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Blender is a powerful open-source tool for 2D and 3D graphics, full-on animation, compositing, and post-production. It is used to create movies and special effects, even in HD. In Blender Essential Training, Roger Wickes offers new Blender users a thorough explanation of its interface, tools, and features. He also demonstrates practical techniques and shows how to access the online and openndash;content resources of this amazing tool. Specific 3D techniques covered include navigating in 3D space, using cameras and lights, and rendering. Roger demonstrates how to rig, animate, and composite a character over live action. Exercise files accompany the course.
In Blender, theme refers to the color scheme that's used and the style of the user interface and you can customize this. The way you get to the themes is to pull down your User Preferences window and click over here on the Themes tab and there are two themes that are shipped with Blender. Woo! The Default and the Rounded theme. The Rounded theme gives a more of a Mac-like Halloween kind of feel to the whole user interface. The backgrounds are a little darker gray, and then your highlights are in orange.
So you have this kind of a charcoal and orange feel to it and all of the windows, all of the little controls now have kind of a rounded outline. However, I find it kind of dark to work in. So what I like to do is to load up a whole set of customized themes. But before I do that, let me go through on how you can now customize your own theme and then I'll show you a fully customized theme that I like. First of all you know you can add or delete your own theme if you want and when you click Add, now I have a New User Theme that's going to be set up and for each type of window, and we have already gone over all the types of windows, so you can see I'm trying to approach this in a pretty structured manner.
But when we come up to like the 3D view, we now have different elements within the 3D View. So we have the background, we have text, we have text highlights, we have the header, we have the panel, we have the grid itself, when things are shown in normal and grouped mode and things like that. So let's just go ahead and change the background and when we select Background here, now we have these RGB sliders or Red, Green and Blue sliders that allow you to change the color. So if I want to give it like a little pink action going on or slide it down to like a gold background, I can do that.
I can also just click on the Swatch here and bring up the handy-dandy color picker applet and this applet allows me to select any particular color from the infinite range of colors that are supported and when I just press Enter, then boom! There it is. We have a lime green, charcoal really kind of ugly looking user interface and it's really easy to make a user interface kind of ugly and that's why I always want to reuse a theme that's been developed by people and you can go out to Google and google Blender Themes and come up with a bunch but I have given you one that is pretty cool, and what we want to do is we want to run that and each of these themes is actually a script, a Python script.
So if we come out to let's say the scripting desktop layout, we can come to the Text Editor and simply do a Text > Open and if you navigate to your interface folder, you will find a GONX theme by Dittohead.py file. And you just click Open Text File there and that brings that Python program into Blender. Then we can then do a Text > Run Python Script. What that does is it sets up what I think is a very attractive user interface for using Blender.
It takes care of all the colors and all of that kind of good stuff. Finally, now to save this, we'll go ahead and do a Text > New to get rid of that text, come on back to our Model 4- up because that's the one that I use. If there is any other changes you want to make, go ahead and make them and then after you are done, go ahead and press Ctrl+U for saving the user defaults. When you do that, what Blender is going to do is it's going to take the contents of this file and put them in a special place, either in your applications data if you are on Windows or some other magic place within the Apple and the Linux worlds, and save that as the file, the actual Blender file, that's going to be opened up the very next time that you start Blender.
So as you can see, Blender offers a very flexible way of customizing the colors and the appearance of the user interface.
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