1) Basic Texture Coordinate Editor Tutorial
Texture Coordinate Editor uses a process called
UVmapping. When you build a model, you first place
a vertices on one of the viewports. But what goes
on behind the scenes? The program records the
position of where you placed that vertices. Or
in the case of a primitive like a box or cylinder...it
records all the positions of the vertices. That
way, any program that uses the model, knows exactly
how to put the model together. In order to get
a texture to show up on the model, it needs to
do the same thing. And the way we get it to do
that, is by telling the program where those coordinates
(known as the U and V coordinates) should go.
The Texture Coordinate Editor is a graphical way
of moving your vertices around on top of an image
in order to get the coordinates of both the model
and texture aligned.
That's the basic behind the scene look, let's
get down to some hands on. For this tutorial,
I'm going to try and keep it as simple as I can.
But the basic principle is the same. You can download
the image I'm going to be using (Right Click Here
and choose Save As) if you want to try this yourself.
Let's open up MilkShape. The first thing I'd like
for you to do, go up to the Menu Commands and
click on Window. Make sure that "Show Viewport
Caption" is selected. That tells you what "view"
you're looking at in the modeling windows. You
can also change which "view" you are looking at
by selecting it from the drop down list. I generally
have my windows set up so that for the Top Left
Window I have "Left" view selected, my lower left
window is the "Top" view, my top right window
is the "Front" view, and my lower right window
is the "3D" viewport. You can set yours up the
way you like, but this way when I refer to one
of the views, you'll know which one I'm talking
We'll start by first creating a simple box. So
under the Model Tab, let's click on Box. Holding
down the left mouse button in the "front" viewport,
let's draw out a box. Don't worry about the size,
shape or position of the box for now.
If you've never worked with Groups before, or
had problems selecting and de-selecting faces...this
could get a bit confusing. So we'll take it slow
and go over each. Let's work strictly from the
Front view for the moment. Click on the Groups
Tab and you should see your box listed as "Box01
". A box is technically 6 sided, but for the moment
Milkshape only see's it as one object or Group.
We're going to break it down into 6 Groups for
texturing (applying an image). Why? In order for
each piece of the box to get a differen't part
of the texture/image (assuming we have 6 differen't
parts to the image), we need to work with each
part of the model (or Group) separately. Otherwise
you'll run into problems. Let's say that the front
and back part of the box we're the same thing
or you want to apply the exact same part of the
image to each one. You could just make the front
and back part of the same group and apply the
material to one or the other..right? Nope. The
texture would get applied correctly to the front,
but the back would have a reversed copy of the
image on it. The only way to resolve that is to
make the back a separate Group and apply the texture
to it. You can apply the same image, or parts
of an image, to as many groups as you want. For
example: you could assign only the part of the
image that says "front" to every group in your
model, and all the sides of the box would say
"front" on it. But you can only do it one Group
or piece of the model at a time in order for it
to come out correctly.
So now that we know we need the box broken down
into 6 separate groups in order to apply the image
correctly, let's do that. Under the Model Tab,
click on Select and make sure that "Face" is checked
under the Select Options. In the "Front" viewport,
hold down select...right click and drag over the
left hand 1/2 of the box. You should now just
have one side of the box selected.
Head back over to the Groups Tab and click on
"Regroup". You should now have 2 groups listed.
Box01 and Regroup01. Look for the text box right
next to Rename and highlight the text in the box.
Now type in right_side and click on Rename. You'll
note in the Groups list you now have Box01 and
right_side listed. Hit Ctrl+A (or under the Edit
Menu Commands > "Select All") to select the whole
box again. Let's repeat the above process, only
this time hold down select then right click and
drag over the right 1/2 of the box.
Under the Groups Tab click on Regroup and let's
Rename this group left_side. Now you should have
Box01, right_side, and left_side listed. Hit Ctrl+A
again, to Select All, and then deselect the bottom
1/2 of the box. Only the top edge of the box should
Under the Groups Tab click on Regroup and then
Rename this Group top. Ctrl+A to select all of
the model again and then deselect the top 1/2
of the box. Regroup this and Rename it bottom.
If you look in the Groups list you should now
have: Box01, right_side, left_side, top, bottom.
All that's left are the front and back.
Hit Ctrl+A to select the entire model again, but
this time we're going to be working from the "Top"
view instead of the front. Hold down shift...then
right click and drag over the lower portion of
the model in the "Top" view. Then under the Groups
Tab hit Regroup and then Rename this to back.
You should now have in your Groups list: Box01,
right_side, left_side, top, bottom, and back.
Select Box01 from the list and Rename it front.
We now have all six sides of the box separated
into 6 separate groups. We can now apply an image,
or parts of an image, to each group.
Hit Ctrl+A once again to Select All of the model.
Head over to the Materials Tab. Click on New and
you'll see Material01 pop up in the Materials
List. We need to load the image you downloaded
from above into the program. So click on the first
box under Specular and Emmisive that says .
Navigate your hard drive to find the image. Now
click the Assign button at the bottom. Nothing
happened? Well, it did but you just can't see
it. Right Click on the 3D viewport and choose
Textured from the context menu. You should see
something similar to the image below. Before we
move on, quickly look at the Groups list. Notice
anything differen't? All of you're groups now
have Material01 applied to them. That's what happened
when you clicked the "Assign" button on the Materials
Tab. It "assigned" the material, in this case
an image, to all of the groups you had selected.
For example; if you only wanted to apply that
particular image to just the top of the box, you
would have only selected the top of the model
and hit "Assign", instead of the entire model
Since we haven't coordinated each part of the
image to each group yet, MilkShape defaults to
placing a copy of the entire image on each group.
That's what the Texture Coordinate Editor is for,
telling MilkShape which part of the image goes
with which group. So let's fire up the Texture
Coordinate Editor. It should look a little like
the image below:
Click Here for a complete breakdown of what each
button is. One thing to note: Before you open
the Texture Coordinate Editor, you need to make
sure that the groups you want to work with have
been selected. Otherwise, the image you have assigned
to those groups may not show up in the Texture
Coordinate Editor Window. We've already done that
by using Ctrl+A, Select All, when we assigned
the texture/material to it.
Assuming you clicked on the link under the image
of the Texture Coordinate Editor above, and know
what each button does, we'll move on. Check the
box that says "Redraw" so that we can see any
changes we make in the 3D Viewport. In the first
drop down menu choose the group, right_side. Then
in the second drop down menu choose "right". Now
click on "Region", then left click and drag a
box around the part of the image that says right.
You don't have to be perfect on getting the entire
red box in which it says right since this is just
a tutorial, plus you can use Select and Move to
perfectly line up the vertices should you choose.
Now hit the "Remap" button. In the Texture Coordinate
Editor, you should now be able to see 4 red dots
which represent the vertices for the Group right_side.
Those red dots/vertices can be selected and moved
around individually or collectively in order to
get it to line up better with the image. If you
look in the 3D viewport at the right side of the
box you should see that the image has been replaced.
Now choose left_side from the 1st drop down menu,
and "left" from the second. Make sure that "Region"
is still selected (it should be unless you clicked
on one of the other buttons). Left click and drag
a box around the area of the image that says left
then hit Remap. Again, you should see the vertices
from the group and the 3D Viewport should show
the new part of the image applied.
Continue doing this for each group of your model.
Once you're finished, your model should look like
the image below.
Hopefully that will give you a brief insight into
the Texture Coordinate Editor. Will you use the
same exact procedure for every model that you
do? For the most part, yes. There may be times
when you will want to use more than one texture
image, or use a diffuse material color instead
of an image. But we'll save that for another tutorial.