Visio Guy

Visio Discussions => Shapes & Templates => Topic started by: vojo on May 29, 2008, 01:13:19 PM

Title: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: vojo on May 29, 2008, 01:13:19 PM
Question:  How valuable would be to have 3d isometric shapes (cube, cylinder, tetrahydron, octogon/hexagon cylinders, spheres, etc) with light source/shading to give it a bit more realism/depth?
Title: Re:Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: Visio Guy on May 30, 2008, 01:13:22 PM
Hi vojo,

Are you looking for these shapes, or have you built them, or do you want to build them?

There are some Visio shapes along these lines in the stencils that open with these templates:

File > New > General > Block Diagram
File > New > General > Block Diagram With Perspective

Look for the Blocks Raised Visio stencil in the Block Diagram template for isometric Visio shapes.

The Block Diagram With Perspective template uses one-point perspective to achieve a 3D effect.
Title: Example...Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: vojo on May 31, 2008, 02:45:20 PM
shapes with perspective are not isometric nor have light source.

Is there any way to embed a jbeg or enhance metafile into this forum to show example
(or a place to post it for discussion)?
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: Lars-Erik on June 01, 2008, 11:46:33 PM
When posting: Click on "additional Options..." theres the option to attach files.

Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: Visio Guy on June 02, 2008, 03:46:56 AM
Here are two images that vojo e-mailed me:

Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: snsisk on June 12, 2008, 08:31:30 AM
On a similar topic, how can a rectangle with a beveled edge or other similar effects be built in Visio?  I'm attempting to improve the visual appeal of my diagrams.  However, I'm a little deficient in the graphics area.  Any help or pointers would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,

Steve
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: Visio Guy on June 12, 2008, 09:37:52 AM
Hi Steve,

If you look at the Blocks stencil (File > Shapes > General > Blocks), there's a Button shape that you might have a look at to get started.
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: vojo on June 12, 2008, 11:07:30 AM
either way its tedious:

A):   take a shape...like the button...and modify it to your needs
B):   make a group shape out of individual shapes consisting of N,S,E,W bezel and center piece.   Play with shading
       as appropriate.

Either way at the group level...set to group only.

I attached something that can get you started (playing with color, shading, etc)

Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: snsisk on June 25, 2008, 12:47:59 PM
Vojo,

Thank you very much. 

Does anyone have any insight into how rounded edges might be accomplished?

Thanks,

Steve
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: vojo on June 25, 2008, 01:50:55 PM
well...2 ways

1. in the cube shape (sheet 1 of this embed), you can specify one dim as 0mm.  At that point , you can use the
    rounding GUI to set (though I tend to do it manually for more precision

2. in manifold shape, can use the the arc to set a better arc to all
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: vojo on June 25, 2008, 02:01:44 PM
As time allows, I am working on a "lego" behavior ibut having troubles...stay tuned..
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: Visio Guy on June 25, 2008, 02:06:06 PM
Hi Folks,

I've just posted an article that is somewhat related to this thread:

Go 3D with Free Isometric Piping Shapes for Visio (http://www.visguy.com/2008/06/25/free-isometric-piping-shapes-for-visio/)

The cube and cylinder shapes on this stencil are quite interesting!
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: Visio Guy on June 26, 2008, 01:56:23 AM
Hi snsisk,

Vojo is right about tedious. Visio is a 2D drawing engine that looks smarter because it offers lots of pre-built SmartShapes that do cool things. But the design and work behind those SmartShapes involves manipulating lots of primitive 2D elements using trigonometry, math, and Excel-like formulas and references.

For example, here is how you might implemented a rounded, feathered shadow:

(http://visguy.com/vgforum/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=104.0;attach=83)

Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: snsisk on July 01, 2008, 08:53:27 AM
Visio Guy,

My assumption is the bottom graphic represents the shapes that comprise the top graphic, correct?

Your example is very close to the objective.  The desired effect is a shape that is for example blue with blue rounded edges.

Thanks,

Steve
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: snsisk on July 17, 2008, 11:35:51 AM

I did some tweaking on Visio Guy's concept and came up with this shape.  This is my first attempt so any feedback would be appreciated.
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: Visio Guy on July 17, 2008, 01:24:24 PM
Soft and fuzzy!

Nice job, snisk! Still drives me nuts that Visio doesn't have a proper feathered shadow.
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: snsisk on July 18, 2008, 06:58:44 PM
Folks,

I've managed to create this equilateral triangle.  My thanks to Alexey Nichkov http://www.prodigitall.narod.ru/ (http://www.prodigitall.narod.ru/) for his excellent tutorial on gradients at specific angles http://www.prodigitall.narod.ru/articles/article3_en.html (http://www.prodigitall.narod.ru/articles/article3_en.html).  His site has some really awesome drawings created with Visio including a Lamborghini.

I hope to work on a rectangle next using Visio Guy's recent smart bezel techniques.

Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: snsisk on July 23, 2008, 08:21:44 AM
Folks,

I need your assistance.  It seems that any shape composed of straight lines can be created.  However, I really stuck on an approach for circle, ellipse and curved shapes.  The difficulty is getting the correct gradient to create the effect.  Any ideas will be appreciated.

When I get the curved shapes completed, I'll send the stencil to Visio Guy.  I would also create either video or text-based tutorials based on feedback from the forum members.

Thanks,

Steve
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: vojo on July 23, 2008, 09:01:34 AM
circles may not be too bad....concentric circles where color is a offset from the group color (obviously need protection on rolling over the colors)

Ellipse/arc are much more difficult because I dont see a simple way to scale the shape (otherwise
concentrics would work here as well).

The shading/light source of these shapes might help give you ideas (see user cells)
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: Visio Guy on July 23, 2008, 10:21:03 AM
Somewhat related article on visguy.com:

Off-center Radial Fill Effect (http://www.visguy.com/2007/08/30/off-center-radial-fill-effect/)
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: vojo on July 23, 2008, 03:10:15 PM
yes ...when I saw the off radial light examples 6 months ago...it was truly an epiphany....salutes go to visio guy.  All I did was take the concept and apply it to some shapes.
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: snsisk on November 17, 2008, 10:22:50 AM
My objective is to create a circle with beveled edges similar to the shapes I previously posted in this thread.  The difficulty is in controlling the gradient.  Any ideas?

Thanks,

Steve
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: Visio Guy on November 17, 2008, 11:05:55 AM
I have broken curves (piping elbow joints) into a bunch of small wedges to get nice shading.

It involves a bunch of trigonometry and you'll save a lot of headache if you use automation to help you build such shapes.

But Visio often displays a thin line between shapes, and it's not clear to me if the line is real (prints out), or only on the screen.

The attached bitmap shows those lines, along with some other artifacts. Some of these aberrations go away with different zooms, but I'm not sure what prints and what doesn't.

Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: vojo on November 17, 2008, 11:23:14 AM
see attached...have fun
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: snsisk on November 17, 2008, 01:15:15 PM
What I'm after is something like the attached.
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: wapperdude on November 17, 2008, 03:56:47 PM
Besides filling the primary shape and using gradients, you can also use the shadow effect--no offset, make it larger than the original shape and add a gradient to it.

Also, if you open the shapesheet and go to the fill section, you can individually adjust the transparency of the foreground, background, and shadow fills, this can extend the "transition" region. 

Haven't discovered an easy way to "widen" the inner fill radius for the #40 fill pattern, which is probably what you'd like, more of a solid circle, with a nice border transition.  Perhaps multiple layers of overlapping circles, the largest of which would have the gradient.   :-\
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: Visio Guy on November 17, 2008, 07:56:03 PM
You can also create a custom pattern that uses distinct shades to approximate a feathered shadow.

Unfortunately, custom patterns can't contain transparency, and they don't work properly with gradient fills, so this is really a work-around/hack.

Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: snsisk on November 18, 2008, 09:40:11 AM
If I understand correctly, as long as the pattern contains some color then Visio will use that pattern as a gradient.  Should shades of gray be used or colors?  Which have you found to be most successful?

What does Visio consider as transparent?

Is grouping being used or a shape operation?

Is the color selected when the pattern is created or is the color applied when the pattern is selected for the shape?
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: snsisk on November 18, 2008, 09:42:47 AM
I have broken curves (piping elbow joints) into a bunch of small wedges to get nice shading.

It involves a bunch of trigonometry and you'll save a lot of headache if you use automation to help you build such shapes.

But Visio often displays a thin line between shapes, and it's not clear to me if the line is real (prints out), or only on the screen.

The attached bitmap shows those lines, along with some other artifacts. Some of these aberrations go away with different zooms, but I'm not sure what prints and what doesn't.



Approximately how many slices were used in these examples?  Does a specific size-to-slice ratio seem to work best?
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: wapperdude on November 18, 2008, 11:00:19 AM
The gradients work with any "color", which means everything except non-filled or 100% transparent since there's nothing to apply the gradient to.  White, grays, blacks, and all colors in between may be used effectively.

There are at least three techniques for using gradients to obtain shading.
1.)  Picking darker and lighter shades of the same color and choosing the appropriate gradient
       a.)  for RGB colors, use the slider on the right
       b.)  for HSL definition, change the luminosity
2.)  Overlaying the color shape with an identical shape that has some level of transparency.  This could be
       a.)  black to white or varying shades of gray to replicate addition of "neutral density" filter.
       b.)  darker & lighter shades of alternate colors to get some "tonal" variation
3.)  Edit the shapesheet, fill section
       a.)  use the tint function to lighten or darken the foreground/background colors, e.g., tint(RGB(255,0,0),-40) to
            get a darker red.  The tint function is new beginning with V2007, and not backward compatible.
       b.)  change the transparency settings of the fore/background fills.
4.)  Use the shadow function.  This has entirely separate set of fills (gradients), and transparencies.  Zero-offset,
      oversizing can be effective on simple shapes to produce a graduated border.  See http://www.visguy.com/2008/03/04/how-many-fill-colors-can-you-put-on-a-visio-shape/


I find that placing one or two duplicate shapes with varying transparency settings also allows the use of different gradient patterns (effectively getting multiple gradients per shape), which can smooth the transitions of the gradients and/or achieve other not so obvious effects.  Also, setting the foreground (or background) to 100% transparency sometimes makes a vary nice fade out to the underlying solid color shape.  You kind of have to play with these effects.  Also, Visio Guys' offset gradient fill is quite effective.  It really comes down to artistic choice, how you use the tools, the level of effect you want to achieve, and does the end use merit the level of complexity. 

HTH
Wapperdude
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: snsisk on November 18, 2008, 11:51:20 AM

Attached is my attempt at creating a custom gradient.  When I apply this gradient to a circle, the color of the circle changes to match the gradient and selecting other colors has no affect. 

I group the concentric circles to create the gradient.  I was not clear about the underlying techniques to make the gradient function properly.

Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: wapperdude on November 18, 2008, 03:19:24 PM
Your shading effect looks pretty good.

If you want more steps without adding shapes, you can use shadows.  Each circle appears to be about 102% larger than the one above, so, if you add a shadow to each circle, with zero offset, and 101% larger, you'll get 2X as many steps.

To the top circle (smallest) add the shadow, size =101% & no offset, select the darkest gray you want, and make the shadow 50% transparent.  This will help blend it with the cirlce below.  For the next shape down, select the fill to be one step lighter than the previous shadow above it, and set it's shadow to be one step lighter, again, 50% transparent.  Work your way down, progressively going lighter and lighter.  For the bottom (largest shape) you will want the shadow to either be only 20% or 0% transparent.  The 20% will allow a small amount of background to show thru.  May not be desireable.

This provides a linear gradient.  To improve the rounding effect, you could vary the circle and shadow sizes such that the upper circles have greater extension than the lower circles.  Hope this makes sense.  (Uh, for example, the 2nd circle might be 108% larger than the top circle, the 3rd circle 104% larger than the 2nd, circle, and 4th circle 102% larger than the 3rd, etc.)  Likewise, you could change the amount the shading changes, such that the upper circles have less change than the lower circles. 

HTH
Wapperdude
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: snsisk on November 18, 2008, 03:50:03 PM

Thanks.  I appreciate the feedback.

Any idea why changing the colors in the fill doesn't change the shape color when the custom gradient is selected?
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: Visio Guy on November 18, 2008, 04:05:39 PM
You've got the right idea. Now with some ShapeSheet formulas, you could get it to work with different colors.

The idea is to leave the foremost circle free-to-be-colored by the user. Then, the "gradient" shapes have GUARDed formulas that form shades of the first circle's color.

In the ShapeSheet, GUARD( ) is a function that protects cell-formulas from being overridden by user interactions. The cells that hold color are FillForegnd and FillBkgnd.

You can build shades of color using ShapeSheet functions like: HUE, RGB, SHADE, TINT, and I think there are a few others, but it's bedtime over here in Germany, so I'm gonna hit the hay. Hope I've helped point the way.

- Chris
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: snsisk on November 18, 2008, 10:56:54 PM
VisioGuy (Chris),

You confirmed what I was thinking.  If I get something working, I'll post back here for some feedback.

Zzzzzzzzzzz
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: snsisk on January 15, 2009, 02:36:21 PM

Howdy,

I hope everyone had a chance to take some time off over the holidays.  For me it was a breath of fresh air.

The time off invigorated my creative juices.  Attached is an oval shape with a beveled edge.  I haven't tested to determine if problems occur when the shape is scaled.  I plan to add code to allow the base color to be changed and the size of the bevel. 

Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.

Regards,

Steve
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: vojo on January 15, 2009, 03:06:14 PM
have fun....shading, light source, etc....just right click
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: davidoff on January 24, 2009, 03:39:27 AM
it's very good topic,
i had asked some questions in the general disccussion, but realised that solution are there.
i will work on them. thank you guys...
Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: davidoff on January 24, 2009, 03:42:16 AM
have fun....shading, light source, etc....just right click

thanks & thanks

Title: Re: Isometric Shapes With Shading
Post by: Tim317 on February 10, 2012, 06:49:01 AM
Hi guys, I'm brand new to Visio, but enjoying the learning process. I'm having trouble with a shape and hope someone here can help. I've been tasked to reproduce the attached drawing in Visio. I found the link to the piping schematic stencil in this thread and it is VERY helpful. One thing I have not figured out how to reproduce though is the end of the piping. This is a common drawing feature that shows that the piping continues on in both directions. I can't describe it in words, but it should be clear in the drawing with a support holding a section of piping with is denoted as continuing in both directions. Any suggestions?