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Modeling, texturing and exporting to DAZ3D
Posted: 01 October 2012 11:15 PM   [ Ignore ]
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I’m almost embarrassed to ask this question, but maybe it’ll help other beginners like me. Nowhere can I find a Hexagon tutorial showing how to export a model to DAZ with all its texture maps and sections held intact, together, as one object, for animation purposes, without welding it all and thereby destroying the individual maps.

The simplest example is a coffee cup - just 2 parts, the cup and the handle. I colored the cup and added a photo to the side by means of texture maps for both parts. Exporting that to DAZ, of course, results in the handle not moving with the cup. So I welded the handle to the cup, which distorted the texture maps, ruining the photo on the side. Eventually I’ll learn seams ‘n things for complicated shapes, but this still begs the question:

Is it necessary to weld all the sections together before you can export to DAZ? If so, it makes no sense that the tutorials teach UV mapping the sections independently. That would be useless if you can’t then use the model in an animation program. Could someone direct me to whatever ellusive tutorial I need in order to answer this question? Much appreciation here, folks!

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Posted: 02 October 2012 01:27 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Maybe you will find something helpfull here:

http://www.geekatplay.com/

http://www.geekatplay.com/hexagontutorials/begining.php
http://www.geekatplay.com/hexagontutorials/index0.php
http://www.geekatplay.com/hexagontutorials/index1.php
http://www.geekatplay.com/hexagontutorials/index2.php
http://www.geekatplay.com/hexagontutorials/index.php

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Posted: 02 October 2012 02:13 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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kenkoy - 01 October 2012 11:15 PM

I’m almost embarrassed to ask this question, but maybe it’ll help other beginners like me. Nowhere can I find a Hexagon tutorial showing how to export a model to DAZ with all its texture maps and sections held intact, together, as one object, for animation purposes, without welding it all and thereby destroying the individual maps.

The simplest example is a coffee cup - just 2 parts, the cup and the handle. I colored the cup and added a photo to the side by means of texture maps for both parts. Exporting that to DAZ, of course, results in the handle not moving with the cup. So I welded the handle to the cup, which distorted the texture maps, ruining the photo on the side. Eventually I’ll learn seams ‘n things for complicated shapes, but this still begs the question:

Is it necessary to weld all the sections together before you can export to DAZ? If so, it makes no sense that the tutorials teach UV mapping the sections independently. That would be useless if you can’t then use the model in an animation program. Could someone direct me to whatever ellusive tutorial I need in order to answer this question? Much appreciation here, folks!

Hi , have you tried to use the bridge between the two programs? Just click on file send to daz studio…if this doesn’t work post a pick of what you’re trying to send…it may help us to help you.

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Posted: 02 October 2012 02:28 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Exporting that to DAZ, of course, results in the handle not moving with the cup.

Not sure how that happened - both pieces should show in Studio as a single object and move as one.  Unless you exported each piece as a separate .obj?  In which case, simply parent the handle to the cup.

To get your texture map onto it in Studio, select the correct surface under the surfaces tab, navigate to where Hex stored it in the same folder as the .obj and apply.

Hope this is of some help?

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Posted: 02 October 2012 12:38 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Thanks, everyone for your responses.
I did use the bridge to send the cup to DAZ, Pendraia. I saved it in Hexagon as a single .obj file, first. But in DAZ, it acted like two separate objects, requiring each to be moved independently. I didn’t even think of parenting the handle to the cup, though! I’m overwhelmed trying to learn Hexagon and Blender at once, and reviewing other programs, as well.

I have been working with those Geekatplay tutes, ruekaka. And the “UV mapping” one, on the robot, in particular. That’s the one that sparked my curiosity over why you’d UV map all those sections separately when it only destroys the map when you weld them together into one object. THAT’S where I think I’m misunderstanding something hugely important.

Roygee, when the cup-with-handle object exported to DAZ, the texture map went with it, already applied, and looked fine. The damage to the map happened when I went back to Hexagon and welded the cup and handle sections, thinking it was necessary to keep them together in DAZ. My first thought was, “Now I have to learn seams ‘n things. Dang!”

Possibly my mistake is in putting DAZ aside and concentrating on Hexagon and Blender. The possibilities with those two programs are so fascinating, I’ve become addicted. As a result, I understand none of the three. Time to take a breath and start over. Thanks again, everyone. I think you’ve given me some good clues here!

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Posted: 02 October 2012 02:55 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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kenkoy - 02 October 2012 12:38 PM

I have been working with those Geekatplay tutes, ruekaka. And the “UV mapping” one, on the robot, in particular. That’s the one that sparked my curiosity over why you’d UV map all those sections separately when it only destroys the map when you weld them together into one object. THAT’S where I think I’m misunderstanding something hugely important.

There’s several different ways of combining parts into a whole object.  The most common, is to just save it as one object..in Blender under Wavefront obj export options that would be to make sure ‘selection’ is unchecked.  Then it will export the whole thing as one item.  This shouldn’t destroy the UV mapping, because it isn’t actually ‘welding’ the parts together (welding involves merging common/nearest vertices and removing ‘extra’ faces).  Not quite sure how to achieve the same thing in Hex, but it should be doable…DS pretty much does that by default.

If the item is going to be rigged/animated then before exporting it, setting groups is a lot easier than doing after it’s been exported.  And if it’s been made in ‘pieces’ and UV mapped, if each piece is a ‘group’, too, it should preserve both the grouping and UVs, as long as the vertex count doesn’t change (or change too much…but ‘too much’ is very relative.  For some items it could many vertices…others just one).


So if you import the item into DS, with all the parts in place and don’t have anything else in the scene, then export it back out as an obj, the next time you import that obj it should be all ‘one piece’ with the UV mapping intact.

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Posted: 02 October 2012 03:33 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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Thanks, ThunderBird8950! I’m going to repeat that cup tutorial again and make sure the whole problem isn’t just a basic step I missed. Or, as you point out, for all I know it might have been fixed if I had of exported it out of DAZ as an object, and reimported.

And, I need to find what “setting groups” is all about, and why I’ve missed that concept. I haven’t reached a level of rigging and animating yet - I only wanted to include the cup in an animation. But, hmm, animating a cup itself? Sort of Lewis Carroll style? Great idea.

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Posted: 02 October 2012 03:45 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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Groups are basically the parts given formal names when combined into a ‘whole’ object.

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Posted: 03 October 2012 11:30 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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I learned quite a bit yesterday working on everyone’s suggestions, although I could find no way to make the cup and handle stay together as one object in DS. But I came to a realization. It’s best to learn “textbook” style, step-by-step from the beginning. It’s a mistake to rummage through online tutorials that vary from one level to another, thinking all I have to do is memorize what they do. I’ve completely missed the CONTEXT of it all.

I’m sure this isn’t necessary, but I want to appologize to everyone here for asking for help when I clearly should just go back to the beginning and treat this stuff with the respect that any complicated task requires. Thanks again for your suggestions. I can use them as I go along. When I come back I want to have the knowledge to be able to participate here on both a give and take basis. Take care, everyone!

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Posted: 03 October 2012 04:39 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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kenkoy - 02 October 2012 12:38 PM

Thanks, everyone for your responses.
I did use the bridge to send the cup to DAZ, Pendraia. I saved it in Hexagon as a single .obj file, first. But in DAZ, it acted like two separate objects, requiring each to be moved independently. I didn’t even think of parenting the handle to the cup, though! I’m overwhelmed trying to learn Hexagon and Blender at once, and reviewing other programs, as well.

The other option would be to select both objects in the Hexagon Scene Tree and right click then group….at least I think that would work.

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Posted: 03 October 2012 04:44 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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kenkoy - 03 October 2012 11:30 AM

I learned quite a bit yesterday working on everyone’s suggestions, although I could find no way to make the cup and handle stay together as one object in DS. But I came to a realization. It’s best to learn “textbook” style, step-by-step from the beginning. It’s a mistake to rummage through online tutorials that vary from one level to another, thinking all I have to do is memorize what they do. I’ve completely missed the CONTEXT of it all.

I’m sure this isn’t necessary, but I want to appologize to everyone here for asking for help when I clearly should just go back to the beginning and treat this stuff with the respect that any complicated task requires. Thanks again for your suggestions. I can use them as I go along. When I come back I want to have the knowledge to be able to participate here on both a give and take basis. Take care, everyone!

Just wanted to say no harm, no foul it’s okay to ask questions.

I must admit I started with doing what you were doing and found it difficult as I would always have gaps in my knowledge that the tutes expected you would have. Eventually I just started to work my way through the tutes at Geekatplay starting with the easier stuff and then got to a point where I could pick and choose more. I’m still very much at the level of low to mid intermediate but finally feel like I’m getting the hang of it.

cheers

Pen

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Posted: 06 October 2012 12:29 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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Re ... I must admit I started with doing what you were doing and found it difficult as I would always have gaps in my knowledge that the tutes expected you would have.

  So true! Even the most basic tutes seem to have assumptions about our knowledge, about a tool, for example, where I end up having to slow down the video to try to catch where his mouse might have quickly hit! And I’m still trying to figure out why my tree stump model, for example, is confusingly see-through on the screen, while his is opaque as he works on it. (Don’t answer that, I’m stubbornly determined to figure it out myself). It’s time to read through that gruelling 295 page pdf manual, isn’t it…
  And of all my mistakes, here’s the dumbest. I promised the people closest to me, that I’d have some cool models for them, by Christmas!!
  Ok, I gotta get back to work.
  Thanks again!

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Posted: 06 October 2012 02:33 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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kenkoy - 06 October 2012 12:29 PM

Re ... I must admit I started with doing what you were doing and found it difficult as I would always have gaps in my knowledge that the tutes expected you would have.

  So true! Even the most basic tutes seem to have assumptions about our knowledge, about a tool, for example, where I end up having to slow down the video to try to catch where his mouse might have quickly hit! And I’m still trying to figure out why my tree stump model, for example, is confusingly see-through on the screen, while his is opaque as he works on it. (Don’t answer that, I’m stubbornly determined to figure it out myself). It’s time to read through that gruelling 295 page pdf manual, isn’t it…
  And of all my mistakes, here’s the dumbest. I promised the people closest to me, that I’d have some cool models for them, by Christmas!!
  Ok, I gotta get back to work.
  Thanks again!

Ill let you figure it out if you want. Let me know if you change you mind. It’s a simple setting change if its what i think it is and it took me ages to work out. I finally stumbled across the answer in a bought tutorials. It something that is very useful to know also.
Cheers

Pen

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Posted: 08 October 2012 05:14 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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Success! I used the simplest method for applying a UV mapped image, sort of like shown in Geekatplay’s “Tree Stump” tute, in part 2. I used my cup-with-welded-handle. I applied the cylindar checkerboard pattern from the UV & Paint tab, and reoriented it to the Y axis in order to get the least distortion of the pattern. I then applied the image (which I made a week ago, using the cup’s exported UV map as a placement guide). Then I adjusted the size of the image, validated it, exported it as an .obj file (to be safe), and then sent it to Daz. It showed up with no image on the cup, so I deleted it and imported that .obj file I had saved, and voila! One cool little cup with a photo on its side. Eventually I’m going to understand what I was just talking about.

Several of the video’s steps don’t work for me, though. I never see the “Custom UVs: Replace by a new gizmo?” popup, for example. And if I click the “Unfold” face icon, the images in Perspective View and UV view turn a dark gray and there’s nothing really doable from that point on. I’ll figure it out, eventually. Much much else to learn first, me thinks.

Pendraia:
I’m not sure about the “see-through” question I had, but it might have something to do with Display > Backfaces Visibility when Select Faces is being used. I haven’t had a chance to test that idea. But please go ahead and tell me what setting you’re referring to. I’m sure that info would be important to others, too.

So… this is how you folks learned, eh??? I gotta say, I admire your patience! I’ll pop back to the forum from time to time to discuss some of these things as I learn them. Maybe it’ll help other frustrated souls like myself. Thanks again!

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Posted: 09 October 2012 12:59 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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kenkoy - 08 October 2012 05:14 PM

Pendraia:
I’m not sure about the “see-through” question I had, but it might have something to do with Display > Backfaces Visibility when Select Faces is being used. I haven’t had a chance to test that idea. But please go ahead and tell me what setting you’re referring to. I’m sure that info would be important to others, too.

So… this is how you folks learned, eh??? I gotta say, I admire your patience! I’ll pop back to the forum from time to time to discuss some of these things as I learn them. Maybe it’ll help other frustrated souls like myself. Thanks again!

I just wrote a great big long piece and lost it. Sorry very brain dead tonight.

Simply put there is a cube on the right hand side of the menu that runs along the bottom. This will toggle whether you can see the back parts of the object. It will also determine whether you can select the back parts (if invisible you can if solid you can’t) It’s very useful to know this as it can help you to select exactly what you need.

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Posted: 09 October 2012 11:13 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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... Simply put there is a cube on the right hand side of the menu that runs along the bottom. ...

Thanks, yet again!

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