It has been a few weeks (months?) since focusing intently on Blender, and I have been having some difficulty getting back into it. I thought I would start out small and finish work on the center point of any pedestrian zone - the fountain - but this has proven to be somewhat of an arduous task. Particularly difficult was the lip of the fountain's basin. Apparently I had inserted too many edges into the lip in order to give it a rounded feel, which caused no little amount of texture stretching when I worked with the UV map. Ah, the frustration! I even tried moving away from image textures toward procedural textures and inserted unwrapping seams nearly everywhere I could, just to avoid the stretching, to no avail.
As the picture above shows, I finally removed some extra edges in the lip and was able to finally get a grip on the excess texture stretching. For fun, I also added a bump map to the image, tweaked the specularity a bit, and also changed the lamp color to produce the warm type of glow that you get on a summer evening.
The final image shows the basin lip of the fountain, complete with grouting between the stones. Oh...and anti-capitalsim graffiti, which I often see on my trips to Germany, especially in university towns. I was planning to put some anarchy graffiti on the fountain, but this particular image just seemed to speak to me, so I grabbed it off the Web, modified it a bit in GIMP, and inserted it into the color map. In the coming days I will be working on the bump map for the fountain and perhaps tweaking the mesh a bit to round the fountain lip off.