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Essential Blender 10 UV and Painting Discussion

Essential Blender 10 UV and Painting Discussion

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Published by Ahmad Musaffa

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Published by: Ahmad Musaffa on Jan 12, 2009
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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11/22/2010

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Chapter 10: UV Unwrapping and Painting: ToolsBy Roland HessBlender gives you an excellent and easy-to-use toolset for slicing and flattening mesh models in order tomake the application of 2D textures more detailed and efficient. Don't be confused: "UV" unwrapping hasnothing at all to do with "ultraviolet," the common expansion of the "UV" acronym. It has to do instead withassigning a set of 2D coordinates to all vertices.Don't they already have 3D coordinates? Yes. As you know, each vertex of a mesh already has an X, Y, andZ coordinate. But if you make a copy of the mesh, slice it and flatten it out, each vertex will also haveanother set of coordinates, ones more appropriate to a flat workspace. Normally, you'd label the axes of a2D space X and Y, but those are already taken. So, it's U and V. Where's W? Don't ask.On the left, a mesh model in Face Select mode. On the right, that model unwrapped in the UV Editor.If you've never dealt with UV unwrapping and mapping before, we strongly urge you to work through thetutorial section first in this chapter. Blender's UV Unwrapper is a highly interactive feature, and one that canbe best grasped by actually using it.UnwrappingThe unwrapping process itself is found in Face Select mode, accessible on the 3D header's modes menu.
 
The Modes menu, with Face Select mode highlighted.Most times, you will be unwrapping an entire mesh at once. In this case, simply using the A-key to makesure that all faces are selected will be good enough.The U-key brings up the Unwrap menu in the 3D view. It only works in Face Select mode.There are a number of UV calculation methods, but only a few will be immediately useful.The simplest ones to conceptualize are "Project from View" and the closely related "Project from View(Bounds)." These options take the mesh exactly as seen in the current 3D view, and squash it right into theUV Editor. (Technically, it's the "UV/Image Editor," but since we're only working with UVs right now, we'll callit the UV Editor for short.)
 
3d view of sphere, flattened with project from view (bounds).

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