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kevinmcpoland
04-06-2004, 06:41 AM
Okey Dokey, Question time!

Is it possible to "lock" points and polys on a layer?

By that I mean, create a mesh on one layer, then freeze those polys so I can carry on building on the same layer without moving the "frozen" ones...

Strange request I know, but the type of thing I want to do is to build up clothing/detail using a mesh as a template. I know I can have them on other layers and activate the View other layers feature, but that only shows them in Wireframe mode, which gets a bit confusing as it's see through. I would like to be able to work on a shaded type template.

Again, I know I could do something similar bringing in pictures into the viewports and using them, but I really want to be able to use this in the perspective window as well, so a frozen mesh would be better for me....

Might not work, but I'd like to try anyway, so anyone know if it can be done, and if so how?

Thanks,

Kevin McPoland
[email protected]

mkiii
04-06-2004, 08:30 AM
Short answer: No it isn't possible.

LW doesn't have any form of Freeze.

kevinmcpoland
04-06-2004, 09:00 AM
Thanks MkIII, from the lack of replies I guessed that was the answer but its nice to have it confirmed...

Hey Newtek, how about considering this for a future release of LW (and yes, I'm sure it will be worth all the development time just for me!! :D )

Kevin McPoland

mkiii
04-06-2004, 11:16 AM
I must admit that if I have to work over a mesh, I just add it to the background. The fact that it is just a wireframe doesn't really affect me, since I tend to do that sort of thing exclusively in the perspective view, and constantly moving the display overcomes the confusion .

tingham
04-06-2004, 11:48 AM
Originally posted by mkiii
I must admit that if I have to work over a mesh, I just add it to the background. The fact that it is just a wireframe doesn't really affect me, since I tend to do that sort of thing exclusively in the perspective view, and constantly moving the display overcomes the confusion .

You could no doubt see where it makes a lot of sense to have shaded views for background objects, yes? no?

There is no practical reason that background[ed] layers should always render as wireframe. Effectively you are just "locking" that layer, not attempting to change it's display mode.

I'm sure that this works in the current fashion due to some memory conscious coder from a few years ago, but these days our systems can certainly handle it.

If we could create our own render modes for viewports, you could set one up that simply rendered backgrounded layers differently, alas. If they've just added hidden line, perhaps there will be a change in the way background layers get drawn, let's hope so - and if not let's draft a proposal because tweaking volume against a wireframe is damn near impossible, if not at least time consuming.


Edit-
While I'm new to Lightwave, I have seen an alarming number of instances where they seem to have forgotten to separate their display ( view ) mechanisms from their data manipulation layer on the backend. I'd say it's likely ( Without having read MattC's article yet ) that this is going to be a big goal of Newtek in the coming months with 8 point releases... Who knows.


-thomas

nixx
04-06-2004, 12:26 PM
One half-working way to do that is create a new weight map, assign 0% values to the geometry you want to "lock", and a 100% value to the geometry you want to edit. Then set all your tools to "Falloff > Weight Map", so anything you do will only affect the 100% values.

This has a few drawbacks, first is that not all tools have a Falloff option, and second, even those that do have it, you might need to use another falloff setting (like radial in the dragnet or magnet tool for example).

nick

tingham
04-06-2004, 12:51 PM
Originally posted by nixx
This has a few drawbacks, first is that not all tools have a Falloff option, and second, even those that do have it, you might need to use another falloff setting (like radial in the dragnet or magnet tool for example).


This brings up another thing that I've noticed; and one that would benefit tremendously from some solid splitting of view/controller code in the application. In lightwave, you generally can do just about anything you need to, but it involves some sort of workaround.
While these workarounds are completely valid in any given single session workflow. Use of the same workaround repeatedly across many different projects becomes a problem because eventually something is going to change, having the workaround limits the overall impact that those feature additions could have had otherwise. I'm all for being able to do the same thing six ways to sunday, but at some point you have to be able to rely on the core application to provide some of those workarounds as core features.

One example I suppose would be the use of channels as selection sets in photoshop of long ago. I know that in my own workflow, I wasn't using the newer selection tools for maybe two versions after they'd been incorporated as solid core features. I can't get those days back :)

Using weight maps sounds like a great methodology, but for those tools which don't support falloff the process breaks, furthermore, without an easy way to toggle falloff and weight map modes, I don't think it's as useful as just plain locking would be. You could set up a preset for "Layer 2 Backgrounded, rendered as solids, Layer 1 solids, foreground" and switch very quickly.

Another item I wanted to point out earlier was that it's just plain silly that you can't enable/disable subdivision as a view mode. I see that they've removed it from the undo` stack, but honestly how useful would it be to view the SubD in perspective, but not in ortho... I can't tell you how much time this would save for making Knifes, Shifts, and just about any other tool where you desire a clean mesh cage, under your subd surface.

-thomas

nixx
04-06-2004, 01:07 PM
Agreed, except for the last thing about SubDs. You can do that now. You can independently set your viewports to only show "Surfaces" or "Cages". So you 'd set your ortho views to only show "Cages", and your perspective to only show "Surfaces".

Ok, not exactly what you were after, but very very close I 'd say. So close that I wouldn't even consider it a workaround if you ask me, but just normal LW workflow.

(I think you can even map these settings as view presets for each pane - you know, the numpad keys)

But agreed on the rest :)

nick

tingham
04-06-2004, 01:24 PM
good point, but still a workaround. SubD doesn't actually affect the geometry of your model until you freeze it.

-t

theo
04-06-2004, 06:00 PM
I'm in your camp on this one tingham- workarounds seem to be a necessary evil in the world of software but my gut reaction to them is one of pure dislike. I am forced to use them more often than I care to admit but I find that the energy involved in developing workarounds sometimes just isn't worth the headaches that can potentially result.

I personally like the idea of lockable polys and points. A locked poly or point set will need to have the ability to be named separate form surfaces or parts, though, for deletion or selection purposes. Maybe have a Lock Poly/Point menu with naming priorities.

Obviously the background is cool to work rorm but I definitely think that if the Lock Poly/Point menu is undoable then a custom background scheme should be worked on to allow for that extra level of control.

tingham
04-06-2004, 06:18 PM
The most interesting thing in this case, is that having a "locked" attribute in my mind is a quintessential component for modeling using any kind of mesh. Lightwave does do a great job of aiding with selection, but there are just a few too many tools that don't require selection to work - it's just a bad thing getting worse.

-t

T-Light
04-06-2004, 08:38 PM
"A locked poly or point set will need to have the ability to be named separate form surfaces or parts" - Theo.

Wouldn't that over complicate things?

I understand the argument, especially for a complex mesh, but wouldn't it be easier to simply select the polygons you want to freeze - then hit a 'Freeze' button?

The frozen poly's(nurbs/lines/points) would obviously be a different colour to show their state.

Currently, I always use 'hide' to try and get around this problem, but it certainly isn't ideal.

If there was a freeze option written into LW before say the next .5 release, this simpler method should certainly be easier and quicker to implement. (aka If we push for it, we might just get it :cool: )

tingham
04-06-2004, 08:49 PM
We should definitely proceed in unison on this one! I would vote for improving any kind of control over which cps get changed and which don't. I'm still a relative LW newbie, so I think it's best if someone with more familiarity structures the formal argument on this item.

-t