Blender’s Frequently Used Tools

Extrude in Blender

One frequently used tool of Blender is the Extrusion tool. Extrusion duplicates vertices while keeping the new geometry connected to the original vertices. An outward extrusion outsets existing geometry. An inward extrusion insets existing geometry.

Let’s look at a hands-on example. To follow along, create a new Blender project.

Select the top face of the Cube on the screen. Hit E, and pull up the face on an axis. To choose an axis, you can hit X, Y, or Z.

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Edge Loops in Blender

To cut the cube in half, you can create an edge loop running through Cube’s center. Hit Control+R. If you hover your mouse over Cube, a pink square will appear in the middle of Cube. Click once to set the axis.

You can still slide around the edge loop because we have not yet set the position of the edge loop. Choose a position, and click again.

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To cut Cube evenly in half by default, hit Control+R, and double-click on Cube. You can make more than one edge loop at a time to split Cube into even pieces.

Hit Control+R. Hover above the pink square where you want your edge loop to be. Scroll up to increase the number of edge loops.

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To remove the edges, hit X. A drop-down menu will appear, giving you multiple options for removing the edges. If you choose “Edges”, the edges and the faces they are touching will disappear.

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Instead, choose “Dissolve Edges”. The edge loops will dissolve.

Select a vertex of Cube. Hit X, and choose “Dissolve Vertices”. The vertex and its connected edges will dissolve. If you select Delete Vertex, the vertex and its connected faces will disappear.

Fill in a Deleted Face

Let’s look at how to fill in a deleted face. Delete one face of Cube.

Enter Edge Mode. Hit Alt, and select one of the edges of the empty face. If you hold Alt, all 4 faces surrounding the edge will become selected. Hit F to fill in the face.

Enter Edit Mode. To select the entire cube, double-hit A. To duplicate Cube, hit Shift+D. Hit Y, and drag your mouse to move the duplicate on the Y axis.

Cube is duplicated, but its duplicate is still part of the Cube object because we duplicated it in Edit Mode.

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If you double-hit A, both cubes will be selected. Instead, enter Face Mode, and hit L. Then you can click on your desired faces to select them.

Delete Cube’s Duplicate. Enter Object Mode. Duplicate Cube again. Now the duplicate will be its own object rather than part of Cube. To combine the cubes, select both and hit Control+J.

To separate the cubes, hit Tab to enter Edit Mode. Hit P. A drop-down menu will appear, giving you options for separating the cubes.

If you select one cube, you can choose Separate > Selection. Otherwise, you can choose Separate > By loose parts.

Blender’s Snap Mode

The Snap tool allows you to align objects. Hit Shift+Tab to enable Snap Mode. Alternatively, click on the magnet icon below the Viewport. When you move Cube, it will snap according to the grid in the Viewport.

To move Cube within the grid spaces, hold Shift as you move Cube. Hit Shift+Tab to disable Snap Mode.

Enter Edit Mode. Another tool option you can use is to resize more than one vertex at a time. Hit Control+Tab. Enter Vertex Mode. Select a vertex of Cube.

Turn on proportional editing mode by hitting O. You can move your mouse to increase the vertex. If you scroll up with your mouse, the vertex and its surrounding areas will resize.

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Want to learn more? Check out our Create 6 low poly rock models in Blender for 3D environments course!

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