3D Modeling Special Interest Group – January 2019

In this session, we covered how to map textures, edit textures, use the Extract tool to get better control over textures, and create textures.

Topics Covered:

  • 00:08    We started by opening a file with a model of a house made using push/pull techniques. The challenge with using solid additions and subtractions is that you end up having the same texture on the top, bottom, and sides of the object. We demonstrated dealing with mapping issues on the corrugated roof. If it was an actual roof object or an extrusion, we could choose a different texture for each face of the object. We compared what happens when you change the Map Type from Perimeter to Plane, Auto-Align Plane, Sphere, or Cylinder.
  • 13:19    I had a texture, one with a bump map that I used for stucco, that we decided to turn into snow. We played with the reflectivity, bumps, transparency, noise shader and other options. Adding some shapes and using the Create Drape Surface command gave us a snow drift effect! We discussed how making the texture large enough and with enough detail makes the repeatability appear more random. Give yourself a time limit when adding textures—it’s easy to lose a whole day doing that!
  • 25:55    Someone said it was confusing how sometimes textures seemed to work by class and sometimes through the Object Info palette. If you’re using a class to control a certain type of material—brass, gypsum board, concrete—it is helpful to use the name of the material for the class. We assigned textures to different parts of a base cabinet using classes. Next, we selected a cylinder, put it in a class and showed how the class texture wouldn’t get applied to the object unless we went to the Render section of the Object Info palette and selected the Class Texture option. We demonstrated how the Extract tool can be used to get more control over your textures. For example, you could extract a hatch and extrude it, or extract the top of an extruded object to give the top a different texture or to map the top texture differently.
  • 42:36    Next, we experimented with turning lines into a texture that looked like a barcode. We had to turn the objects and text into an image. I use a utility to get rid of any line along the edge, because you don’t want that repeated in your texture. Then, we created the texture in Vectorworks. One good trick is to set your texture preview to the size of the object that you’re texturing and then play with the Size option until it looks right in the preview window. Otherwise, you apply the texture and exclaim: “It looks so awful!” We also showed how to turn the texture into a decal, which allows you to put posters on walls or a label on a wine bottle. Cool tricks!

3D Modeling January 2019

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