Breaking Object into Multiple Textures
Maya 2012 Tutorial
How to Break Maya Object into Several Smaller Objects for Easier Texturing
To texture map a complex object you can use multiple strategies. One method is to break your object into a series of smaller objects, then texture map the smaller pieces one at a time. Once the pieces are textured, the object is sewn back together to form one object.
In this example, we will create a polygon plane with two faces. We will then break the object into two objects, one for each face. A texture is applied to each face, then the two faces are combined to form the original object.
Create a new project, set your project and save a new scene in the scenes folder. For more information, see topic, Starting a Project.
In Photoshop create two 512 pixel x 512 pixel images. The images should have a solid background, one with the letter A and the other with the letter B. Save your flattened images as tif images in the project's sourceimages folder. The files should be named letterA.tif and letterB.tif.
Add a polygon plane to the workspace by choosing Create > Polygon Primitives > Plane (include options).
In the options, set the Width to 2, Height to 1, Width Divisions to 2 and Height Divisions to 1.
In the top view, right-click the plane and choose Face from the menu items. With the Select tool (w key), select the left face.
From the Polygons menu set, choose Mesh > Extract. The selected face becomes a separate object.
Click away from the face, then right-click the left face and choose Object Mode. Click the left object to select it.
Right-click the left object and choose Assign New Material > Lambert.
In the Attribute Editor, lambert tab, click the checkerbox next to the Color slider.
In the Create Render Node, 2D Textures section, right click the File icon and choose Create Texture.
Click the file folder next to Image Name to connect to the letterA.tif file in the sourceimages folder.
Click the left object and open the UV Texture Editor by choosing Window > UV Texture Editor.
Choose Polygons > Layout from the UV Texture Editor menu. This make the letter texture cover the entire face.
Repeat steps eight through thirteen with the right object, This time assign the letterB.tif file.
To join the two faces back to a single object, select both objects and choose Mesh > Combine from the Polygons menu set.
Click the Render Current Frame icon to view your new texture.
Consider Mapping the Separate Objects
In this simple example we added textures to a two polygon object. If you were working with a complex object, you could use this technique to break the object into several smaller pieces. For each piece you could use a different mapping method (i.e., Automatic, Planner, Spherical, etc.) depending on the shape.
Watch for Shared Edges and Vertices
In Step Fifteen we combined the two polygon objects. The shared edges of both objects have over-lapping edges and vertices. To remove the duplication, select the object and choose Edit Mesh > Merge from the Polygons menu set.
Delete History and Freeze Transformations
In Step Six, we extracted the faces to become a new object. If the original object has been transformed, extruded or manipulated in any way, you will want to delete all object history (Edit > Delete by Type > History) and Freeze Transformations (Modify > Freeze Transformations) before extracting the faces.