3Doodler HELP
Help index

What is this anyway?

3Doodler is one and half in one application. You can use it to generate 2D images ( simply by drawing them on canvas ) or to generate/texturize 3D models ( thus the number 3 in front of the application's name ). 3Doodler took its name from merging of 2 expressions: "doodle" and "3D" which means the third dimension. So you can either doodle on 2D canvases or doodle on 3 dimensional models, or create new models by doodling on 2D canvas. In the end of this help, you will find some screencasts which explains how to complete certain tasks in 3Doodler, however these demos weren't made by the real artist, so their artistic value is negligible.
After you finish your work, your doodles/sketches/models won't go into the abyss of oblivion - by clicking "save", you will store your sketch, and even replay of your work on server - this means that you can share your sketches with other people. When you create a new model, you won't be able to save it on server - but you can save your work on your disk.
Technical info
3Doodler was mainly written in ActionScript, and some parts were written are using MXML. 3Doodler uses Papervision3D 3D engine to display 3D models, and Twease for animation. Simplification and model conversion doesn't use any 3rd party libraries.

File Menu
New Sketch
Deletes your old work, switches to 2D mode and creates a new sketch
New Model
Deletes your old work, switches to 3D mode and allows you to create a new model.
Open File...
This dialog allows you to open differend kind of files, depending on the extension. You can choose either to read this file from the internet ( URL textfield ) or from your local disk ( File textfield ). So, either, after entering url of your file, or after clicking "Browse" and selecting your file, you will be to switched appropriate mode. For supported file types, see "File types" chapter.
Save as..
While in 2D mode, you will save .rep file, containing the replay of your sketching. While in 3D mode, you will save either .sk3 file or zip file.
  • .sk3 file is written when you are editing other sk3 file, or when you created new model using "New Model" File menu's button.
  • .zip file is written if you imported another zip/dae/3ds/ase/kmz file.
Export model/image
  • While in 2D mode, you will export .png image contaning your current painting.
  • While in 3D mode, you will export .zip file, being the Collada DAE model. You can open it later in other 3D editor which supports Collada format.
close 3Doodler
Edit menu
Undo last action. Whilst in 3D mode, undoing is limited to finite number of steps, because storing in memory every model you've generated is very costly.
Redo last action, like in usual editing software.
Clears entire sketch ( 2D mode ) or current layer ( 3D mode ). Clearing cannot be undone!
Opens preferences dialog.
Preferences dialog
"General" tab
Animate brushes Turn on/off brush cursor animation. When checked, brush cursors are rotated according to directions of your mouse movements.
"3D Features" tab
Mesh simplification percentage There is an option to DECIMATE, in other words - simplify, the mesh you have created or loaded. When converting your sketches to 3D meshes, the meshes you create may be too complex, that is - built from too many triangles. The simplification process remeshes your model, and creates similiar model, but with less triangles. The "simplification percentage" setting allows you to control how many triangles to delete. So if you have a model built from 3000 triangles and you set simplification percentage to 50%, the resulting mesh will be built from 1500 triangles.
Resolution of generated mesh ( dpi ) When creating the mesh from sketch, sketch is fitted to a grid. This grid controls the number of triangles of newly generated mesh. When you set the resolution to 1600, the grid will contain 40x40 ( that is 1600 ) rectangles. Every rectangle can ( but don't have to ) contain 2 triangles. So when you set the resolution to 1600, you will generate mesh with approximate maximum of 3200 triangles. The bigger the resolution, the more the mesh will mimic your sketch more accurately.
No of models to remember for undo Controls how many models the application will store in memory. For example, if the models memory is 10, after clicking on "Create" button 11 times, you will be able to fall back to the second model, the first model will be forget by application.
Always refresh 3D view When checked, the 3D view is refreshed all the time, so you will get fewer fps, but when drawing on the sketching pane, the model will be refreshed in real-time. When this checkbox is unchecked, if you paint something on the layers on the left, the model won't refresh it's textures.
Try stretching texture to the edges Normally, when generating mesh, edges of the mesh are opaque and must be painted. When checked, 3Doodler tries to stretch the texture, to fill outer edges. Inner edges must be manually painted though.
Generated slice height Controls the height of generated mesh. The bigger the value, the higher generated mesh.
"2D Features" tab
Replay speed Speed of replaying. When you are sketching too long, it's good to set the replay speed to bigger value, because replaying could last too long.
White, paper, brick background The default background which is the starting background for your sketches. Every time you start 3Doodler, this background will be your painting's background. You can choose from white, brick ( brick wall ) and paper.
Show replay
Same as the "replay" button on "shorts" toolbox. It show the replay of your current sketching. Works only in 2D mode.
Flip Faces
Flips your meshes faces, that is - triangles. When you load the model and see that the models appears like "inside-out", this option may help you.
Swap U(V) texture axis
Swapping texture axis may help with problems with painting on some models. When you see, that while painting on model, you are not painting where you intended to ( for example you are painting the upper part of the model, and the paint appears on the bottom of the model ), these options may help.
Convert to 3D
Same as "Create" button in "shorts" toolbox. This will convert your sketch to its 3D representation.
Simplify the mesh. Simplification is described more accurately in here.
2D Mode
Switches to 2D sketching mode.
3D Mode
Switches to 3D mesh editing mode.
Changes the way the 3D mesh is displayed. Wireframe
Mesh is displayed in wireframe mode ( no textures )
Mesh is displayed in single color.
Mesh is displayed in normal, textured mode.
Window menu hides/shows different windows. Buttons
Shows/hides toolboxes with shortcut buttons. They are different in 2D and 3D modes.
Color Picker
Shows/hides the color picker.
Shows/hides the brushes toolbox.
Help Contents
This-> help guide.
A few words about 3Doodler
Shortcuts toolboxes
2D mode shortcuts
All these buttons has their counterparts in menu, except SAVE button. When you click save, your current sketch replay, and thumbnail of your sketch are sent to server and put in "Recent sketches" on the right.
3D mode shortcuts
  • Paint - Enters painting mode. When in painting mode, you can paint on the sketching layers and on the model.
  • Move - Enters mode mode. When in move mode, you can move around 3D mesh, or move sketching layers.
  • Rotate - Enters the rotate mode. When in rotate mode, you can rotate 3D mesh.
  • Create - converts your sketch to 3D representation. Doesn't work when you have imported the model from other format than 3Doodler's format - sk3
  • Simplify - Simplify the mesh. Simplification is described more accurately in here.
Windowed toolboxes
Color Picker
Color picker usage is simple - pick the color you want to draw with, then, using Color Picker's alpha slider ( yes, however not described in the ui, that's the alpha slider :) ) pick the right alpha value.
Brushes toolbox
Brushes themselves are described in the brushes section. To select the brushes group, press one of the three buttons. Then, pick the right brush and using a slider below, pick the right brush size and draw your image.
Layers can be seen in the upper-left listbox. When you import the model, every layer resembles different texture. You can paint on the layers, and when you do it, you are painting the model's textures. When you create the new model, layers can help you to change models look, not only the texture. By painting on the layers, you paint the model's shape.
When there are more than 1 layer, the layers are combined to create more complex models. In this scenario, layers are like slices of differently shaped bricks, which you stack to build the tower. You can change the order of these slices, by draggind the items in "layers" listbox. Also, you can show the layers under the current layer ( by clicking "show" ) to position the layers more precisely ( using the MOVE button, in "shorts" toolbox ).

Supported file types
this is application's own file format. You can save your current work to that file and end it later.
Application's own file format. Replays of sketches are saved to these files. You can also load other user's replays.
You can load simple images and paint on them. You can also export your sketches to these image formats.
You can import/export 3D models in Collada(DAE) format. This format is common in web, for example Google's Sketchup use it.
Another supported 3D format, from 3D Studio Max. Only 1 model is read though, because support for this file format is limited.
Standard 3D Studio Max format.
Zipped Collada Scenes. When opening models from your disk, this is the preferred format over .DAE, because due to Flash limitations, textures cannot be imported while opening DAE files.

Drawing 2D images
Before drawing an image, you can choose an appropriate background. For example, you can choose one of the default backgrounds in preferences menu, or your own background.
Because some brushes are blending with the background, your sketch will be highly dependent on the chosen convas.
Default brushes/tools are configured within brushes.xml configuration file, and they can be chosen from sliding buttons on the left, and grouped buttons in the toolbox.
There are 2 sliding buttons:
  • Pencil tool - draws a thin line
  • Eraser tool
Either of these two's size can be chosen from the brushes toolbox size slider ( the slider which is placed on the bottom of brushes toolbox ).

There are more brushes/tools in the toolbox, grouped by type: "normal" brushes, sprays and "weird" brushes.
"normal" brushes are pretty well defined by their icons.
this brush is a little different, it blends with underlying painting and creates "sharpening effect"
This spray takes into account underlying image, and looks best on backgrounds like walls, because after painting, the texture of the wall is preserved
This spray is bigger and the more you paint with it, the whiter the painting.
This spray is the biggest one, and it doesn't blend with the background.
This brush changes its size, depending on drawing speed. It has a special texture too.
Other brushes multiplies symbol from the icon along a drawing path.
How to draw a new sketch
Get Adobe Flash player
Here, we can see different brushes in action, working together to create breath-taking image of a man. Ok, maybe not that breat-taking, and maybe not event a man, but this sketch doesn't look that bad, does it?
After sketching, we save the sketch to .rep file and we are exporting the sketch to png. We then open this png, and see, that we cannot launch the replay ( which is obvious, because we cannot store the information about the replays in png files ), which is expressed by the big asterisk sign. We also couldn't clear the stage, because clearing the stage means deleting everything we sketched and leving loaded file, which was the loaded png.
Then, we open the .rep file, and see that we can see the replay of previously saved sketch ( and later, paint on it ).
Demo of airbrushes
Get Adobe Flash player
In this demo, we first change the background, to one which is more airbrush friendly, and present different types of sprays.

Making 3D models

In 3Doodler, you can either paint existing models, and then export it to Collada file ( which can be then unpacked, to obtain modified textures ), or create new ones. Models created with 3Doodler can be reopened later for further editing ( note about view refreshing )
How to change textures on existing model
In this demo, we open the model and make some mess on its textures, using different painting tools.
How to make 3D models
Here, we create some 3D model, by painting it on different layers. We show how to reposition every layer itself ( using MOVE button, and SHOW button in the listbox ), and then, how repositioning layers in the listbox changes the model.
In the end, we simplify the model and demonstrate, why mesh survived decimation process, by using wireframe view.