Selecting and Grouping Objects
Group objects to specify several objects as a whole. You can use grouping to organize parts of a model — to make it easier to move and edit several objects at a time, for example. Or you can use grouping to define more advanced hierarchies — to make it easy to articulate parts of the model during an animation, for example.
The Basics of Selecting and Grouping
Click an object to select it; Shift-click to extend the selection to include additional objects.
Use the grouping functions from the Edit menu to group, ungroup, add to the existing group, and create a new parent group. The grouping functions are explained in more detail below.
Use group hierarchies to specify spatial relationships between objects in a group. For example, a robot leg that articulates at the knee and foot joints should be grouped so that moving the upper leg also moves the knee, lower leg, and foot. (This is where Create Parent Group and Add To Group become useful.)
To Select all or Part
Use pick (arrow button found on Dashboard toolbar) to choose an object. When you click, the object''s manipulator appears. This is a bounding box around the selected object with knobs for translating, rotating, and scaling the object:
Tip: Double click a selected object to switch between the move, scale and rotate tool. If the object is to small, double click the tool indicator (the small cone, sphere or box).
Choose Selection > Select All or Deselect All to quickly select and deselect all the objects in your scene. Shortcuts: Ctrl-A and Ctrl-D
Clicking on the background deselects all objects.
Shift-click a selected object to remove it from the selection.
You can also use the Outline Editor to select parts of an object by double clicking the object''s Transform. The Transform becomes highlighted once you click it.
To Select Multiple Objects
Select an object and use Shift-click to select additional objects. The last object selected in this manner is the master selection. You can place the cursor over the individual bounding boxes to move the group. Switch to resizing and rotating by double clicking a bounding box. Moving, rotating, and resizing affects all of the objects in the multiple selection at the same time.
When you click on another object, or in the scene, the objects are deselected. Pressing Shift-click again removes objects from the selection.
To Group Objects
- Shift-click to select the objects you want to group.
- Choose Edit > Group, or use Ctrl-g. The objects will now be grouped, with a single manipulator. The grouped objects are treated as a single object whose axis is the center of the group. The objects remain grouped unless you choose the group and choose Edit > Ungroup, or use Shift-Ctrl-g.
To Add a New Object to an Existing Group
Select the object you want to add to the group.
- Shift-click to select the group, which makes the group the master selection.
- Choose Edit > Add to Group.
- Use Edit > Detach From Group to remove the object that you added to the group.
This technique applies to adding a new object to any existing group, including those defined by LOD and Switch. See Creating Group Hierarchies to learn how Add To Group differs from Group.
To Create a New Parent Group
- Select the objects above which you'd like to create a new parent group.
- Choose Edit > Create Parent Group.
See Creating Group Hierarchies to learn when to use Create Parent Group.