Working with Materials
The Material Library Panel
The material library can be found in the Library panel. To open the panel when it is hidden, click the Library button in the toolbar.
Also, you can press Ctrl-Shift-L to open or close the Library panel.
Materials in the library are grouped into categories by types. To select a category, use the drop-down menu at the top of the panel. The Favorites category can be used to gather materials that you are currently working with.
After importing an object, the program can create a temporary category called Imported. This category is used to store materials of imported objects. If you wish to use these materials later, copy them to a standard or custom category.
To search for materials, click on the magnifying glass icon and type in what you are looking for.
Material's Context Menu
To open the context menu, select a material and right-click on it. A second way is to select a material and click on a gear icon at the top of the panel. The second method gives you access to extra commands related to managing categories. This will be explained later.
The context menu includes these commands:
- Add to Favorites – adds a copy of a selected material to the Favorites category.
- Cut – removes a selected material and place its copy to the Clipboard.
- Copy – copies a selected material to the Clipboard.
- Paste – pastes a material from the Clipboard to the open category.
- Delete – removes a selected material. The materials present in the library by default cannot be deleted.
- Undo – cancels the last operation you performed.
- Redo – reverses the last Undo operation.
Customizing the Material Library
Commands that are used to customize the library are located in the drop-down menu. To open it, click the gear icon.
You can use the New Category…, New Nested Category… and Delete Current Category commands from the drop-down menu to add and remove material categories. The standard categories cannot be removed.
Using the Cut, Copy and Paste commands, you can duplicate materials or move them from one category to another.
The standard materials, that are present in the library by default, cannot be deleted.
Creating New Materials
You can create a new material using a graphic file as a texture.
To create a new material:
- Open a category that should store your material.
- Click the gear icon at the top of the Library panel and choose Import Material…
- Select a graphic file and click Open.
The name of the material will have the name of the graphic file at the beginning. It may make cense to rename that file as you want to name your future material in the library.