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Edit the object's mesh by controlling vertices, edges, and faces
What is Edit mode
In Vectary you can edit any object at the level of its geometry, that is, you can manage vertices, edges, and faces (polygons) - this is called polygonal modeling.
Read more about how to enter edit mode here.
As you enter this mode, you will notice three things:
- The appearance of the object has changed, the materials are no longer visible, and it has become something purple. This style of display is called Shaded (or MatCap shader). We see the geometry of the object (the mesh) as a peachy-purple gradient. In this visual mode, it is convenient to work with the geometry, because you have a good understanding of the object's volume and see its mesh.
However, you can switch the style and see the materials again by pressing the
Zkey, which means you don't have to go back to object mode.
- All the tools in the toolbar at the top have changed, there are now only tools related to the editing mode.
- In the panel below there are three new buttons indicating geometric elements: vertex (or point), edge (or line), and face (or polygon). You can only work with one kind of geometric element at a time. That is, if you turn on vertex mode, only vertices are now available for selection. You can not work with both vertices and lines at the same time, it is the laws of polygonal modeling.
When you select a geometric element, the familiar Gizmo appears. Here it works in exactly the same way as in object mode. Just imagine that a geometric element (even a vertex) is the same object, just smaller and without volume.
In edit mode, the selection of geometric elements accounts for about 80% of all actions. Before you can apply any tool or do anything, you must first select the necessary geometric elements.
Therefore, we recommend that you first master the selection tools and that you use shortcuts to speed up your workflow.
In edit mode, you can work with only one geometrical element at a time: a vertex, an edge, or a face. This means that element selection will also depend on which mode is enabled.
This is the tool that is used in Edit mode by default, that is when no other tool is selected. In this mode, you select geometric elements one by one.
+ To select multiple geometric elements, hold down
- To deselect, hold down
Selection by a rectangular area.
+ Add selection:
Selection with Lasso.
You don't have to finish the selection. It connects to the starting point automatically when you finish selecting.
+ Add selection:
Selects all geometric elements that the line touches.
+ Add selection:
Ctrl+A — selecting a separate part of the mesh. That is, if the object consists of separate mesh parts, then that part will be selected first.
Ctrl+A — If you press again, the entire geometry of the object will be selected.
Selects everything except what is currently selected.
Sometimes it's easier to select what doesn't need to be selected to get the results faster.
Selection Jog is a very useful set of tools for selecting geometric elements by conditions:
How to use it:
- select one or more geometric elements
- choose Selection Jog
- a context menu will appear that will offer you options depending on what you have selected
Here is a list of all possible options:
- Loop Selection — set the loop for selection: e.g., every second face, every third vertex or every fourth edge.
- Lines by angle — select all lines with a certain angle.
- Select planar — select all the faces that are on the same plane.
- Invert selection — select everything except what is currently selected.
- Select similar — select similar polygons.
- Select holes — select all the holes.
- Select polygon — select polygons with a certain number of edges.
- Grow / Shrink — grow and shrink the selection area.
Shift + L — select the geometric element and press
Shift + L to select the loop. Press again to select the loop in the other direction.
Alt — and this hotkey will help you use loop selection with exact loop choice. Select the geometric element, then hold down Alt to select the next element, thereby defining a selection loop.
This tool creates a new empty object. A new object named Buffer Object will appear in the panel on the left, but there will be nothing on the scene itself because it doesn't have mesh yet.
It is used when you need to create a new object from scratch or when you need to make a part of an object a separate object (e.g., to apply another material to it).
Just cut out a part with
Ctrl+X, then create a new object and press
Use the drawing tools to create different shapes and then make them voluminous.
There are two types of drawing at your disposal: draw lines and hand draw.
Draw lines — here you draw with straight lines, you just put dots and straight lines appear between them.
For your figure to be filled automatically with geometry, you need the line to be closed and at the end press
Enter (or select the line and press
Snap to End will help to close the line.
Hand draw — is drawing by hand, at the end of which a menu appears to improve the resulting line. You can use it to close the line, smooth it out, remove thresholds, make the line more detailed, etc.
To fill a shape, select the line and press
In edit mode, primitives work the same way as in object mode, but the difference is that you create a primitive with multiple clicks. The first two or three clicks let you create a basic shape, and then you can detail its shape using the context menu.
A tool for extruding a mesh. The tool becomes available for use in the toolbar only after you select a face, edge, or vertex.
How to use
Select the desired geometric elements, choose to Extrude, and drag the arrow that appears. You can drag the arrow either forward or backward.
Select the desired elements, apply Extrude, and pull the arrow that appears. You can pull either forward or backward.
Ctrland pull on any Gizmo element.
The tool for creating bevels and new faces within existing faces (inset). It won't become available for use in the toolbar unless you select a face, edge, or vertex.
How to use
Select the geometric elements you want, apply Bevel, and drag the blue element that appears.
👉 Click on it to bring up a context menu to use all the features of this tool.
The following options are available in the context menu:
Offset — the offset distance when you apply Bevel to an edge or vertex.
Inset — the offset distance when you apply Bevel to a face.
Limits — cancels the constraint for the displacement, it will not rest on the nearest edges.
Segments — specify the number of segments for the bevel. This will make the bevel smoother.
Separate faces off — If you apply Bevel to multiple faces simultaneously, Bevel will be applied to each face separately.
Groups faces on — If you apply Bevel to multiple faces simultaneously, Bevel will be applied to all faces as if they were a single face.
Sharp segments — the bevel as such will not appear, but new segments will appear.
Round segments — bevel with a rounded edge (default).
The tool for transforming geometry to a circle. The more vertices are involved, the smoother the circle will be.
If you click on the blue element, a context menu appears in which you can set the rotation for the circle.
The tool for joining two faces, edges or vertices.
Select the two geometric elements, apply the Bridge, and a new geometry appears between them, as well as a context menu that allows you to change the bridge parameters.
Segments — adding segments for the bridge.
Strength — flexes the bridge.
Twist — twists the bridge.
Perpendicular — bridge is straight.
Smooth — bridge with a narrowing in the middle.
The tool for moving and copying edges and loops. To make it active, you must select at least one edge.
Pull the blue element to move the edge.
Clicking on the blue item brings up a context menu where you can specify the number of Copies of the edge and then use Offset to move them.
Shiftto make one copy of an edge.
The tool for cutting geometry, with which you can either cut an object or simply create a new edge.
There are two tools at your disposal: Cut and Multiple Cut.
How to apply the Cut
Set the starting point, and then use the second point to indicate the direction of the cut line.
Shift and you can make a straight cut at either a 45° or 90° angle.
Cut — a single cut, after which a context menu with the following options appears:
Split — by clicking, you confirm that you are cutting the object into separate pieces. If you don't click on Split, you just created a new edge.
Cap — fill the cut with mesh.
Gap — creates a gap at the point of the cut. Notice that you are not pushing the parts away from each other, but as if you are increasing the thickness of the cut. That is, some of the geometry disappears when you increase the gap.
Multiple Cut — several consecutive cuts, which can be completed by pressing Enter. After such a cut, no context menu appears, so Multiple Cut is used only to create new edges.
The tool for collapsing the mesh into a single point, which will be located at the geometric center of the shape that was selected for collapse.
You can collapse the faces as well as the vertices and edges.
Cap open boundaries
Ctrl + O
The tool for closing holes with mesh. If applied without hole selection, applies to all recognized holes.
If you only want to cover a particular hole, just select its outline and apply the tool.
A tool for merging faces that are in the same plane into a single face.
Just select some adjacent polygons and apply the tool.
A set of tools for working with mesh.
Weld — helps to make the mesh whole. The geometry of a single object may not be connected to each other. This tool welds the geometry, making it connected. Welding can be applied either to the whole object or to individual parts that need to be welded.
Smooth — smoothing of the object, in which only the existing polygons are involved.
Triangulate — makes the polygons triangular.
Quadify — makes the polygons quadrangular.
Spherify — gives the mesh a spherical shape.
Subdivision — an exponential increase in the number of polygons to detail the mesh or smooth it out. Each click increases the unit level. The following subdivision algorithm is available to you:
Flat — subdivision without changing the shape.
Interpolating — softer smoothing, the original shape is better preserved.
Approximating — sharper smoothing, the shape changes noticeably. The same smoothing algorithm is applied in the Subdivision Surface modifier in the Object mode.
Desubdivision — cancels the approximating action.
Tools for flipping and smoothing normals.
Each face (polygon, segment) is also a normal. The normal contains information about how to reflect light. And also the normal has a front side and a backside. Sometimes normals may be pointing in the wrong direction and then they need to be adjusted. You may encounter such situations when importing a model or when creating a new geometry from scratch. When the normal look in the other direction, you will see a void instead of an edge in texture display mode (provided that the double-sided material option is not turned on).
Flip Normals — to flip the normals one at a time.
Unify Normals — so that all the normals look in the same direction.
Smooth Threshold — with this tool, you adjust the color transition between adjacent normals, thereby determining how smooth the object will appear. This smoothing has no effect on the geometry of the object, you just control how the light is reflected (evenly or not). The default setting is 40 to make objects look natural. If you want each edge to be clearly visible, set it to 0. If you don't want to see the edges, increase the value until you like the result. Too high a value will give an unnatural effect.