MODO 501 Essential Training
Illustration by Petra Stefankova

Editing polygons


MODO 501 Essential Training

with Dan Ablan

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Video: Editing polygons

Working with our fire extinguisher, we have used a lot of simple geometric shapes and used a good bit of the modo tools. But now you also want a little bit of realism in this as well. And we've done that by putting edges together and beveling them. But our little handle here is just kind of floating. And what we need to do is extend this clamp up so that our handle is connected to it. What we're going to do is go to the Clamp itself, and let's turn off the CenterHose and the Base from visibility, just by clicking the little eyeballs. And what we're going to do is edit this Clamp so that it encompasses our newly added handle.
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  1. 2m 21s
    1. Welcome
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 26s
  2. 42m 37s
    1. Understanding the interface
      4m 30s
    2. Understanding the workplane
      5m 7s
    3. Understanding Action Centers
      4m 12s
    4. Working with the modeling tools
      5m 10s
    5. Understanding surfaces
      7m 12s
    6. Selecting elements
      7m 33s
    7. Understanding the elements of a 3D model
      4m 3s
    8. Understanding symmetry
      4m 50s
  3. 1h 2m
    1. Building a model
      8m 56s
    2. Editing geometry
      10m 39s
    3. Controlling geometry
      10m 31s
    4. Bending geometry
      6m 42s
    5. Adding detail with edges
      5m 37s
    6. Editing polygons
      10m 27s
    7. Extending polygons
      9m 34s
  4. 42m 53s
    1. Understanding subdivisions
      3m 49s
    2. Understanding Pixar-based subdivisions
      2m 48s
    3. Creating a basic model
      7m 51s
    4. Beveling with subdivisions
      6m 6s
    5. Adding detail to models
      8m 54s
    6. Deforming and shaping objects
      7m 48s
    7. Cloning
      5m 37s
  5. 49m 32s
    1. Creating with Radial Sweep
      4m 44s
    2. Working with text
      8m 40s
    3. Understanding replicators
      7m 22s
    4. Instancing objects
      7m 0s
    5. Working with Curve Clone
      4m 36s
    6. Working with Curve Extrude
      2m 25s
    7. Modeling with Array
      8m 50s
    8. Understanding Mesh Paint
      5m 55s
  6. 1h 4m
    1. Introducing the Shader Tree
      4m 32s
    2. Exploring layer-based shading
      4m 29s
    3. Creating surfaces for polygons
      7m 41s
    4. Editing surfaces
      7m 4s
    5. Applying procedural textures
      7m 38s
    6. Applying image-mapped textures
      6m 2s
    7. Working with transparent images
      5m 48s
    8. Adding bump maps for realism
      8m 49s
    9. Enhancing surfaces with specularity and glossiness maps
      3m 25s
    10. Creating a reflective surface
      3m 27s
    11. Working in glass
      5m 28s
  7. 39m 9s
    1. Building 3D scenes
      2m 49s
    2. Working with different light types
      8m 26s
    3. Lighting a 3D scene
      12m 51s
    4. Reflecting light
      5m 23s
    5. Lighting environments for realism
      4m 18s
    6. Blending light sources
      5m 22s
  8. 21m 1s
    1. Understanding the MODO 501 camera
      5m 39s
    2. Setting up a camera
      5m 42s
    3. Placing multiple cameras
      7m 11s
    4. Animating cameras
      2m 29s
  9. 29m 58s
    1. Understanding the timeline
      7m 16s
    2. Adding and controlling keyframes
      3m 22s
    3. Fine-tuning keyframes in the Graph Editor
      6m 17s
    4. Animating nontraditional elements
      4m 31s
    5. Animating colors
      4m 39s
    6. Animating displacement maps
      3m 53s
  10. 13m 57s
    1. Working with Hair Guides
      3m 18s
    2. Creating human hair
      4m 7s
    3. Creating the hair's surface
      1m 30s
    4. Generating animal hair
      1m 48s
    5. Building enhanced hair textures
      3m 14s
  11. 26m 21s
    1. Working with the painting tools
      6m 14s
    2. Painting on multiple layers
      9m 37s
    3. Sculpting models
      5m 45s
    4. Tweaking and finishing with the sculpting tools
      4m 45s
  12. 25m 56s
    1. Working with the Schematic interface
      1m 20s
    2. Understanding channels
      4m 9s
    3. Building a channel-based animation
      5m 51s
    4. Creating a schematic network
      6m 26s
    5. Setting up inverse kinematics
      4m 29s
    6. Adding the finishing touches on schematic rigs
      3m 41s
  13. 26m 47s
    1. Understanding resolutions and rendering
      12m 43s
    2. Setting up a render project
      4m 51s
    3. Rendering to movie files vs. image sequences
      9m 13s
  14. 3m 23s
    1. Exporting an object
      1m 2s
    2. Exporting a full scene for backup
      2m 21s
  15. 2m 2s
    1. Next steps
      2m 2s

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Watch the Online Video Course MODO 501 Essential Training
7h 32m Beginner Sep 16, 2011

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In this course, author Dan Ablan walks through the process of understanding the MODO workflow while learning to create 3D models and animations. The course teaches fundamental tasks, such as modeling polygons and applying materials with the Shader Tree, while exploring scene building in depth through advanced lighting, camera, and animation techniques. The course also covers MODO's schematic tools and shows how to render animations for various playback media.

Topics include:
  • Understanding surfaces and symmetry
  • Editing polygons
  • Shaping, deforming, and cloning objects
  • Working with text
  • Instancing objects
  • Applying procedural and image-mapped textures
  • Adding bump maps
  • Creating reflections
  • Working with different light types
  • Blending light sources
  • Setting up and animating cameras
  • Adding and controlling keyframes
  • Creating hair textures
  • Working with the painting and sculpting tools
  • Setting up inverse kinematics
  • Exporting a full scene
3D + Animation
Dan Ablan

Editing polygons

Working with our fire extinguisher, we have used a lot of simple geometric shapes and used a good bit of the modo tools. But now you also want a little bit of realism in this as well. And we've done that by putting edges together and beveling them. But our little handle here is just kind of floating. And what we need to do is extend this clamp up so that our handle is connected to it. What we're going to do is go to the Clamp itself, and let's turn off the CenterHose and the Base from visibility, just by clicking the little eyeballs. And what we're going to do is edit this Clamp so that it encompasses our newly added handle.

And the way we're going to do that is by jumping to the Ctrl+Spacebar and choosing the Right view like that. Or you can choose Left. I think in this case, let's do Left. And what we want to do is take this handle and extend it up. And we don't want to stretch it. We actually want to take these nice points and move them up. Earlier in the course, I showed you how stretching a rounded corner can really kind of distort it. We want to work with the points. So we're going to go here. And in order to see things better, I want to make sure I'm in the Wireframe view.

And the reason is, other than visibility, is that if I go like this, often I'm only selecting what's in front of me, because it's a shaded view. If you take a look at a perspective view, and I kind of just go like this, it's only selecting what's in front. Often you can't select all the way down, because of the shaded view. So by going to a Wireframe view-- we're on the Left side, looking at a wireframe--we very easily can come in with our right mouse button and select all of those points.

And I know that those will go all the way through. We also want to take this side and move all of these up. So, very carefully, we're going to select from in here with the right mouse button, we're going to Lasso+Select all the way around, and then let go. And then I want to hold the Shift key and add to the selection, like that. Zoom out a little bit. W is our Transform tool. And I'll click just the green handle to move them straight up. I am going to move those up to about there.

And before I turn this off, Ctrl+Spacebar to a perspective view, and we can see that it might be a little too high, so we'll pull this back down right to about there. And what that does is encompasses the clamp and the handle altogether. So let's turn off the Move tool, click a blank area to deselect, and let's take a look at the OpenGL view. And now you could see that that handle is tucked away very nicely in there. Then we'll put on the Hose and the Base to get a feel for the whole thing.

And it's looking pretty good. And perhaps that hose might want to come up a little bit more. How would we edit that, now that we've extended our clamp up a little bit? Well, this was version 5 that we started with, so let's do this. So let's say File > Save As, and I'm going to version 6. Now I've been manually typing in these versions, but there's a better way to do this. So if you say File > Save Incremental, what happens is, version 6 now becomes version 001. We don't necessarily need to do that, but when you're start a new model on your own, do that from the beginning.

For instance, you would name this Fire Extinguisher and then the next save, do it incrementally, and it'll be 001, 02, and so on. And I pretty much do that for every single thing I do in modo. And the reason I do that is because too often people have final, final 1, final 2. Well, your model is almost never final, and if you save them in versions, you always have one to go back to, but you always know which is the most current, because it is the one with the highest number. Let's get back down to the CenterHose now, select that, and then I'm going to click right on it in Polygon mode, and I want to select all of it.

I'm going to hold the Shift key and press my up arrow. And we're able to go all the way down into that. Now I don't want to select the whole thing and move it; I want to get down just enough. That's the bottom, right there. So let's do this one more time. Select the front, Shift, and then up arrow. And then what I want to do is of course, just move it up, so I'll press the W command. But because I'm selecting only those polygons-- we'll turn the visibility off of the Clamp so you can see what's happening-- we're only extending just what we need, letting the Base remain inside there.

Very simple to edit these. And now that's extended up just a little bit more; it works pretty well. We'll turn off the Move tool, and we'll click the blank area to deselect. Part of editing polygons might mean adding a little bit more geometry. So just for a little bit of added realism, let's add a little bit of a rivet right here. So I'm going to go to Add Item and choose Mesh. I've a new blank Mesh layer. Ctrl+Space to get to the front view and then using the wheel on my mouse, I'm going to zoom in; you can also do it from the Zoom command in the top right.

We're going to select a disk and then right about here, we're just going to drag out like that, keeping an eye on your radius at the very bottom to make those even. And if you go up and down and left and right, this is how you control the X and the Y. And I'm doing this in the front view just simply for control. You can do it in any perspective view, and you can also come in here and manually punch in, just to even that out, and then turn off the tool. Ctrl+Space to get to the perspective view and you can see it's right there, which is fine.

We'll click on the polygon and then press W to move it in. And let's just make sure it touches. Now this is the advantage of having your background layer shaded as an OpenGL versus Wireframe, because now I know exactly where this is lining up. If it's a wireframe, I might not know where that is. So I'm just letting it sit right on there. Turn this off, and then I'm going to press the B key to bevel it. Click to activate the bevel. Let's shift this out and inset it just a little bit like that, and then I'm going to zoom in a little.

Now to make another bevel, hold the Shift key and click again, and then we'll just push this in a little bit, pull it out a little bit like that, and then turn off the bevel and then click to deselect. Now we can move this whole thing in by pressing W and just make sure it sits right in there. Lastly, Ctrl+Space back to the front view. Zoom out. I'm going to copy this, and the way I'm going to do it is pretty easy. That's one way of holding the bottom and the top is what we need.

So we're going to double-click this, go to Edit > Copy. Or you can use on the Mac, Command+C--on the PC, Ctrl+C. So we're going to copy this, move it down, Edit > Paste. Turn off the Move tool and deselect. And then Ctrl+Space to the Left view, and you can see that there's our little rivets right there. Now remember, these are on its own mesh layer, so I don't have to select anything if want to mirror both of them over. Shift+V is our mirror generator.

And we want it on the Z axis, and the reason I know this is because my workplane icon down here shows that I'm looking down the X axis and my Z currently is left and right. I'm going to click right on the center, and you can see that I'm a little off. Those are a little off right there. That's not really a big deal, because I can go right here to center and choose 0 and hit Return and they're perfectly lined up. Spacebar turns off the tool. Now the only thing is that this top one is inside this clamp. So I can do two things.

I can take these points and move them up for the clamp, or I can move the rivet down. So what I'm going to do is move the clamp. So I'll come back to the clamp, choose the Wireframe mode, and with the right mouse, I'm going to Lasso+Select just around these points. And if you don't get them all, make sure you add to it. So in this case, I was still in Polygon mode and that can work, but I want to be very specific and go to Vertices, or Vertex. Now here's the advantage, again, of a different mesh layer.

If I was building on the same layer, I would have selected that rivet inside there on all those points. Because it's on its own layer, I don't have to worry about that. W key for the Transform tool, and we'll just move those up. Turn off that, click to deselect, and this is going to be saved as version 6. Finally, all I really need to do is create some interior here if I want it. The way you can do that, I'm going to turn off all these things here so we can see what's happening.

These rivets that we've created-- I can even turn off the Clamp-- you can very easily take these edges and extend them in. So if you go back to an OpenGL mode, notice that the insides are blank-- very similar to how we created the fire extinguisher from the very beginning. We don't really need polygons in there, but what we can do is come down here like this, go to Vertices, choose one and then two. And earlier in the course I talked about the Loop mode, so press the L key, and it selects that entire loop of polygons.

If you put the Clamp back on, as well as the Handle, and then press the W key for the Transform tool, you can just drag these points until I hit that inside. Spacebar turns off the Move tool, click to deselect, and you can see that those are now in there. So, very easy to do, and you can do those with the others. And initially, these are the things that happen as you're modeling. I don't feel they're important because we're only going to render from a view like this. But if you're building this that you had a fly through it for some reason, and you wanted that to be more accurate, something to consider before you copy this one down and then mirror them over.

So let's name this layer, call these Rivets. And then we'll put the Base back on, and we'll save the model. So editing polygons is not very difficult, adding to your geometry. And a good part of this is staying organized throughout your scene. Whatever you're building, just stay organized. Work in multiple mesh layers. Work with simple geometry, so you have a lot more control. It's always easy to add more geometry and add more detail. It's a lot harder to take away. Keep that in mind as you build anything in modo.

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