Blender Cycles: Materials and Textures Cookbook – Third Edition, by Enrico Valenza is an updated version of Enrico’s first book of the same title. A book which I read with great enjoyment when it came out.
What can you expect in an updated edition that can’t be found in the first. Well at first glance, it all looks pretty much the same. Enrico walks you through over 40 material recipes created in the Cycles rendering engine. The same great teaching style and explanations are still there, the materials still look great and it is still filled with great tips and information.
Generally changes in an updated edition have to do with changes in the software, and that is the case here as well. Although it did seem to me as if the materials looked better and more polished. I didn’t check the recipes step by step with the first edition to be sure the settings were all the same. So it could be either minor tweaks to the materials by Enrico or improvements to the Cycles rendering engine itself. Either way the materials looked good and provide a valuable resource for material exploration.
The only major change I noticed is that the snake skin material from the first edition was replaced with a “disgusting organic material” and that is Enrico’s description of the material, not mine 😛 But I do agree, that particular material is pretty gross looking.
So, to sum it up. If you missed out on getting the first edition, I encourage you to grab this edition. It is filled with great materials, excellent explanations and is a valuable resource that will help you in your own material explorations.