I'm trying to bake bump maps into normal maps. I am having problems with the baking process in that it seems to arbitrarily select the image that the bake renders to. Sometimes it bakes to the texture I've created for the normal map, but sometimes it will bake to the diffuse map instead.

I'm not sure what makes the difference. Even when I make sure the normal map image is selected in the UV editor and I've assigned a UV map to the normal texture it still sometimes bakes to the diffuse map.

How can I make sure I bake to the image that I want?

  • $\begingroup$ possible duplicate of Which object should be selected when selected to active is check for texture baking? $\endgroup$ Jan 15, 2015 at 4:58
  • $\begingroup$ Are you using cycles or BI? $\endgroup$
    – gandalf3
    Jan 15, 2015 at 6:54
  • $\begingroup$ I'm using Blender Renderer, not Cycles. Also, the diffuse, bump and normal map are all in the same material on the same piece of geometry. $\endgroup$
    – kitfox
    Jan 15, 2015 at 11:03
  • $\begingroup$ If you select the target object, go into edit mode, select everything, then select the image you want to bake to in the UV/image editor, it should bake to that image.. $\endgroup$
    – gandalf3
    Jan 15, 2015 at 18:29

3 Answers 3


For Blender internal renderer, the important thing (as I just learned) is to understand Blender assigns textures in the Image Editor on a per face basis. So it's not enough to just load the texture in your UV/Image Editor; you have to load the texture while having the relevant UVs selected also. This way you match the image with the UVs and the image becomes the target for baking.


I had a similar problem and the solution was to select the target image in the Node Editor. This sometimes means you have to add a new node containing the target image (previously created and unwrapped in the UV/Image Editor).

I'm attaching the setup I'm using for baking color texture into another one with separate UV mapping. Note the target texture is selected (orange border).

my setup

This tutorial shows it done, I'm linking directly to the part where they create the image and the node: https://youtu.be/sB09T--_ZvU?t=40s

  • $\begingroup$ Ah, it's choosing the image based on the node editor! That's a fairly strange choice. Guess it makes sense in other ways though. $\endgroup$
    – Lucas
    Apr 23, 2016 at 18:31

It looks like you need to be in edit mode with UVs selected on your model in order to direct the baking engine to bake to the texture you have selected in the UV window.


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