Loft Objects - Quick Start Guide

Let’s start with adding a loft object to the scene. Find Loft in objects panel at the left and drag it to the scene:

You will see a simple cylinder and Edit Loft button at the right. Click it to open Loft Editor window:

From left to right you see:

There is also a toolbar at the top of the window that lets you do most common things with loft objects. More controls are available at the right click menu of the blueprint panel:

Here you can choose between front and side views of the loft, decide what to do for horizontal or vertical dragging of layers and also zoom the shape to fit the preview area.

Let’s Make It Square

So far our object looks pretty simple, let’s make it slightly more complex. For instance, let’s make it square. Locate “Square” shape at the collections panel at the left and drag it onto the top layer of the loft object in blueprint panel:

When you drop it you’ll see that the top part of our cylinder became square. That’s how loft objects work. Do the same for the bottom layer:

You can also drop shapes into the space between layers, just move them to the line that connects two layers and Boxshot will highlight the dropping place:

Let’s add one more square layer so there are 4 of them and select the top two by holding left mouse button and dragging around them as you usually select objects in any other 2D graphics editor:

Now hold left mouse button over one of the control points of selected layers and move it to the right:

You see the changes in 3D preview: the top part of the shape gets smaller. You might also note that both width and length of the shape were affected by the move. You can change this using right click context menu, there is a section called Horizontal Movement there that controls what happens when you move layers left or right. Let’s switch it to Scale on visible axis:

This means that moving control point left or right will only affect the visible side (Front, as you may see in the popup menu). Let’s now move the selected control points slightly left:

You see that our square top became rectangular, as it was resized along just one axis. Now if you switch between front and side views using the context menu, you will see they are different.

There are more options like this in the popup menu:

There are also options for vertical movement, but they are much simpler and only let you define if you want vertical movement to change the height of selected layers or not.

Curvy Lofts

Let’s cancel the current changes and start with a brand new cylindrical loft. Then add another circle layer somewhere in the middle and click Make Curvy button in the toolbar:

This button updates all the selected layers and sets their curve radius to “40”, making them non-flat:

The button itself became inactive, but the shape has been modified and now doesn’t look like a flat cylinder. Also note the yellow dot on the edge in the blueprint panel. By dragging this dot you can control the curve.

Now make the bottom layer curvy, as well and drag the yellow dots to make this shape:

Also select the middle layer and uncheck Hard edge box in the parameters panel to make the edge soft. The shape now looks pretty much like a beer glass, except there is no space for beer itself. Lets fix that by clicking the special button in the toolbar:

Magic just happened! When you click the button, Boxshot checks if the shape is simple enough (basically, each new layer is above the previous one) and automatically generates the inner part of the shape to make it hollow.

Let’s add a final touch and make the glass slightly more complex. Select all the layers in blueprint editor, then find “Polygon 4” shape in the shapes collection panel and drag it onto the selected layers:

You see the glass got edges. You can make it even more interesting by adding a circle near the top and make the very top edge circular, as well:

You can add more layers, adjust their size and positions, make them flat or curvy, hard and soft to make a perfect design.

Do not close your beer can model yet, there is one more thing to do.

Saving Lofts

Although you can simply click OK and get the loft object added to the scene, it might worth saving it for further usage by itself. Boxshot lets you do so, as it has a collection of loft objects. Click the Lofts button at the toolbar to see them:

Scroll down to see sample lofts that come with Boxshot. You can use them as a starting point for your own ones, or simply use them “as is”. The main thing is that you can add your own loft there by clicking Save Loft button in the toolbar:

Enter the name you want and click Save, then find your shape saved to the collection:

Anytime later you can simply drag that loft into the blueprint to get it loaded instantly.

Right click saved lofts to reveal their saved location or delete them.

Anything Else?

Definitely, but the tutorial gets too long for that. See our Lofts FAQ page for more questions and answers regarding lofts.

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