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How to edit a texture


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I have been through three manuals and searched this forum for an answer to a very simple question. The following sentence is from the VW manual:

1.From the Resource Browser, select the texture to be changed, and then select Edit from the Resources menu.

I cannot find the Resources menu. I have the following menus at the top of the program screen: File Edit View Modify Model AEC Tool Text Window Help. No Resources menu. I have tried right clicking on a texture and double clicking.

I feel like an idiot spending $$$ on manuals and then having to come here for answers. I appreciate the help I get here.

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Hey Joe, What are you doin' with that manual in your hand? Sorry I couldn't resist... Okay some answers: First, the Resource Browser ("RB") is NOT a menu but a palette. If it's not already open in your workspace, you can make it appear by going to the MENU ITEM WINDOW>PALETTES>RESOURCE BROWSER. In the RB, the second pulldown list will have the name of the file(s) you are working on at the top, then under that a list of all the available "favorite" resource folders. As you'll see, resources are many and varied, including Symbols, Hatches, Textures, etc. If you open the RB and scroll to your active file you can see which resources have been added to that file. If you scroll to one of the favorites you can see which resources are available... You can add a resource to a file by double clicking on that resource in the RB. Be aware that if any object is currently selected, that resource will "stick" to the selection(s). So if you want to add a resource to the file but not an object, double click it with nothing selected. You can also drag a resource onto an object, or into a drawing (like dragging a tub or shower into the bathroom). Okay, now I'll answer the original question: you can only edit a resource once it's in your drawing, and you do that by OPTION CLICKING on it in the RB. Remeber, VW's will not let you modify a resource that resides in its original favorites folder, only one that has been added to your drawing. Hope that helps. Let us know if you have further questions (and never be embarassed to ask. How else can you learn?) PC

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Thanks! The manual failed to mention that you have to load a texture into your drawing before you can edit it. If I want to alter the colour of a texture I guess I have to do it in a Photoshop kind of program then load it into the texture. The open gl view looks so grey, I am trying to brighten it up with some monochrome textures.

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To alter a texture's color you can use a shader. It's not a perfect solution but if you start with a whitish or grayish texture it's sort of doable. I often create my own textures for siding (and other things) by modeling the actual boards in the color I want, rendering them with shadows, exporting the image file, then re-importing the image to create a new texture. Have fun. Experiment ;-)

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The problem I am trying to address is that VW does not have the ability to show a pattern in hidden line. This makes my elevation views look like bad. I have to produce elevations during the design stage that look good but are drawings not renders. Sooo, I am experimenting. I do not want to explode everything to lines and fill the walls with patterns. This defeats the whole idea of creating a 3d model in the first place. If VW is going to sell itself as a BIM program the finished product must be a model and not a flat 2d drawing which may or may not represent the finished building. You lose all BIM integrity if you explode your model. Applying flat textures to building faces that may be at an angle to the viewer (roofs for instance) always looks like crap. If I can find a way to use textures to mimic patterns I can produce an elevation that looks like a professional drawing. So far I am not having a lot of success, but I have just begun experimenting. Problem is that when I bought into Vectorworks I thought this problem would have been addressed and I would just have to check out a tutorial or buy a how -to manual. I do not want to worry when I produce a set of plans whether the elevations reflect the latest changes in the plans. Using the 3d model to produce the elevations removes that worry. At the same time I want my drawings to look good. So I continue to experiment in my laboratory....

(I can't wait till I try to show shadows on my elevations) smile.gif

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Joe, yes, we ALL have those exact issues. Here's what I (and many others) do: I use a white (or light gray) texture for all my exterior surfaces (so that's basically the siding and roofing for example). This works well for 3d models. When I want to produce the 2d Elevations I use "layered" viewports. I make a Final Quality Rendered VP with shadow and all then I duplicate the VP in place (over the top of itself) and change the render mode in the duplicate to Hidden Line. Then I use the annotations to add heavier lines and clean stuff up, etc. This works well but ONLY if I am pretty precise with my model (because anything sloppy will really show). If you try it you'll see what I mean. The advantage of this technique is that it allows me to create my 2d elev's pretty much right from the model. The disadvantage is that if you are an "old-school" purist you may not like the graphic style.

There is another way: render the model in hidden line, then use the MODIFY>CONVERT COPY TO POLY's command. The advantage to this is that you are only using the model to trace over (basically), the disadvantage is that if you make changes you'll need to go through the entire elevation drawing process again (or at least make sure to chase all your changes through the whole set).

I like the *potential* for using 3d models to create 2d CD's, mainly because theoretically I only need to draw an object one time AND when I change something it is reflected everywhere (without needing to chase it). It isn't a perfect system quite yet, but it's really close. Let me know what you think...

Added: I'm sure there are other methods. Perhaps other users will chime in and enlighten us (all) with their favorite techniqes. The cool thing about VW's is that there are so many different ways to do what we do. Once you find one you like you'll make it part of your regular workflow....

Edited by CipesDesign
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I like your overlay technique! Thanks for sharing it. You are right that VW is very close to having the ability to easily use the 3d model for 2d plans. I think I can make something useful using overlays. If I create something worthwhile I'll post an image here. Thanks for the help!

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I have been having some success using the overlay method. I would post an image here but I can't believe you have to set up the image on a server.

I tried to apply the same technique to a model I have been working on and everything turns out gray-ish instead of white-ish. None of the classes are gray, nor is the lighting a gray colour. I cannot find the source of the gray. I even copied the sun position from my sample. Any ideas?

I am unclear about the best way to texture something. In the wall definition or the class definition? Which takes precedence? What layer do you put your lights in? Does it matter? Help, as always, is gretly appreciated.

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I am going to have to admit to some frustration here. I have four views of my model. I set one of the views up so there is an overlay of a hidden line and a rendered view. Looks great. I go to another view and set it up the same way. The hidden line view obscures the rendered view. How come this didn't happen with my other view? Who knows. So I decide to just copy the viewports and change the view from front to side. When I do that the viewport is completely blank. No model visible at all. Why does this happen? It never happens in the tutorials. There must be a logical reason for stuff but whenever I think I have a grasp of it things do not work as I had predicted.

I am also trying to figure out how to set up lights so that every view has the same shadows. I don't want some views to be in shade. This will require a Phd. in Vectorworks.

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1) Double check your rendering mode. Check to make sure there are actually only the two VP's you want, and not something else. 2) Changing the view can also "move" your model relative to your screen/veiwing angle. Zoom out (or use "fit to objects") and you'll find it. Note: if your model is at 0/0 in plan view, that is, centered on the "origin", it will hardly move at all. The further away from "center" it is, the more it will "move". 3) There are a couple ways to deal with lighting. If you truly want shadows on all sides (which is "fake") you could try creating more than one LAYER LINK (see the manual). Make sure there are no "Sun" lights in any of the "parent" layers first, then use the "set sun position" command in each of the Links. You will then have a different light source/angle for each of the links. I sometimes create a Link for elevations anyway because I find it easier than using stack layers, or model view, for this particular task. In addition to adjusting the ambient light of your design layers, you can also increase/decrease the ambient light of a particular VP by clicking on the "lighting options" button in the OIP. A note regarding the "set sun postion" command: If you run the command with nothing selected it will create a new (second, third, etc) light source. If, however, you select your exisitng light source first, then run the command, you will be modifying the existing/selected light. Be careful not to create "multiple suns" in your various different model layers (unless you want them or are designing homes in some other solar system. Ha ha.) Hope that helps-

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So I decide to just copy the viewports and change the view from front to side. When I do that the viewport is completely blank. No model visible at all. Why does this happen?

Is the original VP cropped? Sometimes the crop box interferes-delete it from the copied VP and you might be OK.

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I managed to correct the problem I was having with the viewports by editing the class that the viewport was on and making it transparent. There are so many ways of controlling visibility in VW it becomes a guessing game at some point.

The model is not at 0,0. I'll try to move it, but selecting everthing in the file is a challenge.

I want the shadows not as a sun study but to highlight the different planes of the building. This is not an unusual activity and is not really "fake". What I would like to be able to do is control whether a light affects a viewport. I should be able to put the light in a class and then turn that class off in a viewport. Alas this doesn't seem to work.

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I should be able to put the light in a class and then turn that class off in a viewport. Alas this doesn't seem to work.

Yes, this does work. Along with making sure the class in which the light resides is active, make sure it is in a layer that is active for that viewport also. I have separate classes for SE, SW, NE, and NW lights and turn them on or off depending on the elevation. The many levels of control in VW is its power but if you're not careful they can get out of control. Lighting is tricky, and I certainly haven't mastered it yet.

You can control the visibility of a viewport directly with the attributes palette instead of putting it into a class other than "None". The new viewport class may get inadvertantly turned off and you might not know why it's dissappeared. HTH

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