Join Aaron F. Ross for an in-depth discussion in this video Displaying and moving orthographic cameras, part of Cinematography in Maya.
A common issue that new users to Maya have is that they look in the orthographic views and objects appear to be missing. And this is a good example of it here. If we look over here, there should be a lamp in this corner. We look in the perspective view. There's actually a lamp, over there, in that corner next to the sofa, but it's not showing up here. Also, on the other side of the room there is a TV. And we should be seeing that TV somewhere around here, in the front view, but those objects are not appearing in our views.
And this is because the orthographic cameras are placed too close inside the scene. So in a lot of programs the orthographic view ports are implicit and they're not actually objects in the scene. But in Maya, the orthographic views are actually cameras and they can only see in front of themselves, they can't see behind themselves. And so if they're positioned inside the scene, then objects that are behind the ortho cameras will be invisible.
What we need to do is make those ortho cameras visible to us and then move them outward so that they can see the entire scene. To make the cameras visible, there's a couple ways of doing it. One is to go up into the Display menu and choose Show>Cameras and now you see these green lines here in the perspective view. Those are actually the orthographic cameras. The other way to show and hide the cameras in through the outliner.
Window>Outliner. And up at the top here, you will see persp, top, front, side. Those are the cameras. If I highlight all those, I can show or hide them. You can just use the keyboard shortcuts, in fact, to hide is Ctrl+H and to show, to select them again, this is Shift+H. Okay, so once they're visible, we can move them. So for example, this is the top camera here. If I don't know which one is which, what I can do is I can go into that camera's panel and either choose View > Select Camera, or click on this button here, Select Camera, which will accomplish the same thing.
Once it's selected we can tell which camera is which. So, this one is the top camera and the icon here shows a couple of things. It shows an arrow pointing down. That indicates which direction a camera can see. And then this line sticking out, perpendicular to that line, is the top of the camera. So this is the top of this panel here. So, this edge corresponds to the top of the view port. Okay, so to get this up I just move it. Grab the Move tool and simply pull it upward.
And as you can see, as I move that up and down, it's looking like it slicing through the scene. And dolly back, you can also dolly back in the top view with the mouse wheel. And you see, as I do that, this icon becomes larger to indicate that it's encompassing more of the scene. I just want to pull that up enough so that it's up above the ceiling of the room. Dolling back a little bit more, taking a better look at the scene here. So these are the other two cameras here. This one here is, apparently that is the side view, as is shown here.
So I can pull that back here. And as I move that, you can see that objects appear and disappear in that side view. So I pull it back far enough, now the lamp is visible. Basically, I just want to move it out so that it's able to see everything inside the room. And this is the front view port here. Same thing, just want to pull that out so we can see everything inside that room. The perspective camera's also been made visible, but it is very, very small. If I dolly in really close, you might be able to see that perspective camera we selected. It's tiny.
We'll look at how to change the icon size for cameras later. For now I just want to warn you not to use the Scale Transform here. because that can cause problems. You can see I can move the perspective camera, just like any other camera. Okay, so once I've got all those cameras positioned so that they can see everything I need them to, then I can hide them. Either through the outliner, or through the menus here. Display>Hide>Cameras.
- Getting the most out of viewport cameras
- Controlling camera attributes such as clipping planes
- Setting display options such as Resolution Gate
- Adjusting focal length and field of view
- Previz editing with the Camera Sequencer
- Setting rotation order for predictable camera animation
- Animating simple camera moves such as pan and dolly
- Mastering compound moves such as crane and handheld shots
- Understanding the Film Back attributes
- Achieving isometric and tilt-shift effects
- Projecting a texture from a camera
- Rendering depth-of-field and rack-focus effects