[Tutorial] Discovering Blender Part 2: Creating your First Textured Mesh

Discovering Blender


This tutorial is based on Blender 2.49.

In this tutorial I will show you how to create a simple object and then assign a material and a texture to it.

First delete the cube by hitting x, place the 3D cursor where you want the object to be created by left clicking the location on a viewport or leave the 3D cursor at its default location. To reset its the location at the center of the scene press shift + c (center).

Create the object you want by hitting the spacebar, select “add” then “Mesh” and for this tutorial I will create a cube.

Add an object

It is always a good thing to name directly every object/mesh directly to avoid having a whole bunch of “cube”, “cube.001” and so on in the scene or file.

Naming your model

Now that we have our nice cube it is time to give it the material it deserves! In order to do so let’s go to the material panel a submenu of the shading button. Hit F5 several times to get to/circle through the submenus.

Shading button

If no material has already been assigned to the object as shown in the screenshot below press “Add New

Add a new material

The panel will now present you various options that affect the material. The standard properties are highlighted in the screenshot below such as the color, specular color, shininess, hardness etc. If you can’t see all the option i.e you don’t have a screen big enough, you can either middle button click a panel and drag it or you can hold ctrl while scrolling the mouse wheel to resize the whole panel.
Giving the material a more personal name is also a good idea.

Material panel

By the way have you noticed the little car button usually next to a name box?

Auto button

This button gives automatically a name to the connected textbox based on important properties of what it is referring to. In this example when I press it the material receive “Grey” as a name which suits it well since its color is grey. Grey-t feature isn’t it? (ok its lame… ._.)

Autonamed material

Now to add a texture to the material click the texture button submenu of the shading menu (F5). Be sure that it is the “Mat” button which is pressed as opposed to “World, Lamp, Brush”.

Texture panel

Then you have to select a texture type among the texture type list, in this example I’ll use an image texture.

Texture type

…then a bunch of options pops

Texture options

For this example we are interested by the “Load” button at the right of the panel. Click it then select an image on your disk.

Texture selected view

Now we have a material with one texture assigned to it. We can see what a render (F12) of the scene will produce!

Result

As you can see the object has the material and the texture applied to it. It appears that the texture is projected on the cube from above (or below ^_^). This is what happens when we don’t apply specific mapping coordinates to the model. By default Blender assign some texture coordinate to meshes that you create, those coordinates are surprisingly named Original Coordinates abridged ORCO. You can define which type of coordinate you want to use in the material subpanel (F5) in the “Map input” Tab. Select the most appropriate texture mapping: ORCO if you want to use the default coordinate, UV if you want to use defined UVs coordinates (If you have imported a model for example) or in this example Cube. Be sure to check the mapping type if you have some weird texture placement when you render the scene (F12). You can set the tiling (the number of occurrence you want the texture to repeat over the surface) by changing the “sizeX, sizeY, sizeZ” values.

UV button

If you want to export your creation you must first apply UVs to it, otherwise no mapping infos will be exported. To do so press TAB to enter the edit mode select all vertices by pressing A a couple of time and pres U to apply UVs. You have to choose which option suits your needs best, in our case it will be “cube projection” (works also for a torus and other kind of shape). Don’t forget to enable UV in the map input tab of the model’s material.

UV options

which gives (in GeeXLab – an alpha version will be released soon…)

Mapping result

Select the model go to file then export and select the desired export format (here obj) and typically a parameter box will appear letting you choose some option depending on the format selected.

Export formats

Export options

Next time we will see how to apply and customize UV coordinates.

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