When a 2D texture is applied to a 3D model, the TextureCoordinates often need to be split into multiple chunks to minimize distortion. These splits often cause seams in the texture, which need to be removed by an artist.
There are some common workflows for solving texture seams. It is often easier if the seams can be painted non-destructively, on a separate layer with transparency.
- Paint & save in your 2D painting app (Photoshop, GiMP, etc.).
- Reload the texture in your 3D app (3ds Max, Maya, etc.) to examine.
- Repeat until seams are solved.
Integrated 3D Paint
Use a 3D paint tool or plugin inside your main 3D software to paint directly on the model.
- Mari Vs. Quixel ? Polycount Forum thread has 3d paint comparisons and workflows from multiple artists.
- 3D Coat
- 3ds Max
- 3ds Max 2016 Help - Viewport Canvas. See the tutorial Creating a Tileable Texture from a Photo by Shawn Olson.
- TexTools is a free set of tools. Camera Map allows projection painting in conjunction with your 2D painting app, via the Windows clipboard. Does not isolate the painted details on a transparent layer.
- TexPaint3D is a free painting plugin. 3ds Max 2010 only. Does not isolate the painted details on a transparent layer.
Dedicated 3D Paint
You can use a dedicated 3D painting program to paint directly across seams.
- Blacksmith3D Paint
- BodyPaint 3D
- Substance Painter
Multiple UV Channels
Fix seams by using two UV channels and baking textures:
- Create a UV layout and texture for your model.
- Create a 2nd UV layout which moves the UV splits away from the existing seams.
- Use a baking tool to render the existing texture into the new UV layout.
- Use a 2D painting tool to fix the seams.
- Apply the fixed texture to your model, and bake it back into the original UV layout.
- 3ds Max Tutorial for this process - by Peter Kojesta
- Category:TextureTechnique - Texturing techniques commonly used in game development.
- Concept Fundamentals - The basics of concept drawing and painting.
- TexturingTutorials - Tutorials for creating game textures.