Needing clarity about mapping

I’ve finished modeling my character in Blender. I want to achieve a level of realism with his skin, but I’m finding myself drowning in the deep end of a lot of terms and processes I have a cursory understanding of and no experience with; namely: baking, applying and connecting texture/material nodes. I’ve gotten as far as my UV layouts, painting a skin in PS, and applying a decent SSS to the head; but I’m not understanding how to create, apply, or layer the other skin layers to get the effect I want.

From here, I’d say I am more comfortable painting in Photoshop than Blender. And I want to continue any necessary painting that way. So, my starter questions are:

  1. Are Nodes:Textures as Layers:Blend Modes, in Photoshop?
  2. Are my painted skin images applied as Materials or Textures?
  3. Is the starting point of a node chain and “place-holder” for my UV layout/skin map the Geometry Node?
  4. Do I paint multiple skin images atop the same UV layout, for the varying details in my dermal layers or are those adjustments made inside the materials or textures panels/nodes?
  5. Is there a “standard node model” for the process I’m trying to use?

This is the most I can think of, as specifically, as I can. Any other fundamental insight about texture/material/nodes is welcome. I’m attaching pix of my (SSS) model, initial skin map, and unsuccessful node chain. Thanks!


Here’s an article about creating a skin render

Thanks, will check it out!