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Maya 2011 Essential Training
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Navigating viewports


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Maya 2011 Essential Training

with George Maestri

Video: Navigating viewports

Maya is a 3D program. But we actually operate Maya through a 2D interface, which is our flat screen of our computer. Now in order to overcome this difference, we need to use some special keyboard and mouse functions in order to be able to navigate in 3D space on a 2D screen. The simplest way to change your view in Maya is by using what's called the View Cube, and it's this little cube at the top right of every viewport. If the View Cube doesn't show up on your screen, you can reveal it by going to Display > Heads Up Display.
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  1. 3m 50s
    1. Welcome
      1m 34s
    2. Using the exercise files
      26s
    3. A note on screen resolution
      1m 50s
  2. 1h 0m
    1. Overview of the Maya interface
      7m 42s
    2. Working with files and Maya projects
      2m 27s
    3. Navigating viewports
      5m 56s
    4. Reviewing the Viewport menus
      6m 28s
    5. Configuring safe frames and grids
      3m 21s
    6. Selecting objects
      4m 33s
    7. Using the Move tool
      3m 48s
    8. Rotating and scaling
      4m 31s
    9. Manipulating pivots
      3m 59s
    10. Understanding the Channel Box
      5m 36s
    11. Working with the Attribute Editor
      2m 28s
    12. Using the Hotbox
      2m 59s
    13. Working with marking menus
      3m 6s
    14. Customizing the interface
      3m 36s
  3. 59m 25s
    1. Creating polygonal objects
      6m 28s
    2. Working with polygonal components
      4m 42s
    3. Selecting polygonal components
      5m 44s
    4. Working with Soft Select
      7m 3s
    5. Using the Extrude tool
      6m 47s
    6. Keeping faces together
      2m 42s
    7. Extruding along curves
      3m 27s
    8. Using the Polygon Bevel tool
      4m 14s
    9. Smooth and subdivision surfaces
      7m 6s
    10. Blocking out a character body
      11m 12s
  4. 36m 6s
    1. Working with edge loops
      3m 27s
    2. Inserting and offsetting edge loops
      3m 38s
    3. Symmetrical modeling techniques
      5m 53s
    4. Combining objects
      3m 50s
    5. Using the Polygon Bridge tool
      2m 7s
    6. Connecting components and splitting polygons
      2m 48s
    7. Poking and wedging faces
      2m 49s
    8. Working with polygon booleans
      3m 17s
    9. Modeling with nonlinear deformers
      4m 54s
    10. Modeling with lattices
      3m 23s
  5. 1h 18m
    1. Introducing NURBS modeling
      5m 3s
    2. NURBS primitives
      5m 54s
    3. Using the NURBS curve tools
      5m 7s
    4. Creating Bézier curves
      1m 59s
    5. Creating text
      3m 51s
    6. Manipulating NURBS curves
      4m 13s
    7. Refining NURBS curves
      4m 16s
    8. Offsetting NURBS curves
      2m 31s
    9. Editing NURBS surfaces
      7m 3s
    10. Refining NURBS surfaces
      7m 22s
    11. Using NURBS Revolve
      7m 31s
    12. Using NURBS Loft
      4m 11s
    13. Using NURBS Extrude
      6m 0s
    14. Using NURBS Planar
      4m 47s
    15. Stitching NURBS surfaces
      8m 52s
  6. 35m 53s
    1. Extracting NURBS curves from surfaces
      5m 57s
    2. Creating curves on a surface
      3m 53s
    3. Projecting curves on surfaces
      7m 2s
    4. Trimming NURBS surfaces
      3m 42s
    5. Using the NURBS Fillet tool
      5m 31s
    6. Sculpting NURBS and polygonal surfaces
      5m 52s
    7. Converting NURBS to polygons
      3m 56s
  7. 33m 22s
    1. Working with the Outliner
      4m 58s
    2. Grouping objects
      4m 2s
    3. Creating hierarchies
      4m 17s
    4. Duplicating objects
      4m 51s
    5. Understanding the Hypergraph
      3m 32s
    6. Working with Hypergraph connections
      2m 31s
    7. Hiding and showing objects
      2m 12s
    8. Creating layers
      4m 2s
    9. Working with selection masks
      2m 57s
  8. 40m 18s
    1. Overview of renderers
      3m 24s
    2. Understand the basics of materials
      6m 15s
    3. Creating and applying maps
      5m 13s
    4. Using bitmaps as texture
      2m 59s
    5. Working with the Hypershade window
      5m 12s
    6. Working with mental ray materials
      6m 57s
    7. Using displacement and bump mapping
      3m 14s
    8. Using the Ramp Shader
      2m 36s
    9. Using the 3D Paint tool
      4m 28s
  9. 30m 14s
    1. Texture-mapping NURBS surfaces
      5m 46s
    2. Projecting textures onto surfaces
      4m 0s
    3. Texture-mapping polygonal surfaces
      7m 0s
    4. Applying UV mapping
      8m 11s
    5. Using the UVW Editor
      5m 17s
  10. 41m 16s
    1. Creating joints
      10m 2s
    2. Deforming a mesh using the Skin tool
      5m 2s
    3. Creating IK handles
      6m 48s
    4. Creating blend shapes
      5m 39s
    5. Rigging nonlinear deformers
      2m 36s
    6. Finalizing the character
      4m 45s
    7. Rigging the character to the scooter
      6m 24s
  11. 1h 5m
    1. Working with the Timeline
      4m 16s
    2. Creating and adjusting keys (keyframes)
      5m 4s
    3. Editing keys
      3m 13s
    4. Modifying keys in the Graph Editor
      5m 47s
    5. Modifying keys in the Dope Sheet
      2m 51s
    6. Creating breakdown keys
      2m 28s
    7. Animating objects along paths
      5m 54s
    8. Animation playback using Playblast
      3m 10s
    9. Animating with constraints
      6m 16s
    10. Creating animation cycles
      8m 25s
    11. Using set-driven keys
      6m 13s
    12. Adding sound to animations
      2m 24s
    13. Finishing the animation
      9m 45s
  12. 1h 2m
    1. Lights and lighting types in Maya
      7m 29s
    2. Adding depth-map shadows
      4m 13s
    3. Using Raytrace shadows
      3m 28s
    4. Understanding the basics of cameras
      7m 14s
    5. Adding depth of field
      6m 31s
    6. Adding Bokeh using mental ray
      4m 33s
    7. Using motion blur in Maya Software Renderer
      4m 10s
    8. Using motion blur in mental ray
      3m 5s
    9. Raytracing reflections and refractions
      4m 41s
    10. Interactive rendering with IPR
      3m 33s
    11. Lighting a scene
      8m 29s
    12. Batch rendering
      4m 53s
  13. 25s
    1. Goodbye
      25s

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Maya 2011 Essential Training
9h 8m Beginner Jun 01, 2010

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In Maya 2011 Essential Training, George Maestri demonstrates the tools and feature set in Maya, as well as the skills necessary to model, texture, animate, and render projects with this deep and robust piece of 3D animation software from Autodesk. This course takes an in-depth tour of Maya's interface, including navigating and manipulating objects in 3D and customizing the workspace. The course also covers object creation and modeling basics, shading and texturing, surface mapping techniques, character rigging, and lastly, rendering and final output. Exercise files accompany the course.

Topics include:
  • Getting familiar with the Maya interface
  • Organizing scenes
  • Creating hierarchies
  • NURBs modeling for solid objects
  • Adding color to models
  • Applying bitmap textures
  • Working with mental ray materials
  • Polygonal modeling for characters and organic objects
  • Deforming with the Skin tool
  • Setting up lights and cameras
  • Creating realistic effects such as depth of field
  • Working with the Timeline
  • Creating animation cycles
  • Batch rendering
  • Rendering with the mental ray engine
Subject:
3D + Animation
Software:
Maya
Author:
George Maestri

Navigating viewports

Maya is a 3D program. But we actually operate Maya through a 2D interface, which is our flat screen of our computer. Now in order to overcome this difference, we need to use some special keyboard and mouse functions in order to be able to navigate in 3D space on a 2D screen. The simplest way to change your view in Maya is by using what's called the View Cube, and it's this little cube at the top right of every viewport. If the View Cube doesn't show up on your screen, you can reveal it by going to Display > Heads Up Display.

And down here we have an option for ViewCube, so you can just turn it off here, so Display > Heads Up Display > ViewCube, and that will turn it on and off. Now we can just hit any one of these points on the Cube, and we'll see that option. So if we hit the Front view, we'll see the front. If we hit the Corner of this, we'll see kind of like a three-quarter or the left, or if you want, we can hit the top arrow here. We can see the top. We can also rotate this around, and so on.

If we hit the Home, it goes back to Perspective view, or we can go to our Front view. Now this is great for just giving a general overview of what we want to look at, but if we want to actually zoom in and get in close, we need to actually start navigating in 3D. Now we navigate in Maya using a combination of the keyboard and the mouse. Now on the keyboard, you're going to notice just immediately to the side of the Spacebar, there's going to be the Alt key on the PC keyboard, or if you have a Mac keyboard, it's going to be called the Option key.

So what we do is we hold down Alt or Option, and then we left, middle or right-click, to do our navigation. So what I'm going to do is hold down the Alt key, and then left-click. And notice how my cursor changes, and if I drag, you can see that well, I'm rotating. I'm actually spinning around the scene. So I can actually change my angle of view, or tumble, by using Alt+Left-click. Now if I middle-click, while holding down the Alt key, you can see I can pan and just move left or right.

If I right-click, notice how that changes again, and you can see how I can basically zoom or truck into the scene. So between these three, you can see how I can actually tumble around the scene, zoom in, get in close, come out to see more, and so on. Now there is also one more mouse function, and this is for people who have a mouse with a middle scroll wheel. And just by rolling that scroll wheel, you can zoom in and out. So in order to zoom, you can either Alt +Right-click, or you can just roll the middle mouse button.

They do pretty much the same thing. Now there's also other ways to look at the scene. We're actually right now looking at what's called a Perspective view, which allows us to see things in Perspective. But there are going to be times when you want to see kind of more of a drafting view. Well, it's called an orthographic view. And those you can get to by using the Presets down here, or if you just hit the Spacebar, it'll go to that default Four view. Now you'll notice here we still have our Perspective view, but we also have a top, a front and a side view as well.

Now in this top, front and side view, I can also navigate using the same keys, except I can't tumble. So if I hit Alt+Left-click, you're going to see the little "no, you can't do that" sign on the side view. But I can still pan, and I can still zoom effect. Let's go head over to this view here, which is in Wireframe, but you can see I can still zoom, pan, but I can't rotate. But that's because this is really a fixed, flat 2D view, or an orthographic view, kind of like how you would see a top view in a drafting program, such as a CAD program or something like that.

Now if I want to switch between any one of these viewports, again, the Spacebar is what I need. So if I just place my mouse say over the top viewport and hit Space, I go into the top viewport. I hit Space again, and it goes into my four view. If I put my mouse over my Perspective view, hit Spacebar, again, I get into my Perspective view. Now the thing here is I'm tapping the Spacebar. If I hit the Spacebar and hold, you'll notice that a menu comes up. We're going to discuss this menu a little bit later.

But for just switching between viewports, it's actually just a very quick tap on that Spacebar. So let's go back into our Perspective view, and let's do a little bit of practice. Let's say we wanted to zoom into the couches, in this office. All I have to do again is hold down Alt or Option and then right-click and zoom in. And of course, I'm zooming into the center there, so I'm going to have to middle-click and drag, and again, I'm holding down the Alt key the whole time. And then if I wanted to get a different angle on this, I can just, again, left- click and drag, and notice how by just moving your fingers on the mouse, you can pretty much get this intuitive way of positioning yourself in the scene.

There is another way of navigating, and that's using the frame key, or actually the F key, so if I hit the F key on the keyboard, it'll frame everything in the scene, except when I have an object selected. So if I left-click say on the couch and highlight it, and hit F, it will go ahead and frame that couch. That's a great way to zoom in very quickly to a certain place in the scene. So now you know the basics of navigating in Maya, so go ahead and practice this and get fluent with it.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Maya 2011 Essential Training.


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Q: The Chapter 2 exercise file dog_reference.mb appears blank when opened in Maya. I can't see the dog image. What do I do?
A: Make sure you are working with the most current version of the exercise files for this course from the lynda.com site. Try downloading the files again. If the image still doesn't appear, make sure the project folder is set to the matching (Chap02) folder in the exercise files.
 
Also check to make sure you have "hardware texturing" enabled under the viewport's Shading menu.
 
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