Projection Texture

Projection Texture

Maya 2012 Tutorial


How to Apply a Projection Texture in Maya



Two texture mapping methods are used in Maya, UV Mapping and Projection. For information on UV Mapping, see topic, Automatic Texture Layout. Projection Mapping adds a projection object to the workspace and links it to your texture. Projections come in several varieties: Ball, Concentric, Cubic, Cylindrical, Perspective, Planar, Spherical and TriPlanar.

You choose to map your object as a projection as you are adding textures to the shader. The actual projection type is specified later in the Attribute Editor.

Since the object in the workspace and the projection are both objects, interesting things begin to happen if you move your object away from the projection. One way to lock the projection to the object is to set up a parent/child relationship. Another option is to bake the texture onto the object to prevent the texture from "crawling" across the object.


Step One

Add a polygon plane the workspace by choosing Create > Polygon Primitives > Plane.

Step Two

Select the plane, then right click the plane and choose Assign New Material > Blinn.

Step Three

In the Attribute Editor, blinn tab, click the checkerbox next to the Color slider to open the Create Render Node panel.

Step Four

In the Create Render Node, 2D Textures section, right-click the Checker button and choose Create as Projection.

Step Five

In the Attribute Editor, projection tab, you can see that the Proj Type is Planar. Planar is similar to the way an image is projected onto a screen in a theater.

Step Six

In the workspace notice that a new projection object was added to the stage that is perpendicular to the plane object.

Step Seven

Click the projection object and open the Channel Box. Change the Rotate X value to -90. The normal line on the front of the projection should be facing the plane object.

Step Eight

Press the 5 key, then the 6 key to preview the texture. Select the Scale tool (r key), then select the projection object and scale the projection. Notice how the texture changes.

Step Nine

With the projection object selected, open the Attribute Editor, place3DTexture tab, 3D Texture Placement Attributes section, and click the Fit to Group BBox button. The projection now matches the object size. Click the q key to return to the Select tool.

Step Ten

Click the Interactive Placement button and a series of handles appear on the placement object. Drag the handles to move or scale the projection.

Step Eleven

Click the "T" in the lower corner of the projection to access the move, rotate and scale manipulators.

More Projection Options

In this example we worked with the Planar projection. The other projection types can be accessed in the Attribute Editor, projection tab, Proj Type pull-down menu. They include Ball, Concentric, Cubic, Cylindrical, Perspective, Planar, Spherical and TriPlanar.