Skill Level Intermediate
- [George] Hi, I'm George Maestri, and today we're going to take a look at UV Mapping, now I know a lot of people don't like UV Mapping, but I'm going to show you a couple of simple processes that make UV Mapping go very, very quickly. And so we're going to map this human head, which is a very common problem that has a complex object. So let's go ahead and just dive in. So first thing I need to do is select my head, and go into my UV Editor, now there is some mapping on this UV Editor, but I'm going to go ahead and take what we have, and just move it off to the side.
So I'm going to right click over this, select Shell, and just use my Move Tool, to kind of move this out of the way. Now when we do UV Mapping, we're going to place all of the objects in this area. So what I'm doing is, I'm just clearing out this area, so we have a nice place to work. Now when we UV Map this character here, we've got a couple of things that we need to worry about. We have some complex objects, like the ear, we have the inside of the character's mouth, which you can see here.
He's got this kind of mouth tube here. And then we have the head and the neck, so we need to separate all this out, so they can be mapped properly. So I'm going to go ahead and start out with the ears, so I'm just going to do a very simple select of this ear, and probably the easiest way to do it, is to just go into Face Mode, select one or two vertices towards the middle of the ear, and just use your Greater Than sign, to expand your selection. And as you can see, I've got my selection a little too much, I can bring that back by hitting Less Than.
And then I'm just going to go ahead and deselect that geometry which is not part of the ear, at least not part of the ear that I think it is, the ear. As you can see, we've got the ear pretty much selected, so I've got to go ahead and just select this part of it, maybe this one here.
And again, I'm just trying to get a very clean border there, okay, so that looks pretty good. So now that I have this selection, I just need to map it and unfold it, so the process that we're going to do is really simple. Select, map, unfold, so I've got this selected, I'm going to go in to UV, and do a Planar Map. And what that does is, it maps my ear to a plain. Now the problem with this is that a planar map will get both the front and the back facing faces along the same plain here, so we need to unfold this.
And we can do that by going Polygons, Unfold. So this one needs to be unfolded, and then all I have to do now is just go ahead and scale this down a little bit, and place it somewhere on my work area, okay, and we can always rearrange that later. So now I've got this ear, and let's go ahead over to the other ear, and do the same thing. So again, the process is select, map, unfold, so again, I'm just going to go ahead and start with a select, so I've got all of that selected, I'm going to go ahead and deselect this.
So again, I'm just doing very quick, deselection here. And again, what we want here is, we want a good border for all of these objects here, so there we go, okay. So again, I've created a selection, remember, select, map, unfold. So again we're going to do a planar map, and then I'm going to unfold that, and again, notice how, it comes up very nicely.
So now I've got two ears, and again, I'm just scaling that down in my UV Editor. So now I've got my ears mapped, and let's go ahead get the inside of the mouth. And so I'm going to come in from underneath, because I can kind of get in here. And the easiest way to do this is to simply select one face, and then double click on an adjacent face, and that will select the entire ring. And then all we have to do is just use our Greater Than sign to expand this, and I'm going to expand it close to, but not exactly on the mouth, because we want to go ahead and map the mouth a little bit separately.
And then for this, this is very much like a cylinder, if you can see it from the inside, so we're going to use cylindrical mapping for this. So I'm going to do, UV, Cylindrical, but notice how this cylindrical map, if you can see it here, it comes up this way. And so I'm going to go in to the Attribute Editor for this, and as you can see, it's going, basically, up and down, it's along the y axis, so I need to rotate this, and I need to rotate it around x, as you can see, that's my x axis.
So I'm going to go ahead and rotate this 90 degrees, around x, and as you can see, that puts it in the right orientation. I'm going to go ahead and close up the loop, and notice what it's doing in the UV Editor, and I'm going to go ahead and dial up my projection height, and there we go. Now because this was pretty much cylindrically shaped, I don't necessarily need to unfold this particular piece of geometry, because I'm pretty close. So I'm just going to go ahead and move on from here.
Now that we have this in place, we can start working on the head and the neck. So I'm going to start off with the neck, I'm going to select the face, and double click on an adjacent face to select a loop. And then I'm going to go up two loops there, so I'm going to go select a total of three, and then I also need to select towards the back of the head so, I can do that, simply by going into this wire frame view here.
And I'm going to hold down my Shift Key, and use a Lasso Select to try and get all of this, so I'm doing this right at about ear height, there we go, well that's pretty close. So this line here, that's coming off the top of the ear, I could try and select again, or I could just clean it up by hand, and I think that's going to be a little bit faster for me. So I'm going to go ahead and select all of these, and again, this is really, you know, it's a general guide, your geometry of your particular character may be a little bit different, but this is generally what we need to do.
So for the neck, we kind of want, a shape that's somewhat like this, that kind of comes in from behind the ears. And again, we want to make sure that we select everything, and make sure that nothing else is selected on our character. And again, what's the process? Select, map, unfold. So I'm going to go ahead and to a planar map for this one, now this planar map comes in this way, which is not really what I want, so I'm going to go ahead and just make it zero in x, and again, I'm just going to the Attribute Editor, and selecting the Poly Planar Node, and there we go.
And you can see it in our UV Editor. So now that I have it poly planar projected, I need to do one thing, I need to select a seam along the back of this, and then unfold it. Now sometimes, when we unfold something, we will need to give Maya a seam to work with. So in this case, I'm going to select an edge, this is my top of that, you can see it here, in my Attribute Editor, in fact, I can even, you can see here, I've got this edge selected here, and then you can see it here as well.
And then I'm going to Shift + Double Click that, and then I'm going to say Cut UV Edges, so what that does is, it gives it a place to unfold, so I'm going to go ahead and do Cut UV Edges, and then I'm going to select the shell, and do Unfold. And when I do, it unfolds it flat along that line. Now when it unfolds this, it unfolds it kind upside down, so I'm going to have to flip that around, so I'm going to do Polygons, Flip, and then we want to flip it vertical.
And then just go ahead and move that down. Now, we've got just basically everything but the head, so I'm going to go ahead and zoom out here, and as you can see, we've got, this is the rest of the geometry that we need to unfold. So again, as with the neck, we are going to have to cut this open somewhere. So I find the easiest place to cut is along this line, along the scalp, and then a little bit in the back. And that places the seam of the texture away from where you would normally see it.
So I'm going to go into Edge Mode here, and I'm going to locate this area here, and so I'm going to go right below that, and select there. And then flip around, and Shift + Double Click, so what that does is, it basically creates a line around here, and so I'm going to do Polygon, Cut UV Edges, and then I'm going to go the back of the head, Shift + Select these edges here, and you can see them right here.
And then again, I'm going to go, Cut, so what I've done is, I've cut along the edge of the scalp, and then in the back, and hopefully, when this unfolds, it will give us a nice pattern that we can use. So again, I'm going to select my shell, Polygons, Unfold, and there we go. And let's go ahead and move that into place.
In fact, let's go ahead and place it a little bit more. And I've got a little piece left over here that I'm going to have to reattach, but let's go ahead and just start with this main part of the head. And I'm going to just scale that so that it's within the boundaries of that work area. And then this neck, I'm going to scale it down a little bit, it's about the same scale as this, and in fact, when we start working with these little bits and pieces, now we start actually scaling them properly.
So this is the point where we need to add texture to our geometry, so I'm going to go ahead and just go back into Object Mode, and let's go into the material for this. So in this case, we have a material called Lambert 3, and in our Color Channel, let's go ahead and just put in a simple checker pattern. And if we go into Place 2D Texture, I'm going to go down to Repeat UV, and I'm going to do 16 by 16.
And what that does is, it tells us, exactly how the mapping is working, and you can see that, from a scale perspective, we're actually pretty close. So if I select this, and maybe dim that image, you can select these shells, and scale them. And as we scale them, it scales the geometry here, so that way, we can see how the mapping works. The object here is not to get these to line up, but to get them to the same scale.
So that way, when you map something, it's going to map pretty easily here. And so these ears, actually are pretty close. And then if we go into the inside of the mouth, well, we don't see too much of that, so if I want, I can again, scale this, so that they're square. Something like that, okay. So that looks pretty good. I'm going to stop here, but as you can see, this is a good general process for UV Mapping a complex surface such as a human head.
Now again, the process is really very simple, what you need to do is select out your geometry, map it, and then unfold it, if needed, and then once you're done with everything, go ahead and scale to match. So hopefully, this gives you some insight in how to map a complex object.