Hello and welcome to my new tutorial about unwrapping and texturing.
So far we have successfully rigged the mesh attachment,
and we also have optimized its weight-maps.
So we are now ready to add some color and texture to our object’s surface…


Hello and welcome to my new tutorial about unwrapping and texturing.
So far we have successfully rigged the mesh attachment,
and we also have optimized its weight-maps.
So we are now ready to add some color and texture to our object’s surface.

Understanding the process of texturing needs a lot of time and practicing.
In this video i only give you a very general idea about this topic.

Let me first move the armature to a separate layer.
I select the armature,
then press m on the keyboard,
and finally i left-click on the destination-layer.
I also move the hidden Avastar-parts out of sight,
This will help us later to keep focused on the attachment.

ok, now lets turn to the dress.
Currently its surface is displayed in a grey-shaded white,
and without any texture.

Well, textures are tightly coupled with materials.
So the starting point for our adventure is the material-editor.

You always can add a new material by clicking on the plus icon,
It is also a good practice to give your material a meaningful name.

It is pretty easy to colorise the object.
We do that by opening the material’s color picker.
We can modify the surface-specularity in a similar way.

Now lets set the shading to smooth.
Then the edges of the individual faces get almost invisible,
and thus the object’s surface appears less facetted,

So, now we want to add some texture to the mesh.
And we also want to see the results in the viewport.
So we have to tell blender which texture we want to get displayed,
And we need to tell how the texture has to be projected on the mesh surface.
This is the moment where UV-Unwrapping comes into play.

unwrapping actually describes a relationship between
the 3-dimensional surface of the mesh,
and the 2-dimensional texture data.

In fact a 2 dimensional map is created.
This map is called: uv-map.
The uv-map defines
how each model-face
matches up with a corresponding part on the texture.

But you do not need to create the UV-map manually,
Blender provides a powerful unwrap-tool,
and we will just use it for now
without going deeper into the details.

Ok, lets get into practice, and first change the screen lay-out.
We obviously want to switch to UV-editing.
Proceed by switching to edit-mode,
then select all faces.
now call the unwrap-tool by navigating to:
Mesh, unwrap, unwrap.

You see the calculated UV-layout
in the UV-editor on the left side.
Each face shown in the UV-editor
corresponds to exactly one face of the mesh.
We even can make this visible as follows:

go to the uv editor,
then select: keep uv-and-edit-mode mesh selection in sync.
in this mode you can see exactly
how the selected vertices of the mesh
correspond to the vertices in the UV lay-out.

Now you can select any area on the mesh
and see where it is located on the UV lay-out.
And of course this also works in the other direction.
When you add or change a UV face
then you can instantly see
how that face is mapped on the Model.

Note that By default blender tries to keep
adjacent faces of the mesh
also adjacent in the UV-lay-out.

But the current result is not yet very appealing.
This UV lay-out can not be easily textured.
I prefer to get a lay-out
that looks at least a bit like a dress.
Fortunately we can tell the unwrap-tool to calculate
a more useful unwrapping by adding seams.
A seam is just an edge in the mesh.
And the texture will be cut into pieces along this edge.

Ok, so lets start by adding a vertical seam on the back of the dress,
Select the vertical edge-loop along the back,
by hovering the cursor somewhere over it,
then press the ALT-key, and click the right mouse-button.
Now mark the selected edge-loop as seam:
Navigate to mesh, edges, mark seam,
or alternatively use the keyboard shortcut control e,
and again select the mark-seam option.

The seam is shown in a bright orange color.
Now let us unwrap again.

Select all vertices, then call:
Mesh, unwrap, unwrap.
Now we get a more appealing uv-lay-out,

And when we select only the seam in the viewport,
then now we can see
that the UV-layout
has indeed been cut along the seam.

We also could have chosen to create 2 seams
along the sides of the mesh as follows:

Hover the 3D cursor above the 3D view,
press control-e  and select clear seam,
The previously created seam has now been removed.
Now Select the 2 seams along the sides.
For the first seam:
you can press the alt-key and click the right mouse-button,
and the secnd seam can be added by pressing shift, alt,
and again click the right mouse-button.
Now press control e, and select the mark-seam option: just like we did before.

finally select all vertices and unwrap again.
Now you see that the uv lay-out contains two parts,
namely the front-part and the back-part of the dress.

At the end it is your own decision
which UV-layout you prefer for your attachment.
But in our next step we are not very dependent on the lay-out,
so let us just keep what we have for now.

Ok, we now have created our first uv-map, so what comes next ?
well, obviously we will now create our first texture.
Lets start by creating a simple test pattern,
and assign it to our map.
Navigate to:
image, new image.

You also should enter a meaningful image name,
and select a color-grid as test-pattern.
By now we have an image
that has been associated to the UV-lay-out.
and now, finally, we want to see our image on the dress.

We can do that by selecting viewport shading mode, solid.
and enable textured solid in the mesh properties sidebar.

Well, this is a nice option, but
we eventually also want to see the texture in texture-mode.
But when we switch back to texture mode,
then we just see the mesh color and specularity, but no texture.
lets change that.

go to the texture properties,
add a new texture,
set its type to image or movie,
and in the image panel
assign the just created test pattern as input image.
Finally change the image-mapping from generated to UV.

And there it is,
Your test pattern can now be seen in GLSL texture mode.

Now let us change the texture from our test pattern
to a procedural magic-texture.
But now the texture disappears immediately,
and we are back where we started.

The reason why this happens is simply
that in GLSL-mode
Blender only displays image-based textures,
but not procedural textures.

So we have to find a work-around for this problem.
Actually the solution is
to first bake the procedural texture into an image,
then use the bake result
as a new source for a separate image-texture
on the texture-stack.

ok, its less complicated than it sounds.
Lets start by baking the magic-texture.

I use a separate small window here,
and you will see in a moment
why this is a good idea.

Go to the render-properties section,
locate the bake-tool,
set Bake mode to textures,
and then bake.

When we now look into the UV-editor,
then we see that our test pattern
has been replaced by a new image,
namely the just baked magic-texture.

But we still see nothing in the viewport.

We now add an additional texture into the texture stack.
go to the texture properties,
add a new texture,
name it uv-texture,
set its type to image or movie just as we did before,
and in the image panel
assign the just baked magic-texture as source image.
Finally change the image-mapping from generated to UV.

And now we can see the magic texture on the mesh.

But hold on, we see another problem here.
The texture is broken apart at the seams.

Let us again examine the settings for the magic-texture.
I will point you right-away to the problem.
go to the Mapping section. We have set the Coordinates
to UV, But in general this is not correct for procedural textures.
Here we want to map to the generated coordinates instead.

Remind that when you change the settings of a procedural texture
then you have to rebake the UV texture again, before you can see
the results in the 3D View.

And here we run into the next problem.
Try to bake the texture.

Blender tells you that it has found a feedback loop.
That is, one of the images used for the textures
in the texture stack,
is modified by the texture bake process.
Thus the bake process modifies its own input data.
And that is a feedback loop.

The problem is with our uv-texture.
During the bake,
blender tries to use the texture image as input.
But we do not want that.

We only want to use this texture as output.

The trick is to disable this texture before we bake,
then bake,
and finally enable the texture again.

And now we see that we have created a texture wich matches
perfectly along the texture seams.

well, the need to frequently enable and disable the uv-texture
is a bit inconvenient.
So the alternative is to switch back to display mode solid,
disable the uv texture in the texture stack,
and work on your procedural texture until you are satisfied.

Then switch back to texture mode,
enable the uv-texture again,
and finally check how the texture looks
when it is placed into the environment.

You might have noticed that the texture stack offers a huge
potential for your creative art-work. However the entire topic
is so complex that i am not able to give you a complete introduction.
Actually i just scratched on the surface.

However i hope that you found one or 2 useful informations
for your own projects. For now have a great day and see you in the
next part of this series,