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# Engraving Text

Date post: 29-May-2018
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Tutorial: Engraving Text By Bernard Peh  I've always wanted to do wonders with max. Coming up with new methods and overcoming difficult 3D problems gives me great challenge and satisfaction. In this tutorial, I want to show how the problem of engraving words on an object can be solved easily without the use of any plugins. If you are a max enthusiast, you should have seen this same old question popping up again and again in many max forums. Why? Because the idea is cool but coming up with a solution is not. I do know of some complicated solutions involving the use of Photoshop, bones and other plugins. However, I still feel that these methods are too cumbersome and slow to implement. In this tutorial, we are going to engrave a letter "W" onto a wall and I will show how by merely utilizing the path deform modifier, we can do the job in a simple and elegant way. I will not recommend this tutorial for newbies to try because of the complexity of the steps and modifiers involved. Furthermore, I am also not very direct in my explanation because of time and space constraint. You should be comfortable if you have done some work in video post, path follow and basic modeling. 1. File/Reset. In the front view, Objects/Create box/Keyboard entry (x = 0, y=0, z = 0, length = 200, width = 300, ht = -20). Create another box (x = -180, y = 100, z = 0, length = 20, width = 30, ht = 20). Rename this box as letter. 2. Shapes/Rectangle/Keyboard entry (x = -180, y = 50, z = 0, length = 20, width = 20). Name it "Cross Section". 3. We are now creating the letter "W". Shapes/Line/Keyboard entry : point 1 (x = -60, y = 60, z = 0), point 2 (x = -30, y = -60, z = 0), point 3 (x = 0, y = 0, z = 0), point 4 (x = 30, y = -60, z = 0), point 5 (x = 60, y = 60, z = 0). To prevent future surface smoothing problems, we need to add a few more points to the sharp corners. Next, change the corners points to smooth type. Name the completed spline as "Path".
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Tutorial: Engraving Text By Bernard Peh

I've always wanted to do wonders with max. Coming up with new methods and overcoming difficult 3D problems gives megreat challenge and satisfaction. In this tutorial, I want to show how the problem of engraving words on an object can besolved easily without the use of any plugins. If you are a max enthusiast, you should have seen this same old questionpopping up again and again in many max forums. Why? Because the idea is cool but coming up with a solution is not. I doknow of some complicated solutions involving the use of Photoshop, bones and other plugins. However, I still feel that these

methods are too cumbersome and slow to implement. In this tutorial, we are going to engrave a letter "W" onto a wall and Iwill show how by merely utilizing the path deform modifier, we can do the job in a simple and elegant way. I will notrecommend this tutorial for newbies to try because of the complexity of the steps and modifiers involved. Furthermore, I amalso not very direct in my explanation because of time and space constraint. You should be comfortable if you have donesome work in video post, path follow and basic modeling.

1. File/Reset. In the front view, Objects/Create box/Keyboard entry (x = 0, y=0, z = 0, length = 200, width = 300, ht = -20).Create another box (x = -180, y = 100, z = 0, length = 20, width = 30, ht = 20). Rename this box as letter.

2. Shapes/Rectangle/Keyboard entry (x = -180, y = 50, z = 0, length = 20, width = 20). Name it "Cross Section".

3. We are now creating the letter "W". Shapes/Line/Keyboard entry : point 1 (x = -60, y = 60, z = 0), point 2 (x = -30, y = -60= 0), point 3 (x = 0, y = 0, z = 0), point 4 (x = 30, y = -60, z = 0), point 5 (x = 60, y = 60, z = 0). To prevent future surfacesmoothing problems, we need to add a few more points to the sharp corners. Next, change the corners points to smoothtype. Name the completed spline as "Path".

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4. Save File (Optional).

5. Select "path", loft/get shape/choose "Cross Section". Under surface parameter, choose output = patch.

6. Select loft01, Add Noise (x = 10, y = 10, z = 10), check fractal. Add Meshsmooth, type = classic, iteration = 2.

7. Boolean/pick operand B = box01, Check subtraction (B-A). Name loft01 = "Base". Collapse Stack.

8. Select "letter", modify/world space modifier path deform/ pick path = "path". Click move to path. Under Submenu, selectbox. Change height = 380, height segment = 100 (The box height is arbitrary, change it till it cover the booleaned path). Clicselect and move, F12, absolute world/z = -10. The "W" letter should now fully cover the booleaned trail. Now, Modify/smooth(This is to prevent the "letter" from not deforming properly around the sharp bends).

9. Time config = 200, click animate button, go to frame 200. Under submenu, select box, change height = 0. Go back toSubmenu, select Path Deform, percent = 100. Click animate button again to switch it off.

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10. You can stop here actually if you have reached this stage. We will now be adding some cosmetics.Material/Diffuse/Bitmap/Choose a picture. Under texture, check environment. Assign material to "base" and "letter".

11. In the left view, create 1 omni and 1 direct target light (laser). Select target light, modify hotspot = 10, falloff = 15. SelectDirect01.target, Motion/Assign path controller/ pick "path", check constant velocity. The laser should now follow the path.

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12. Under Render/Environment, add volume light/pick direct01, change fog color to red.

13. In the front view, create a spray particle/view port count = 500, render count = 500, speed = 5, drop size = 5, variation =5. Rotate it 180 degrees and make it face out of the base.

14. At the top view, create a gravity space warp and link it to the spray. Now link the spray to Direct01.target so that the sprafollows the laser.

15. Choose a new Material, set diffuse color = yellow or orange and assign it to the spray. Assign material ID = 1. In videopost, add lens effect glow, check material ID = 1, effect = 5.

16. Adjust perspective view, render in video post.

Conclusion

So what do you think of this tutorial? If you want to create letters that requires more than one stroke such as "A", "K" and "Xyou need recreate 1 set of everything again and do the strokes separately, tweaking each path percentage accordingly overtime. The path deform method does not work well with sharp corners. One way to overcome it is to change the coveringlofted text to patch. You might also need to smooth and add more points to the corners.

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