In this video, learn how to import the reference images of the character into Blender and align them in the center of the grid.
- The first thing I like to do when creating a character is to bring in the reference images. And what I've done is just draw a few fairly rough views of the character of front view and a side view. And I'd like to bring those in to the scene here to help us begin the character. Now I don't need any of these objects I'm just going to hit the a key to select everything and then I'll hit the X key and choose delete. And there we go. Now let's bring in a reference image. So first of all, what I'll do is just press shift a which brings up the add menu. You can also of course, come over here to add. It's the same thing. But if I press shift a and I go to image and reference we can browse to the reference images folder that's in the project files that you can download. I'm going to open up that folder and here we've got a couple of views of our character. And what I want to do is bring in this front view. Now, if I select this front view and I keep this aligned to view on, what happens if I click here to load the image you can see it is aligned to that camera view that I was at when the image was brought in. So I don't want that. I'm going to press control Z and get rid of that. So let's try that again. I'm going to press shift a, image reference and if we select this and de-select this align to view now we load the reference image and it comes in flat on the grid. So that's something that we can use. What I'll do is come over here and turn on the move gizmo. So we can see we've got these X, Y, and Z axes. We've got them over here, X, Y, and Z. So I'm going to turn the reference image 90 degrees along the X axis. And to do that, I can press R X nine zero and hit enter. And that will turn it 90 degrees. So now we have our character here. What I'd like to do is bring him up onto the grid. So he's kind of standing on the grid plane. And if we come over here we've got this object data properties panel I'll click here and we can change things here for our reference image. So, first of all, I think I want to take the size down. I think I want this character to be about 1.3 meters tall. So that's what I'm going to do. I'm to come in here and just type in 1.3 and there he is. Now I want to move him up so he's standing on the ground plane, as I said. So I'm going to take this Y field right here. And instead of negative 0.5 I'm just going to type in zero and enter. And there he is. Okay. Now the last thing for this image is to try and center him up along the X axis. If I hit the one key on the number pad we go to the front orthographic view. And in this view, you can see that the Z axis is kind of off. It isn't going right down the center of the character. To move this image over I need to be able to see that Z axis so I could put that Z axis right down the center of the character. And I can't see it, it's behind the character but there are a couple of things here that we can work with to change how we view the character. So this depth tool here, as it says it determines which other objects will occlude the image or be in front of the image. So if we chose the back button here, now we can see the grid and the axis lines in front of the character. And this is just temporary. I'm going to change it back to default once I move the character around. But let's now grab this X axis. I'm just going to click and drag in the X axis and drag them over. Now, as I said, this drawing is pretty rough and you can see how the center of the body of the drawing is around in here but the center of the head is around in here. So I wasn't really accurate on my drawing here but what I'm going to do is put the character centered in the head on the face, right, right around in here. So for mine, it's around negative 0.43. All right. So that lines him up right down the center. I'll change back to default. Now let's bring in the side view I'll tumble back around and let's do that again. Let's press shift a, image and reference and then bring in this side view. Once again, it's flat on the grid plane. So let's turn it in the X axis, r, x, nine, zero. And then let's also turn it in the Z axis. This blue axis is going up and down. Let's press r, z, nine, zero. And that spins that around. All right. We want it a 1.3 meters, right? And we want to type zero in the Y axis to bring them up onto the grid plane. And there we go. So now we've got the reference images in place and we can kind of get a sense of the three dimensionality of the character here. Just very roughly, I know, but you can kind of see how deep he's going to be, how wide. And I think having the images like this is kind of a good way to begin visualizing the character within the 3D space, but there are a couple of other things that we can do here. First of all, when I tumble around here I can see the back of the front image. And I don't think I want to do that. I think as I'm working and I accidentally I'm over here that may confuse me as to where I'm supposed to be. So what I'm going to do is select that front image. And I'd like to turn off the ability to see it from the back. So if we come over here to side and I just click front now we can only see it from the front. And when we tumble around here, we can't see it in the back. And I think that'll just help me keep from getting confused. As I'm working here. Let's also rename these objects. I'm going to come up here and instead of empty I'll call this a front view. And for the side view here, let's just call this side view. And for the collection, it's in this grouping that these kinds of automatically went into let's change this and call it reference. And this is just where we're going to put all of the reference images as we bring them in. All right, so now we've got our images in. We can come over here to the number pad on the keyboard and press the one key to go to the front orthographic view. The three key to go to the right or the graphic view. And we can see each of these on their own. If we then tumble around we can see them both again, in the perspective view. Now, sometimes you may not want to see things in the perspective view, but only in the orthographic. You can do that by just turning off perspective here. Or maybe you do not want to see it in an orthographic view. You can maybe choose the side and turn off the orthographic view here. So it just depends on how you want to work. Sometimes I like to just turn them off completely in the perspective view and only have it in the orthographic. And one way to do that quickly is you can choose both of the images up here, let's say, and with them both selected you could turn off the perspective view by pressing alt and then clicking on the check mark. And that will turn that particular thing off for everything selected. When you hold down the alt key so I can press alt and click again. And that brings them both back. So just a tip there if you have multiple things selected oftentimes you can change values for all of them at once by holding the alt key down and clicking. Now, lastly, if you're working in this view and it's getting hard to see polygons because the images are so bright. You can always come over here with these both selected. I can come over here and press alt and click. And now if I press alt and click and drag in the opacity slider here it can reduce the opacity, make it a little bit less bright. And so you can kind of see through them too. So you can also do that if you like, alt click here and that brings it back or turns off the transparency. All right, now that we've got our images in, in the next video we'll begin modeling the face of the character.