Maya 2011 Essential Training
Illustration by Maria Reñdon

Selecting polygonal components


Maya 2011 Essential Training

with George Maestri

Video: Selecting polygonal components

Now, when you're working with components, there are times when you are going to have to select very specific parts of a model in order to be able to manipulate it the way that you want. So Maya has a number of different types of ways to select parts of a model. I am going to start off by creating just a very basic sphere here. I am going to hit 5 to shade it, so we can see what we are working on. Then I am going to right-click over it, and go into Vertex mode. Now typically, you can just rubber-band select.
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  1. 3m 50s
    1. Welcome
      1m 34s
    2. Using the exercise files
    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

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Watch the Online Video Course 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
3D + Animation
George Maestri

Selecting polygonal components

Now, when you're working with components, there are times when you are going to have to select very specific parts of a model in order to be able to manipulate it the way that you want. So Maya has a number of different types of ways to select parts of a model. I am going to start off by creating just a very basic sphere here. I am going to hit 5 to shade it, so we can see what we are working on. Then I am going to right-click over it, and go into Vertex mode. Now typically, you can just rubber-band select.

Let's say I want to select the top of this sphere. I could basically position it so I can see it and rubber-band select it, and make sure that I got it all selected, but look. I have got parts of it that aren't. So if I wanted to, I can just hold down the Shift key and Shift+Select to turn on and off the vertices that weren't selected properly, and then once I had that, I could actually move them up and down, or do whatever I need to do with those. I could actually scale those if we wanted to flatten out the top of that or something like that.

This is one way of selecting is basically to rubber-band select. When you rubber-band select, you are just getting a rectangle. There are times when you don't want a rectangle, or you want to do what's called a Lasso Select. So this is very handy with modeling, so you could actually just click and drag, and just drag whatever it is you want to select, and there you go. So Lasso tools can also work very well for selecting just discrete parts of a model.

Now, one of the things that actually can be a real problem with selecting like this is that if you Shift+Select, a lot of times what you will do is you'll Shift+Select parts of the model, but you'll deselect parts of the model, but you actually reselect other parts of the model. So sometimes you have to be very careful in how you Shift+Select. Another way to select is by using Paint Select. Now, this actually uses what are called the Artisan Paint tools, and this is going to be our first introduction to it.

So there's a couple of keystrokes we need to learn. So let's go ahead and click on this. In fact, if I double-click on this, my Brush tools come up. Now if you notice here, let me go and zoom in a little bit here. Notice how this little circle is floating above my mouse, and it's turned into a paintbrush, and what this is is really just a brush, and all I have to do is left-click and drag just by brushing over the vertices, it kind of sticks to the surface, and I can just brush in all the vertices that I want to select.

Now if I want to make my brush bigger or smaller, all I have to do is hold down the B, B for Brush key, and just left- click and drag, and I can make my Brush either smaller or bigger. So if I have a bigger brush, I am going to be selecting more vertices. If I have a smaller brush, it's going to be a little bit more precise. So all you have to do is just Paint Select. Now if you want, you can also, by using this Tool palette, Paint Unselect. Again, I am not holding down anything. It's not like I am Shift+Unselecting.

I am just Paint Unselecting. Now, this is sometimes a little bit better than using like a Shift+Lasso tool because you are actually being very precise about what you're not selecting, rather than deselecting, that sort of thing. There we have some buttons to Unselect or Select everything. Let's say I wanted to select everything and just deselect these few. I could do that. Now, there are some other options here as to what type of brush we have, and also there is some additional stuff here, such as Stylus Pressure, and Stroke, which actually apply a little bit more to other types of tools which we will get to.

Now, another way to select is by using edges. So let's go ahead and just deselect everything. There is also a Deselect here on the Edit menu, so we just do Deselect. And I am going to go ahead and right- click over here and go into Edge mode and just again hit my Q key just to go into Regular Select mode. So if I go into Regular Select mode and select an Edge, well I can select as many edges as I want. But a lot of times with a polygonal model, particularly like the sphere, you're going to want to select either the latitude or the longitude lines, and these are known as Edge Loops. And these can be very important when you start modeling polygonal objects because they can really define the contours of your object.

So if I position my mouse over one of these and double-click, you can see I can actually select that Edge Loop. Now, if I hit my Left and Right arrow, you can see how I can move that Edge Loop selection up or down. Now if I hit my Up and Down arrow, you can see how I can actually select the other Edge Loops, these kinds of short Edge Loops, or if I want, I can double-click on each of the vertical ones to select those as well.

But also notice how in this sphere, it doesn't quite go all the way around. That's because of the way this is constructed. So these particular lines will go all the way around, but the longitude lines won't. So these are basically some strategies for selecting individual components or groups of components within a polygonal object. Now, each one will depend upon your individual situation. So get to know all of these different tools. When you're in a situation where you need to select something very specifically, you'll know which tool will work best for that situation.

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 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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