Many modeling projects start from the ground up, and you can't get much lower to the ground than 2D. But this book is on 3D, you say? What place is there for 2D shapes? Within the 3D world, you frequently encounter flat surfaces—the side of a building, the top of a table, a billboard, and so on. All these objects have flat 2D surfaces. Understanding how objects are composed of 2D surfaces will help as you start to build objects in 3D. This chapter examines the 2D elements of 3D objects and covers the tools needed to work with them.
Working in 2D in Max, you use two general objects: splines and shapes. A spline is a special type of line that curves according to mathematical principles. In Max, splines are used to create all sorts of shapes such as circles, ellipses, and rectangles.
You can create splines and shapes using the Create
Shapes in Max are unique from other objects because they are drawn in 2D, which confines them to a single plane. That plane is defined by the viewport used to create the shape. For example, drawing a shape in the Top view constrains the shape to the XY plane, whereas drawing the shape in the Front view constrains it to the ZX plane. Even shapes drawn in the Perspective view ...