UV Fundamentals 2017

Maya UVs

In This Class You’ll Access…
Learn the Foundations of UVs in Maya 2017 in this class. We’ll cover the major tools and focus on the easiest seams and unwrap workflow that’s most commonly used today and look into many other UV functions.


You’ll learn the basics of UVs and how different UV layouts affect how textures are wrapped over objects. We’ll briefly explain other alternatives too such as PTex and Poly Paint and explain why UVs are still the predominant choice for 3d production.

This class focuses on the easiest and most popular workflows for UV Unwrapping with Maya’s unfold tool. You’ll see the tool in action in various situations, and you’ll get to know more advanced workflows such as pinning and unfold painting handy in cases like unwrapping tubes too.

Explore the base projection types, and get a quick tour of the UV editor. We’ll see how we can mirror UVs, pack them and use visual helpers of the UV editor to aid us in the process. And the common UV stretching issues involded in SubD workflows is covered in detail too.

Finally we’ll see how we can unwrap an entire character with a time lapse of the unwrapping of Zanzi.

2016 version of this class is here

Running Time: 1:24 hrs
Software: Maya 2017
Old Maya 2016

Instructor: Andrew Silke

Class Time: 1:24 hrs

1. UVs Explained (13 mins)

1.1 – How UVs Work (1:50 mins)
1.2 – How UVs Work (2:56 mins)
1.3 – Zanzi Example (2:24 mins)
1.4 – Unfold Workflow (4:36 mins)
1.5 – PTex and Polypaint (2:04 mins)

2. Projection Types: Planar, Cylindrical, Spherical and Automatic (10 mins)

2.1 – Planar Mapping (5:06 mins)
2.2 – Cylindrical Spherical (2:38 mins)
2.3 – Automatic UVs (2:38 mins)

3. The UV Editor (4:48 mins)

3.1 – The UV Editor (2:04 mins)
3.2 – UV Marking Menus (53 sec)
3.3 – UV Selection (1:51 mins)

4. Unfold The Easy Option (14 mins)

4.1 – Unfolding UVs (2:47 mins)
4.2 – Unfold Options (1:27 mins)
4.3 – Unfold Coat Example (3:58 mins)
4.4 – Unfold Face Example (5:45 mins)
4.5 – 2017 Unfold Updates (34 sec)

5. Paint Unfold UV Tool Workflows (10 mins)

5.1 – Paint Unfold Setup (1:03 mins)
5.2 – Unfold UV Tool (2:26 mins)
5.3 – Pipe Setup (3:25 mins)
5.4 – Pipe/Tube Unwrap (3:25 mins)

6. UV Visual Display Helpers (4:01 mins)

6.1 – Shaded UV Display (1:05 mins)
6.2 – UV Distortion (2:56 mins)

7. Mirroring UVs (2:08 mins)

7.1 – Symmetry Tool Setup (1:13 mins)
7.2 – Symmetry UV Tool (55 sec)

8. Packing UVs (Layout) (6:47 mins)

8.1 – Layout Introduction (51 sec)
8.2 – Layout Main Settings (3:06 mins)
8.3 – More Layout Options (2:50 mins)

9. Common Edge Warp/Stretch Issues (6:51 mins)

9.1 – Edge Warp Issue (2:12 mins)
9.2 – Edge Warp Fix (1:23 mins)
9.3 – Edge Warp Add Poly (2:26 mins)
9.4 – Edge Warp Cube (50 sec)

10. Unwrapping Zanzi (10 mins)

10.1 – Unwrapping Zanzi (10 mins)
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  1. Toby Leung
    August 6, 2017 at 9:07 pm ·

    Hi Andrew, thanks for the amazing tutorials. I am using Maya 2016 but somehow in my UV editor I couldn’t find the Unfold UV Tool. I checked the icon shelf and also went into the tool tab but it wasn’t in either. Is this only a Maya 2017 feature? thanks

  2. Andrew Silke
    August 6, 2017 at 10:00 pm ·

    Hi Toby, yeah see vid 4.1 at 1min, “Unfolding UVs”. The plugin switches itself off and you just have to switch it back on. It’s def in 2016.

    • Toby Leung
      August 8, 2017 at 2:39 pm ·

      Hey Andrew thanks for replying. No, sorry I was meaning the Paint Unfold UV Tool featured in Video 5.1. Somehow couldn’t find it on the icon shelf.

      • Andrew Silke
        August 8, 2017 at 2:55 pm ·

        Yeah good question, I believe that’s most likely 2017 only, they’ve also moved it from 2017.3 and I can’t seem to find it in the newer 2017 either, I’m sure it’s there somewhere. You could try the smooth UV tool, though I think it works with the old relax feature, still may be ok.

        UV Editor menu > select Tool > Smooth UV Tool

        that one’s also in 2017.3 onwards too.

  3. Yaman Aldous
    October 6, 2017 at 9:47 am ·

    thanks Andrew for the great effort you made to create these straightforward courses, as you know the “Nightshade UV editor” has been integrated into Maya 2017 update 3, i hope in future plans if you could do an advanced UV course especially on some complex hard surface models. Thanks again

    • Andrew Silke
      October 7, 2017 at 4:00 pm ·

      Yes indeed, in fact is was released shortly after I completed the update on this page. Luckily all the functionality is the same but yes the buttons have moved around and the menus have all changed. This workflow still works fine but yes this page will need an update, it may be a while until this page gets a full make over.

  4. Yaman Aldous
    October 8, 2017 at 3:33 am ·

    Thanks Andrew I really appreciate your effort

  5. pendooramzada
    July 21, 2018 at 9:29 pm ·

    How do I view the course? I have paid the subscription and the video links always stays stuck on introduction.

    • Andrew Silke
      July 22, 2018 at 12:25 pm ·

      Hi Pendoo, so far I haven’t had any reports of the site not working as you’re describing. Can you try and hit “refresh”, your browser refresh button, that should fix up any issues. If you’re still having problems let me know the browser you’re using and what OS. You can also try a different web browser. We have had some rare plugin conflicts but in those cases, you’ll see a warning message on each video.

  6. Meihe Wu
    July 24, 2020 at 3:25 am ·

    How can I download the pTube shelf tool?
    or is there a way I can build my own customized tool?
    Thank you!

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