you can fly!? Archipelis mini-tutorials....

Using theClipboard
to Load an Image

more tutorials...

The whole philosophy of Archipelis Designer has always been to make 3D models - fast. Very fast.  So it's not surprising that even the mere process of loading a starting image as a background is a task which it wants to help you get done with as fast as possible. For example, if you are looking at a picture from your digital camera in your image viewing software, or you're smiling at photos of your highschool sweetheart's 30-year class reunion on a website, what's the fastest way to get such image into Archipelis Designer?

Well, through the Clipboard, of course, because in this hectic world, who's got time to save files?

Take for example a look at one of the Dogwafflers of the Moment, such as Martin Duerr, presented at

Scroll down to look for a good portrait, side or frontal. Click the mad cat for example.

Ok, here's the image in all its glory. Don't worry about it not being centered. We can adjust the position a little in Archipelis Designer, and besides, let's not forget that this is fun, not rocket science. 'Precision' is not part of our vocabulary here.

Don't forget: hit the PrintScreen key on your keyboard at this time. This will capture the screen into the Clipboard. Or  use ALT-PrintScreen if you only want the selected window to get copied.

Switch over to a new session or Archipelis Designer.  Set the Appearance to "Textured", in the mid-right area. The default style might be cartoon.

then click "Paste Texture" to force the image from the Clipboard into the program.

You may want to adjust the zoom, left/right and top/bottom sliders to fine-tune the position and size of the loaded image.

Read... Set... Trace!!

You can inspect the traced object as it turns into a 3D shape, using the right-mouse to drag and orbit. To re-align the view with the original direction view axis, click the "Shape" option - it will align along the viewing axis that was used during the creation of the currently selected shape.

This is particularly useful when you draw multiple parts from different angles, perhaps not using a backdrop image as reference, or using different parts in the image which show  the same object as seen from different angles, such as a front, side and top view.

Trace-draw the various parts. You can use the Translation and Size control sliders along the left side of the view to position the selected object relative to others.

Here's a rotated side view with the traced head moved forward and more scaled to make it more thin.

When you're done tracing the several desired objects, including the eye patch and nose, you can change the desired Resolution. This changes the density of the subdivision surface mesh.

When all is done, use "Save As" to save the file to a native .archipelis file. Then also export the mesh to .obj format, which includes the vertex texture mapping addresses.

Or, if you're not done yet, perhaps you'll want to change the appearance of the cat, such as its color, by editing the texture. To that effect, Archipelis Designer lets you select your favorite image editor. By default, mspaint is used. Click that entry in the main menu to the left side (next to the export formats), and pick your alternate viewer. For example, Project Dogwaffle. Find the executable, dogwaffle.exe, in the installation folder of PD Pro.

 You can then simply click "Edit Texture" in the lower-right area's menu. Archipelis Designer then minimizes itself, and launches the image editor, opening the current image. Note that a new instance of the image editor is launched.

Inside Dogwaffle, or whichever image editor or paint program you prefer to use, simply paint over the existing image to change it as desired. Here's an example with flowers added and long shiny hair using the particle brushes.

When you're done, save the image to Jpeg from the File>Save menu, then close (Quit) the program. Archipelis Designer will then return and continue by applying the newly saved image.

And here she is, in all her glory.