Basic modeling in Blender using the interface

The interface

Opening a fresh Blender, you have 5 panels (from left to right, top to bottom):

  • Info panel
    With basic menus, interface layout menu, scene menu, render engine selection and some infos about the project
  • 3D View panel
    Where the modeling (and many other things) will happen. The main window expected in any 3D creation application.
  • Timeline panel
    Pretty self explanatory
  • Outliner panel
    Very useful to have an overview of the different resources used in the project and navigate in a tree like structure of them.
  • Properties panel
    Where mostly all the configuration happens, from camera to texture, lamps, modifiers, etc. The next most used panel after the 3D View, I guess

Generalities

  • Right Click is for selecting (objects, nodes, elements,…).
  • Shift + Right Click is for selecting multiple.
  • Ctrl + Up arrow makes a panel fullscreen (Ctrl + Down Arrow does the opposite).
  • Spacebar is for searching functions.
  • X to delete.

More shortcuts available in DDG by searching for “Blender Cheat Sheet”.

Note that shortcuts are the best way to move around in Blender and can save a lot of time. If you find yourself repeating clicking on the same buttons, look for the shortcut and use it. Shortcuts also behave differently depending on the context (the panel where your mouse is).

3D View panel

  • T is for tools.
  • N is for properties in the 3D View.
  • Tab switches between Object Mode and Edit Mode.
  • Ctrl + Tab : switch between vertex, edge, face