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In 3ds Max 2011 Essential Training, author Aaron F. Ross demonstrates how to use this top-tier application for digital content creation, widely used in diverse industries such as architecture, industrial design, motion pictures, games and virtual worlds. This course covers modeling with polygons, curves, and subdivision surfaces, defining surface properties with materials and maps, setting up cameras and lights, animating objects, and final output rendering. Exercise files accompany the course.
We have edited the path and the shapes of the loft. Let's go back into the loft object and position those shapes at different locations along the path, so we can get a different result. Because, for example, what I really want here is I want it to be more or less tubular and then sort of flower out to the star pattern at the top. Let me maximize this view, Alt+W, and just so that I am not too confused by stuff, I am going to hit the J key to turn off those selection brackets, a little bit clearer to see what's going on now.
So within the loft parameters, we have got the ability to move the shapes. This is accomplished by going to the loft Modify panel in the modifier stack, clicking the plus sign and I have got access to the loft sub-object types, and you will see here Shape and Path. Before you do anything here, I want to warn you that this next operation is one of the few things in 3ds Max that cannot be undone. Undo does not work. And this is rare.
Almost everything can be undone, but this is one of those weird things in there that you cannot undo. So in real production, you will want to make sure that you save before you do this. All I have to do is choose the Shape sub-object type, and then I want to click on the shape in the view, but the problem here is that you can't really see the shape very well. So you might need to hit F4 and turn off those Edged Faces and now the shapes are a little bit clearer to see.
So this white line here is the shape. So, for example, the star, I really want that to be at the top. So I can just click on it and now that shape is selected, and I will just use the Move tool and drag that up. So now what I have got is a transition from a circle at 0% along the path to a star at 100% along the path. You will see this is reading out 100 now.
I can also use this spinner to adjust that value too. So I can move this circle shape as well. I can click on it, and I can move it up to, I don't know, let's put in exactly 60% along the path. Press Tab to enter that. So now you are seeing the effect of a little bit more of a floral design here, because we have got this sort of tube shape and it's sort of opening up into a flower up top. I can also rotate shapes as well and you might need to rotate shapes if you have got weird twisting or unpredictable stuff going on with your loft.
Let me get in a little bit closer here, Ctrl+Alt+Middle mouse. Middle mouse to move. Let me hit F4 again so we can see wires, and I am going to rotate a shape to see what this does. So I will choose the star and I will select the Rotate tool or use the E hot key and I can rotate the shape to get different effects.
So you might end up with a situation sometimes where this sort of happens whether you want it or not, where things are twisting through each other or maybe the polygon edge structure is not very pretty and it's doing weird stuff. In that case you may need to rotate the shape. I want to remind you once again that this is not undoable. So I can hit Ctrl+Z and nothing happens in here. So there you go. That's how I can adjust the shapes in sub-object mode to fine tune my model.
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