View Full Version : Beginner Tutorials

07-11-2003, 11:25 AM
I'm new to lightwave and I'm having trouble geting around the interface as it is quite different to what I am used to working with in Windows. There are loads of great tool listed down the side of the screen, but I can't find simple things like "select vertice" or "select face."

I've had a look on the tutorials page but I haven't found anything that addresses these basic functions yet. Can anyone point me in right direction?

07-11-2003, 12:09 PM
I would get any one of a number of books on LW. Even the original manual should get you started. Just go through from the beginning and it should point you in the right direction.

07-11-2003, 12:50 PM
If you want to select the points, look at the bottom of the screen in the modeler and you will see.
"Points ^G" [the ^ means you press "Ctrl" button on your keyboard plus the G] "Polygons ^H" "Volume ^J" [note: the shortcuts are the defults, and can be changed].

So the veritces is the same as Points. The Polygons are the same as the faces. And I don't know what they called "Volume" in Macs.
I think most of the other things are named mostly the same. They might have slight differences, just test and see...

07-11-2003, 02:41 PM
Thanks both of you.

I'm still struggling to get used to the interface. I'm only ising the Discovery Edition and it didn't come with a manual. I wouldn't mind buying a book, but I live in the Japanese countryside so getting one in English could take a while.

Selecting things is quite difficult. Points aren't too bad, but faces are nearly impossible, and selected faces are only highlighted in white which makes them hard to see. Also when slecting points and faces, isn't there an "ignore backface" option? I'm sorry if these seem like stupid questions.

Isn't there a help file? Where do I find it?

07-11-2003, 02:54 PM
This is the manual (in html format), plus a lot of additional material.


Hope this helps!

07-11-2003, 03:00 PM
You're at the Help file right here!

If you change the viewport from wireframe to shaded solid (upper-left corner of each viewport) it's easier to select faces, and you won't select the backfaces - or set it to 'wireframe shade' to make it easier to select points. In wireframe you must click on the edge of a polygon to select it.

Right-click to lasso points/polygons, "]" to 'select connected', "}" to 'expand' selection, "{" to shrink it

07-11-2003, 03:09 PM
Thanks MGuerra for the help. There is quite a lot to get through on that link, but I'm working on it. The support for this product is certainly top notch.


Thanks for that info. One more question. What if I DO want to select backfaces? This is usually more usefull when selecting points. Sometimes you only want to select the top point, and sometimes you want to select all the points under it as well. Can this be done?

07-11-2003, 03:15 PM
leave the display on wireframe, or have 2 viewports, one set to wireframe and the other set to shaded

Steve Warner
07-11-2003, 07:23 PM
Also, if you're getting into Modeler, I have a basic overview tutorial on my site:


Welcome to the LightWave community!


07-11-2003, 08:38 PM
Check the link in my signature below.

07-12-2003, 04:31 AM
Thanks for the warm welcome! I've had a brief look at those links. I'll go through them thoroughly later.

In the meantime, can anyone tell me simply how to make highlighted points and faces a different color before they drive me cross-eyed? :cool:

07-12-2003, 09:44 AM
A Russell,
NewTek has a bunch of great video quickstart tutorials on their site, such as navigating the interface.

If you're in Japan, there is a translation of my Inside LightWave books. Check out local stores (online) in that part of the world and see if they show up.

Dan Ablan
CD-ROM Training at www.3dgarage.com
(we ship to Japan :))

07-12-2003, 10:19 AM
Hello Dan Alban,

Funny thing, I was looking at your book on Amazon.com earlier today, and I saw it (the Japanese version that I don't want) at a computer shop I visited just a few hours ago. To tell the truth the reviews were so good I almost bought it on impulse, but I'm waiting to decide if I'll go with Lightwave or 3ds Max. If I do chose Lightwave I'll definitly buy your book.

I had a look at some of Newteks quickstart videos. They were sort of helpful.

So far Lightwave seems to be better value for money than 3ds Max, but I find it much harder to use. It doesn't look like it was designed for a Windows user at all. If I can get my head around the interface, and soon, I'll go with Lightwave. Until now I've only been using cheap, low poly modelers.

Newtek's customer support is much better than Discreet's. That's a consideration too. I just want to see if I can actually model anything in it. I spend almost all my time just trying to find which buttons to push.

07-12-2003, 10:29 AM
Glad you found it.

Trust me, LightWave is the way to go. I've used them all. I'm not sure why you think LW is not windows friendly - it plays fine with my computers :)

With Max, here's the problem - too many goofy icons. Have fun figuring out what they all mean. Sure, you can hold the mouse over and wait for the popup to tell you.... but really....
LightWave has the best online community for support, answers, galleries, and more. LightWave 8 coming soon will be even better. And, Max's plug-ins are too damn expensive. LightWave's external third party plugs not only are extremely useful, they're cheap! Many are even free. How free? Go over to www.flay.com and look at the archives. Crazy.

Here's something else, LightWave has more out of the box than Max hands down. And, it's cheaper. In order for Max to do what LightWave does natively, you need to spend a good deal on 3rd party plug-ins.

But don't take my word for it. Ask here on the forums.

Dan Ablan

07-12-2003, 11:40 AM
It looks pretty good alright. I'll have another go at modeling in Lightwave tomorrow. So far it's slow going.

The cheapy modelers I've been using were more like 3ds Max in layout and the way they worked, which is probably why I find Max easier to adjust to. However, as you say, I could save a lot of money and get a great modeler if I can just get used to Lightwave's layout and workflow.

I'll try out some of those tutorials you've all been posting for me tomorrow. Thank you all very much.