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egearbox
11-24-2013, 03:24 PM
I've googled on this but I'm not finding much. How are people organizing their Lightwave content on disk? Let me explain why I'm asking. The normal structure that I'm aware of is (of course):


\MyLightwaveData
\Images
\Objects
\Scenes

But I have multiple projects that I would like to keep track of. So I've been doing this:


\MyLightwaveData
\MyProject
\Images
\Objects
\Scenes
\MyOtherProject
\Images
\Objects
\Scenes


This works fine until I want to re-use objects or images (for example), and I can't remember if something was in "MyProject" or "MyOtherProject." Then I have to go on a scavenger hunt.

Jamming all the projects back together into one folder solves this problem:


\MyLightwaveData
\Images
\Objects
\Scenes

But, oops, now I get collisions when I try to save a new object called "Box.lwo" for a new project, and LW politely asks me if I'd like to overwrite the existing "Box.lwo" for an existing project.

So, I don't know what the optimal way of solving this is and I'm asking if anybody out there has any thoughts on this.

lertola2
11-24-2013, 03:50 PM
At the office we have all jobs in one content directory organized by client like this:


\Content directory
\client 1
\ job 1
\other files
\lightwave
\scenes
\objects
\images
\ job 2
\other files
\lightwave
\scenes
\objects
\images
\client 2
\ job 1
\other files
\lightwave
\scenes
\objects
\images


This works OK. We have auto detect content directory turned off so the content directory is always the top level folder. I do have to hunt for file from previous jobs if I want to re use them though. When I start a new job based on an old one I open an old scene file then use the save current object command to save the objects into a new client folder so I do not accidentally alter files needed for the old scenes.

Kuzey
11-24-2013, 03:52 PM
Try it this way:


\MyLightwaveData\Images\MyProject
\MyLightwaveData\Objects\MyProject
\MyLightwaveData\Scenes\MyProject
\MyLightwaveData\Images\MyOtherProject
\MyLightwaveData\Objects\MyOtherProject
\MyLightwaveData\Scenes\MyOtherProject

Ryan Roye
11-24-2013, 08:47 PM
Here's how my projects are organized. Understand that one size does not fit all here... think of this as a more "centralized" setup, relying on the "Scenes" folder to differentiate the "tasks" that need to be done, and pooling all of the assets you've built into corresponding categories.

- Backgrounds
-- Each "background" is placed into its own folder, with the model, scene file, and anything related each put into a folder for easy re-use
- Props_Prefabs
-- Props are organized by "Handheld", which are objects that characters can pick up and interact with, and "non-handheld", which consist of things that are typically used to dress up a scene with extra detail, or are larger things such as vehicles or giant crates. Prefabs are pre-rigged/setup things that are used periodically, such as Light/Camera rigs designed for animation or IK grab handlers to use with characters.
- Characters
-- All character models go here (each character has their own folder so that any character can be duplicated then modded as needed)... anything related to those characters, such as motion files, clothing templates, etc, also go in here.
- Scenes
-- This folder is for content that is currently being worked on. Whether "Load From Scene" or "Package Scene" is used is a matter of preference and whether data bandwidth is an issue.

The point of this setup is to keep your pool of assets clustered together in one folder so that you don't have to dig around your hard drive to find things that you've built. Re-using the content you've created wherever possible is vital to ensuring a fast and efficient workflow.

JonW
11-24-2013, 10:11 PM
I'm using Matt's Screamernet setup:

\LW_SN

\images

\project01i
\project02i
\project03i

\objects

\project01o
\project02o
\project03o

\scenes

\project01s
\project02s
\project03s

\save

\project01
\project02
\project03

I than have sub folders for trees, people & cars to find things.

Find good naming protocol for image, layer, surface, object, scene, file & folder name hierarchy & really put the effort in to get this right before you start any job! Turn all your images into PNG etc, & grey scale for bump etc.

Putting in the effort getting your administration right in Lightwave solves a multitude of problems at the end of a job when you do NOT need additional problems. If you don't have this sorted out before you start a job you may as well take a rope!

egearbox
11-24-2013, 10:21 PM
Thanks for the suggestions! I'll post any interesting results.

Ryan Roye
11-25-2013, 06:17 AM
Find good naming protocol for image, layer, surface, object, scene, file & folder name hierarchy & really put the effort in to get this right before you start any job! Turn all your images into PNG etc, & grey scale for bump etc.

Take this advice especially no matter how you set up your files... or you'll end up like me 2-3 months ago where I spent a full 2 weeks going through my content in order to make it manageable again. That pile of "Lightwave stuff" can turn into a mountain without you even noticing it!

Danner
11-25-2013, 06:49 AM
We use something a little different, geared towards ArchViz.

/LWScenes <--- Permanent content directory. LW always find everything, no matter what project it is, if kept this way.
/2013
/Client1
/reference
/photographs
/floorplans
/Frames
/Compositions
/Videos
/3d
/property1 <-- "Royal Deluxe Suite" or "Main Office building" for example.
/Scene
/Objects
/Textures



We keep reference material like photographs, videos and rendered frames separate from the 3d assets. I'ts easier to browse, and delete in mass if needed. Videos for example, all of the client's videos sit toghether.
We back things up that are 5 years or older redundantly and remove them from the server. I can go back and load every object and scene I've made since 2005.

egearbox
11-25-2013, 07:44 AM
That pile of "Lightwave stuff" can turn into a mountain without you even noticing it!

Yep, that's where I'm at... sigh...

Ryan Roye
11-25-2013, 08:12 AM
Yep, that's where I'm at... sigh...

While we're on the subject of organization, also be sure to lump all of your 3rd party plugins into a separate folder to isolate them from the rest of LW's built in plugins; I got this advice a bit back and later wondered why I never did it in the first place. This is important for when you need to upgrade LW to a new version and want to avoid headaches, or want to transport your Lightwave install somewhere in a more convenient fashion.

Kuzey
11-25-2013, 11:44 AM
While we're on the subject of organization, also be sure to lump all of your 3rd party plugins into a separate folder to isolate them from the rest of LW's built in plugins; I got this advice a bit back and later wondered why I never did it in the first place. This is important for when you need to upgrade LW to a new version and want to avoid headaches, or want to transport your Lightwave install somewhere in a more convenient fashion.

Speaking of which, I have made a small app that copies your custom plugins..surface libraries etc. from one LW installation to another...comes in handy :)