Thursday, March 15, 2007

Cosmic Blobs Tutorials - Point Pull, Poke, Flatten & Pinch

Note: Relax your eyes and focus on the center of the image, if you are among those that can see a Crossed-Eye Stereogram, you should soon see fully 3D objects in the center of the image.

Making these tutorials has been a real joy. The tools that the Cosmic Blobs developers have given us are a pleasure to use. The tutorials being posted with this entry complete the Modeling Mode Toolset. These are the most basic tools that we use to manipulate our models.

Point Pull Tool

The Point Pull Tool is probably the most used tool in Cosmic Blobs. As with other so-called 'pull' tools, this one can both pull surface of a blob out or push the surface inward. It relies on a single 'Influence Slider' to adjust the behavior of the tool.

Play Tutorial #15 - The Cosmic Blobs Point Pull Tool

Poke Tool

The Poke Tool is another tool that gets lot of use when building 3D models in Cosmic Blobs. With this tool, you can 'Poke' OUT or IN. Animal ears, eye sockets and noses are among the many great uses for the Poke Tool. Two sliders are used with this tool. One slider determines the depth of the poke and the second the width of its influence.

Play Tutorial #16 - The Cosmic Blobs Poke Tool

Flatten Tool

The Flatten Tool may not be used as much as the two previous tools; but, it is no less important. With this tool you can feather edges or smooth the point on a cone. You can also use it to do exactly what it's name implies...flattening objects. This tool relies on a single influence slider to control its effects.

Play Tutorial #17 - The Cosmic Blobs Flatten Tool

Pinch Tool

It won't be long before this tool will become one of your favorites. It's extremely versatile and can be used effecively with every one of the basic blobs. It actually should be called the Pinch or Bulge tool becuase it does both. While the tool itself is locked to either a vertical or horizontal action, you can turn your blob to affect it at any angle. It's a favorite around here with the Torus tool and nothing is faster at creating a four legged creature to quickly show someone how Cosmic Blobs' animation mode works. This one is just pure fun!

Play Tutorial #18 - The Cosmic Blobs Pinch Tool

The tutorials finish the Cosmic Blobs Modeling Mode. But, there are two other modes in Cosmic Blob and we'll move on to creating some tutorials to show you these great tools, too!

Now that you have seen ow Cosmic Blobs works in the Modeling Mode, is there any wonder why we're Blob Fans???

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Cosmic Blobs Tutorials - Curve Pull, Area Pull & Curve Push

Cosmic Blobs has a number of tools designed to let us easily manipulate the surfaces of our blobs. Some of these tools can only be used in conjunction with the three drawing tools. The drawing tools are the Line Drawing Tool,the Arc Drawing Tool and the Freeform Curve Drawing Tool. The three tools can can only be used in conjunction with the drawing tools are the Curve Pull Tool, the Area Pull Tool and the Curve Push Tool. The first two of these tools works with a drawing on a blob. The Curve Push Tool only works with a drawing that is NOT on a blob.

The following tutorials demonstrate each of these tools individually.

Curve Pull Tool

The name of the Curve Pull Tool can be a bit misleading becuase we can use this tool to both pull and push to lift or depress the surface of a blob under and around a drawn line. The Influence Slider determines how the Pull or Push affects the surface. It's useful for creating a mouth or pulling up an eyebrow ridge.

Play Tutorial #12 - The Cosmic Blobs Curve Pull Tool

Area Pull Tool

Like the Curve Pull Tool, this tool can push as well as pull. This tool is only activated when an area is enclosed by one or more joined lines that create a boundary around an area on the blob. Istead of simply pulling under and around the lines, this tool pulls the entire area defined by the lines. This tool is excellent for pulling out the neck, snout or ears of an animal or pushing in an area to form eye-sockets.

It's also useful to add complexity to things like robots. Used with Cosmic Blobs 'Stickers', it can add a three dimensional effect to flat drawings.

Play Tutorial #13 - The Cosmic Blobs Area Pull Tool

Curve Push Tool

This is the only tool of those that utilize the drawing tools to require that the drawing be done in space and not on the blob. It only works by being pushed toward the blob. The Influence Slider determines how much the push will affect the blob's surface. The important thing to remember is that while we may draw a simple line, the Curve Push Tool will treat it a plane and affect a wide area of the blob horizontally.

Of the the three tools, this is the most difficult to use and the least predictable. But, once harnessed it can do things like turn the sharp edge of a cube into a nicely curved edge (Filet).

Play Tutorial #14 - The Cosmic Blobs Curve Push Tool

Here is a sample using both Curve Pull and Area Pull to add complexity to the shape of an insect robot's head.

Sunday, March 4, 2007

Cosmic Blobs Tutorials - Modes, Bend, Scale & Join

Cosmic Blobs permits us to design, decorate and animate our blobs using three different modes. The Modeling Mode is where we create the shapes for our blobs, the Decoration Mode is where we add color and 'stickers' like eyes and the Animation mode is where we set our blobs in motion to music in a variety of ways. Tutorial #5 introduces you to the Cosmic Blobs Modes.

In Tutorials #6 through #10 we begin to introduce some tools only available in the Modeling Mode.

The 'Modeling' mode of Cosmic Blobs includes a number of tools to help you reshape the basic blobs into models that you envision. Among them are the 'Bend' tool which, as the name implies, allows you to bend objects into new shapes; the 'Scale' tool that permits you to resize your objects and the 'Join' tool that creates a single object from two separate objects.

For your convenience, here are links to the previous tutorials. If you haven't already watched them, we suggest that you use these links to see them now.

Play Tutorial #1 - The CosmicBlobs Help System
Play Tutorial #2 - The CosmicBlobs File System
Play Tutorial #3 - The CosmicBlobs Undo/Redo Feature
Play Tutorial #4 - Moving and Rotating CosmicBlobs blobs
Play Tutorial #4a - Using Mirror to Rotate More Precisely

Here are the new tutorials we've added:

Cosmic Blobs Modes:

Play Tutorial #5 - The CosmicBlobs Modes (Modeling, Decoration & Anmation)

Cosmic Blobs Bend Tool:

Play Tutorial #6 - The CosmicBlobs Bend Tool (Sheet & Cube)
Play Tutorial #7 - The CosmicBlobs Bend Tool (Torus & Cone)
Play Tutorial #8 - The CosmicBlobs Bend Tool (Sphere)
Play Tutorial #9 - The CosmicBlobs Bend Tool (Cylinder)

Cosmic Blobs Scale Tool:

Play Tutorial #10 - The CosmicBlobs Scale Tool

Cosmic Blobs Join Tool:

Play Tutorial #11 - The CosmicBlobs Join Tool

While Cosmic Blobs is designed to be easier than any other 3D modeling application, we hope these tips make it even easier for you to begin to create your own wonderful blobs even more quickly. The more you know about the great features of Cosmic Blobs the more, we're sure, that you will like it.

We hope that you will enjoy these tutorials while we set about enjoying making some more!