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I would like to make a sphere and unwrap it in order to apply a texture and a normal map so that it looks like this: enter image description here I've already created the 2d elements that will compose the ball: enter image description here But I really don't know how to morph them in order to create the final result.

Can someone please give me a hand? Thank you!

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I will not propose to unwrap a sphere to the texture, but how to make the sphere geometry as it appears in the reference image.

enter image description here

Start from a cube, subdivided twice.

Select opposite middle parts of each face and scale them down (around 0.2 for instance).

Do that for the three pairs of faces:

enter image description here

Then scale down the corners:

enter image description here

Add a subdivision surface modifier, then a cast modifier with sphere set to 1.

enter image description here

Refine the model: apply the modifiers then selecting the 3 edge loops starting from each 4 corners, bevel them:

enter image description here

The shape is done. Selecting the same edges you can now mark seams and unwrap.

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  • $\begingroup$ Hey lemon, thank you very much for taking the time to record the full tutorial! What I need to do from here is to export a lowpoly .dae file. Do you think I will be able to do it after modeling the ball that way? Thank you! $\endgroup$ – Andrea Silvestri Mar 28 '17 at 7:50
  • $\begingroup$ @AndreaSilvestri, yes, sure. This is a simple mesh, finally... $\endgroup$ – lemon Mar 28 '17 at 8:18
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We can unwrap the sphere same as a cube, if the geometry of sphere is just subdivided and displaced cube:

enter image description here

Create a cube and give it these modifiers:

enter image description here

Proceed same as with unwrapping a cube. The texture can look like this:

enter image description here

Notice the bleeding over the unwrapped mesh. That is to not pollute the surface with green (or black in my example). You can also pack those faces much more efficiently if you like, to not waste any texture space:

enter image description here

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  • $\begingroup$ Hey Jerryno, thank you very much for the advice! It's a great idea actually. What I need to do from here is to export a lowpoly .dae file. Do you think I will be able to do it after applying your modifier? $\endgroup$ – Andrea Silvestri Mar 28 '17 at 7:49
  • $\begingroup$ @AndreaSilvestri, sure, when you apply the modifiers you can export the geometry. Just set the subdivision amount not too high.. $\endgroup$ – Jaroslav Jerryno Novotny Mar 28 '17 at 13:31

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