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Soccer Ball Design – The Template Files

Since the start of PASSPORT some of my friends have expressed interest in designing a soccer ball themselves. Because of this I decided to do a step by step tutorial that will hopefully provide an artist with a framework to get started right away. I will provide you with the template files I used as well as a 3D model of a soccer ball that will allow you to see an accurate representation of your design.

This instructions assume the artist is versed in Photoshop, Illustrator and a 3D application of his/her choosing. Though in depth knowledge of a 3D application is not required the artist should be capable of opening the passportBall.OBJ file and know how to assign a texture to it.

Step 1. Download the necessary files
Right click and Save Link As to download these 3 files.

passportTemplate.PDF This is your working illustrator file.
passportBall.OBJ This is the 3D soccer ball model.
passportTexture.TIF This is the texture map you will apply to your model in the 3d application.


Step 2. Create your graphics and import them into the Illustrator template file

Whether you prefer to work in Photoshop, Illustrator, or your sketch book, is entirely up to you. Just keep in mind that, if you intend for your graphic to be viable for the production of a ball the final version must be in a vector format.

I arranged a fish graphic pattern on the template to use as an example.

After you layout your graphic on the template select Save for Web & Devices option under the File top menu. I decided to save mine as a JPG image and name it fromIllustrator.JPG

Step 3. Matching the Illustrator file to the passportTexture.TIF file

Open both files fromIllustrator.JPG and passportTexture.TIF in Photoshop
Resize fromIllustrator.JPG to 1024 x 1024

On the fromIllustrator.JPG file Select All, Copy and Paste the fromIllustrator.JPG on passportTexture.TIF
I renamed my new layer fromIllustrator.
Align the layer fromIllustrator with the BALL GRID layer in the passportTexture.TIF file. Using Multiply on the fromIllustrator layer will help.

After aligning both panel grids switch the fromIllustrator layer back to normal.
Save passportTexture.TIF file.

Step 4. Appliying the graphic to the 3D ball

Open file passportBall.OBJ in the 3D application of your choice.

Apply the file passportTexture.TIF as a texture to the ball model.

I hope this basic template has been helpful. If you have any suggestions or comments about things I can do to make this process easier to understand please let me know. I will try to accommodate anything that helps as time allows.

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