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About SamIWas

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    Entertainment Lighting Programmer/Technician
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    Atlanta, GA

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  1. Yep...I got ya. I still want my symbols to be able to take on Spotlight info, so I'm making them "hybrid" symbols for now. They have a spotlight light in them, but for some renderings, I'll turn that off and turn my visual light on. Curious...how do you focus them?
  2. I've been working on some objects with a fresnel lens, and am using an imported image texture for the lens. The texture is applied to an extruded regular 16-sided polygon (edges will be hidden with other geometry). I've tried numerous different mapping styles (auto-align plane seems to work best) and tried drawing just at center or in place. I've had mild success if I draw at the drawing origin, but if not, it's a crap shoot. The image below contains a rendered fresnel. The last time I worked on this file, the lens was centered and looking great (after spending FOREVER getting it centered). When I opened it again, the texture was offset. The second image shows several polygons with the texture appleid. All three have exactly the same texture settings, but they're all wildly different. I've tried with both the Z-origin option on and off, and it's just killing me. Is there something I'm missing, or does Vectorworks just randomly plop textures on wherever the hell it feels like? I'm used to Cinema 4D where texturing is a breeze. And this is precisely why I typically don't texture my 3D models...I just don't understand how Vectorworks determines texture coordinates.
  3. Thanks, Andrew. This is exactly what I thought. I have added light sources into my symbols for visualizations not related to stage looks, and put them into a class of their own so I can turn them off at other times. They're bright enough to glow the lens, but not bright enough to put much out on stage. One s the Spotlight default light and the other is my custom one. The spotlight one looks ridiculous, even moreso when the pivot point isn't in the center of the head!
  4. I'm getting deeper into modifying my 3D fixture symbols. I want to make sure I'm correct in the thought that Spotlight lighting fixtures contain a default simple spotlight, and that's it. You can't really customize that light too much? I've gotten some results I like by placing a spotlight object inside the fixture, but then it's not controllable from the visualization palette. I don't mind the automatic light for some things, but when it's a tiny spot in the middle of a large lens, it looks ridiculous. Trying to find the best balance. What are others doing?
  5. Make sure you have "Export Plug-In Objects" checked. I just tested again, and truss will not export if that option is deselected. This is in Cinema 4D with a straight VW export.
  6. If you are looking to import patch info into an existing plot, you'll run into the problem of spotlight not knowing which info goes to which instrument. If you want to just import data, and have lights placed via the 3D coordinates from MA, this is possible, but will likely not place actual symbols since exported fixture names might not match symbols in the document. In short...yes, it can be done. But, it's not straightforward or automatic.
  7. As Rob said, the clamp needs to be a part of your symbol. Accessories typically add to the lens/color frame of a fixture.
  8. Hmmm...I just checked on my setup with VW 2020 SP3.1 on mac. Exported a 3ds with straight truss, curved truss, and a few other random objects. Imported into Cinema 4D with no problems. Everything is there.
  9. You got me! I knew I had seen the mesh smoothing option before in the OIP, but I thought it had been under "shape". So, when I didn't see it, I figured something was wrong. It was in the render tab. That seems to have fixed it. Thank you!
  10. I am modeling some objects and importing meshes for some parts that I don't want to model in VW (I don't want to lose all my hair). The mesh imports just fine and looks great, but I need to change the class of some of the meshes. While this works, it doesn't change the underlying structure's class. This means that the mesh is essentially two classes, which is undesirable. But, if I go into change the internal class, the mesh loses smoothing settings, and looks bad afterwards. I trued using subdivision, but it smoothed things way too much. There is probably a way to deal with it, but wondering if there's anyway to change the underlying class of a mesh without destroying the smoothing angles? Right is the imported mesh, while left is after changing the class inside.
  11. I like the new DMX addressing options in Spotlight, especially the new Universe/Address field. I have always preferred my printed DMX addresses to have three digits, so that a fixture with universe 4, address 86 would come out as 4/086 (or 4.086 in my format). But Spotlight automatically changes digits to only what is required. For me personally, it just doesn't look as good. Maybe just a checkbox in Spotlight settings with an option "Use 3-digit DMX addresses" and an update to the code to display it would be helpful.
  12. I will probably try that tonight. I can make the label legends fine. It's editing their settings later that becomes an issue. Luckily, this is not something I have to do very often.
  13. Well, I hope that service pack comes soon. I'm in a different file now, and started creating label legends from scratch. Once I got past that "about ten" limit, the new ones started failing. 2020 isn't going to be very useful if I can't put legends on my fixtures.
  14. I have done it both ways. The resource manager is where I duplicated them first, and found them broken. So I tried from within the manager. That also did not work.
  15. In VW2020 SP 2.1 on a mac, whenever I duplicate a label legend, it breaks inside the label legend manager. I can still arrange legend through editing the 2D components. But if I choose the legend in the manager and try to edit the fields, the base symbol is blank and selecting it says "The resource list is empty". When I cancel out of the window, there is a vector script error which says "Error on line=1: _1979 _1982 - Index outside array limits." It appears that label legends can no longer be duplicated then modified. This is a serious workflow issue for large files.


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