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Essential Blender 04 Mesh Modeling Tutorial

Essential Blender 04 Mesh Modeling Tutorial

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Published by Ahmad Musaffa

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Published by: Ahmad Musaffa on Jan 12, 2009
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05/13/2011

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Mesh Modeling TutorialBy Roland Hess -- Based on the Blender Summer of Code tutorial by Michael Worcester In the previous chapter, you learned how to manipulate objects in Blender. You've seen how to move, scaleand rotate objects, as well as some ways to set Blender to different modes.But now we want you to actually edit the object itself. Blender has several modes for dealing with objects,but the two most frequently used are Object Mode and Edit Mode. In Object Mode you work with the objectas a whole - you can move objects, scale them and rotate and parent them. In Edit Mode you concentrateon one particular object, and make changes to the mesh that gives the object its shape.So, what's a mesh? I hear you asking. Usually, Blender (and computers in general) represents 3D objects bya set of vertices (or points) connected by edges. Three (or sometimes four) vertices can form the boundariesof a "face". A face is just a part of a mesh that is "filled in", and will look solid when rendered. Vertices andedges do not render, but faces do.Here are some images to attempt to make this clearer.Figure MMT.00: [no text]In Edit Mode, you manipulate the object at the vertex level.
 
Where we'll be heading in this tutorial.This model is what we hope to achieve in this tutorial. In theory, you could come close to making this all inobject mode, but what you need to learn is when and where to use the different tools Blender has to offer.Knowing that this is the product of experience, doing this tutorial will give you some idea of how to chooseyour tools.Anyway, enough about theory. Let's get down to modeling. Start up Blender (or use Ctrl-X to begin a newsession if Blender is already running) and press the Z-key. The Z-key toggles between shaded mode andwireframe mode. You can switch between these two modes whenever you want to see how you're model iscoming along. In this tutorial, some screenshots will be in wireframe mode and some will be in solid mode.You don't have to be there too, though. We tried to choose the best mode just to let you see what was goingon in the illustration.RMB select the default cube in the center of the scene, then press the X-key and confirm its deletion.The first thing you are going to do is to create the basic shape of one of the pillars. You could do this with asimple cube, but as the pattern on each side of the pillar is identical, you are going to create one side, thenduplicate it.Use the spacebar to bring up the toolbox, then select the following menu items: Add, then Mesh, then Cube.I know, you just deleted the default cube, but we want to get you familiar with using the toolbox.
 
 Figure MT2.A: The toolbox, about to add a cube.You may remember from the previous chapter that when you add a new object, that object begins its life inEdit mode. You should be able to see 4 yellow dots at the corners, which are called vertices. A yellow vertexmeans that it is currently selected. Press the A-key and watch all the vertices turn pink. (This is also thecase for edges and faces.) To recap, just as the A-key toggles select all/deselect all for objects, it does thesame in Edit mode, only with vertices.The cube in Edit mode.Selecting VerticesThere are several ways to select vertices in Blender.- RMB. Just like object mode, clicking on (or near) a vertex with the RMB will select it. Holding down Shiftwhile RMB clicking will build a selection. RMB on an already selected vertex will deselect.- Border select. Press the B-key, then LMB drag over the area you want to select. Border select is alwaysadditive, so using it will add to the selection set you already have.- Circle select. Press the B-key twice, and the cursor turns into a circle. You are now in circle select mode.You can "paint" a selection with this circle by LMB dragging. MMB dragging deselects. The mouse's scrollwheel increases and decreases the size of the circle. RMB ends circle select mode.

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