Thursday, 6 January 2011

UV Unwrapping and Texturing - The Final Test!!

Boy oh boy, this did not work out how I planned it to. This was supposed to be a test, my own personal exam to see if everything I had learnt up until now was sufficient enough to UV map a character, create some simple and basic textures, and then apply them back to the model. Things started off very well, I started by paint selecting the faces of the head that I wanted to change in the texture and created a spherical planar projection to give me the UV's in the texture editor.

Above all of the faces I wanted have been selected, the selected ones are coloured orange, I did not touch the eyes or teeth. I then made a quick select set with the selected geometry so I can easily reselect the needed area without having to re-paint all of the faces. 

I applied the spherical mapping planar which turns the selected area black.

In the texture editor the selected geometry has now been unwrapped and is ready to be exported into photoshop for the texturing process.

I applied the basic texture that I quickly made in photoshop to the model, in the working window it appears grey but when it's rendered you can see how it actually looks.

This is the texture I added, it's nothing fancy, I changed the colour of the skin and coloured the eyebrows. So far everything has worked well, the texture has applied onto the model correctly as can be seen by the position of the eyebrows which are right where they need to be.

This is where things started to go wrong. I started to repeat the same process as above with other parts of the body. I easily coloured the hands, arms and from the waist down no problem, they all had the same colour as the head so it wasn't really a challenge. The issues began when I began to try and make the torso look as if it was wearing a t-shirt. I selected the required faces, created my quick select set, and made my UV maps in the texture editor ready to be exported.

The texture editor showing the UV's of the torso being used to create the t-shirt. The texture I made for the t-shirt was simple enough, it was plain black with a band logo both on the front and the back. But when I applied the texture back to the model everything went wrong.

This render shows the problem, it's very clear that the texture for the head has completely messed up. For some reason the t-shirt texture interferes with the head texture. Half of the head and neck is black, the other half is grey and the eyes have changed colour.

I originally thought that maybe somehow when making my geometry sets for the t-shirt I had accidently selected one of the faces belonging to the head which is why the textures where conflicting with each other, however after taking a look at my geometry sets and going over them I found that they are all perfectly done and separate from each other. My second thought was to go back a a few steps to when i made the geometry set for the t-shirt, instead of going straight into UV mapping it I decided to apply a new lambert material to the selected area incase it was a problem within the hypershade. I applied the texture again to the new separate lambert but the problem still persisted.

I searched online for possible solutions to the problem, after a while of reading various tutorials I began to see a pattern and realised my mistake. I kept creating separate UV's and applying textures to the same geometry separately which can cause problems like the ones that I had. The method I used can be effective and useful for non-organic objects where the geometry is a lot more simple, but for things like characters which have more complex shapes it's best to create the whole texture in one UV map rather than breaking down parts individually and applying them on their own. I consider the overall result of my test both a success and a failure. It was a failure for the obvious reason of the textures not working correctly, but it was also a success because I learnt the reason why so I shall not make the same mistake again. Now I feel confident enough to move onto more advanced and challenging texturing jobs now that my knowledge of the role has increased even further, but i still have lots more to learn which can only be done through practice.