My first day of learning Maya techniques at Uni I was tasked to make a basic 3D model of a coke can. As you can see above this is how it turned out. By learning about the different keys and tools in Maya I was able to complete the model (well almost complete it). The basic keys are W, E and R which are as follows, Move, Rotate and Scale. Each of these 3 keys allowed me to model the can in a specific way that made it look like a realistic can. To start with I created a basic cylinder shape from the polygon primitives menu, allowing me to form the base model for the can. By using the three keys I mentioned earlier I was able to make a small but wide can that looked similar to the little cans of coke that you can buy. But I needed to add some more depth to the model, which was done by using the extrusion tool (Ctrl E) allowing me to extend out parts of the mesh.
So by holding right click and selecting face, I could select the specific faces that I needed, which was the top and bottom. Rather than selecting each individual face, I learn’t that by selecting the whole mesh then hold Ctrl and drag the mouse across the middle you could have the base and top highlighted. This is where the extrusion tool comes in, by using this tool I could extrude out the faces to have a cone sort of top. By using the arrows and the boxes on the extrusion tool, I was able to manipulate the mesh to form the cone, pushing the extruded mesh inwards and upwards. Then learning a trick with the G key you can extrude again, you can always press Ctrl E again or find extrude in Edit Mesh> Extrude. Anyway by using the G key I was able to repeat the earlier process and make a more detailed can shape, I repeated this another time before making a final extrusion. This was to make the ring like shape at the top and bottom, to do this I simply extruded into the mesh rather than away from it, forming a simple ring shape at the top.
By using a skill called UV mapping I was able to create a map for the coke can texture to go on to the mesh. This was done by having the object selected and go to UV> UV editor, bringing up a menu which has a 2D map of the shape, like when you unfold a cube you end up with the net of the cube. But I needed to learn how to make my own map, so by minimizing that menu and selecting the model, I went to UV again and selected Cylindrical. This makes a new map of the shape where we can add the texture on top. Back in the UV editor with the model in object mode, I selected the UV map and held Ctrl right click> to shell, providing me with the option to resize the map. I needed to make sure the map was in the box on the editor, so I resized it using the W and R keys. Now we can create the camera based map, which then we use the spacebar to go through the different camera angles to make the top and lid map. This is achieved by selecting the faces by holding Ctrl (after going into faces mode in the model menu) and select the top faces for the lid. Now press automatic and you should have a circle map. Now resize it like before. After duplicating that circle map (Ctrl D) and move you have a map for use.
Once I did that I went into the UV editor> Polygons> UV snapshot, this make a snapshot of the image that can be put into Photoshop for the texture. By going into Photoshop I was able to search online for a coke can picture that suits a UV map. Putting these images over the UV map layer, I saved the image I now had as a JPEG. Back in Maya we selected the model and held right mouse and selected assign new material, this brings up the textures. I needed to use a Blinn texture, with a file (the Jpeg attached to it). By selected Blinn I then clicked the little black and white checkered box in the menu and selected file this allowed me to add the new JPEG to the texture.
But with the UV snapshot I changed the numbers from 200 to 1024 because I was told it makes the snapshot easier to use within Photoshop as it increases the pixels. As you can see above this didn’t work for me so I will need to experiment with Maya to see if I can solve the issue, and perhaps practise using the tools. although I have already used Maya I need to keep practising to be more aware with the interface.