Product Environments (Editor)

Available in: Matter: Editors > Product Environments.

Product Environments provides the tools to prepare your environments for displaying your products. It also manages environment layers. Environment layers allow for the creation of several product variants with different environments. These layers can then be used in the configuration system.

Environment Layers Tab

Environment layers are created in the Environment Layers tab.

The name of the product in the active viewport is displayed at the top of this tab. The rest of the tab is composed of the Environment Layers, Environments, and Surfaces using environment boxes.

Environment Layers Box

This box contains a list of the existing environment layers. Each layer has a toggle button to activate or deactivate its visibility. The symbol means that the layer is visible. When a layer is hidden, this symbol is barred. The icon is used to pinpoint the active layer, which will receive all the new environment allocations.

The following operations can be performed on the environment layers:

Icon Function Description
New Environment Layer A new environment layer is created and added to the list of existing layers.
Duplicate Environment Layer Creates a copy of the selected environment layer. The mention "Copy" is added to the name of the created layer.
Rename Environment Layer This operation opens a dialog box which allows the selected layer to be renamed.
Solo Environment Layer This operation displays the surfaces affected by an environment contained in the selected layer only.
Delete Environment Layer The selected environment layer is deleted. The minimum number of environment layers is one.

When the Product Environments editor is opened, it already contains a layer called Default. When opening a database created with a version of Patchwork 3D Design prior to version 5.5, the environments assigned to the product are automatically imported in this layer.

When no environment layer is selected, the name of the default environment is displayed in the Environments box. When all environment layers are hidden, the default environment is used.

As with aspect and position layers, the position of environment layers in the layer list is taken into account when displaying environments on the product. The layer hierarchy is assessed from the top to the bottom of the list:

  • The first allocation of a global environment found in a layer is displayed in the product.
  • If, for a given surface, any environments are specifically assigned, the highest-ranking of these environments is applied, even if a higher-ranking global environment is defined.

Environments Box

This box displays the list of environments contained in the selected layer of the Environment layers box. A global and several surface-specific environments can be present in the same layer.

Selecting an environment in this box displays the list of surfaces affected by this environment in the Surfaces using environment box.

The following actions can be performed on a selected environment:

Icon Function Description
Solo Environment Restricts the rendering to the surfaces affected by the environment selected in the list.
Set Active Environment Defines the selected environment as the one considered active in the Matter sidebar's environment library.
Find Environment Selects the corresponding environment in the Matter sidebar's environment library.
Remove Environment Removes the assignment of the selected environment from the surfaces using it in the current layer.

To set an environment as a global environment in the active layer, drag and drop it onto the product.

To assign a local environment, drag and drop it onto the targeted surfaces.

In order to replace an environment in the active layer, drag and drop the desired environment from the Matter sidebar's environment library onto the name of the environment to be replaced in the list of the Environments box. It is also possible to drag and drop the desired environment onto a selection of surfaces in the Surfaces using environment box to assign it to the selection.

Surfaces Using Environment Box

This box lists the surfaces affected by the environment selected in the Environments box.

The following actions can be performed on the selected environment(s):

Icon Function Description
Solo Surfaces Restricts rendering to the selected surfaces.
Reset Orientation Resets the orientation of the environment affecting the selected surfaces. This feature applies only to surfaces for which the environment has been specifically reoriented. These surfaces are tagged with the icon .
Remove Environment Removes the assignment of the environment specific to the selected surfaces.

Surface names displayed in italics and crossed out correspond to surfaces which possess an unused environment allocation. For a global environment allocation this occurs either when another global environment allocation is listed higher in the layer hierarchy, or when a surface-specific environment exists. For a surface-specific environment, this occurs when another surface-specific environment allocation is listed higher in the layer hierarchy.

Product Environment Properties Tab

The Product Environment Properties tab presents the functions used to prepare environments by adjusting their orientation or by defining the specific settings for the use of a real-time sun.

It contains four boxes: Environments, Orientation, Real-Time Sun, and Environment’s Brightest Point.

Environments Box

This box lists the environments that are globally allocated in the product or specifically allocated to certain product surfaces. Selecting an environment from this list gives access to its orientation settings, to the real-time sun settings, and to the settings for the definition of its brightest point. The settings for the selected environment are modifiable when the environment is the product’s active environment. Otherwise, they are visible as read-only.

Orientation Box

The Orientation box is designed to modify the two following types of orientation:

  • Environment orientation in the product. This orientation can also be modified by activating the Environment Orientation mode and moving the environment directly using the mouse. The global orientation of the visible environment under the mouse is modified, even when the environment is a surface-specific environment affected to multiple surfaces.
  • Surface-specific orientation, typically used to reorient reflections on a given surface. This operation is also performed by activating the Environment Orientation mode and moving the environment by using the mouse to click and drag while holding the Shift key, or from the Surface Properties.

This orientation feature does not impact the environment’s default orientation stored in the environment properties, which is used for initializing the environment orientation in the product upon allocation.

In order to change the selected environment’s orientation from the Environments box, enter the desired value for the orientation with regard to the X, Y and Z axis in the corresponding fields.

You can reload the default orientation at any time by clicking the Use default orientation button.

In order to save an environment orientation as the default, click on the Set as default orientation button.

Real-Time Sun Box

The settings in this box are used to adjust the real-time sun specific to the selected environment.

The settings established for the Real-Time Sun can be overridden by the settings established specifically for the selected environment by checking the box Use the following Sun Settings for this environment. The available sun settings function identically to those in the Sun Settings box of the Real-Time Sun editor.

If no real-time sun is active for the product as a whole, it is still possible to use a specific real-time sun in an environment by ticking the checkboxes Apply the following sun settings when using this environment and On.

Environment’s Brightest Point Box

This box is used to specify the brightest point of an environment in order to position the real-time sun with the help of the positioning option Extracted from Environment. This can be set up either manually or by an automatically search.

To run the automatic identification of the position of the brightest point in the environment, select the environment in the Environments box, then click Find automatically. The brightest point of the current environment is then identified by a square on the displayed environment.

It is also possible to click directly on the displayed environment to pinpoint the desired direction of the real-time sun.

The sun remains fixed relative to the environment when the environment Orientation feature is used.