How to

Level up your 3D design flow with booleans

Create complex 3D shapes easily and in real-time.

Booleans are one of the most useful modifiers that you can use in 3D modeling. In Vectary, it is a shortcut that leads to fast and easy modeling with quality results (topology), without having to use mesh wireframes. 

When we talk about booleans, it is hard to imagine just from this mathematical term what it really means. In 3D design, it refers to two or more shapes that influence each other. 

Booleans can be used to carve a section out of the other (Subtract),  add one shape to another (Union), or combine and merge shapes (Intersect). Imagine a Venn diagram in 2D. The same principle can be applied to 3D:

Effective ways to use booleans

By using boolean modifiers, the whole design process becomes faster and more precise. It simplifies some of the key functions, opening up room for creativity and model exploration. 

Here are a few examples to try out:

  • Creating a hole - use Subtract modifier
  • Placing patterns on a surface - use Union or Subtract in combination with Array Modifier
  • Experiment with various shapes - get new results with Intersect modifier and the order of the shapes in the project menu
  • Embossing a logo or typography on a surface - use Subtract modifier and various material settings

Watch the video and see all these examples in action:

How Vectary has improved the booleans feature

  • With the recent update, we combined all three separate boolean functions into one. You can switch between Union, Subtract and Intersect in the object menu.
  • It is now possible to stack all objects into one plugin and change the boolean type for each object individually. (Previously, it was necessary to stack multiple plugins to get the effect). 
  • You can change the order of the objects by clicking and dragging them inside a group. The main object is always the one at the bottom.
  • We added a new menu option ‘Separate by material’ that splits objects into multiple geometries to achieve a multicolor result.
  • Speed and topology have significantly improved - most of the operations are in real-time.

Learn more about the updated Boolean feature in our documentation: