3DStudents.com is a resource for digital 3d content production students, whether it be for entertainment, fine art, industrial, medical or any industry. If you have any questions or suggestions, feel free to contact me. cornell " at " 3DStudents.com ~Cornell

About My High School Program, Digital-Evolutions. [ ]

http://www.digital-evolutions.org/

Digital-Evolutions, is a public high school digital arts program, introducing students to digital sculpture, design principles, traditional art mediums, programming, visual storytelling, engineering/medical visualization, video production, and a heavy focus on 3D visualization and animation. Students can participate up to four years, with two possible advanced college accredited tracks, both IB and traditional. Our core philosophy, is to move past just teaching the tool, to empowering students to become intrinsically motivated, independent learners, story tellers, and artists. It challenges them to tap into both hemispheres and further develop their logical and creative abilities as an artist and critical thinker. The program is both exciting and challenging, providing students with a learning environment without limitations and opening the the door to artistic expression and conceptual exploration. Students become artists, visual story tellers, and technical problem solvers, further preparing them for the ever-changing digital landscape and future workforce.

Digital-Evolutions is hosted at Smoky Hill High School part of the Cherry Creek School District.

Occupational Outlook Handbook 2008/09 predicts that digital media design and animation will show tremendous growth ‘much faster than average’ through 2016 nationally. As of 2008, China has over 30 animation industrial bases, 5,400 animation companies, 450 high schools teaching certified animation courses, and 460,000 students studying animation related subjects. This was an increase of over 36% in comparison to 2006. (Aldric Chang 2008) According to Robi Roncarelli industry expert, China’s growth is not even due to outsourcing, but huge local demands. So it can be said that, our local industry is just at its infancy and this perpetual growth is blending together multiple disciplines, blurring the line between art, science, math, and technology.

But our underling goal is to develop intrinsically motivated creative learners with the skills to succeed in their chosen career path; whether it be engineering and the sciences or entertainment and the arts.

About Me . . . [ ]

Creativity and design has always been a huge part of my life, it has been infused in the way I think, live, parent, and teach, so it is difficult to separate it from my studio classroom. I am a 3d designer and sculptor, my entire family comes from some type design and/or art background. My father was head designer at Kodak and used cutting edge design equipment since the 70's, which lead me to receiving my first computer in 1982. My brother is in a think tank and has been using 3d printers for close to 25 years. A “learning space” is more than just physical, it is a way of thinking, it is a process, it is an atmosphere, it is what I call a “Creative Epicenter”.

In the classroom, I have sixteen years experience working with k-12 and post-secondary students; eleven of those years my emphasis has been teaching creative work flows, the design process, 3d design, and visualization. Additionally, I spent two years as District Technology Coordinator and curriculum trainer for Red Creek Public School District, NY. Personally, I have eight years of Industry related experience – founder and head artist at Specular Studios LLC (http://specularstudios.com/).

Over the last 12 years, I have developed two design program models, a new high school model, Digital-Evolutions (http://www.digital-evolutions.org/) and a middle school version TEAM-C in Denver Public schools.

Digital-Evolutions is a public high school digital 3D design studio housed in Smoky Hill High School outside of Denver Colorado. Our core philosophy, is to move past just “teaching the tools” to empowering students to become creative, intrinsically motivated, independent, conceptual learners with a solid understanding of the creative and design process. Students can participate up to four years, with two possible advanced college accredited tracks, both IB and traditional. The curriculum challenges students to tap into both hemispheres of the brain to further develop their logical and creative abilities as both an artist and critical thinker. The program is both exciting and challenging, providing students with a learning environment without limitations and opening the the door to artistic expression and conceptual exploration. Students become innovators and problem solvers, further preparing them for the ever-changing digital landscape and future workforce.

Presently, I am teaching: 3D Design and Animation, Advanced 3D Design Animation, Digital Portfolio I and II, computer graphics, MYP Design Technology, and IB Digital Arts. The backbone of the classes are to guide them through the design process while they create an original product. During this process, I emphasis that 70% of out effort is developing the idea and once that is set, we build it.

The studio is set in three main areas:

“The Tank” - a collaborative space and think tank, which also houses the recording studio and currently the 3d printers and 3d scanner.

The concept studio - which is our HP workstation lab (sponsor) fully equipped with hardware and software

The prototype studio – which is the hands on area, for creating maquettes,

Have a Question or a Great Tip? . . . Please Contact Me. [ ]

Maya Basics: Temple

Critical to learning any software application is some initial understanding of the basic concepts: how that software’s world works and the fundamental skills you need to work in that world. If you have never used a three dimensional (3D) software application before, you may initially find Maya different compared to 2D applications.

Let’s make a temple . . .

Undo

Using primitive objects to model 3D forms is a great place to continue learning about Maya. You can create many types of 3D objects using Maya and then move, scale, and rotate them to create more complex forms in your scene.

In this lesson, you begin to construct a classic temple using the primitive object creation tools in Maya. The project is not very complex and provides you with experience in using some of the important object manipulation and viewing tools.

As you continue to work with Maya, you’ll learn how to visualize more complex forms using these basic objects. Maya has many advanced tools and options for modeling complex forms, as you will learn in later chapters.

 

Primitive Objects

Maya provides many types of primitive types and shapes such as cubes, spheres, cylinders, and planes.

Primitive objects can be used as a starting point for a wide variety of shapes and forms.

In this section, you construct the base for the temple using a polygonal cylinder primitive. The octagonal shape is created by modifying the creation options for the cylinder tool before you create the object. If you did not modify the cylinder options you would create a default round cylinder.

To create a polygonal cylinder for the base

  1. Select the Modeling menu set.  *This is the default setting.

    Menu
  2. From the main menu, select Create > Polygon Primitives > Cylinder >

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  3. An option window appears.  In the Polygon Cylinder Options window, select Edit > Reset Settings and then set the following options:
    1. Radius: 10
    2. Height: 1
    3. Axis divisions: 8

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  4. In the Polygon Cylinder Options window, click Create.

    Maya creates a cylinder primitive object that is octagonal in shape and positioned at the center of the Maya workspace. This cylinder is 20 units wide by one unit high, and has eight faceted sides.

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*NOTE: You can toggle between wireframe and solid by press <4> on the keyboard for wireframe and <5> on the keyboard for solid.

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*NOTE: You were instructed to reset the option settings as a precaution in case they had been set differently. This is a good habit to practice when working with tool options to avoid getting a result that was different from what you expected.

    The Toolbox

    The Toolbox is located on the left hand side of the Maya user interface. It contains icons that open tools for transforming your objects within Maya (selection, move, rotate, scale) as well as layout shortcuts for changing the views and panel layouts.

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    Layout shortcuts

    The Quick Layout buttons shortcuts allow you to select a different panel or switch to another layout.

    You need to finish positioning the cylinder. To do this you need to see the object from a side view to make sure it is sitting exactly on the ground plane.

    To change the panel layout to view the base from a side view

    1. From the Toolbox, click the Four View layout shortcut.

      Menu8

      The workspace changes to a four-view layout. The perspective view is located in the top right corner and the other views show the object from the top, front and side.  It’s now possible to see the base from the side view, but it would be easier to determine the position of the base if the side view were enlarged to a full view.  The easiest way is to just hit <Space Bar> to toggle between orthographic views.  If you are in the Four View and want to enlarge any other view, position the mouse cursor in that view, and tap the <Spacebar> of your keyboard. to the view that you want to be in and hit the <Spacebar> again, this will open only that window.

      Menu9


       

      The Toolbox: Transformation tools

      You need to move the base slightly upwards in the Y direction so it is positioned on the X, Z plane. To do this you use the Move transformation tool located in the Toolbox.

      The upper half of the Toolbox contains the tools for transforming objects (selection, move, rotate, scale) within Maya. When you move your mouse cursor over any transformation tool icon you see the name of the tool appear next to the mouse cursor.

      Menu10

      Use the Move Tool to adjust the position of the base

      1. Select the cylinder base and press <4> on the keyboard to switch to wireframe.
      2. Select the Move Tool from the Toolbox.

        A move manipulator icon appears over the primitive cylinder in the scene view.  The Move Tool Manipulator has handles that point in the direction of the three fundamental axis directions of 3D space: X, Y, Z. The handles are colored red, green, and blue based on their function related to the X, Y, Z axes and control the direction of the movement along an axis.  When you click a specific handle, it indicates that the move is constrained to that particular axis direction.

      3. In the side view, drag the green Y manipulator handle to move the primitive cylinder upwards in the Y direction.  Move it upwards enough so that the bottom of the base cylinder is aligned with the X axis (the thick dark line of the grid)


      Rotate Base

        The base cylinder now needs to be rotated slightly so the front of the base is parallel to a grid line. Since each facet of the octagon represents 45 degrees of a circle, you need to rotate the object approximately half of that amount or 22.5 degrees.

        To use the Rotate Tool to adjust the position of the base

        1. Display all four views by positioning the mouse cursor in the view and tapping the <Spacebar> of your keyboard.

          The four view panel appears.

        2. Position the mouse cursor in the top view and tap the <Spacebar> once.

          The top view appears in the workspace.

        3. With the base cylinder selected, choose the Rotate tool from the Toolbox.

          A rotate manipulator icon appears over the primitive cylinder in the scene view.

          The Rotate Tool manipulator consists of three rings (handles), plus a virtual sphere enclosed by the rings. The colors of the handles correspond to the X, Y, and Z axes. The handles are colored red, green, and blue based on their function related to the X, Y, Z axes and control the direction of the rotation around an axis.

        4. In the top view, drag the green Y manipulator ring to rotate the primitive cylinder so that one of the facets of the base cylinder is aligned with the grid as shown in the image below.

          You are rotating the cylinder around its Y axis.

          *You may be asking yourself the question “How do I know if I’ve rotated the base exactly 22.5 degrees?”  You can check the accuracy of the rotation by viewing the Channel Box. Rotate Y should be close to 22.5 degrees.

                     

          To undo an action select, Edit > Undo or press < Ctrl > + < Z >.  Maya allows you to perform multiple undos.

          The Channel Box

          The Channel Box is an editing panel that provides you access to an object’s transformation information and much more. It provides information on three distinct areas for any type of object: The transform node, shape node, and input node.

          Nodes are where information about object types are kept track of within Maya. Nodes are comprised of attributes. Attributes refer to information related to what the node is designed to accomplish. In this case, information about the primitive cylinder’s Y axis rotation is referred to as the Rotate Y attribute.

          When you moved and rotated the cylinder primitive using the Move Tool, you were doing this by your own visual judgement. This will usually be sufficient for many of your creative applications.

          If you need to control the attribute of an object with more accuracy you can do this by entering the precise values into the appropriate attribute field of the Channel Box.

          To move and rotate the base using the Channel Box

          1. With the base cylinder selected, view the Transformation attributes in the Channel Box. Specifically, view the values for Translate Y, and Rotate Y.

          2. In the Channel Box, adjust the attribute values so they match the above image by clicking in the field and entering the correct numerical values.  This accurately positions the base in your Maya scene.
          3. Maya named the cylinder primitive when it was first created. Rename the cylinder to something more meaningful to your project.  To rename the cylinder primitive using the Channel Box

            1. In the Channel Box, click in the field with the name pCylinder1.
            2. Rename the primitive object by typing the new name: templeBase1 and then pressing < Enter >.   


            Duplicating objects

            Duplicating an existing object is a useful way to make an exact copy of it without having to start over. When you duplicate an item the copy takes on the characteristics of the original. Using the Duplicate Tool you can additionally apply transformations to the copy (move, rotate, scale).

            Return to a four view layout to view what you’ve accomplished to this point.  Press < Spacebar >

            1. The base for the temple is constructed of two levels and appears stepped. You  will need to duplicate and scale the templeBase object using the duplicate tool.

            To duplicate the temple base

            1. In the four view layout, click in the perspective view and tap the < spacebar > to display the base in this view.
            2. With templeBase selected, choose Edit > Duplicate Special > from the main menu.

              The Duplicate Special Options window appears.

            3. In the Duplicate Special Options window, select Edit > Reset Settings and then change the following options:  Translate & Scale  
              • In the Duplicate Special Options window, click Duplicate Special.  

                Menu11


                Menu55


                Maya creates a duplicate of the templeBase object that is scaled to 0.9 of the original in the X, Z axes, and is one unit above templeBase. As a result of the scale operation, the base for the temple now appears stepped.   Maya keeps track of the name of the duplicated object based on the name of original and renames the duplicated object templeBase2.

              REVIEW: Camera tools

              In the lessons so far, when you looked at an object from the top, front, or side views you have been viewing the scene through an orthographic view. Orthographic views appear two-dimensional because the object is displayed using parallel projections of only two axes at a time. (Scooter images courtesy of The Art of Maya)

              When you view the scene through the perspective view, you are viewing the scene in a three-dimensional manner. The perspective view simulates what your scene would look like from a camera’s point of view.

              In Maya, you view the scene through a set of virtual cameras. These cameras are either orthographic or perspective in nature. You can adjust how these cameras view the scene using the Camera Tools.   The three primary methods for manipulating the camera view are dolly, tumble, and track.

              Dolly Tool

              The Dolly Tool gets its name from filmmaking where a camera, mounted on a wheeled tripod, is moved towards or away from the scene. In Maya, dollying allows you to view the items in your scene either close up or from further back.

              To dolly the perspective view

              1. Enlarge the scene view to a single perspective view.
              2. Do one of the following:
                • (Windows & Linux) Press the Alt key and drag the mouse to the right while holding down the right button on your mouse.
                • (Mac OS X) Press the Option key and drag the mouse to the right while holding down the right button on your mouse.

                  comp_DollyBase1

              3. To dolly the camera outwards from the subject in the scene you can perform the same key and mouse combinations as described above but drag the mouse to the left.

                Dolly works in both the perspective and orthographic views.

                TIP:If you make an error when adjusting your camera view of the scene, you can reset the camera to its default home setting.

                To reset the camera view for a particular orthographic or perspective view:

                From the panel menu, select View > Default View.

              Tumble Tool

              The Tumble Tool allows you to tumble or rotate the camera’s view around a particular center of interest to achieve either a higher or lower vantage point, or a different side angle.

              To tumble the perspective view

              1. Press the Alt key (Windows & Linux) or the Option key (Mac OS X) and drag the mouse either left or right, or up or down, while holding down the left button on your mouse.

                Tumbling the view revolves the camera around the center of the scene view, in whichever direction you drag (left, right, up or down). The Tumble Tool does not work in the orthographic views.

                comp_baseTumble

              Track Tool

              The Track Tool allows you to move the camera up, down, or sideways in relation to the scene.

              To track the perspective view

              1. Press the Alt key (Windows & Linux) or the Option key (Mac OS X) and drag the mouse in any direction, while holding down the middle button on your mouse.

                The Track Tool works for both orthographic and perspective views.

                comp_baseTrack1

                NOTE:

                Even though the objects appear to move across the screen when operating any of these camera tools, it is the viewing camera that is actually moved in relation to the scene, not the objects.

                Making the Column

                The columns are made up of multiple primitives that are moved, scaled, and rotated into position. Once the first column is created, with each component named and accurately positioned, you will group and duplicate it to create others.

                To create a polygonal cube for the pedestal

                1. From the Main Menu, select Create > Polygon Primitives > Cube >.
                2. In the Polygon Cube Options window, select Edit > Reset Settings and then set the following options:
                  • Width: 1.75
                  • Height: 0.6
                  • Depth: 1.75

                  Leave the other options at their default settings.

                  Menu12

                  NOTE: If the Polygon Cube Options window does not appear, ensure that the Interactive Creation option for primitives is turned off by first selecting Create > Polygon Primitives > Interactive Creation so that a check mark does not appear beside this menu item.

                3. In the Polygon Cube Options window, click Create.   Maya creates a cube primitive and positions it at the origin.   

                   
                4. In the side view, move the cube upwards (Y axis) so it rests on the top surface of the temple base.  You can do this using the Move Tool or with the Channel Box. If you use the Channel Box, enter a Translate Y value of 2.3.  You may find it useful to dolly or tumble the scene view to obtain a better viewpoint.      

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                5. In the Channel Box, rename the cube columnPedestal.

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                To create a polygonal cylinder for the shaft

                1. From the main menu, select Create > Polygon Primitives > Cylinder >.
                2. In the Polygon Cylinder Options window, select Edit > Reset Settings and then set the following options:
                  • Radius: 0.5
                  • Height: 6
                  • Axis divisions: 12

                  Leave the other options at their default settings

                  Menu14

                3. In the Polygon Cylinder Options window, click Create.  Maya creates the cylinder primitive at the origin.   
                4. In side view, move the cylinder upwards (Y axis) so it rests on the top surface of columnPedestal.  You can do this using the Move Tool or with the Channel Box. If you use the Channel Box, enter a Translate Y value of 5.6.      

                5. In the Channel Box, rename the cylinder columnShaft.

                The capital for the column rests on top of the column and is very similar to the pedestal. You duplicate the pedestal and position the duplicate at the top of the column.

                To duplicate the pedestal to create the capital

                1. With only columnPedestal selected, select Edit > Duplicate Special > from the main menu.  The Duplicate Special Options window appears.   

                  Menu56
                2. In the Duplicate Special Options window, select Edit > Reset Settings and then set the following options:
                  • Translate:      0      6.6      0
                  • Scale:           0.8      1.0      0.8

                  Leave the other options at their default settings.

                  Menu16

                3. In the Duplicate Special Options window, click Duplicate Special.

                  Maya creates a duplicate of the columnPedestal object and moves and scales it based on the options you set.

                  NOTE: If you positioned the geometry for the column using the Transform Tools and your mouse, the Y translate values may be incorrect for your particular model. You may want to continue positioning the objects by visual reference using your mouse.  Using the duplicate options is an alternate method for positioning and scaling duplicated objects when you can anticipate its final location.

                4. In the Channel Box, rename the duplicated cube columnCapital.

                The base for the column rests on top of the pedestal. You will create the base using one half of a NURBS sphere primitive and then move and rotate it into position. You will do this by modifying the creation options for the sphere primitive.

                To create a NURBS sphere for the column base

                1. Select Create > NURBS Primitives > Sphere >.  The NURBS Sphere Options window appears.      

                  NOTE: If the NURBS Sphere Options window does not appear, make sure you have Create > NURBS Primitive > Interactive Creation turned off and then try again.


                2. Switch to Side View.  In the NURBS Sphere Options window, select Edit > Reset Settings and then set the following options:    
                  • End Sweep Angle: 180
                  • Radius: 0.75 

                  Leave the other options at their default settings.

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                  • In the NURBS Sphere Options window, click Create.

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                  Maya creates a half-sphere primitive at the origin.  The sphere needs to be rotated 90 degrees and then positioned on top of the pedestal.

                  To rotate and position the sphere on the pedestal

                  1. In side view, rotate the sphere so that the dome part is pointing up.          

                    • Rotating the sphere about the X axis using the Rotate Tool’s manipulator handle.
                    • Using the Channel Box to change the Rotate X value to -90.

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                  2. Move the sphere so it rests on the top surface of columnPedestal (Translate Y = 2.6, if you have been inputting values into the Channel Box).

                    Menu20

                    Menu21
                  3. Using the Scale Tool, scale the sphere along its Z axis (blue manipulator handle) so that the sphere becomes slightly squashed in appearance.

                    When you scale an object non-uniformly along one of its axes, you are scaling it non-proportionally.

                  4. In the Channel Box, rename the sphere columnBase.

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                  Viewing objects in shaded mode

                  Up to this point, you have been viewing your objects in the default wireframe mode. In wireframe mode, objects appear transparent except for the simple wire outline that indicates their position and general shape. Maya provides several options for displaying objects in a shaded manner.

                  Change the display of your scene so that the objects display as shaded objects.

                  To display the objects in smooth shaded mode

                  1. Enlarge your perspective view, and dolly and tumble the scene so you can easily view what you’ve completed so far.
                  2. From the panel menu, select Shading > Smooth Shade All or press < 4 > on the keyboard for wireframe or < 5 > on the keyboard for Solid.   

                    The objects in your scene display in an opaque dark gray color. You can work with objects in either shaded or unshaded mode for the balance of this lesson.

                  Grouping objects

                  When you need to move, scale or rotate multiple objects as one unit it is easier if they have been grouped together so that they transform as one unit. Many primitive objects in Maya are grouped objects.  When the plane objects are grouped together they create a hierarchy.  A hierarchy is a collection of nodes or objects that are connected together to form a unit for some purpose. Hierarchies are useful for describing how the objects within them share similar characteristics or attributes; move, scale, rotate for example.

                  To group the objects for the column

                  1. Select the four objects that comprise the column simultaneously by doing one of the following:
                    • With your left mouse button, shift-click each object in turn until the four column objects in the scene view OR
                    • In the Side View, With your left mouse button, drag one large bounding box around the column objects in an orthographic view.

                    It is important that you do not select any of the templeBase objects as part of your selection. If you accidentally select any of the base objects, deselect them.

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                    OR in the side view . . .

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                  2. From the main menu, select Edit > Group.  Maya groups the objects together in a hierarchy. You will learn more about hierarchies in the steps that follow.

                    The Hypergraph

                    The Hypergraph is a window that shows how the nodes and their connections are organized in your scene. You view object hierarchies and dependencies in the Hypergraph. Use the Hypergraph to view what happens when you group an object.

                    To view the Hypergraph

                    1. From the main menu, select Windows > General Editors > Hypergraph Hierarchy.     

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                    2. In the Hypergraph panel, select View > Frame All.

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                      The Hypergraph displays the hierarchy for all of the objects in the scene. This approach to viewing the entities in the scene provides a very graphical approach to viewing all of the various nodes in your scene.   In the Hypergraph, each node is represented as a rectangle labelled with an icon that denotes the type of information it represents (for example, surface, shading, and so on). Each node has a unique name assigned to it when it is first created. When you rename your objects, you are actually renaming the node associated with that object.  Some nodes display with a line connecting them. This denotes that they are in a hierarchy and have a dependency structure based on how they were originally grouped.

                      For the temple’s column objects, the hierarchy displays each of the named objects under a node labelled group1. Group1 is the parent node for this hierarchy of objects.  In Maya, when the parent node (sometimes referred to as the root node) is moved, rotated, or scaled in any way, the child nodes (sometimes referred to as the leaf nodes) underneath are also affected.   When you select objects at the top level of a hierarchy and move them, the objects within the hierarchy or group follow.

                      NOTE: This system of nodes, attributes, and hierarchies may initially appear somewhat complex, but it is one of the most powerful features of Maya. The node based architecture provides flexibility and power to create complex models, shaders, and animations.

                    To rename the parent node in the Hypergraph

                    1. In the Hypergraph, click on the group1 node so it becomes active.  In the scene view, all of the objects in the column group become selected as a result of selecting the group at the top (parent) level of the hierarchy.   
                    2. In the Hypergraph, right-click the top node representing group1 and select Rename from the pop-up menu.   
                    3. A small text box appears in the node.    Enter Column as the new name.  Rename the group to column1 and select OK.

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                    Now that the column is grouped, you need to position it at one corner of the temple base.

                    NOTE: If you accidentally deselect the column, you can either select the group in the Hypergraph or select one part of the group and hit the < ↑ > on the Keyboard until you are at the top of the group.

                    To position the column on the temple base

                    1. Change the display of objects to wireframe mode by tapping the < 4 > on your keyboard.  This is a keyboard shortcut. Instead of selecting the item from the menu you can use a single key to implement the command.      

                      TIP:  Many of the tools and features in Maya can be accessed using keyboard shortcuts. In Maya, these shortcuts are called Hotkeys. Some Hotkeys are displayed directly beside the menu item, others are listed in the Hotkey Editor. For a complete listing of available hotkeys, go to Window > Settings/Preferences > Hotkey Editor.

                    2. In the Hypergraph, select the Column1 at the top node so that Column1 becomes active in the scene view.
                    3. In the Top scene view, use the Move Tool to position Column1 at the front corner of the temple base as shown below.

                    With your first column in position, you can now create a copy of the column and position it on the adjacent corner of the base.

                    To create a duplicate copy of the column

                    1. With Column1 still selected in the Hypergraph, select Edit > Duplicate from the main menu.  The Duplicate Special Options window appears.   
                    2. In the Duplicate Special Options window, select Edit > Reset Settings.  Leave the other options at their default settings.
                    3. The Hypergraph view updates to show an additional column object in the scene. The copy also takes on the prefix name of the original group and is now labelled Column2. In the scene view it appears that nothing was actually duplicated. When an object is duplicated without any transformations the copy is positioned in the same position as the original. The two objects are on top of each other.

                    You need to move the column into position on the adjacent corner of the temple base.

                    To move the duplicate column into position on the base

                    1. In the Hypergraph, ensure Column2 is selected by clicking on its top node so it becomes selected in the scene view.
                    2. In the scene view, use the Move Tool to position Column2 on the adjacent corner of the temple base as shown below.

                    3.        

                    Pivot points

                    A pivot point is a specific position in 3D space that is used as a reference for the transformations of objects. All objects (curves, surfaces, groups) have pivot points.

                    When you group objects in Maya, a new node called a parent node is created for the group of objects. The pivot point for the group’s parent node is placed at the origin (0, 0, 0). This is useful if you later want to duplicate and rotate the objects radially (that is, in a circular fashion around the pivot).

                    To group the two columns

                    1. Ensure Column1 and Column2 are selected.
                    2. From the main menu, select Edit > Group.
                    3. Maya groups the objects together in a hierarchy and the pivot point is positioned at the origin. (When the pivot point is relocated to the origin the Move Tool manipulator for the selected group appears at the origin.)    
                    4. In the Hypergraph rename the group of the groups of column1 and column2.  Right-click on the group1 an choose rename and then change it to columnGroup1.

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                    With the two columns grouped, you then duplicate the columns with a rotation option, the groups will duplicate and rotate around the pivot point at the origin (0, 0, 0).

                    To duplicate and rotate the group

                    1. With columnGroup1 selected, select Edit > Duplicate Special > from the main menu.
                    2. In the Duplicate Special Options window, select Edit > Reset Settings and then set the following options:
                      • Rotate: 0      90      0
                      • Number of Copies: 3
                    3. In the Duplicate Special Options window, click Duplicate Special.

                      Menu66


                      Menu31

                      The columns are duplicated and rotated by 90 degrees with each copy.

                        

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                    For your classic temple, you need to create the entablature using a torus primitive. An entablature is a structure that lies horizontally upon the columns of a temple and supports the roof.

                    To create and position a torus primitive for the entablature

                    1. From the main menu, select Create > NURBS Primitives > Torus >.
                    2. In the NURBS Torus Options window, select Edit > Reset Settings and then set the following options:
                      • Radius: 8.5
                      • Number of Sections: 24
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                    3. In the NURBS Torus option window, click Create.

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                      NOTE:  If the NURBS Primitives Options window does not appear, ensure that a check mark does not appear beside the Interactive Creation menu item before selecting Create > NURBS Primitives > Torus > by first selecting Create > NURBS Primitives > Interactive Creation.

                    4. In the Channel Box, rename the torus primitive Entablature.

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                    5. Move the entablature vertically in the scene so it rests on top of the columns (Translate Y = 9.7).

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                    Components

                    All objects in Maya have a transform and a shape node. Geometric shapes, like the primitives in this tutorial, have smaller parts called components. A few examples of components in Maya are control vertices, faces, and hulls. Components allow you to work with objects at a finer level and allow you to edit them in creative ways.

                    In order to change the shape of the entablature beyond the basic scale transformations, you need to modify its component information.

                    To select components of the entablature

                    1. In the side view, dolly in for a closer view of Entablature.
                    2. Hold down right-click on the In the Entablature and switch to Control Vertex mode.
                    3. Right-click (and hold the right-click button) the wireframe of Entablature and select Control Vertex from the pop-up menu.

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                      The menu that pops up is a marking menu for quickly selecting operations relevant to the object where you right-click the mouse. In this case, the choices pertain to the display of the entablature’s components.

                      A set of small pink squares appear on Entablature called control vertices. Control Vertices (CVs) describe the shape of an object based on their position in space. If you move any combination of these vertices, you change the shape of the object.

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                    4. Drag a selection box around the top row of vertices so they become selected.

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                    5. Using the Move Tool, move the vertices up vertically as shown below to change the shape of Entablature.  Select the top vertices.

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                      Move the vertices up.

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                    6. To cancel the display of the CVs, hold right-click over the wireframe of Entablature once again and select Object Mode from the pop-up menu.

                    The roof for the temple rests on top of the entablature. The roof for the temple is created using one half of a sphere primitive.

                    To create a roof for the temple

                    1. Select Create > NURBS Primitives > Sphere >.
                    2. In the NURBS Sphere Options window, select Edit > Reset Settings and then set the following options:        
                      • End Sweep Angle: 180
                      • Radius: 8.75
                      •        
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                      In the side view, in the NURBS Sphere Options window, click Create.

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                    3. Rename the half-sphere templeRoof.

                    The roof needs to be rotated -90 degrees about the X axis and positioned on top of the entablature.   In side view, rotate the roof so that the dome part is pointing up.

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                    To rotate and position the roof on the entablature

                        
                    1. Move the roof so it is positioned close to the top edge of Entablature.

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                      Scale the roof so that the sphere becomes slightly squashed in appearance.

                      Using the Scale tool, adjust the Z axis (yellow manipulator handle) so that the sphere becomes slightly squashed in appearance

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                        The Attribute Editor

                        The Attribute Editor provides information about the various nodes and attributes for the objects and materials in your scene. Like the Channel Box, you can view and edit the basic transform information and many other keyable attributes. However, the Attribute Editor provides a more detailed display of all attributes for a selected object.

                        To view object attributes using the Attribute Editor

                        1. In the scene view, select templeRoof.
                        2. To view the Attribute Editor, click the Show/Hide icon on the Status Line.

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                          The Attribute Editor displays the attributes for templeRoof. The various attributes for the templeRoof object appear under various tabs. Each tab represents a node.

                        3. Click the templeRoof tab to see its attributes.

                          This tab is known as the transform node, because the most important attributes on this tab control templeRoof’s transformation. Every visible object in Maya has a transform node, including cameras and lights.

                        4. Click the templeRoofShape tab to see its attributes.

                          This tab is called the shape node because the attributes establish the object’s geometric shape or physical properties when the object is first created. Most objects have shape nodes, some do not, such as the group for the column objects. The shape node also includes other types of attributes, such as object display attributes.

                        5. Click the makeNurbSphere tab to see its attributes.

                          This is an input node that includes attributes related to the object’s construction history. The attributes of an input node are passed to another node subsequent in the construction history for the object—in this case, to the templeRoofShape node.

                        6. The last two nodes are initialShadingGroup and lambert1. If you can’t see them, click the display arrow.

                          The initialShadingGroup and lambert1 nodes are default nodes that relate to the default shading material for an object. Maya uses them to establish the initial color of objects and other settings related to shading. If you create your own shading materials for the temple, as you will in the following steps, these nodes are replaced by the new shading nodes you create.

                        Surface materials

                        The color, shininess, and reflectivity attributes of an object are controlled by its surface material (sometimes referred to as a shader, or shading material). Material attributes relate to how the object simulates a natural reaction to light in Maya’s 3D computer world.

                        Maya assigns a default shading material to all objects when they are first created. In this section, you learn how to assign a new material to your objects.

                        To assign a new material to the temple objects

                        1. Right-click the Entablature and select Object Mode from the pop-up menu.

                          This changes the selection mask back to objects so you can select objects in the scene. It is a shortcut to access this feature.

                        2. Drag a selection box around all the objects in your scene to select them.

                          TIP:  If objects won’t select in the Maya scene, check that your selection mask is set correctly on the Status Line.

                        3. With the temple still selected, right-click on the temple parts and choose Assign New Materials . . .

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                        The Assign New Material window appears.   Scroll down until you see aiStandardSurface material and select it.

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                        1. In the Attribute Editor, rename the aiStandardSurface1 shading material to templeShader.  With a shading material assigned to all the objects, you need to edit the color attributes of the templeShader material.

                        To edit the shading material’s attributes

                        1. In the Attribute Editor, click in the light gray box to the right of the word Color.

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                          The mini Color Chooser appears.

                        2. Click the ring between yellow and orange (or any other light color) to achieve a sand color. You can further refine this color by clicking a shade in the square palette.

                          The exact color is unimportant for this lesson. However, if you’d like more options for choosing your color, you can double-click the the gray box to display the full Color Chooser.   In either case, as you adjust the color wheel indicator, the temple objects become the same color you select in the Color Chooser.


                        3. If you have opened the Color Chooser, click Done to close the chooser.           

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                        4. In the Attribute Editor menu, choose the Selected menu item, and select templeBase1 from the list.

                          The attributes for templeBase display in the Attribute Editor.

                        5. Click the templeShader node tab to see its attributes.  If you can’t see this tab, click the display arrow to the right of the tabs. These are the same attributes you edited when you assigned the templeShader shader to all the objects in the scene. When you first create an object, you see two default nodes for shading, initialShadingGroup and lambert1. When you assign a shading material, the two default nodes are replaced by the attribute node for the assigned shading material.      

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                        6. Close the Attribute Editor using the Show/Hide icon.

                        Light: Physical Sky

                        Setup a simple Physical sky using Arnold.  In the Main Menu select Arnold > Lights > Physical Sky.  The background turns black.  Maya creates a large sphere that surrounds you scene.

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                        Rendering:

                        Frame Test the render. Arnold > Render

                        In the perspective view, turn on the Resolution Gate.  In the Perspective Menu select View > Camera Settings > Resolution Gate

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                        1. Frame your Temple within the Resolution Gate.

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                        In the Main Menu, choose Arnold > Render and the render window pop up.

                        NOTE:

                        • The red square toggles the render on/off.
                        • The second dropdown menu allows you to change the camera to be rendered.

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                        Create a plane to be used as the ground.   From the Main Menu choose Create >  Polygon Primitives > Plane.  

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                        Scale it so that you cannot see it in the final render.

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                        Render the scene again.

                        Temple

                        Move the camera so that the temple is on the left side of the render window.  Select the Physical Sky sphere and rotate it so that the shadow reaches across the scene.

                        Temple2

                        If your shadow does not reach across the scene, you will need to change the time of day by changing the angle of the sun.  Select the Physical Sky sphere and Press < Ctrl > + < A > to toggle the Attribute Editor

                        Save your final image: File > Save Image

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                        Give you image a name and save.

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                        What am I looking for?

                        Temple Requirements.

                        • Temple Finished – all parts correctly modeled
                        • Assign the aiStandardSurface shader and change the color
                        • Render using Arnold and use the Physical Sky light
                        • Rotate and change the the Physical Sky sun’s Elevation so that the shadow reaches from the lower corner to the upper corner

                        Temple-Finished-2

                        Temple Part 2

                        Temple Part 2 Requirements.

                        • Assign a complex shader preset and make adjustments.  (Gold, Orange Juice, Balloon, etc.)
                        • Assign a new material to the ground
                        • Sculpt the ground into an interesting  form

                        Temple-Finished4