RaySupreme Tutorial
Posted by: Markus Moenig on 08 Apr 2013 04:05 AM
Views: 3950


RaySupreme


V1.0


Tutorial

Introduction

3-dimensional development software has evolved in both sophistication and capabilities over the years. It is now possible to create photo-realistic models and fantastic scenes. However, the basic techniques for modeling and rendering haven’t changed along with the capabilities.

RaySupreme introduces a fundamentally new approach to 3D development, Text-to-3D, the creation of 3D environments from either written text or spoken words. RaySupreme combines Text-to-3D (T-t-3D) with conventional modeling and rendering techniques to deliver a robust creation tool for creating 3D models, and is the development environment for the soon-to-be-released Text-to-3D.com website which will allow non-technical users to create 3-dimensional scenes and worlds just using text instructions.

This tutorial is designed to familiarize you with both the conventional and T-t-3D features of RaySupreme through a practical exercise, creating an armchair. We invite you to experience the power of RaySupreme and learn about the versatility of Text-to-3D.

Text-to-3D technology

The Text-to-3D engine was developed to allow anyone to create complex 3D scenes using natural English language. This innovative and powerful system allows you to create the sort of complex 3D scenes and imagery that previously was only available to experienced 3D modelers and programmers.

By using ordinary text statements, you can create the scenes and objects that you envision. This makes 3D worlds accessible to anyone who can speak English. While we will examine Text-to-3D here, for more detailed information, consult the Text-to-3D Users Guide.

RaySupreme contains different sections which are specialized for particular tasks. Here we will be working in an area of the program called the Language Editor.

From the View menu at the top of the screen, choose Language Editor.

You will see the following screen when you launch the Language Editor.

We will be entering text in the Command Prompt, labelled above in yellow text. This is where we tell the Text-to-3D engine to build our world. Click inside the Command Prompt window with the cursor, and type “A table, a chair on each side of the table”.

Next, Click on the Process Language button, shown above.

You will notice that your table and chairs are placed into a scene and rendered, like magic!

This is great so far, but we are just getting started. Click on the Process Language button a second time. You will notice that a new choice of tables and chairs are placed into the scene.

With the Text-to-3D engine, you can designate a particular style of table, or you can be more vague with your language and random choices will be chosen for you.

Sure, this is impressive, but the innovation does not stop there. This time, add “It is 1928”. to the end of your text statement.

Hit the Process Language button again, and you will notice that table and chairs are chosen which are from that time period.

If you do not specify a year, the Text-to-3D engine will assume the current year. If you happen to specify a year, it will search the Database for choices which line up with your request.

3D Modeling

RaySupreme provides a complete set of modeling tools and features to complement the functionality of the Text-to-3D system. We have a large assortment of components available in the Database, but full freedom is given to RaySupreme users to model anything imaginable.

Everything begins with Primitives. Primitives are basic geometric shapes that can be adjusted to mimic objects in real life. Primitives have a set of features for each unique shape, so that the user can tailor these shapes to their liking.

In RaySupreme we have many different Primitives, and they have a large assortment of individual settings which allow for a large variety of flexibility. This all sounds good, but in order to truly communicate these ideas, we will need to get inside the program and begin working with them.

3D Modeling Part I – Getting started with Primitives

If you are still in the Language Editor from the last section, from the View menu at the top of the screen, choose Scene View.

When you first start the program, you will see the following screen…

This is the Scene View, one of the specialized layouts of RaySupreme

In the Scene View, we have something called the Browser Menu, which sits at the right side of the screen.

The Browser Menu allows us to quickly access many different types of tools to handle a range of tasks. We start out in the Project Browser when we launch the program. To start working with Primitives, we will need to Jump to the Objects Tab of the Browser Window.

So, let’s click on the Objects button, which is located in the Browser Menu at the right side of the screen..

Clicking on the Objects button brings us to the Object Templates screen of the Browser Window.

The contents of the Browser Window change depending on the current selection of the Browser Menu. We can also select what specific types of Object Templates are displayed with the Show: pull-down menu.

Here you can view the Primitives we can choose from.

Let’s click on the Cube Primitive heading in the Object Templates Window. The heading turns blue when selected.

With the Cube selected, you can also see some of the Parameters of the Cube in the window directly below the Object Templates Window. Primitives are flexible objects which can be configured differently depending on our needs. These Parameters allow for customization of our Primitives.

We are going to be creating a simple chair out of our Primitive. For this task, we will need a little more detail. The Face Elements Parameter allows us to easily put more detail into the objects we are working with.

Let’s adjust this Parameter up to 5 Face Elements per face. We can do so by using the Face Elements Slider, or by keying 5 into the Face Elements Text Field. Once this has been done, we have the relative amount of detail we are looking for.

We have configured the Cube Primitive to what we need to start with. So at this point, we need to create one. Double-click on the Cube Primitive heading, and a Cube Primitive will be placed in the middle of the Scene. If you are new to 3D, the Scene is the space in which we create our 3D objects.

Now we have our Cube, but we still have a few changes to make.

The Camera Viewport

Before we move on to further modifying our object, we could benefit from a better view of our Cube. In RaySupreme, we have four Viewports which allow us to view our Scene from different points of view.

We will focus on just the Camera Viewport (which is the upper-right one) for now.

Rotating the Camera Viewport

If you hold down the option key, and drag your mouse pointer in the Camera Viewport, you will rotate the point of view. You will Rotate the Camera upward by dragging the mouse downward, and Rotate the Camera to the right by dragging the mouse to the left. This inverse relationship takes a little getting used to but it becomes natural with practice.

Feel free to practice rotating the Camera Viewport, and finally settle on a view similar to the one pictured. This will help keep your point of view consistent with this guide.

Moving The Camera Forward

If we hold down the option key and drag the mouse pointer upward with a right-click, we will move the camera forward and closer to our Cube.

Panning the Camera

If we hold down the command key and left-click and drag the mouse downward and to the right, you will pan the Camera upward and to the left as shown. A camera pan moves the camera up or down.

This gives us a better view of our Cube for us to work with it, and has given you an introduction on how to manipulate the Camera Viewport.

Once you have made it this far, it’s a good time to save your Project File.

From the File menu at the top of the screen, choose Save As…

The Save As Dialog will come up.

Give your file a descriptive name and click on the Save button.

Now that we have learned to get a better view of our Cube, let’s continue onward.

3D Modeling Part 2 – Modifying our Cube

As it currently exists, our Cube is uniform in all dimensions. We will need a flatter “seat cushion” form to start with.

We will use the Scale Tool to accomplish this. At the upper-left portion of the screen we have the Transform Tools. These Transform Tools allow us to move and adjust our objects.

We will be interested in Scale in this case, and we will choose the Scale Tool, indicated in the following image by the blue arrow.

Once we have selected the Scale Tool, We will need to make a slight adjustment to our Cube.
You will notice that when we select the Scale Tool, the Scale Gizmo appears over our Cube.

We can use this Scale Gizmo to alter our Cube, but you will also notice that when the Scale Tool is selected, the Transform Tool Parameter Values are shown in the upper-right hand corner of the program.

This particular bit of information is displayed when a Transform Tool is chosen, in this case, the Scale Tool. It displays information about the object, in this case Scale.

You will notice at this time that the Cube has a Value of 1.000 for each Scale Text Field. You will also notice that each of these three text fields are color coded: red, yellow and blue. Each of these colors designate a particular direction of 3D Space. Next we will briefly discuss how 3D Space works.

About 3D Space

The following image shows an image you recall from math class, plotting points on an X and Y axis.

This is where we begin with our first two dimensions, X and Y. The X axis runs along the bottom of the graph and our Y axis runs along the left-hand side. When we mention a point in this 2D space, we call a coordinate citing the X axis Value followed by the Y axis Value. In the accompanying image, the X Value of two means we move to the right from zero to 2 on the X axis, and our Y Value of 3 means me move upward 3 on the Y.

When we make the transition to 2D from 3D we add the next axis of depth.

So, in 3D we describe how objects exist within these 3 Dimensions (or directions) of Space. Just as we have color-coded the Axis directions in the preceding illustrations, we have color-coded the Axis directions in RaySupreme. This makes it easy to know what particular direction you are working with at any particular time.

Scaling the Cube

Now that we understand 3D directions, it is easy to see how these directions correlate to the individual Values in the Transform Tool Text Fields in the upper-right corner of the screen.

We want our Seat Cushion to be much shorter along the blue Z-axis (the up direction), so we will be Scaling our object along the Z-axis with a Scale Parameter Value of .2 in the blue Text Field.

So, let’s enter .2 in the blue Text Field of the Scale Parameter in the upper-right portion of the screen and press the return key.

You will notice your Cube is Scaled down, and there is a Scale Value Parameter indicated in the lower left corner of the Viewport, this information also gives you feedback on the Scale Factor.

Make Editable

Once we have scaled our Cube down, we are at the limit of the edits we can perform on our Cube as a Primitive. To make revisions that are more detailed, we need to make our object editable. This gives us access to more powerful editing tools, but means that we can no longer make changes to our object with its Primitive Parameters.

At the left edge of the screen under the Transform Tools, we have the Available Tools toolbar. This toolbar changes based upon what we are currently working with. When our Cube is selected, there is the following icon available in the toolbar. If you have de-selected your Cube, click on it and you will see the following icon as well.

Let’s click on this icon, and our Cube will be made Editable.

You will notice that when your Cube is made Editable, the Tools button becomes highlighted in the Browser Menu, and the Tools Browser Window shows an assortment of Tools which can be applied to our Cube.

Polygon Editing Modes

When we are working with our objects, we have different ways of manipulating them. There are different Modes to Polygon Editing, and we will be choosing the Edit Faces Mode.

Let’s click on the Edit Faces Mode icon located in the top toolbar, indicated above by the blue arrow.

Edit Faces Mode

In Edit Faces Mode we can select and make modifications to individual Faces of our object which has previously been Made Editable.

Selecting Multiple Faces

While in Edit Faces Mode, we can select multiple Faces by holding down shift and clicking on the desired Faces with the mouse pointer in the Viewport. Take your time getting accustomed to selecting multiple Faces with the mouse pointer and shift.

When you are comfortable with making selections, select the Faces as indicated above.

Now we will apply the Extrude Face Tool to our selected Faces. An Extrude builds onto the geometry of our object by a selected distance in a single direction.

Click on the Extrude Face Heading in the Tools Browser window, and you will be able to see the specific Parameters of the Extrude Face Tool which we can set according to our needs.

We can adjust the particular Extrusion amount by the slider or by keying in a Value into the Text Field. Let’s enter 1 into the Extrusion: Text Field. The other Parameters like Bevel and Isolated can be left at their Default Settings. Click on the Extrude Face button.

When you click on the Extrude Face button, you will see another set of options come up, to Cancel or Accept your Extrude. This gives you a chance to preview and decide if you are happy with the results. Click on the Accept button.

Once we have made one Extrude, we can keep the same settings and Extrude again a second time. So, let’s click on the Extrude Face button a second time. Once again, we will click on Accept button to approve the Extrude.

Once we have Extruded twice, we will be slightly modifying our selection before Extruding again.

So, let’s select the Faces indicated above, and we will once again perform Extrude Face to build up the back of the chair a little higher than the arms. We will keep the Extrusion Parameters the same.

Now that we have made this last Extrude, we have made a base form to start with.
We will make a few modifications from here, and then apply something called Subdivision to make our Chair a little more realistic.

Our next move will be to select the Faces on top of the arms of the chair, as indicated below.

With the tops of the chair arms selected, we will apply Extrude Face once again, this time with an Extrusion amount of .28 and a Bevel amount of .046.

Now at this point, we have made the necessary Extrudes and Bevels. We will now add Subdivision, a process that takes our boxy 3D model and smoothes it to produce a more rounded, natural shape.

Adding Subdivision

We have been working in Edit Faces Mode, now we will be switching out of this Mode and into Object Mode, where we will have different Tools available.

Let’s click on the Object Mode icon located in the top toolbar, indicated above by the blue arrow.

Now that we are in Object Mode, you can see we have different Tools available. Subdivision (C-Clark) is the first heading in the list after Object Mode.

Let’s click on the Subdivision Heading, and we are able to see the Parameters of the Subdivision Tool. There is only one Parameter, which is the Number of Iterations. With Subdivision, we can apply more amounts of smoothing, in order to have a more rounded result. Let’s apply one iteration, which is the Default Setting. All we have to do is click on the Perform Subdivision (C Clark) button.

Now you will see the Smoothed result…

Now comes a particularly useful aspect of Smoothing, it is something we can toggle on and off.

You will notice that once Subdivision is applied and our Chair object is selected, we will see a Subdivision (C-Clark) toggle icon at the left side of the screen. Click on this icon.

Now that we have toggled the Subdivision off, we can adjust the Number of Iterations Parameter, and apply Subdivision again. Let’s raise the Number of Iterations to 3, and once again click on the Perform Subdivision (C Clark) button.

You will observe that with 3 iterations, the smoothed result is much rounder and softer in appearance…

We have made a good deal of progress, now would be a good time to Save.

From the File menu at the top of the screen, choose Save As…

The Save As Dialog will come up.

Give your file a descriptive name and click on the Save button. I suggest choosing a new file name each time you save so that you can “backup” to an older version of the model if you need to.

Smoothed Result Versus Base Form

Now comes a particularly useful aspect of the Subdivision Toggle. When we toggle Subdivision off, we can alter the base form which ultimately influences the Smoothed Result. You may wonder why this is important, the answer is that it is very easy to modify the simple base object.

So, we can make some revisions to our object, and then just add Subdivision once again to see our edits in place.

Modifying the Chair Base Form

Now for some quick revisions to improve the look of our chair.

As before, let’s toggle off the subdivision with the Subdivision (C-Clark) toggle icon at the left side of the screen. Now we once again can work with the base form of the Chair.

Edit Edges Mode for Editing

We will now investigate editing our Chair in Edit Edges Mode to revise its form.

Let’s click on the Edit Edges Mode icon located in the top toolbar, indicated above by the blue arrow.

Edit Edges Mode gives us Tools which allow us to modify our objects at the Edge level. As you work, you will find that you prefer working in the different Modes to do different tasks.

We will be making a simple adjustment, by adjusting a single Edge on each side of our Chair.

While in Edit Edges Mode, we will be using the Move Tool to adjust the Edges. Note that the Camera View has been adjusted slightly, click on the Edge indicated below to select it.

You will notice that we once again have a Gizmo, similar to the Scale Gizmo. This is the Move Gizmo, which allows us to move objects, vertices, edges and polygons, depending on what Mode we happen to be in.

The red, yellow and blue color-coding is once again in place, selecting the red Axis of the Gizmo locks in the ability to move the Edge in the X direction, which is what we happen to want here.

Let’s select the red Axis in order to lock it on the X, and move it slightly towards the center of the Chair. You will notice a Delta Value that appears in the lower left corner of the Viewport when you move the Edge. This gives us feedback on our edit (Delta is a common shorthand for change, which is appropriate here since the Delta Value tracks the extent of our change). Move the Edge until the Delta Value reaches around .117. Your Value does not have to match exactly, look to match the example visually.

Next, we will adjust the Viewport and make an adjustment to the matching edge on the other side of the Chair.

Once again, we will be locking the Axis to X by selecting the red Axis and we will move the Edge until the Delta Value reaches around .117. Your edit does not need to be exact, you want the two sides of the chair to match visually.

That is the extent of our edits in Edit Edges Mode, we will now be switching to Edit Faces Mode.

Let’s click on the Edit Faces Mode icon located in the top toolbar, indicated above by the blue arrow.

We will be selecting the 3 Faces indicated below.

We will be making a simple adjustment to these Faces with the Move Tool.

Note that the Camera View has been adjusted slightly, we will once again use the Move Tool Gimzo, this time selecting the blue Z Axis to lock our edits to the Z direction.

Now let’s move our Faces upward to a Delta Value of .042.

Now that we have made the adjustment to the 3 Faces, let’s select only the one in the middle.

Let’s move this Face upward .036. Once again, let’s use the blue Axis of the Move Axis for accuracy.

Viewing Our Results with Subdivision

We have been working in Edit Faces Mode, now we will be switching out of this Mode and into Object Mode, where we can once again apply Subdivision.

Let’s click on the Object Mode icon located in the top toolbar, indicated above by the blue arrow.

Now that we are back in Object Mode, Select Subdivision (C-Clark) from the Tools Browser Menu and enter 3 into the Number of Iterations Text Field. Click on the Perform Subdivision (C-Clark) button.

So you can see the new smoothed result. We now have a nice rounding to the back of the Chair.

The back and seat of our chair do not exactly look too cushy, however. We can make some very slight modifications and see a big improvement. We will be making these mods in Edit Faces Mode.

Let’s click on the Edit Faces Mode icon located in the top toolbar, indicated above by the blue arrow.

Now in Edit Faces Mode, let’s select these two Faces of the Chair.

Let’s move these selected Faces upward for a Delta Value of roughly .076.

Next, we will be selecting the Face in the center of the seat back.

Let’s choose the Y Axis and move the Face forward to a Delta Value of roughly .104.

Viewing Our Changes with Subdivision

Now we have made our slight adjustments, and we are ready to view our edits with Subdivision.
We have been working in Edit Faces Mode, now we will be switching out of this Mode and into Object Mode, where we can once again apply Subdivision.

Let’s click on the Object Mode icon located in the top toolbar, indicated above by the blue arrow.

Now that we are back in Object Mode, Select Subdivision (C-Clark) from the Tools Browser Menu and enter 3 into the Number of Iterations Text Field. Click on the Perform Subdivision (C-Clark) button.

We have made a good deal of progress, now would be a good time to Save.

From the File menu at the top of the screen, choose Save As…

The Save As Dialog will come up.

Give your file a descriptive name and click on the Save button.

Now that you see the Smoothed Result, you have an idea about how slight changes in your base form can yield a much more refined Smoothed form. Next, we will investigate some other aspects of RaySupreme.

About the Node System

The Nodes System is a flexible, powerful time-saving system that we can apply to our Models. Rather than explaining it all at once, we will incorporate aspects of it a little bit at a time.

The Node System Part I – Creating the Chair Legs

We will start out in the Scene View, creating a simple component to go with the Chair.

We will begin with a Primitive, so once again, we will click on the Objects button, which is located in the Browser Menu at the right side of the screen…

Clicking on the Objects button brings us to the Object Templates screen of the Browser Window.

The contents of the Browser Window change depending on the current selection of the Browser Menu. We can also select what specific types of Object Templates are displayed with the Show: pull-down menu.

Here you can view the Primitives we can choose from.

Let’s click on the Cube Primitive heading in the Object Templates Window. The heading turns blue when selected.

With the Cube selected, you can also see the Parameters of the Cube in the window directly below the Object Templates Window. We do not need the same amount of detail as we did for the body of the Chair in our Chair Legs. Accordingly, we will lower the detail of our Cube for this use.

Last time we set the Face Elements Parameter to 5 Face Elements. This time we can adjust this all the way down to 1 for the task at hand.

Let’s do this with the Face Elements Slider, or by keying 1 into the Text Field.

We have configured the Cube Primitive to what we need. So at this point, we need to create one.

Let’s create one by dragging it to the Camera Viewport.

So now, we have a Chair and a very large Cube.

You probably know the next move, we will Scale our Cube down a little smaller.

Let’s choose the Scale Tool, indicated in the following image by the blue arrow.

Once we have selected the Scale Tool, We will need to make a slight adjustment to our Cube.

Uniform Scaling

Unlike before when we wanted to Scale down our Cube in one direction, this time we want to Scale our Cube in a consistent ratio.

So, let’s enter a Value of .172 into each Scale Text Field and press the return key.

Now you can see our Cube is much smaller and uniform in proportion.

Using the Transform Tools Parameter to Move Objects

Once we have Scaled down our Cube, we can relocate it to the proper Position relative to our Chair. We can use the Move Tool to place our objects by hand, but since we created the original Cube at a specific location (by double-clicking and placing it at the center of the Scene) we can place the Leg where it needs to go by the numbers. When we say “by the numbers”, we mean that the Leg can be placed at a defined point in space where it belongs. Since we can precisely name a point in space with the 3 directions of 3D space, it’s no problem.

Let’s start by selecting the Move Tool at the left side of the screen.

With the Transform Tool selected, we can view the specific location of our Cube. Since we placed our Cube by hand, the location of the Cube’s current Position might vary, but the location we want to move it to is specific.

We can move our object around just by keying in the Values listed above into the corresponding Text Fields.

Make sure to enter a negative Value with the “-” key for the X and Y Values in the red and yellow Text Fields.

Once you have entered all 3 Values into the Text Fields, press the return key and the Leg will be moved right into Position.

Now we have our Cube in place, behaving as a Leg of the Chair, but the problem is, we have only one.

We will be now using the power of the Nodes System to build the rest of our Chair Legs. We use nodes in a new section of the program, the Object Editor.

From the View menu at the top of the screen, choose Object Editor.

The Object Editor

You will see the following screen when you launch the Object Editor.

The Object Editor is a place where we can work with Nodes and manipulate our objects in a new way.

The Node System Part 1 – About Nodes

At this point, you might be asking yourself, what’s a Node?

By definition, a Node is a point where paths intersect in a network, a central or connection point.

This is what a Node looks like in RaySupreme -

So, what I would add, to paint a clearer picture for how we use Nodes in RaySupreme, is that a Node is a distinct element like a puzzle piece. What we will be doing is using these pieces, or Nodes, to build a larger object piece by piece.

We have another type of concept to introduce, the Terminal.

Terminals represent a connection within a network. We use these Terminals to connect our individual Nodes together.

Here is the Object Graph of our Chair Leg. If you do not currently see the following image in your Object Graph, click on the Cube we Scaled down to be the Leg in the Camera View.

These Nodes are what define the Cube. Here’s what they do individually:

Cube Material – The Node which defines the look of the Cube (we will manipulate this later)

Shape – The Node which defines the geometric form of the Cube

Material Dispatcher – The Material Dispatcher links the Shape and Material Nodes together

Transform – The Transform Node defines the Position, Rotation and Scale of the Cube

The Node System Part 2 – Working with Nodes

Now that we have had some discussion about what Nodes are, we will work with them. In this case, we will utilize Nodes to create duplicate Chair Legs.

Before we begin, let’s make sure that the Show Parameter of the Project Objects/Templates Browser is set to Project Objects.

At the right side of the Object Editor we have the Nodes Tab. Here at the Nodes Tab we have access to different functions related to Nodes. We want to click on the Available Nodes button, which will show us the different types of Nodes we can use.

We have a large assortment of Nodes available. Nodes are classified into two main Types, Geometry and Material. The heading system is expandable, if we click on the “+” icon next to the Geometry heading, we will see the many Geometry Nodes available.

We will be using the Transform Node.

You might be a little puzzled because we already have a Transform Node in the Object Graph, but will be using the Transform Node to create duplicates of our existing Leg.

In order to put our Transform Node into place, we will drag the Transform heading from the Available Nodes to the Object Graph.

Every object we make in RaySupreme has a Transform Node, we will be using a second Transform Node in order to create a copy of our first “Leg” Cube, which has all the same characteristics of our original “Leg” Cube. The only difference is that it will be placed at another point in 3D Space.

More about Nodes

Nodes have input Terminal Ports on the left side, and output Terminal Ports on the right side. We connect Nodes together with these Terminal Ports.

Typically when we are using the Transform Node we are just adjusting the Transform Node that was created when we created our Cube. Furthermore, if we were going to use another Transform Node, we would normally break the connection which pre-exists between the Material Dispatcher and the Transform Node.

However, this task is a special case. We are going to perform a trick with the extra Transform Node. We will leave the original Terminal which currently runs to the original Transform Node and creates our first Leg.

Making the Second Leg

We are going to take the output from the Material Dispatcher and create a second Terminal connection to our new Transform Node. To do this, we will click and drag from the out Terminal port of the Material Dispatcher and connect our new Terminal to the in Terminal Port of our Second Transform Node.

The Terminal itself acts like a rubber band, it will snap into place when you release it over the in Terminal Port of the Transform Node.

You will now notice that you have a very Large Cube in your Scene. That is because the connection to the original Transform Node carries the information we provided when we Scaled the Leg down to size.

So, let’s create a Terminal connection by clicking and dragging from the out Terminal port of our new Transform Node to the In Terminal port of the original Transform Node.

You will notice at this point that the large Cube is no longer visible in the Viewport. This is because it now receives the Transform information from the original Transform Node, and the new “Leg” Cube occupies the same space as the first. We have not yet altered the Position of the Second Cube.

We can tell that a particular Node is selected in the Object Graph when it has a white outline as pictured above. With the second Transform Node selected in the Object Graph, you can see the particular details in the Current Node Screen of the Nodes Tab at the right side of the screen. If the second Transform Node is not currently selected, click on it in the Object Graph.

Now we will alter the Position of the second Leg. Type 4 into the red Position Parameter Text Field. As you recall, the red Text Field correlates with the X Direction of 3D Space. Press the return key after you enter 4 into the Text Field.

With our edit to the Position of the second Transform Node, we now have a second Leg which is identical to the first Leg we made. It also carries the same Material, since the Material Node and Material Dispatcher Node are common to both Legs. There are even more benefits, but we will mention them later when they are important.

Making the Third Leg

Now that we have successfully created a duplicate Leg, we will carry the concept on to create the third Leg. We will start out by once again adding a Transform Node to the Object Graph. We will need to jump once again to the Available Nodes, by clicking on the Available Nodes button at the right side of the screen.

Once we arrive at the Available Nodes screen of the Nodes Tab, we will once again find the Transform Heading in the listing of Available Nodes and drag the Transform Heading to the Object Graph.

Now that we have our third Transform Node, we will once again make Terminal connections to incorporate our new Transform Node into the network.

To do this, we will click and drag from the out Terminal port of the Material Dispatcher and connect our new Terminal to the in Terminal Port of our Third Transform Node.

With our first Terminal connection in place, we will once again see the large Cube in the Viewport. As before, let’s make the second connection by clicking and dragging from the out Terminal port of our third Transform Node to the In Terminal port of the original Transform Node.

You will notice at this point that the large Cube is not longer visible in the Viewport. This is because it now receives the Transform information from the original Transform Node. As before, we must next alter the position of the Third Cube.

We can tell that a particular Node is selected in the Object Graph when it has a white outline as pictured above. With the third Transform Node selected in the Object Graph, you can see the particular details in the Current Node Screen of the Nodes Tab at the right side of the screen. If the third Transform Node is not currently selected, click on it in the Object Graph.

Now we will alter the Position of the third Leg. With the third Transform Node selected, we can see its current Node Parameters in the upper right corner of the screen. If you examine the Camera Viewport, you will notice that this time we need to work with the Y direction to move the Leg backward. As you recall, the yellow Text Field correlates with the Y Direction of 3D Space. Type 4 into the yellow Position Parameter Text Field, then press the return key.

With our edit to the Position of the third Transform Node, we now have a third Leg which is identical to the first two we made.

The Fourth Leg

You may be under the impression that we need to add another Transform Node in order to create our fourth Leg, but due to the flexibility of the Node System, we do not have to.

In order to place a fourth Leg at the right-rear corner of the Chair, we need to move the Leg to the right and backward. We have already made those Transforms with the second and third Transform Nodes. In order to make a fourth Leg which has gone through those Transforms, we merely have to link the second and third Transform Nodes together.

So, our fourth Leg requires an additional Terminal running from the second Transform Node to the third Transform Node.

We will now connect the out Terminal Port of the second Transform Node to the in Terminal Port of the third Transform Node. This creates a branch of the Network for the fourth Leg.

Now we have made the necessary connections. All four Legs have been created from a single Primitive Shape through the power of the Node System!

We have made a good deal of progress, now would be a good time to Save.

From the File menu at the top of the screen, choose Save As…

The Save As Dialog will come up.

Give your file a descriptive name and click on the Save button.

Applying Materials

We have another concept we have not covered yet, and that is Materials. Materials are a way for us to create models that are more finished and realistic by applying treatments to a model’s surfaces. We have a large assortment of Materials available, and we have the ability to create our own as well.

We will be applying our Materials to the Legs of our Chair in the Object Editor. There are additional ways to apply Materials, to learn more consult the RaySupreme Users Guide.

We left off in the Object Editor, in case you are in a different area of the program, choose Object Editor from the View menu at the top of the screen.

In the Object Editor, at the right side of the Screen, you are already familiar with the Nodes Tab. You will notice that right next to the Nodes Tab we have a Materials Tab.

If we click on the Materials Tab, we can browse through the available Materials that we can use.

We can use the Material Browser window to find suitable Materials for our Chair.

Polished Aluminium is a suitable Material for our Legs. In order to apply our Material to the Legs, we need to select the correct object from the Project Objects Browser Window. (Our chair, when it comes down to specifics, is really only made from two Cubes)

Let’s first make sure that the Show Parameter of the Project Objects/Templates Browser is set to Project Objects.

We want to select the second Cube in the list, which is our Leg. If you look at the Nodes column of the Project Objects, you will notice that it has 7 Nodes compared with the first Cube. That is because we added two additional Transform Nodes to the first Leg.

Now, we can drag our Polished Aluminum Material from the Materials Browser window to the Cube Material Node of the Object Graph. When we release the mouse over the Cube Material Node, the Polished Aluminum replaces the Cube Material (The Cube Material is the Default Material applied to a Cube when it is created)

Note – The addition of the Materials to our objects will increase the Node Count in the Project Objects/Templates Browser, as the Materials contain Nodes also.

Next, Let’s select the other Cube in the list, which is our Chair body. Drag the Vinyl Material from the Materials Browser window to the Cube Material Node.

Working with Templates

Eventually, when we want to do more exciting things with RaySupreme, we start working with Templates. Templates allow us to take Models we have created in the Scene View and manipulate them with Text-to-3D Technology. We will cover some basic strategies here, but for further information consult the Text-to-3D Users Guide.

We will make a quick jump back to the Scene View to carry out a task first. From the View menu at the top of the screen, choose Scene View.

Back in Scene View

Once we are back in the Scene View, our task is very simple.

First, let’s select both of our Cube objects in the Camera Viewport (hold shift while clicking in the Viewport).

Once both objects are selected, from the Object menu at the top of the screen, choose Group.

Now that we have Grouped our objects, we can see our Group Name in the Schematic View of the Project Browser.

Once we Group our objects, the Default Group Name is “Object”. We can change this Group Name to a more descriptive one that serves our purpose. Let’s double-click on the Group Name of Object, which will allow us to rename our Group.

With the Group Name highlighted, let’s type in “Chair” to give our Group an appropriate name.

With our Group properly named, our work in the Scene View is Complete. We needed to Group our objects so that the Chair can be manipulated as a single object in the Object Graph when we return to the Object Editor.

We have made a good deal of progress, now would be a good time to Save.

From the File menu at the top of the screen, choose Save As…

The Save As Dialog will come up.

Give your file a descriptive name and click on the Save button.

Back to the Object Editor

From the View menu at the top of the screen, choose Object Editor.

First, make sure that the Show: Parameter of the Project Objects/Templates Browser is set to Project Objects.

If we then take a look at the Project Objects Browser, we can see our “Chair” Group

Let’s click on the “+” icon to the Left of “Chair”, which will reveal our Cubes underneath.

Note – Your Cubes may be in a different order than in the List pictured below, simply confirm your selected object in the Camera Viewport window, the Cube selected in the Project Objects Browser will be highlighted with a bright blue in the Viewport. The Number of Nodes with each object may also differ, so confirm them in the Camera Viewport as well.

We can make things a little more reasonable for us by labeling these objects appropriately as well. Let’s rename our “Legs” Cube to “Legs”.

With our Legs renamed, Let’s also look at the remaining Cube which is the Seat of our Chair. Let’s double-click on the remaining Cube, and rename it to “Seat”.

With our Sub-Elements of our Chair named, it’s time to start thinking of our Chair as a Template.

Let’s click on the Template Tab, which is located right next door to the Object Graph.

Here in the Template Tab, we will carry out all of our Template-related tasks.
First, we will select the Legs in the Project Objects/Template Browser by clicking on it.

With the Legs selected, we will now add an Adjective. An Adjective is a description we want to use to modify an object.

Underneath the Adjectives and Attributes window is the “+” icon, which is the Add Adjective button. Let’s click on this button to create our New Adjective.

You will notice the “New Adjective – Click to Change…” heading. Let’s double-click on this heading and rename it to “Round”.

Next, we click on the the 1. Node Parameter Heading.

With this heading selected, we can now apply what characteristics will change when the “Round” Adjective is used.

We will affect the Shape Node, so we type “Shape” into the Node Name: Text Field. To affect changes to our Nodes, we identify them by Name (the Shape Node in this case).

The Parameter of Type is what we want to manipulate so we don’t need to change it. (The Parameter: pull-down menu contains the available Parameter choices of the Named Node.)

Under the Set to Value heading, select from the Type: pull-down menu and choose Tube. This will actually change the Shape of the Primitive when the “Round” Adjective is used.

Now we have completed the necessary actions to make our Template customizable through Adjectives! In this case we have only added one Adjective, but you can apply as many Adjectives and multiple Attributes per Adjective so that your objects can feature all the flexibility you envision!

Completing the Template Details

Now we have a few last items to address in the Template Description Tab at the right side of the screen.

Name:

Here is where we would indicate the Name of our object. We did not have to Name our Template in this case, because we properly named our Group while it still existed as a Project Object. If we did not rename our “Object” Group at that time, the Name: Text Field would have been blank.

You want to choose a name which describes your object in the way people would describe it in everyday English. “Chair” is the correct name to use in this case.

Type:

The Type Parameter allows us to describe the Type of object we are creating. A Component is the proper choice in this case, select Component from the Type: pull-down menu.

Style:

Enter valid descriptive, comma separated data into this Field. The style should be a well known style, like Modern, Victorian, Classical Greek, for example. Scientific names, as in the scientific name of a flower, should be set as a Style. For our Chair, type “Modern” into the Style: Text Field.

Tags:

Enter valid descriptive, comma separated data into this Field. It should contain (optional) additional information which will be used to further narrow the search results when objects are selected by the Text-to-3D engine.

Tags are very useful if you prefer to use certain objects which have a specific tag set, for example if you want the Text-to-3D engine to prefer objects which you have made.

You could make a tag like “thomas_mueller” and when you create an object, you can use your tag in the statement. Entering a statement like “A thomas_mueller room” will influence the Text-to-3D engine to choose items which have a tag of “thomas_mueller” over objects which do not.

Time Range:

One of the most interesting aspects of the Text-to-3D engine is that we can have objects chosen by time period. If we don’t enter a Time Range, this innovative feature will not be taken advantage of.

For example, a Roman sword could have a Time Range of “300BC” to “400AD”. Always use BC or AD after the time data.

If you are creating something very old that still exists in the same state today (imagine something made of cobblestone), just enter the particular start date and leave the end date blank. If a certain object is timeless, like a rock, leave both Text Fields blank.

Our Chair is of Modern design, let’s enter a start date of 1975.

Version:

Since this is our first build of this Template, we will leave the Version: Parameter at 00.000

The Version number is used so that we can update our Template, add a Version number, and upload our new Template.

This is important because it will replace your old Template in the Database. When Users then update their Templates, they will receive the newest version of our Template in place of the old one. So, every time you update your Template, add one to your Version number.

Alternative Names:

An Alternative Name is an additional Name which someone might use to describe our object. Think about any particular ways a User might describe your object. Enter Seat here for our Chair.

UUID:

Next, click on the Generate button, which creates a UUID. The UUID is a unique identifier that is used to identify your Template.

Created by:

Here’s where you take credit for your work. Always use your real name or your company’s name. We do not accept anonymous objects or Materials.

Description:

The Description should be a brief statement that describes our Template concisely.

Let’s enter “A Modern Style Chair”. into the Description: Text Field.

Saving our Template

Now that we have completed these steps, our Template Description is complete and we are ready to Save our Template. In the Project Objects/Templates Browser, let’s click on the Save Object as Template icon.

Uploading Templates

Now that all of the Template Details have been completed and the Template has been saved, theoretically you can now upload your template to the RaySupreme Modeling Community Center. Then everyone who uses Text-to-3D would have access to it!

Testing Our Chair in the Language Editor

Now that we have completed our work, our next step will be to use our Template. We will need to jump to the Language Editor.

From the View menu at the top of the screen, choose Language Editor.

Here’s the layout of the Language Editor.

We will be typing a text statement into the Command Prompt Window. Click within this window to insert the cursor and type:

“A seat. The legs of the seat are round.”

Next, just click on the Process Language button, located above the Command Prompt Window, indicated below.

It works! You will notice two things about this test. The “round” Adjective was seen by the Text-to-3D engine. Also, the Alternative Name of “Seat” was recognized by the Text-to-3D engine as well.

Rendering

Once we have created our Template, and built our object from our text statement, we can also Render our image as we see fit.

So far, we have been viewing our objects inside our Viewports in RaySupreme. That’s fine for us, but eventually, we need to Render our images for a few reasons:

- for higher image quality
- for use in other programs
- to be able to share our images with others who don’t own RaySupreme.

When we work with our objects in our Viewports in RaySupreme, we are viewing our objects at a lower image quality. When we Render out our images, we can view them in greater detail, and we can share them with others.

We will now investigate the process to Render out your Chair.

Getting Ready to Render

From the View menu at the top of the screen, choose Scene View.

Now that we are back in the Scene View, you can focus on getting the proper view in the Camera Viewport that you would like to Render.

Rotating the Camera Viewport

If you hold down the option key, and drag your mouse pointer in the Camera Viewport, you will rotate the point of view. You will Rotate the Camera upward by dragging the mouse downward, and Rotate the Camera to the right by dragging the mouse to the left.

Moving The Camera Forward or Backward

If we hold down the option key and drag the mouse pointer upward or downward with a right-click, we will move the camera forward or backward.

Panning the Camera

If we hold down the command key and left-click and drag the mouse, you will pan the Camera in the opposite direction of your dragging.

Take your time and position the Camera as you see fit. Once you have found the point of view that you are pleased with, we will Render out our image.

Rendering

Once we have our Camera View to our liking, we can bring up the Render Dialog in order to choose the particular Render settings we would like.

Render Quality

We have many selections to choose from, with Preview having the quickest Render time with the lowest quality settings and Highest having the longest Render times and the highest quality settings.

You might be wondering why there are so many Render quality settings.

The Answer – We have this many choices available because our needs/uses vary.

Sometimes we are Rendering out for a quick test. At other times we want to see our work at the highest Quality Setting.

We can select the Quality Setting that works best for us. Let’s choose Highest from the Quality: pull-down menu.

Render Image Height & Render Image Width

The Render Image Height and Render Image Width allow you to key-in the specific height and width of your Rendered image in pixels. In many cases, you will want to choose a common image size like 1024 × 768 pixels.

In case you were wondering, a pixel is the smallest element of your screen, the tiny squares of color that make up images. The term pixel is an abbreviation for Picture Element.

The default size of 600×400 is fine for our needs.

Render Image button

Now that we have investigated many of the features of the Render Dialog, click the Render Image button to execute your Render.

At the Highest Quality level our render will take a little less than a minute. It depends upon your computer and its specifications, my Mac Powerbook Pro rendered the image in 37 seconds.

Render History Browser

One of the features unique to RaySupreme is the Render History Browser. It allows you to view and compare your Renders in one location. It is very handy when you are deciding upon what specific Render settings you should use.

Save Image button

The Save Image button located above the Render History Browser allows you to save the selected image from the Render History Browser.

Let’s click on the Save Image button and it will launch the Save Image Dialog.

In the Save Image Dialog, you can title your image and determine the location where it will be saved on your computer. The image will be saved as a web-friendly .png File (PNG stands for Portable Net Graphics).

Other Features of the Render Dialog

These features weren’t needed for our task at hand, but it’s good to be aware of them.

Remove Image button

The Remove Image button located above the Render History Browser removes the currently selected image from the Render History Browser.

Note – Removing Images from the Render History Browser is not undoable, make sure you really want to remove them first.

Render Queue

The Render Queue gives you information about your current Render including the Height and Width of the Image, Render Quality Settings and Percentage Completed.

Sharing your Render with others

Now that we have Rendered out your Chair, you can attach your Rendered .png image to an email to your friends or post it to your favorite social media site.

This concludes this RaySupreme Tutorial. For more information, consult the RaySupreme Users Guide and the Text-to-3D Users Guide.

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