Blender – How to texture rocks, round objects

I’m sure you’ve seen some youtube videos with pretty dumb workflows and result is terrible, sphere projection -> minimize stretch… nope.gif

This is not what you want:

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Well answer is pretty simple, instead of working hours with complicated UV Map and trying to get the map fit over one cubic image and do that without any stretching, just like some kinda Master Wizard of 3D world with super magical wand. We can simply just use smart uv mapping and paint your object with single texture or multiple textures (in 3d viewport), all that just with the tools inside Blender. This way you can create whatever shape you want and let the computer be the wizard for once.

This workflow works with all kinds of round objects, rocks, trees, cliffs and everything where uv map is just a total mess. You could probably paint your object in Photoshop too if you  import your mesh in 3d mode and know how to use brushes in there, but whole job is so effortless in Blender once you just figure it out.

Sculpting a Rock

Remember to turn Cycles Render on

Add Ico Sphere

If you are a beginner with sculpting then you should always start with ico sphere, if you want some cliffs then start with cube.

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Switch to Sculpt Mode

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Enable Dyntopo

Turn Mirroring off

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Go all around the object with it, just one round. Till it looks like this:

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Next step imagine that you are trying to make it look like a cube. Look it from this angle:

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Just go one round around it.

Don’t go here (upside):

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And just make those corners come out little bit.

After that switch brush, select F Crease:

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You need to change some settings

  • Dyntopo Detail 5px
  • Subtract on
  • Auto smooth around 0.5
  • Brush strength 0.25
  • Brush size 35px

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Stay on same distance and just go one round again, all around object, till it’s something like this:

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Now you can use Flatten Brush

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Just go in random places, wherever you like and add small flat areas:

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And that’s it!

  • Switch back to Object mode ->
  • press tab (edit mode) ->
  • press W, make sure everything is selected ->
  • select Shade Smooth:

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UV Map

Switch to UV Editing

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Make sure you are in editing mode on right viewport and you have everything selected:

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Press U (on right viewport), select Smart UV Project:

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Island Margin 0.03 and OK:

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Result (left viewport):

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Now we need to check stretching, press N to open Display Settings and select Stretch:

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Click UVs, and Minimize Stretch (picture below). Blue means it’s not stretched, every other color means stretching and how much. It might go worse or better, you just have to decide yourself but if you have red or yellow parts and they disappear with this option then you should use it but blue to yellow is ok, yellow to red is bad. Hit Enter to stop Minimize stretch. Go back with ctrl + z and select minimize stretch again and look all around the map, you might need to do it for few times till you see everything.

I only used minimize stretch for once, Smart uv project does its job very well.

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Texture and Painting Setups

Object Mode

Lets add Material to our object.

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Click plus on right first and then New:

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Now it might be a good time to Save your project cause it might crash or just lag for too long.

Go to texture, pointed out with arrow. Make sure you have Brush:

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Add New texture and Open:

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Now it’s time to choose texture you want to use on your rock object. You can go hunt your own or use this:

rock_by_shadowh3

Before you can start painting go back to uv editing and add New Image:

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Set your material, Color -> image texture

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Vector -> UV

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And select image you created:

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Painting

Now you should be ready to Rock (literally):

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Just in case.

Checklist:

  • Material
  • Uv map
  • Image
  • Brush texture
  • Paint Mode
  • Project saved
  • Coffee (or your choice) 😀
  • Artistic Imagination

Let’s go over some settings:

Brush strength should be full for first round, after that reduce it to 0.8. Keep Blend mode on Mix whole time.

Set Size, x and y to 0.1

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Keep viewport distance same whole time. Now just paint it for first round.

If you see some stretching:

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Aim your viewport at it and wipe it with brush:

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Look for more stretching:

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If you want some parts to look different:

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Just move your viewport little bit and paint the area again:

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Check out the result on uv edit:

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Now that is pretty awesome compared to result of shitty youtube videos, right? 😀

You can add more textures:

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And Paint with it:

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Have Fun! Thanks for reading the whole tutorial. And hope you learned something new today.

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