Why is this so hard?

I’ve used various 3D packages for recreation for about 10 years now, primarily LightWave 3.5-7 and Maya 6. Yet I can’t figure out how to texture or material a surface in Blender. I know there is plenty of documentation out there that covers this but still I look at a surface I want to texture and I just can’t seem to figure it out.

I select a series of primates I want to assign to a new material; I create a vertex group, then create a new material and click assign. When I click on the color it changes the color of the object, not the material I thought I was working with. Furthermore when I’m in the material window the materials I thought I was creating aren’t there.

So I’m just really confused – this can’t be hard so I donno why I’m struggling with something so basic.

I tried to replicate your steps. If you created a new material for your group of vertexes, and then click on the Materials button and go to the materials sub window, both materials for your object will at first be mapped to the same material. In the Materials subwindow look at links and pipeline and see where the 2 is, left click on it and make it a single user. Modify the color of your material and render it, you should see that it has a different color than the rest of the object.

Then click on the Texture button(F6) Create a Texture. Then click on the Materials button again. In the Links and Pipeline tab click where it says 2 Mat 2. Click on it so it says 2 Mat 1. That lets you work on the default texture. Look at the Texture tab. See where it says 2. Click on the button that says Clear. Then go back to the Links and Pipeline tab and switch back to 2 Mat 2. You will see that the texture was cleared in the default material but not in your second one. Render it now and you should see the texture in your vertex group, but not in the default one. Hope this helps.

I think I might be confused at the pipeline steps - I’ll review this again later but its just I was expecting texturing and applying materials to an object to be as simple as deleting faces - select, [apply OR create] done.

well, instead of working with multiple materials for one meash maybe u should work with one material per mesh, and model each part with a different material seperately, no?
its alot easier id say…

Perhaps thats why I’m screwing this up so much. But for me its easier to work with a more complex object than multiple parented smaller objects.

Teeth in jaw would be a nightmare if you had to resize the jaw, at least I would think.

this is where parenting and groups come in to play.
it depends on the situation though whether single or multiple objects are more useful.
teeth should be separate from the head though in my opinion.

Assigning multiple materials to a single mesh is often a very good way to go. I tried to find a good tutorial that I’ve used on the web, but I just couldn’t locate it. This link is the to the Blender wiki, and it does a pretty good job of explaining it, though. One thing you have to watch out for is that you don’t assign one material to the whole mesh and then try to assign other materials to vertex groups within that same mesh - Blender renders the materials in a certain order, and will obscure the ones beneath it in the material index. You have to delete all but the one you want in the material index for the vertex group you’re assigning that material to.