INTRO STEPS: | setup | start modelling | moving around | materials | lathing | extruding | ray guns |
RENDERING PICTURES: scenes | lighting | rendering | cameras |
tips | polycount | evaluation

Exercises: Blueprint | Flying Saucer Poster | Flying Saucer Movie | Spaceship | Pumpkin


Adding colour and surface properties in Anim8or
Note - Check the Online Manual for tips on the Materials Editor
Once your basic model has been created, you can start applying some colour and surface properties (shinyness, transparency) to it.
1. Open Materials Panel
  • Click the MATERIALS button Anim8or Materials.gif at the top viewbar
2. Create a New Material
  • DOUBLE CLICK the "NEW" Material.
  1. NAME your material "Dome Black" and adjust the HUE and BRIGHTNESS.
  2. NOTE: Why do you need to NAME your materials?
  3. Try adjust Specular to .1 to make it less shiny.
3. Apply the Material
  • Start in OBJECT MODE (we'll paint an entire object)
  • Select the dome, and APPLY the material
4. Create a Transparent Material
  • Double click the NEW button
  1. Name the new material "Blue Glass"
  2. Choose a light blue colour
  3. Adjust the TRANS to 0.3 to make it 30% opaque
5. Select individual FACES to apply materials to
  • Start in POINT EDIT MODE b_points_u.gif(to modify PARTS of an object)
  1. Choose to edit FACES Anim8or_Edit_Faces.png (this is important!)
  2. Use the selection tool Anim8or_Object_Edit_Mode.png and RIGHT mouse button to select multiple faces; You can also use the WHEELMOUSE button to DE-Select faces
  3. Apply the GLASS material.
  4. Left click elsewhere to deselect the faces.
NOTE - You can only select individual faces on MESH objects - PRIMITIVE objects can only be coloured as a whole
6. View the results
  • Return to OBJECT edit mode Anim8or_Object_Edit_Mode.png
  1. Choose SMOOTH SHADED view Anim8or_Smooth-Shaded-View.png to see the results.
  2. ARC-ROTATE anim8or b_arc_rotate_u.gif to check out the angles.
7. Customize your Saucer
  • Create a shiny "Silver" (Spec:0.8) material for the Dish.
  1. Try adding some detail to the dish object;
  2. Get used to the selection of individual faces!

Why do you need to NAME your Materials?

You will eventually want to store different 3D models in different files, and on different OBJECT page in the same file. IF you mix them together, your colour schemes WILL get messed up IF two different materials share the same NAME. The trick is to give each material it's own unique name.


  1. Create a simple SPHERE in the bottom left corner of your screen, and use your materials to colour it RED (without changing the material name)
  2. Use OBJECT - NEW to open a NEW object page - the red sphere will disappear - no problem - just go to the OBJECT menu and select Object01 and you'll see it again.
  3. Use the OBJECT menu and return to Object02 page, and create a new CUBE in the top right corner. Use materials to colour it ORANGE (without changing the material name)
  4. Select the CUBE and use CONTROL-C to copy it
  5. Go to OBJECT01 and use CONTROL-V to paste the cube on the sphere's page. The cube SHOULD turn RED.
    The problem is that both colours tried to use the default name "MATERIAL01" - the pasted object will always mutate to the "host" object's colour scheme if there is a conflict

Now try copying and pasting the SPHERE into the OBJECT02 page - it should turn red

Double click and RENAME the material (MATERIAL01) to the word "Orange" (or "red" as need be) - NOW try copying and pasting one object to the other's page.

ALWAYS name your MATERIALS appropriately as you invent them - it's way less work than trying to repair things later.

NEXT: Sculpt some ROCKETS with the LATHE tool