LightWave 2018

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(default keyboard shortcut Shift W)

The Text tool (Create > Text > Text) lets you interactively create type objects using any font available to your operating system including PostScript, TrueType and OpenType formats. Once you create them, these objects can be bevelled, extruded, drilled, and more.

When you first click in a viewport after selecting the Text tool (Create > Text > Text), the text insertion pointer appears. You can just start typing to create the Text template.


The Text Insertion Pointer

You can use the Backspace or Delete keys to clear the last character typed. To clear the entire text line, press Shift + Backspace or Shift + Delete. If you need to use a Modeler keyboard shortcut, like the N key, while using the Text tool, first press the ESC key to exit the Text tool, then press the desired shortcut key.

Modifying the Template

The position of the text is referenced to the bottom left of the pointer. You can reposition the text in any viewport. Dragging the sizing handle up or down will scale the text larger or smaller. Dragging the kerning handle will adjust the amount of space between characters.Text will be aligned with reference to the vertical bar. Pressing the Tab key will cycle through the alignment options.

You can cycle through the font list using the Up and Down cursor keys or you can use the numeric requester. If you have already started a template, the font will change.

You must deselect the Text tool to actually create the object. This can be done by clicking on any other tool button, mode button, the Make button or hitting the Return key. The Text tool cannot be dropped with the / key (Drop tool) because it is interpreted as text input. Alternatively, clicking your RMB will create the object and also move the template to your mouse pointer position. You can quickly make unlimited copies of the text in this manner.

The number of points used to approximate curves in characters depends on the setting for Curve Division on the General Options Panel (Modeler > Edit > General Options).

If you realize you are creating your text in the wrong viewport, click in the grey empty area of the interface - the text you have created in the viewport will disappear, but you will notice that the Text tool button remains highlighted and active. Click in the correct viewport, and your text will reappear in that viewport.
The characters that are available within the selected font may be limited. You may or may not have all possible characters allowed by the font type depending on whether those characters were created in the font originally.

The Text Numeric Panel

The related Numeric Panel provides interactive feedback and also lets you set options numerically. Axis is the perpendicular axis used in creating the text; however, it is usually set interactively by clicking the mouse in a view window. The Text input field lets you enter the text to generate into a 3D object.

From the Font pop-up menu, you can select any of the fonts defined in the previously discussed Fonts List.

Some fonts, when converted into 3D objects, have additional points near their corner vertices. When these polygons are beveled, these additional points can cause beveling inaccuracies. Use the default setting, Sharp, for the majority of your text generation, as this will avoid the creation of such points. The Buffered setting allows the additional points to be created.

The Alignment setting determines how the text is aligned around the text insertion pointer.

Center is the XYZ position of the insertion point; however, it is usually set interactively by clicking the mouse in a view window. The Scale value sets the general height of the text; however, the actual size may be less and will vary from font to font. Kern sets the spacing between fonts and depends on the font’s own characteristics. Negative numbers are allowed to bring characters closer together.

Characters with separate parts, such as i, é or ; will have an edge joining the parts making selecting the whole letter more easy. This edge won’t appear in renders unless you specifically want it to use Object Properties > Edge options in Layout.

These lines might look odd in shaded OpenGL display modes, but there’s nothing wrong.

The Scale setting (Numeric Panel) cannot be set to zero or a negative number.