Viewpoint

Viewpoint refers to where you (or the camera) are looking from. You can move the viewpoint away from your avatar, around your avatar, up and down and sideways. This lets you look around your environment or at whatever you may be working with. Note: only the zoom on the viewpoint behind the avatar does not reset when you move.

The standard viewpoint is from above and behind the head. You can zoom the view in and out from the head. If you zoom right in to your avatar you will enter Mouselook. You can zoom back out of this. Ensure the mouse cursor is over the viewer window  and use the mousewheel for the smoothest range, or use CTRL+0 & CTRL+8.

This is the one viewpoint change that remains constant. It can be convenient in tight spaces where, as the avatar turns, your view becomes obscured by walls unless you move in closer to the head.

To move the camera around use the ALT and arrow keys. The CTRL and SHIFT change the way it moves. To reset your view use the ESC key, click on your avatar or use an arrow key without ALT held down. Then try the exercise below to look at your avatar's face.

  • ALT and the arrow keys move the camera back and forward (up and down arrows) and around (left and right arrows).
     
  • Hold down ALT + CTRL and the up and down arrow keys move the camera around vertically to look over and and under. left and right continue to move the view around.
     
  • Adding SHIFT (ALT + CTRL + SHIFT) make the arrow keys move the camera's centre (and you viewpoint) left, right, up and down.

Note: the direction you might expect the view to move may not be what happens. You are moving the camera so, for example, when you move the camera left the view moves right.

It is important to realise most movements are around the avatar and within certain limits. A quick example is moving around to look at your avatar's face. Start with the default view above and behind the head.

  1. Hold down ALT and use the left or right arrow to rotate around your avatar until you can see the face.
     
  2. Hold down ALT and use the up arrow to move in towards your avatar. You will see that you can only get so close. How do we get closer?

    This is done by moving where the camera is centred.
     
  3. Hold down ALT and use the right arrow to rotate your view so your avatar is on the right of the view and roughly sideways. It may disappear from view, bring it back by rotating with ALT+left arrow.
     
  4. Now hold down ALT+CTRL+SHIFT and use the left arrow key to move your avatar sideways to the right.
     
  5. Now if you rotate back to the face you will be much closer.
     
  6. Hold down the ALT+CTRL+SHIFT and use the arrow keys to move up, down, left and right for a front view. Use ALT+CTRL and up and down to tilt the camera.

This is a bit simplified and it takes practise. Looking at yourself, your feet, hands, and so on will help you learn to move the viewpoint around the world and objects.