I have a print design job which requires me to map an image of the earth over the body of a satchel. The image needs to look as though it's part of the bag, following the contours of the fabric (ie. being distorted by the dips and wrinkles etc). I've seen something like this done before in Maya, using the brightness values of the base object to distort the image laid over the top. Is there some way of simply and effectively doing this in Photoshop? Anyone know?
You can save out a separate file with just the bag, call this bag_distort.psd for example. Then take the pattern image and drag it over your bag in your "active" file, selecting that patterned layer, go to- filter>distort>displace -and browse to bag_distort.psd. Make sure that both files are exactly the same size. You'll have to tweak the setting a bit, but this should get you close. The way it was done in Maya (most likely based on your description), was by projecting it onto an object.