View Full Version : UV for Newbie

03-11-2009, 05:17 AM
Hello everyone
This is my first post here. I'm new to Lightwave, coming from Modo, which I still prefer (for now) for modeling, but I got Lightwave for its flexibility and render capabilities. Also, most of what's been announced for Modo 401 is already on LW 9.6, so...

I'm slowly getting a grip of the material editor and the hundreds of different windows that you can open ;-), but I haven't really understood how LW works regarding UVs.. Is there an unwrap tool ? Can someone point me to a thread or video where that's explained?

Thanks in advance

PS : Here's my first try with LW, combining the Basketball tut and the tennisball FFX tut...http://i85.servimg.com/u/f85/11/15/41/92/basket10.jpg

03-11-2009, 07:30 AM
Cool texturing. Not entirely realistic, but it looks really good. :thumbsup:

As for UV mapping in LW... well now, that's an interesting subject. Not that it can't be done, but...

You might as well plan on keeping modo around for that. ;)
You can do *basic* UV-ing in LW easily enough and of course if you're into it, you can always spend hours dragging points around manually...

But there's absolutely nothing that you can do in Modeler for UV's that you can't do more easily in modo. And that's to say that most of what you can do in modo can't be done in Modeler, far as UV mapping goes. Modo has far more versatile UV tools built in. And the cool thing is, you can do your UV's in modo and export as .lwo.

Having said that, here's a link to some excellent *free* UV mapping plugins for Modeler: LINKY. (http://homepage2.nifty.com/nif-hp/index2_english.htm)
They come in 32 and 64 bit for Windows and for Mac too. I think pretty much everyone here who does UV maps in LW uses them.

There are some tricks you can do in Modeler and even Layout to make UV's with, a few rather ingenious workarounds to LW's glaring UV deficiency, but the plugins above are alot simpler to deal with.

03-11-2009, 08:04 AM
Thanks ! I'll check out Linky.

You mean that if I export my model from Modo as a Lwo, I export my UV maps as well ?

03-11-2009, 08:13 AM
You mean that if I export my model from Modo as a Lwo, I export my UV maps as well ?

Absolutely. Works perfectly. :)

03-11-2009, 09:52 AM
Groovy :)

03-11-2009, 02:10 PM
download these free UV tools, they help alot.


- Derrick

03-11-2009, 02:37 PM
Well, I did download them, but can't install them... I put them in the plugins folder, and went to utilities>add plugin, but I get a message saying that the file is not recognized...

I'm on a Mac (Intel), BTW, and downloaded the Mac versions.

03-11-2009, 02:51 PM
The PLG tools don't work on the MacUB (Universal Binary) version. You can (like I do) keep a copy of the MacCFM (non-Intel) version on your HD just for the PLG tools though. Keep in mind that the CFM version will be much slower than the UB version. And I do crash quite a bit when using the PLG tools. But for now it's a decent solution. Or you can UV in modo.

Also, keep in mind that any plugins for the MacUB version will need to end in a ".plugin" extension for them to work. The CFM would end in a ".p" extension but they will need to be Mac plugins as the Windows plugins will not work on a Mac. At least in 9.6 and earlier.

03-11-2009, 03:51 PM
OK, I'll keep Modoing my UVs. Thanks for the answers.

03-11-2009, 03:55 PM
just cross your toes allot using the CFM version.... It helps, I don't know why but it does...

03-11-2009, 04:58 PM
Oops, sorry about that, Matelot, I forgot that the PLG tools didn't work with the MacUB.

03-11-2009, 08:57 PM
As a modo and LW user as well I gotta say this: I usually get better UV's with LW and the PLG tools than with modo, which kinda blows me away cause I think that is one of modo's strong points.

03-12-2009, 12:41 PM
any tutorials explanations for what the plugins do and how to work them?

03-12-2009, 01:21 PM
any tutorials explanations for what the plugins do and how to work them?

There used to be an English manual somewhere on that site, but I can't find it now. Maybe someone else knows where it is, where it went to.

If you have any specific questions though, I'll help if I can. I don't know offhand of any tutorials though, but I bet they're out there in internet land if you Google them. Also, those plugins have been discussed *alot* here in these forums, for the past several years.

03-12-2009, 08:21 PM
The PLG tools are nice and easy, you have to use it edge selection functions and not modelers, but it's simple and does a good job. It will unwrap every part if you have different surface names or different islands. The relax functions are simple, if you do any unwrapping in modeler for characters/organics it a great tool. Haven't used it for atlas stlye mapping, but I heard its good with that.

The thing to get used to with UV creation in modeler, is that I find myself breaking my model up into different parts, so when I unwrap them the maps don't strech all over the uv space. For example, if you unwrap a fish, I use the PLG Unwrap/relax for the body/head, (like gutting a fish) and have all the fins unweld (or cut and paste the fin parts) in the same/or different layers. For the fins I will just use planer mapping with manual zero scaling in the UV Map tool so it doesn't force the fit of the UV space and makes it the fin the correct 3D space size. After I'm done I weld the poly back together and I'm done!

Good Luck and welcome!:D