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In UV Editor, I can't load the UDIM images if the sequence number does not start with '1001'. Is there a way to load? Or another workaround?

This is a problem with the new UDIM workflow of Substance Painter (2020.2). It exports the texture file name as {Material Name}_{UDIM Number}.png, such as 'face_BaseColor_1001.png' or 'body_BaseColor_1002.png'.

According to the developer at Blender Developer Forum, 'There must be a file with number 1001' to detect UDIM image sequence.

⚓ T72734 UDIMs don't behave properly on imported geometry

Therefore, this is currently a Blender's specification. But I want to use SP's new UDIM workflow. It will be more useful for large projects which has many meshes and materials.

Does anyone know a good solution?

Example

In Blender, I modified Suzanne mesh as follows:

Materials in Blender

Assign 3 materials: Face, Eyes and Ears

Split into 3 UDIM tiles

Split into 3 UDIM tiles: Face (1001), Eyes (1002) and Ears (1003)

Then export it to .FBX format, and import into Substance Painter.

Texture Painting in Substance Painter

After texture painting and exporting with default settings, you'll get these files:

  • Face_BaseColor_1001.png
  • Eyes_BaseColor_1002.png
  • Ears_BaseColor_1003.png

Importing texture succeeds

Return to Blender's UV Editor, load Face_BaseColor_1001.png, it succeeds.

Importing texture fails

However, Eyes_BaseColor_1002.png and Ears_BaseColor_1003.png fail. It says 'Can't Load Image'. Maybe it's because the number doesn't start with '1001'.

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So far I have come up with three solutions, but none of which are sufficient.

  1. Assign all materials to tile '1001'. It's better to assign to a mesh that is hard to find.
  2. Create an empty image file for each texture set that does not have a '1001' file.
    • e.g.: If 'eyes_BaseColor_1002.png' exists, but 'eyes_BaseColor_1001.png' does not, you should create 'eyes_BaseColor_1001.png' (2*2 px blank image).
    • If you use this method frequently, it's better to write a program for it.
  3. Create individual materials only for texture that were not recognized as UDIM.
    • (I know, this is the worst solution)
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Had the same issue, so I wrote an addon which will automatically generate blank 1001 tiles if none are detected, and can also import and replace any number of materials in a scene, kind of like the Node Wrangler material importer on steroids.

It's still in development, but you can find it for free here:

https://github.com/prof-kerfuffle/kput

https://gumroad.com/l/k-put

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    $\begingroup$ Hi thanks for the answer and solution, but as it stands this is a link only answer and it reads like self promotion. While the addon may be relevant links to answers are not answers, if the link goes down your answer becomes empty and meaningless. Either describe the workflow or essential parts of the process here or post it as a comment instead. $\endgroup$ Dec 12 '20 at 19:19
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There's a solution that works on Maya, which is to rename all the files with the same name except the UDIM numbers. So for example you have: Face_1001.png Ears_1002.png

Now you have to rename them to: Face_1001.png Face_1002.png I think Blender can't recognize the difference between Face_... and Ears_...

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