Saturday, May 12, 2007

Day 230: Creating Jewelry Part 4 (Chain Link)

In Part 1 and Part 2 of this tutorial series, we made a necklace and bracelet using Ged Larsen's LoopRez script. In Part 3, we created earrings using tiny/micro-prims.

In this part of the Creating Jewelry tutorial series, we are going to make a chain link necklace, an essential part of every girl's jewelry box :P

Chain link necklaces are pretty by themselves. More importantly, they are an important part of more complex pieces, like pendants or charm necklaces.

Actually, chain links are particularly hard to do in Second Life for a few reasons.

First, because most jewelry are prim attachments, you cant simply make a chain and have it drape around your neck. If you made a long elliptical necklace, it would look like you have a garden hose around your neck :P The necklace would stay perfectly elliptical and would not drape. You have to build the "draping" into the necklace itself.

Also, most professional SL jewelers (such as Johanna Hyacinth) write custom scripts to make their jewelry pieces. We are going to make a necklace using the LoopRez script in this tutorial. The settings we are using just happens to produce a nice necklace. However, you may need to make lots of manual adjustments (to the links) if you change the size dramatically.

You will need the free “Ged Larsen’s LoopRez Generator” and the "Full Transparent Texture" from Sirena Hair & Fashion to complete this part of the tutorial. Click on Search, select Places, and enter “sirena” as the keyword (SLURL: Sirena Hair (116,217,22)).

1. Chain Link Necklace Overview

As in Part 1 and Part 2 of this tutorial series, we are going to use LoopRez to create our necklace.

Notice that the necklace has a "saddle" shape (I love this term that Ged Larsen uses :D). When attached to your avatar, this will look like the necklace is draping around your neck.

But unlike the earlier parts of this tutorial series, the Ellipse Calculator would not be very helpful in trying to figure out how many links we would need for the necklace. The "saddle" shape makes it way too hard (There are probably a few of you who can do this in your head...but I have problems with my checkbook, OK? :P) So I resorted to the old way of figuring out how many links to use: guessing :)

The individual chain links are little seriously tortured prims :P They are made from the insides of a twisted hollow Tube. BTW, this isnt the only possible shape. So feel free to tweak with the settings and try other shapes you might like better.

These chain links are cool, because if you put them in a line, they link nicely to each other. This saves us from having to use special scripts to "rotate" every other prim or something. (OK, this saves ME from learning how to write special scripts to rotate every other prim :P)

Lastly, there are 80 of these little links in the necklace. So make sure you are in a place where you can rez 85 or so prims (you can always try a Sandbox).

OK, here we go!

2. Create the Chain Link

Be aware that the prims in this tutorial will be very very small. So be sure you have a good place where you can keep track of them (preferably some place with solid color walls and floor). Remember that you can always go into Edit mode and draw a window around where you *think* the prims are. This will select the prims within the window.

Note that I deliberately make the chain links at the minimum prim size (0.010M). This means that you would not be able to shrink the necklace (you can make it larger though). I did this because the smaller links look a lot better. I have a relatively small neck, so this should not be a problem for most avatar sizes. If you are planning to sell necklaces, you should use slightly larger links so your customers can resize them.

And if you are a Tiny, Fae, or other cute cuddly creature, I apologize in advance. I promise to give you a big hug if I see you ;P

Rez a Tube on the ground.

Edit the Tube and enter the following settings:

Size X: 0.010
Size Y: 0.010
Size Z: 0.010

Hollow: 95.0

Twist B: -360.0 (Note this is a negative number)
Twist E: 360.0

Hole Size X: 0.05
Hole Size Y: 0.50

Profile Cut B: 0.650
Profile Cut E: 0.800

Go to the Texture tab. Click on the Texture square. This will open up the Pick:Texture window. Click on "Blank" and click "Select".

Click on the drop-down box for Shininess and select "High".

Check the "Full Bright" checkbox (hey, its jewelry!).

Go to the General tab of the Edit window, and change the Name to "Chainlink".

Now close the Edit window to get out of Edit mode. Right-click on the Chainlink and select "Take" to take it into your Inventory.

3. Setting Up LoopRez

We will prepare the LoopRez script to generate the necklace.

If you are planning to sell this necklace, you will want your name as the Creator of the Necklace. You should perform the additional tasks described in "Step 1. Rezzing the LoopRez Object" in the Flexi Prim Skirt Tutorial. This enables you to create your own LoopRez object, with your name as the Creator. You may want to come back and do this once you have tried this tutorial first…

If you are just making this bracelet for yourself, then you don’t need to worry about making your own LoopRez object.

Look for the “LoopRez v0.6 object, full perms” in your Inventory. Rez the LoopRez Object on the ground.

Right-click on the LoopRez Object and select the Contents tab.

Look for the “Chainlink” you just created in your Inventory (Its probably in the Objects folder). Drag and drop the “Chainlink” from your Inventory to the Contents tab of the LoopRez Object.

Go to the Contents tab of the LoopRez Object. Double-click on the “LoopRez v0.6” script. This will open the script editor window.

Make the following changes to the top of the script:

string objectName = "Chainlink";
integer numObjects = 80;
float xRadius = 0.09;
float yRadius = 0.07;
float flareAngle = 0;
float bendCoefficient = 0.03; //saddle shape
vector rotOffset = <90.0,>;
vector posOffset = <0.0,>;

Click on “Save” to save the script.

Close the Edit window.

4. Generating the Necklace

OK...its about to get very messy! :)

Touch the LoopRez object. You should see the chain link necklace appear above the LoopRez object. The necklace is relatively small, but it has a LOT of prims!

If nothing happens, you may be in an area that does not allow foreign scripts to run. There is typically an indicator icon at the top of your screen that shows this. Try moving to a public Sandbox just to see if your LoopRez object is working.

5. Linking the Necklace

The newly created chain link necklace is made up of separate objects. We need to link them together to make a single necklace. In addition, we want to add an object in the middle of the necklace so it would be easier to position and fit the necklace. We will use a copy of the LoopRez object in the middle of the necklace.

First, we are going to make a copy of the LoopRez object. Right-click on the LoopRez object, and select Edit. Now press and hold the Shift key. Click and hold on the Blue arrow and pull it up towards the necklace.

This will create a copy of the LoopRez object. Put this copy in the middle of the necklace (actually, it would cover the whole necklace for now).

Go to the Content tab of the copy of the LoopRez object, and delete the "LoopRez v0.6" script (Right-click on it and select "Delete"). This will prevent accidentally setting off the script again. :)

Next, go to the Object tab and make the Size smaller. Change the Size to X=0.050, Y=0.050, Z=0.050.

Unfortunately, the copy of the LoopRez object will stick out of our neck if we leave it as is. So we are going to make it transparent.

Look for the "Full Transparent" texture you picked up at Sirena Hair & Fashion.

Edit the copy of the LoopRez object and go to the Texture tab. Click on the Texture square. This will open up the Pick:Texture window. Select the "Full Transparent" texture and click "Select".

Now while you are still in Edit mode, draw a box around all the chain links and the copy of the LoopRez object. Dont include the original LoopRez object. You may find it helpful to go to the Tools menu at the top of your screen and select "Select Only My Objects".

Then press and hold the Shift key. Click on the copy of the LoopRez object to deselect it. Click on it again to select it (yes, its invisible, but its there!). This will make the copy of the LoopRez object the Root Prim.

Click on the Tools menu at the top of your screen and select "Link".

Go to the General tab of the Edit window, and change the Name to "Chainlink Necklace".

Now close the Edit window to get out of Edit mode. Right-click on the necklace and select "Take".

6. Fitting the Necklace

Here comes the (relatively) easy part. Wearing the necklace! :)

Find the "Chainlink Necklace" object in your Inventory (probably under the "Objects" folder). Right-click on it, select "Attach To >", and click in "Chest" (you can also use "Spine", but the positions would be different than the ones in this tutorial).

When you first attach the necklace, it will be somewhere in your stomach (Dont ask :P). Right-click on the necklace, and select Edit. In the Object tab, change "Rotation X = 36" and "Rotation Z = 270".

Now slide the bracelet into place using the 3 Red/Green/Blue arrows. As a reference, look at the numbers at the top of your screen. It fits me well at these settings: "X:0.000 Y:0.319 Z:-0.106". These numbers will vary somewhat for you.

Depending on your body settings, you may need to Stretch the necklace to fit. To Stretch the necklace, go to the Edit window, click on "Stretch (Ctrl-Shift)" at the top of the Edit window. Now, click and hold one of the little white boxes around the necklace and move it slowly away from your avatar. Remember that you cannot shrink the necklace.

Here I am, with my new chain link necklace :)

You can change the color and shininess of the chain links to simulate gold, silver, or some other material.

And if you have a favorite pendant or charm, you can add it to the necklace. Here is one of my favorite pieces from Johanna!

Have fun with all your new jewelry :)

BTW, heres a preview of something that Ged Larsen is working on for making necklaces! Cant wait :)

numly esn 43500-071006-960640-75

© 2007 All Rights Reserved.


Suki Kyomoon said...

That is really funny. I made (well tried to make) a chain necklace yesterday. Its not as good as the one you made but it fits. :)

Riki said...

Thank you
Thank you
Thank you
Riki :-)

Dani McGough said...

Thank you for another great tutorial, Natalia! The only think I had trouble with was fitting the necklace. For some reason I had to set the X rotation to -54 instead of 36. Then it worked just fine.

By the way (since you mentioned tinies), I saw the smallest avatar I've ever seen today. He was a smurf and was much smaller than any of the tinies I'd seen before. I was actually afraid I might step on him! He was cute, though :)

Ged Larsen said...

LOL, Natalia! My own worst 'competitor' will be my own script, thanks to you and your great blog entries ;)

Doesn't "saddle-shape" sound a lot more approachable than "bend factor" or "sigma coefficient", which is what it's called in my notes...?

Thanks again for the EXCELLENTLY written tutorial. I wonder if there's any chance I could pay you to write documentation... Just kidding!

Ekio Locatiare said...

You are as always so helpful ^-^ I was just making pendants and dreading actually making a chain. My plan was to hunt down a script for it today, but you just saved me hours ^-~ Thanks so much. Hopefully now I'll quite procrastinating and get at least one done. he he he.

SLNatalia said...

Suki, Im sure the necklace is beautiful! The important thing is that you made it...and that it fits :)

Riki, you are welcome :) Good luck on the necklace :)

Dani, thank you for mention the rotation issue! That is a good point: the X=36 is based on the rotation of the LoopRez object (I think it has a slight rotation). So if you rotated the LoopRez object or made your own, the rotation would be different...

The smurf sounds so cute!! :) Every time I see a tiny, I just want to attack them with hugs :) And I bet Im not the only one :P

Ged, thank you for your great script! :) You are probably responsible for generating more prims in SL than any other script ever written! (Um...pretend you dont know me if the Lindens come after you :P)

Im sure you new necklace maker would do VERY well! Im amazed by what you have shown me already!

Ekio, I actually had the same issue! I kept putting off making a chain necklace until recently, just because of all the tweaking involved. Hopefully its easier now with something to start from :) Ive already made a pretty necklace for an outfit by modifying this chain necklace!

Anonymous said...

WOW! Thanks to you I am swimming in pretty jewelry which did not even cost me =) The way you write your tutorials make timid people like myself think, "Hey! Even I could do that!" And we do =)

euicho said...

This question doesn't really have anything to do with loop rez, but I'm a new reader to your blog and really enjoy reading it, plus you seem really knowledgable about building so I was curious if you could help me. I'm trying to attach a flexi wire (just a long cylender to a prim at each end (for a pair of headphones being plugged into a cd player). Do you know how to do this? I can anchor one prim to the flexi-prim wire, but the other end just slumps over. Any ideas? Thanks! -Euicho-

SLNatalia said...

Dear Anonymous, heehee have fun with all the jewelry :) I always thought its part of the fun of SL to make your own stuff :)

Euicho, only 1 end of a flexi prim can be anchored. The other will always flex around...

I dont think theres a way to do a wire using flexi prims. You could maybe use static prims and animate them or something... But it wouldnt look very smooth...

cabaretchatnoir said...

What is the settings for the necklace that you have the pendant on? I would like to see if I could make one.

Thanks for these awsome tuts!

SLNatalia said...

Cabaret, I didnt make the necklace with the pendant...I bought that from Johanna Hyacinth. But you can prob make something similar using a larger version of the chainlink prim...

Cindy said...

Love your tutorials! Thank you for your lovely blog!

I heard something about Sculpted Prims... Do you know what these are, Natalia? (=request for a lovely great tutorial ;))

SLNatalia said...

Cindy, I looked briefly into sculpted prims earlier :) I was going to try making a tutorial soon...hopefully all the new programs wont blow up my computer! :P

lazee sands said...

thanks a lot natalia, for this brilliant tutorial. i did it step by step and it came out perfect. big propz from a happy user,..
lazee sands

SLNatalia said...

Lazee, congrats! Im glad it came out (and that it fits :) ). I was worried about using the smaller prims, but they look so much better :) Have fun with the new necklace!

Iris said...

Natalia, you're my hero! I've been making jewelry lately and was freaking out about making a nice looking, original chain to attach my pendants onto, this is a life saver!

SLNatalia said...

Iris, Im glad you found this helpful! :) LoopRez is really a great tool!

Oh BTW, Ged Larsen is putting a new jewelry script together...I hope to write about that soon!

Anonymous said...

I love your tutorials & hope someone can help me -- no matter what I try, the prims on my chain keep lining up side by side instead of linking - what am I doing wrong?
-Ayla Stringer

SLNatalia said...

Ayla, if the links are next to each other, it is probably because they are too far apart or too few objects. Be sure there are 80 objects and the sizes (X=0.09 and Y=0.07). Good luck :)

Atine Anatine said...

Thank you very much for this tutorial it has been very helpful and although i created jewlery before i love the sadle shape that this technique provides...Thank you.
Atine Anatine

Natalia Zelmanov said...

Atine, heehee Im glad its useful! I wish it were easier to make things bend around the neck! :)

Susan Rogan said...

Thank you so much Natalia, I've just finished the 4th of your jewellery tutorials and feel inspired to do more. Congratulations too on your fine teaching technique, even I was able to follow it! One question if I may please: is there such a thing as a texture changing script so I could have one bracelet for example and touch a button to change it from diamonds to rubies etc?

Natalia Zelmanov said...

Susan, I know it can be done, but I dont know how to do it (Im really bad with scripts :P) There is a way you can change textures in a script. But I dont have a script that does what you are asking...

Check out the SL Forums (there are tons of stuff there). I hope you find it!

Chimi said...

Hi Aagain:)
I just made them, thank you very much!! It looks good in my Avatar:P

Natalia Zelmanov said...

Chimi, congratulations! Arent they cool? And you can hang things off the end too ;)

Kira Zobel said...

I put those settings on a tube and I get nothing that looks like a link :c

Natalia Zelmanov said...

Kira, be sure you put in the Twist and Profile cut (not Path cut)

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for this tutorial! I made a necklace, as well as a chain that attaches to the hip with this! I've been reading through your tutorials for a few months now, and they really have helped me learn how to create my own accessories!

Darla Aycliffe said...

Wow! I made a necklace!! thanks to the script from Ged, and your perfectly written tutorials!
Now I can go on and find the sculpted letters to hang on it, and I have perfect gifts!! (and hand made too, even better than store-bought)
Thank you