1001 ways to use LW and Blender together

Tim Parsons

Well-known member
Good to know. I've only read the parts of the manual where I've been stuck. I had a "Blender for Dummies" book in my Amazon cart, but then took it out at the last minute. :) Probably still get it at some point for reading at the beach.
 

prometheus

REBORN
Good to know. I've only read the parts of the manual where I've been stuck. I had a "Blender for Dummies" book in my Amazon cart, but then took it out at the last minute. :) Probably still get it at some point for reading at the beach.

As for fur, rugs...since you do that occasionally as can be seen from images you posted, If you don´t apply that already?..I would suggest always just use quick fur(F3 and search for quick fur on newer blender versions)
Why?
Because you don´t have to go in to particle editor and choose stuff, and the material will already be setup for you..which it doesn´t if you manually just add particle emitter, then you would have to create new material and assign it...so Quick fur is better if you should decide to do rugs or fibers.
 

Tim Parsons

Well-known member
As for fur, rugs...since you do that occasionally as can be seen from images you posted, If you don´t apply that already?..I would suggest always just use quick fur(F3 and search for quick fur on newer blender versions)
Why?
Because you don´t have to go in to particle editor and choose stuff, and the material will already be setup for you..which it doesn´t if you manually just add particle emitter, then you would have to create new material and assign it...so Quick fur is better if you should decide to do rugs or fibers.

Yeah I did a rug with the Blender fur and it just picked up the material that was on the rug. Very nice and a lot less setup than with LW - except for the fact that you actually have to use Blender. :) I've really become comfortable with LW's shading system and Blenders just doesn't seem to stack up right now, so taking advantage of Blenders great rendering may not happen for me. I quit using Modo because of the Shader Tree - everything else in Modo is superior to LW fundamentally - but I went back to the kludge. :)
 

prometheus

REBORN
Yeah I did a rug with the Blender fur and it just picked up the material that was on the rug. Very nice and a lot less setup than with LW - except for the fact that you actually have to use Blender. :) I've really become comfortable with LW's shading system and Blenders just doesn't seem to stack up right now, so taking advantage of Blenders great rendering may not happen for me. I quit using Modo because of the Shader Tree - everything else in Modo is superior to LW fundamentally - but I went back to the kludge. :)

As for Lightwaves shading system, I do not grasp here exactly why it is more comfortable, is it quality or feature wise, (as such I do not see much of difference other than perhaps an upperhand for blender for certain materials)
But as for working with a surfacing panel and texturing, yup..I prefer working with that kind of UI than how it is structured in blender, it´s harder to get an overview, harder to copy and paste materials, and by default not as nice preset system as Lightwave has.
If you care to ellaborate a bit more on why blenders materials doesn´t stack up..I would listen to that and take notes.
And as marander also said I, didn´t, and don´t like modos shader tree either.

To me I find myself being irritated by the scrolling of the materials in blender, and ways to select and multicopy or multi edit surfaces, also VPR in lightwave to choose the materials by just clicking, it´s not there in blender.
further notes, you acces nodal material editor a bit easier in lightwave I think, cause it opens it as soon as you enter node edit, while in blender you have to setup or have a default workspace with shader editor active for an object, maybe that´s not a big deal and
such, but it reduces the workspace since it needs to have both shader editor active in one window, and viewport cycles for instance, these windows are dependend on their respective scale and isn´t floating, while in lightwave it´s a matter of keeping the vpr fully in one viewport, unchanged no matter how the floating window is managed by a move, or minimizing it, or tab hide and make visible, I actually prefer it that way than constantly dragginb blender windows.

Within any nodal editor though, I find it´s much more pleasent to work with in blender, rerouting which you cant in lightwave, muting nodes which you cant in lightwave, zooming to a much better zoom level..which is just too poorly in Lightwave.
Plus For Lightwave nodes ..is that it has much more node stuff to work with, as well as fractals, and also..I really like the left list where the various sections of nodes are, and search filtering etc..it is better than blenders I think.

Don´t forget to activate material vx library in blender addon preferences, so you can add your own preset materials, it´s not as slick as Lightwave´s though, then there are some other addons as well, but can be slow to use, I have to check out more about what´s there though.

I must correct myself about windows in blender, you can of course for some properties panel, right click and choose area and then duplicate area to new window, that will create a new FLOATING window from let´s say the outliner..then or the right side properties panel you can change that to be a shader editor, or focus on material in that window, it´s quirky though.
In the top part of properties you can then check that pin icon to have the material section only in focus.
That´s the closest to Lightwaves popup surface window I think.
 
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prometheus

REBORN
Thanks for that kryslin, I still haven´t installed that though..but I will.

I just found out that lw curves comes in nicely, converted directly to blender curves when I used Lightwave 2015.3 and save out as lwo and use the lwo 2 importer for blender, then open the lwo in blender 2.83.
Now this was great, it means I can just go to the curves and adjust depth (image 3) and I will have shape curves that I can select end points and adjust radius in one go.
If I want that to be a mesh to sculpt on, I would just convert it to a mesh.

But not only that, I could also use hairnet and just select the curves, the headmesh and use hairnet from curves, voila..works without fuzz.

Now in this case I made the spline curves with the lightwave plugin splinerator, I had to track that down with the wayback machine though, when sent to blender it creates yet another layer for one point poly vertexes, so those are not necessary and can just be deleted before applying hairnet.
But standard made curves in lightwave works as well.
Now this means I really do not have to convert the spline curves in lightwave by using strandmaker on them, or select the curves in edgemode and copy and paste..which will make them polyedges instead of curves.



lwo curves to blender.jpg




Just testing, so nevermind some mesh intersection ..since there is no collision grooming tool in lightwave, that will have to do for a test, in blender you have deflect emitter when comb grooming to avoid that.
 
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lwanmtr

Lwanmtr
There's a lwo2 importer for blender 2.8x-2.9x? I've been using 2.79 when I need to import a lwo into blender.
 

prometheus

REBORN
If there's Japanese, could it be the one at the bottom of this web page?

http://www.neko.ne.jp/~asagi/P2P/Plugins/blender.html

I've never tried this one. I didn't know if it used Maya as an intermediary.

It´s him, but the version number, not sure, since that is the only version available on that site, download and check version number, mine says differently in the preference tab, unless that is the actual number presented once installed.
Zipfile and text info says v.0114
my preference info of the plugin says 0.02

And I am not sure I downloaded it there from that site or github.

Edited, checked my blender addons folder ..and the zipfile is v0.144 so it is probably that one for sure, the extracted folder consists of several py scripts, and among them curves.
so it should be the right lwo importer for this, just download and install, and both 2015 and 2019 and above should be able to export any lw spline curve, converted to blenders curve format, as long as you export to 2015 lwo format.




lwo importer.jpg


Direct file..
http://www.neko.ne.jp/~asagi/P2P/Plugins/maya/LoadLWO_0114.zip

Site..
http://www.neko.ne.jp/~asagi/P2P/Plugins/blender.html

I also think someone made a translate menu for the japanese signs, but I don´t recall where that is.

The best thing about it, it retains curves by automaticly converting it to blender curves, and also non destructively to be able to change curve geometry thickness/depth, animation, change handles, radius on selected handles/points for tapering effects, all none destructively as pointed out, and you can do so on multiple curves at once, which is something you can´t do natively in lightwave an not with any free lw plugin either, the only other contender I see would be lw cad ..maybe, or curve form from pixtrix ..If his free version was limited to only one curve and a payed version would be able to do that.
 
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lwanmtr

Lwanmtr
I tried that plugin, but it doesnt want to load any lwo into blender 2.91..I made sure to export 2015 lwo too.
 

prometheus

REBORN
I tried that plugin, but it doesnt want to load any lwo into blender 2.91..I made sure to export 2015 lwo too.

But we are not supposed to use 2.91, I made that very clear what lw version I used, the later is still more developing phase I would say, but anyway..the development phase and pace of blender is such that you need to have some older versions installed, plugins..and especially plugins that covers lightwave pipelines are even more proned to not being on the top of the fast spaceship development.
This is the version you need, may work with some later as well, but this is the one I have tested it on...

Blender 2,83 beta..
version: 2.83 (sub 15), branch: master, commit date: 2020-04-29 19:35, hash: cd833d887995, type: Release
build date: 2020-04-29, 21:13:36

So if you want it to work, just download that version and use that, not 2.91, the author also states it´s a 2.8 version plugin...so that was expected that it won´t work on 2.91.

I also have 2.92 alpha installed, but that is mostly for trying out new stuff.
 
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prometheus

REBORN
Just noticed that toggle lines from edges/polylines works just fine as well, so you could turn a hole mesh, a head or similar in to polyedges (select edges and copy...delete polys then paste the edges back int) then toggle lines to curves, save as lwo
and once imported in to blender, that line curve object will consist of many curves, fully editable by just adjust depth on all curves at once, so that is pretty nice.

if you would to import it as only polylines and edges, you need to use skin modifier, and as such you can use intersecting lines, fused point ends etc, but it will be a bit denser slower to work with, and you need to know how to scale the skin and mark root to adapt the skin to All loose poly edges.

And yes, LW 11 hould work just as fine I think.
 
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prometheus

REBORN
And Layout Fiberfx created strands, polygonize to make mesh strands and send them to blender for curve creation works nicely too.

1. Create the fibers on a simple sphere mesh in Layout, keep hair density low for testing, like 0,1% or so, give it some styling gravity depending on your time to do so:)
2. right click on the fiberfx menu sphere object and polygonize, set it to 1 side only, leave everything else as it is.
3. save out that resulting mesh object.
4. Open in modeler, select the strands in edge mode and copy them, delete the polygons, and then paste the edges back from the clipboard, now we have polyedges.
5. Hit "w" for statistics and select 1 point vertexes and delete those.
6. Toggle lines to curve with evenflows toggle line.
7. Save out to lwo 2 format

8 Import to blender and just go to the curves geometry tab and increase depth on all curves in one go, I would suggest to go in to edit mode, select all, then use select/deselect first..then go to mean radius and scale, this will taper the curves but not influenced on the very first end of all curves, you can also instead of selecting all in the beginning, just go with deselect last and scale mean radius, that will scale taper the ends only at the end parts and not propagate the scaling over the whole curve length.
Now..it seems that blender recognizes lw curves in flipped curve direction, but I am not sure on this.


LayoutFiberfx_polygonize_2BlenderCurves.jpg
 

prometheus

REBORN
And if you want to use fiberfx twist, braid etc...You Have to have initial mesh strands, so if you only work in layout, you would have to create the main fibers first with some gravity perhaps, then polygonize those, then pick that result and grow new fibers on those, and then you can twist and braid style it, it doesn´t work directly on a first layer of grown fibers that aren´t polygons.

So here´s yet another sample of that with braid twist, then saved out and in modeler converted to curves by edge selecting and pasting back and toggle curves, saved out as lwo2 and in blender just adding depth and scaling some of the curve ends...

Instead of working with the curve shape and bevel depth, I could of course just as well make them particle hair with hairnet and hair from fibers, the former method is better suited if you need poly hair, maybe to sculpt or print etc, and the latter method is for realistic hair rendering obviously.(not shown here)



braid_twist.jpg
 

chunderburger

Active member
Blender 2.8 LWO export

http://www.ewocprojects.be/lwoexport.html

exports mesh objects in the .lwo Lightwave format. When you
enable this addon, an option is added to the File->Export menu.
It supports meshes, materials, uvs, vertex colors, weights and shapekeys(endomorphs).
Textures are not saved in the file, but referenced by relative filename.
 
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