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Blender For Dummies®, 2nd Edition by Jason van Gumster

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Painting Textures Directly on a Mesh

If you followed the earlier sections in this chapter, you have an unwrapped mesh and a texture on it that doesn't stretch. Woohoo! But say that, for some crazy reason, you don't want your object to have a checkerboard as a texture, and you want to actually use this UV layout to paint a texture for your mesh. You can either paint directly on the mesh from within Blender or export the UV layout to paint in an external program like GIMP or Photoshop. I actually prefer to use a combination of these methods. I normally paint directly on the mesh in Blender to rough out the color scheme and perhaps create some bump and specularity maps. Then I export that image along with an image of the UV layout to get more detailed painting done in an external program.

After you have an unwrapped mesh, the starting point for painting textures on it is Blender's Texture Paint mode. Activate Texture Paint mode by left-clicking the mode button in the 3D View's header. From here, things are pretty similar to Vertex Paint mode, with a few exceptions. The Tool Shelf updates with an array of paint options, but the specific content of the Tool Shelf has some differences from Vertex Paint. The Brush datablock is largely the same, though with a few more preset brushes and a Jitter slider. There's also a Texture panel in the Tool Shelf where you can actually define a texture for your brush, so you're not just painting flat colors. You define the brush texture in the Texture ...

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