Fundamentals of Texturing in Blender

Jonathan Lampel

Texturing in Blender is a huge topic

As we delve into texturing mapping in Blender, we'll guide you step-by-step through digestible lessons. With hands-on exercises peppered throughout, you'll grasp each concept with ease.

By the end of the course you'll understand how to use Blender to add a texture to a model. 

Even if you're completely new to texturing... the end of this course, you will be comfortable with texturing and know how to texture map any Blender object.

You will prove it to me (and yourself) by texturing this awesome motorcycle model at the end of the course

What is a texture?  An image mapped to 3D surface

In older video games or games like Minecraft, the line between geometry and images is pretty obvious. 

In newer games or in visual effects shots though, it’s a bit less clear where to draw the line. 

With bigger production budgets and faster computers, geometry got waaaay more detailed. At the same time, there are now new types of complex textures.

So where does modeling end and texturing begin? That's going to be different for every project.

How do you Texture a Brick Wall?

If I asked you to create a brick wall in Blender, should you model bricks - or use a brick texture on a plane? 

You could decide either way depending on the circumstances. 

For this course, I’ll just assume that anything you haven't modeled is what you need to texture. 

Here is how you can create the textures:

  • use photos (found online, or your own)
  • use procedural textures
  • paint the textures
  • use a combination of all of the above.
In this course, you'll learn how to do just that!

Chapter 1: Introduction to Texturing in Blender

WTH are textures, anyway?

In the intro video, we will go over some Blender basics about what textures are - and that you probably know more about them than you think (hello, Minecraft!).

Chapter 2: Diving further into Texturing

  • how Blender saves and loads images what texture coordinates are (and how you can use them to manipulate textures)
  • how to apply 2D image textures to 3D objects using UV unwrapping, and how to solve common UV mapping problems. 

Chapter 3: Digital Color 
the basics of digital color - and why it's crucial to texturing

  • color management
  • blend modes and color material nodes
  • how file formats affect color and the quality of your images

Chapter 4: PBR Texturing

  • physically-based shading
  • focusing on textures you'll need to create

Chapter 5: Procedural Texturing

  • how to combine shader nodes together
  • create procedural effects from the ground up

Chapter 6: Texture Painting

  • how to prepare your model for painting
  • how to use the brush system in Blender
  • how to paint with layers

Challenge: Paint a Low Poly Axe by Hand

We'll switch it up with another small project.

This time, I’ll walk you through painting a low poly ax by hand using nothing but the default Blender brush. 

Chapter 7: The Complete Texturing Workflow

Before we finish things off, you will learn:

  • texturing workflow tips
  • a look at intermediate topics, like trim sheets, decals, texture baking, and more.

>Challenge: Texture a Motorcycle

The final challenge will be to take a motorcycle model and make it look amazing by texturing it.

This course builds off all the other fundamentals courses, so you can watch those first if you’d like or jump right in. 

Got questions? Let me know!

As always, I'll be here to help you along.

Ask a question below - this will notify me and I'll jump in to help out. 

The original concept for the sci-fi motorcycle is by Arthit  Boontanomchit.

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Awarded upon completion:
100xp +
Course Curriculum
2 Reviews
  • Chris Le Fave(RedOmicronCreator) ·

    This course is extremely thorough. Jonathan is a good teacher who is professional, nice and funny. This course will be a game changer in my development for sure and I truly understand UV unwrapping, procedural texturing, and texture painting at a level I certainly didn't before. I don't have the heart to give it a four star as Jonathan has done a tremendous service to the CG community with the creation of this course. There are a few points where I struggled and would like to offer some feedback for a revision of this awesome course that I hope will happen one day.

    1. To be fair, I'm new to CG so much of this is from me being so new. All of my criticisms I do mean very lightly. Jonathan is my most listened to teacher and a great one.

    2. While the Blender version note is something I read and took to heart, I do think that advances in Blender version get to a point where an update of the videos are warranted so newbies like me can follow along step-by-step. I ran into trouble with the musgrave node which is no longer there and was incorporated into a different node. As a result, I wasn't able to produce a 1:1 copy of Jonathans results which is how I prefer to check that I am doing something correctly.

    In addition, the Texture Slot UI location is now in the window of the Image Viewer but that wasn't mentioned because it was in the vertical bar on the right. This was confusing until I realized that it wasn't missing, it has just been moved to a better spot. These hang ups can create confusion and eventually frustration for the end user as they interrupt the learning process. I listen to these videos at 2x and follow along exactly and rapidly so having a smooth but rapid-fire learning experience is essential for me.

    3. Nodes - Everyone gets lost in some areas more than others and for me it's nodes. I already had to detour from this course twice to learn Re-topology and Mesh Modeling in order to continue this one. By the time we were dealing with nodes, I refused to detour a third time and just muscle through it. It would have helped a lot if Jonathan had had a 5 minute intro video to nodes to explain a little about what they are and how they work, that way I understand WHY he's getting the result he gets when he's plugging one thing into another at the different entry points. I found myself linking things up exactly as he says, without fully understanding why what we were doing was working. This makes it difficult to impossible to re-produce similar results from our head in the future.

    In addition, Jonathan says to Ctrl+Shift to preview a node, but doesn't say click the first time you do this. With how specific blender is, I wouldn't have guessed to click on top of pressing Ctrl+Shift. This took me a while to figure out but was a game changer for sure. I think Jonathan should use the same input logger on-screen for this course as he did for Blender Basics that way if he forgets to tell you exactly how to do something, you can see what he pressed and figure it out from there.

    My feedback here doesn't overshadow what is truly and awesome and amazing course. Jonathan speaks very clearly and his courses are always a treat to get through. What he's taught me here will help me greatly in my journey and I can't wait to take all of the rest of his courses!

  • Nathi Tappan(nathitappan) ·

    Jonathan is an incredible teacher and his courses have been instrumental on my learning path in 3D. I came to CG Cookie with the hopes of learning concepts and the reason behind doing this or that, and all of these fundamentals courses have been doing just that.

    No need to hide: unwrapping and texturing are not my favorite part of the process, but I'm now going through a personal project (so no tutorial to fall back to) and it just clicked to me that while it is challenging I'm being able to make decisions throughout the process that are only possible because I have a solid foundation on these concepts. It feels so rewarding I might even say I'm enjoying unwrapping my model lol.

    I followed the course with Blender 4.1 and had no issues at all. If you ever hit a snag, check the questions bellow the lesson, they usually have a solution already.

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