Following the previous post about modelling comes this post about UV mapping. Before applying texture to a model, it is necessary to create a UV map. Basically, the UV is what links the texture in 2D to the model in 3D. In the example below is a depiction of the mapping of the “rotor” part of the model. For this section of the model I did mark the seams of the UV map myself (ctrl+e while having an edge selected, then “mark seam”). There are some “good practices” that I tried to follow:
- Try to place the seams in the less visible places as it may then appear in the texture itself, on sharp edges or in places where the texture itself is changing.
- Smooth edges are not good candidates for seams.
- Try to keep the orientation consistent.
- Try to keep the pixel density as consistent as possible and avoid distortion. (in the example, the grid helps to see that)
- Don’t waste space, move the islands to maximize the final resolution of the texture.
I did not make a exceptional job of following all these rules. For the guns, I actually use the auto wrap features of Blender. There are some distortions and pixel density is not always respected but I will say that it is good enough for what I try to achieve.
In the example above, you see that only half the UV map is used. This is because I use a mirror modifier on the mesh. The modifier has an useful option to mirror the UV map as well. Here, V is set as the symmetry axis.
In a next update, I will talk about texturing with Substance Painter.