In Maya, surfaces appear
in a rendered image based on the shading materials you apply to
them. The default shading material that gets assigned to surfaces
provides basic attributes such as color, transparency, and incandescence.
Depending on your final
image requirements, you can enhance the visual impact of an object
by adding one or more texture maps to the assigned shading material.
One basic texture map you can apply is a bitmap image also referred
to as a file texture. In this lesson,
you apply a texture map we’ve created for your use on the cracker
For more basic information
on shading materials and texture maps see the Rendering chapter
of this guide and the Maya Help.
To assign a shading material to the cracker
- In the scene view, select Shading
> Smooth Shade All from the panel menu.
This displays the cracker
box with a default gray, smooth shading material, lit using default
lighting. Turning on Smooth Shade All displays the assigned
shading material you apply to the cracker box in the steps following.
- In the scene view, right-click on any
region of the cracker box and select Assign New Material from
the pop-up menu.
New Material window appears.
- In the list of materials, select Lambert.
A new Lambert shading
material is created and assigned to the cracker box. The Attribute
Editor appears and displays the various attributes for the
new Lambert shading material.
The new Lambert material
is identical to the default gray material that was previously assigned
to the cracker box. However, it’s always a good practice not to
modify the default shading material in the scene. Instead, you should
always create a new shading material and modify it to suit your requirements.
- In Attribute Editor,
double-click in the lambert2 box and then type: box_material to rename the shading
Renaming the shading
material lets you easily identify it later on when you need to edit
it. Naming items uniquely in Maya is a useful habit.
- In the Attribute Editor,
move the Color slider fully to the right
so that the color box appears white.
The shading material
assigned to the box model also updates in the scene view so it appears
in a brighter tone.
- Click the Map button
located to the right of the Color slider.
Render Node window appears and lists the various texture options
you can apply (or connect) to the color channel of the box material.
- Click PSD File from
the list of 2D Textures.
Choosing this option specifies that you
want to apply an Adobe® Photoshop® format file as a texture.
A PSD format file lets you keep the various components of your texture
map on multiple layers. This is useful when you need the ability
to edit a component of the texture during production.
Editor updates to display the options for the PSD File
TipIf the Attribute
Editor suddenly appears empty, it indicates that no objects
are selected in the scene. Simply select the box model again in
the scene to display the attributes for the box.
- Click the Browse button
(folder icon) to the right of the Image Name attribute
to specify the image file for the texture map.
A browser window appears
with the path set to the default project directory. By default,
Maya looks for source images for texture maps in a sourceimages folder whenever the project
folder is set. Maya can use file texture images from anywhere on
your workstation or local network. For example, you can have images
on a central disk drive that is shared among users in a production
- Select the image file named UVLesson.psd.
This file can be found
in the GettingStarted directory
that you set as your Maya project:
The image contains 2D
artwork for the front, back, top, bottom, and sides of the cracker
box that was generated in Adobe® Photoshop®.
A small preview of the
image appears in the Texture Sample box in the Attribute
When a texture is applied
to a shading material its attributes get added to the existing attributes
for shading material. That is, all of the existing shading attributes
remain unchanged except for the attribute that gets modified by
the texture. In this case, the grey color is substituted by the image
of the cracker box artwork.
- In the scene view, select Shading
> Hardware Texturing from the panel menu to display
the texture map on the cracker box model.
The texture map does
not appear correctly on the cracker box model. The texture map was
designed so that specific sides of the box receive specific regions
of the image. Instead, the complete image is being placed on every side
of the object.
To correct this problem
you must modify the default UV texture coordinates for the model
so they match the layout of the texture image. To do this, you use
the UV Texture Editor.