Edit Normals Tool

Sometimes you need to re-generate normals of a single mesh or even the whole shape. You may need to make them smooth or hard, or even flip them. You can do this in Owlet using the Edit Normals tool.

Let’s start with the same bunny as in UV Mapping tool, just assing a reflective material to it (steel is fine):

Owlet with a 3d bunny model

Now click the Tools -> Edit Normals menu item or the corresponding button in the toolbar to see the normals editor window pops up:

Normals editor in Owlet

Nothing really changed for the bunny, as by default the normals editor tool runs in “Auto” mode that tries to make normals smooth. As the bunny was smooth enough before we started, there is no much difference so far. However, things will change when we switch to the “Hard” mode that makes all the edges hard:

Normals editor in Owlet - hard mode

As you may see, all the edges are now hard and the bunny looks like a disco ball. This is good when you need to focus on sharp edges of the shape.

The last option is Flip normals, which doesn’t depend on normals generation. Instead, it is used to heal some poor shapes that are loaded inverted. Here’s what happen if you click it:

Normals editor in Owlet - inverted bunny

We’ve basically inverted the bunny, so it looks black, as the renderer is now confused by meeting the backside before the front side. If you ever see such shape in Owlet - use the normals editor tool to flip the normals and heal the shape.