UV Mapping / Texturing

I am completely and utterly new to all things 3d. I personally feel I am improving, although this site is proving me wrong. However, the one thing I cannot proclaim any sort of proficiency at all in is texturing. There also appears to be something called “nodes”. I am entirely confused as to nodes and texturing in general. Help and tips would be much appreciated.

ok, so texturing is applying a 2d image to a 3d object. that in itself is a problem because how does blender know how to apply the 2d image onto the 3d model?

First you need to unwrap the 3d object. here is an example. say i give you a wrapped candy which has nothing written or printed on its wrapping paper. I ask you to draw or print the logo onto the wrapping sheet. it would be very difficult to do since the wrapping paper is spherical shaped, so you think “i’ll unwrap the candy and obtain a 2d sheet on which I could more easily paint or print the logo.”

in blender, you have 3d objects and you want to unwrap them, there is more than one method but the traditional method is to mark a few edges as “seams” by selecting them and hitting ctrl-E > Mark Seam. You open up a UV/Image Editor window, select all the faces of the mesh, hit U > Unwrap. Now you have the 3d object laid out onto a 2D image. you then export the result and paint on top of it using photoshop or whatever, save the image and load it into blender.

You now need to apply the image into the diffuse channel of a material, you don’t particularly need to know nodes for this. just assign a material, click the button next to the diffuse color, select Image Texture and load up your painting.

Once you know this technique you can search youtube for texturing tutorials (they don’t need to be Blender-specific) and learn the art of texturing