorial

Mesh Shading Fix

This was a tutorial I made for a friend on The Sims Resource having problems with weird shading on her dress. As you can see in the picture – the areas around the neck, arm cuffs, and dress hem have some funky shading going on. This is a common problem for both CAS and object CC! Although this tutorial provides some quick shortcuts for CAS made in Marvelous Designer and then imported into Blender, the method is the same for fixing these shading issues regardless of the object. Split your edges simmies!


Inspect in object mode

Step 01.

Make sure you are in object mode, the display option is set to ‘Solid’, and then toggle between Smooth and Flat Shading. Doing this should help identify the areas that are causing shading issues.


smooth shading

Smooth shading is how your object will show up in game. You will want to check your mesh with smooth shading to make sure it looks correct.

In this case, most of the dress looks correct, but the neckline and bottom hem of the dress has weird shading issues that need to be fixed.

flat shading

Flat shading can be used for finding out where you are having issues but should not be used to see how your object will look in the game.

In this case, if you look at the neckline and hem of the dress, they now look correct and those shading issues are gone. This means we need to ‘Split Edges’ in those regions.

select sharp edges

Step 02.

Go into edit mode and turn on ‘Sharp’ Overlay. In most cases, an object created Marvelous Designer and then imported into Blender typically has these defined. The sharp edges are shown in teal and is where the shading issues are happening. Make sure the mesh select type is set to Edge and select any one of the sharp edges (it doesn’t matter which one). With the edge selected, go to Select > Select Similar > Sharpness. This should select all the edges that are marked sharp. If your mesh doesn’t have any sharp edges pre-defined, you can also hand select the edges where you are seeing the shading issues.


split edges

Step 03.

After you have selected the edges it can be hard to see, so turn off ‘Sharp’ Overlay. All the teal sharp edges should now be selected and will show up as orange. Once you have made sure the correct edges are selected, go to Mesh > Edges > Edge Split. You can also hit Ctrl + E and then ‘Edge Split’.


final check

Step 04.

Go back to Object Mode and look at the object with ‘Smooth’ shading with the display option is set to ‘Solid’. Again, the Smooth shading is how it will actually look in game so for your final check make sure this is the option you have selected. This should have fixed those pesky shading issues. If there are still areas with shading issues repeat this process until it is fixed. You may not be able to use the shortcut to select all the edges quickly, but the overall process is the same.