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View Full Version : Is Lightwave a problem child?



Lord Snarebotto
04-26-2006, 02:03 AM
I just recently purchased Lightwave. While fiddling about learning things, I've noticed that when using modeler, every time I create an object (a sphere, cube, whatever) it gets "attached" to every other object on the screen. More specifically, it doesn't seem to create these as seperate objects.

Now, I also own 3DS Max and trueSpace, and I've used a few other apps, as well. All of the other applications create each object as a seperate entity, and selecting each one is very easy - you just click on it. If I create a box, then create another box, they are each seperate meshes, with unique names and transforms/coordinates.

I like that way of doing things. It is logical. In fact, the Lightwave way of doing things, in this respect, is quite cumbersome, not at all intuitive, and forces me to do extra steps not required by other 3D applications, especially in the selection and transformation of these objects.

So, have I bought into a problem-child? Are there more of these cumbersome ways of doing things in Lightwave?

FredyN
04-26-2006, 02:29 AM
Hi,
LW is managing object with layers like Photoshop.
every part of a object you want to manipilate/animate put in a separate layer

Lord Snarebotto
04-26-2006, 02:47 AM
I got that part FredyN, and that's my point: who needs layers? I'm really trying to find a motivation behind this way of doing things.

I've been creating 3D models for maybe 13 or 14 years now, so I'm not exactly a beginner. The layers thing is a 'layer of complexity', as for most modelling tasks, it makes you do more work. More keystrokes/mouse gestures all the way down the line. I'm wondering what the upside of this complexity might be...

FredyN
04-26-2006, 03:08 AM
layers are good for(IMHO):
- one obj with more layers - for IK - modeling in one, animate separate,
- in animating (BIG scenes) - you can make invisible unimportend obj when you animate (speed up the work) or make the work well-arranged (the same for modeling).
- Layers are used in boolean operation

for more work - you can parent one layer to other (like linking in PHOTOSHOP or AfterFX) and you have to animate only the one obj

or you can save every obj as separate file :)

(may be it was so because of separate modeler an layout)

walfridson
04-26-2006, 03:32 AM
make the work well-arranged (the same for modeling).
Think thats the big one :)

Castius
04-26-2006, 04:56 AM
It sounds like the things are cumbersome based on your habits. To take advantage of Lightwave to the fullest you will need to understand its workflow.

I'll try to give you an example.

First you need to understand that when working in modeler you are always working on a model subobjects. So lets say for example you make two spheres. If you were modeling in max you would make two sphere move them where you wanted them. At that point you can either model each sphere by themselves or you can merge them. In this case we will merge them. Once they where merges and you wanted to edit them you would need to enter the subobject mode elements. You then select the elements you want and move it.

In Lightwave you can work in many different ways. So lets do the same thing in LW.

So we start a new model. You make one sphere. From this point we can make a decision. If we know we are going to edit these two sphere allot separately. I would go to the second layer and make the second sphere there. But I can easily edit the two sphere together by selected both layers. I can easily select one of those sphere with a tool called select connected "]". This is basically the same thing as selecting elements in max. To use that you select a polygon or point of one of the spheres and hit "]". It will then select all polygons connected to that one polygon or point. Or since we have them split in layers. I can just select one layer with a sphere and movie it. (Itís important to know that in lightwave if nothing is selected that means everything is selected.)

While Iím modeling I might only want to see the second layers as a reference. You just click on the bottom part of the layer button and make it a background layer.

Layers are not just for organizing. They can be used to boolean or stencil shapes on to other objects. And other aspects of modeling using curves. But seting certain layers as background layers.

Also curves in LW they are incorporate into a model as if they are just another polygon. This means polygon and curve can share the same points. This will be something you might not be used to from a max background.

There are many aspects to modeling in Lightwave that give it its advantage. You are going to have to forget a lot of what you know of max and just focus on LW. In order to really get the most out of it

zapper1998
04-26-2006, 05:46 AM
I just recently purchased Lightwave. While fiddling about learning things, I've noticed that when using modeler, every time I create an object (a sphere, cube, whatever) it gets "attached" to every other object on the screen. More specifically, it doesn't seem to create these as seperate objects.

Now, I also own 3DS Max and trueSpace, and I've used a few other apps, as well. All of the other applications create each object as a seperate entity, and selecting each one is very easy - you just click on it. If I create a box, then create another box, they are each seperate meshes, with unique names and transforms/coordinates.

I like that way of doing things. It is logical. In fact, the Lightwave way of doing things, in this respect, is quite cumbersome, not at all intuitive, and forces me to do extra steps not required by other 3D applications, especially in the selection and transformation of these objects.

So, have I bought into a problem-child? Are there more of these cumbersome ways of doing things in Lightwave?


Me also, but after learning LightWave's workflow, wow what a differance, LW is so much easier than TrueSpace. Nothing against TS, but there is a major diff between the apps as far Workflow, and LW's Workflow is so much Faster once u get use to it.. after a few months u will love the program...

:lightwave

Michael

SCS5
04-26-2006, 05:58 AM
I got that part FredyN, and that's my point: who needs layers? I'm really trying to find a motivation behind this way of doing things.

I've been creating 3D models for maybe 13 or 14 years now, so I'm not exactly a beginner. The layers thing is a 'layer of complexity', as for most modeling tasks, it makes you do more work. More keystrokes/mouse gestures all the way down the line. I'm wondering what the upside of this complexity might be...

Lightwave is full of "quirks" like this. should you be able to just click on an object and move it?YES! Should you have to build a complex object with 50 Layers? NO! You should be able to just select parts of an object in Layout in the SAME LAYER & MOVE TI, You should be able to animate that complex object with out having to group all 50 layers! I've been pushing to simplify the work flow for the last couple of years. They are just starting to make changes to the work flow now. There are dozens of duplicate tools in Modeler that need to be combined, tons of plugins and core tools in Layout that Don't work together, & you have to CONSTANTLY jump back & forth between Modeler & Layout to make or modify the model and animate those changes! Things that you can Animate in other apps with a couple of mouse clicks take lots of extra steps in Lightwave! In Newtek's defense, the Modeler IS very good, but it DOES need refinement! Hopefully the 9X cycle will FINALLY speed up this very cumbersome and slow work flow!

BeeVee
04-26-2006, 06:58 AM
Well, you can move one of the spheres of two on a layer?, just select a single poly on it and hit ] to select all the others on that sphere then hit t to move it?* Modeler's way of working with "nothing selected==all selected" has always worked wonders for me and I feel lost when using other apps in the same way.

B
* Being LightWave there are also loads of other ruses, such as if your spheres have different surfaces, you can select by surface, or use the drag tool with falloff, etc...

omeone
04-26-2006, 07:09 AM
...such as if your spheres have different surfaces, you can select by surface

how would you go about doing that then?

.. is their a way to filter selections then, for want of a better word, of course....



:D

SCS5
04-26-2006, 07:21 AM
In Polygon Mode, go to Statistics, under the "surf" option, select + or - to select or de-select

Wonderpup
04-26-2006, 07:22 AM
Hi Lord Snarebotto,

I felt exactly the same way when I first moved from Max to Lightwave- but stick with it, once you get into Modelers workflow you will never want to go back. These days when I model in Max it's like trying to pick my nose with boxing gloves on- :D

Weetos
04-26-2006, 07:56 AM
Don't forget you can also define Parts, which may be distinct from surfaces and are easily selectable from the statistics panel. Works like a charm for me

Captain Obvious
04-26-2006, 07:57 AM
It's not that Lightwave does it "the wrong way," it's you who need to adapt to LW's particular workflow. A workflow that I prefer over "the other kind," by the way. In Modeler, polygons are just polygons. There are no "objects," there are just vertices and polygons, and you can edit them however you darn well feel like.

Bog
04-26-2006, 08:26 AM
Having been using LW for A While Now, any other modelling app feels hideously clunky and tortuous to use, especially on large models with many entities comprising them. Layers are a very powerful tool - they can be used for organising the parts of a large model (a task that can also be done, as stated, by Surface Name or by defining Parts, both managed with the statistics panel (shortcut key "w")), they can be used for setting up heirarchical animations (if you open your Layers panel and doubleclick a layer, you'll see you can set it's parent), and each layer can have it's own independant pivot point (View tab, Layers group, Pivot button), so an articulated robot arm can be entirely created in one .lwo file, with each segment's swivels made automagically when it's loaded into Layout.

The Layers system also gives you a highly controllable ability to make your own tools - the Drill and Solid Drill functions let you use background layer objects as templates for surface and geometry creation. Placing curves in background layers allows for powerful extrusion and cloning. Objects can be combined via Boolean options in four seperately useful ways.

There's so much Right with Modeler's layer system that any other way of working - once you start to use it properly - feels half-baked and ill considered.

That's my tuppen'th anyway. I can see how it might be confusing to a new user who doesn't actually realise what the tools are for. I'm starting to think I've been too humble all my life - whenever I've come across something I didn't understand, I always asked "What am I doing wrong?" or "How do I use this?" rather than just asking if the software was broken. Must be me...

RonGC
04-26-2006, 10:09 AM
Layers are your best freind when dealing with multiple objects. If working on an object that will be highly detailed i will load my greeble set into seperate layers. This gives me dozens of objects on their own layers which i can cut and paste to my main model. The beauty is that i can have the greebles invisible until i need one then select that layer to access it.

Trying to work without layers you would have so much clutter it would be hard to see what your selecting. Also i dont have to repeat loading over and over again for various greebles, i just arrange them to layers once then save that layered set out for use any time in the future with a single load.

Makes life easy. When dealing with many parts. This is a major time saver with layers.

Ron

Qslugs
04-26-2006, 10:33 AM
Wow, someone complaining about layers. That my friend is a feature :)

How about a real argument like integration of modeler and layout!!!

Oops... did I say that?

prospector
04-26-2006, 06:56 PM
I hope not...them's fitin words

Bog
04-27-2006, 12:30 AM
the one thing that LW has over 3ds max is its modeling.

And rendering. Don't forget the rendering. ;)

toby
04-27-2006, 01:12 AM
And rendering. Don't forget the rendering. ;)
And workflow speed.
And stability.
And it doesn't take over your whole system.
And this community!

Bog
04-27-2006, 01:44 AM
It's the "What have the Romans ever done for us?" sketch all over again...

;)