UV Mapping in Blender is standard.
Here is a small run-through on the basics of UV-Mapping that I threw together for ya!
(Sorry the images are so big…I just had to show detail…)
The UV Image Editor is panel just like the 3d window or the buttons window. You can get to it as seen in the image.
I would suggest having both the 3d view and the image view up at the same time
In edit mode, you can make seams(or cuts) on your model by selecting edges and pressing CTRL+E. Then you can press U to literally “unwrap” the mesh.
Sometimes you can get away with using the smart projections. This will automatically add seams to your mesh where it thinks necessary. However, it will never have as good of judgment as adding the seams yourself.
This is what an unwrapped mesh looks like in the UV Image Editor.
Next you can save your unwrapped mesh as an image so you know exactly where to draw or paint in your image program. I use photoshop for this, some people use GIMP(free like blender), and some people use other software. Its whatever you’re comfortable with painting textures in. Note that these unwrapped meshes will only show up in edit mode. In Blender 2.46 they mixed UV Mode with Edit mode so its all one mode now.
After you’ve painted your image in photoshop or GIMP(again…free) or whatever software you want, you can open it in the UV Image Editor.
Notice that my image now matches up perfectly with my mesh! This is why UV Unwrapping is so powerful!
Next you can go to the textures for your object(back in object mode) and apply your image as a texture.
VERY VERY VERY IMPORTANT!!! Make sure your “map input” is set to “UV”
If you’ve applied your image properly, the texture should line up with the mesh EXACTLY as you painted it! YAY!
Some important things to note:
When unwrapping, the unwrapped mesh can get stretched. Its easy to see this by doing this in the UV Image editor:
Go to the view properties…
Then select these. My areas on my faces are inaccurate, but it doesn’t matter since it’s mostly the same color. However, all of the angles ARE mostly accurate(if you click the small “angle” button in the view properties.)
That’s a VERY quick run through on UV Unwrapping…
I hope this helped some…