02. Now let’s start using CS4’s 3D menu. Select 3D > New Layer From 3D File. As you can see, there are several extensions available: 3DS is the native format for 3D Studio Max and Collada, while .KMZ is for Google Earth files. We’ll be using Wavefront|OBJ files – OBJ is a universal 3D format. Import SwirlAbstractObj.obj from the cover CD into your working document.
03. Pretty cool, right? You can tell if a layer is 3D by looking at the layer’s thumbnail box – it will have a small 3D box logo. Now that our abstract 3D model is in our scene, we can begin to dig into CS4’s extended 3D features. At the moment, our model looks very generic and doesn’t seem to belong to the empty room at all: now our task is to make it sit seamlessly in the room. Select Window > 3D.
04. This is an overwhelming window at first, but you’ll soon get to grips with it. The four icons at the top of the window serve as filters when displaying the elements in the lower Scene menu. For this tutorial, we will just leave it at the default Filter By: Whole Scene. We’ll also leave the render settings at Default for now. If your graphics card is good, switch Anti- Alias to Better, which will smooth out the model. However, you may find it faster to work in draft mode and then switch this at the final stage. Finally, we’ll leave Paint-On at Diffuse for now. We won’t be using Cross-Section in this tutorial, but play around with it on other projects as it has some great effects.