Does anyone know if it is possible to view the active UV layouts of multiple objects? I have a model comprised of individual meshes that I would like to apply a single texture to and the only way I can think to UV layout them is to join them (which has caused major problems).
I guess that depends on whether the texture is tileable or not, or you want to have separate parts with different colors/texture painting in a single texture image.
If your texture is tileable, just UV each object separately, and apply the same material. You may need to adjust the scale of the UV per object though.
If it all needs to be one single large image texture with different detail, I don’t know of a way to do that other than to join objects together, if you want to texture paint.
If you are creating textures in a different application like Gimp or PS, you could create a new image for all objects, but position the UVs for each object differently. For instance, if you have 4 objects, UV the first object, scale the UV map so it fits into a quarter and position it top left. For the second, do the same but position top right, etc. Then, export the UVs and combine them together from different layers in Gimp or PS as guides for texturing there. Once you load it back into blender, each object should read from the correct places in the single image texture.
I have about 20 or so meshes that I would like to represent the textures on one UV layout (using gimp to create the texture); I previously tried joining the objects and creating the layout but it severely messed up the meshes properties when I separated them so that option is out. I guess I will just have to eyeball it; surprised Blender doesn’t have a way to do this, is there somewhere I can submit a feature request?
UV/image editor, view menu -> draw other objects.
Alright I have a work around for anyone that comes across this post: once you have all the meshes you wish to UV map together, duplicate them (Ctrl + D) and then join them (Ctrl + J after you have selected all meshes). Go into edit mode, lay your UVs out, and then separate by loose parts (In edit mode hip P). Now, select the original mesh and then the duplicated mesh (that you just laid the UVs out for) and hit Ctrl + L; from the menu select “Transfer UV layout”. It will look like nothing happened but if you select the original mesh and quickly go into edit mode it will snap the UVs to their coordinates.
**As a side note:
If you would like to support a feature to allow multiple mesh UV layouts: head over to this google spreadsheet the Blender devs have created and support option 29!
Holy tiberculosus JA12! That is very helpful! Not a super fix but much better option than what I suggested! Still, if you would like to easily export it I think the only way is to join the objects and export that way.