How to Slice a 3D Object?
January 14, 2010 10:17 AM   Subscribe

How can I get "slices" of a 3D rendered object?

Here's what I want to do: render an object in a 3D modeling program, then generate an animation of "slices" of that object, as if being run through a real-time CT Scan. Something like this animation of the inside of a pig's head. (Warning: links to an animation of the inside of a pig's head.)

I'd be creating the original 3D model myself. What software would I need to make this whole thing happen? Bonus points for OS X software, cheap software, or open source software.
posted by lore to Computers & Internet (4 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I think Google SketchUp does this, and it's free.
posted by Lifeson at 10:24 AM on January 14, 2010

In most 3D programs I have used, I implement that effect as follows:

-Model the important item
-Make a large primitive of some form (let's just say it is a cube, bigger than the important item)
-Subtract the cube from the important item
-Now, if you move the cube around, you can see how it creates a cross section of the main item when any of its faces intersect it.

In general, these slices are called cross-sections. That knowledge might help you find whatever commands or tutorials you might need in whatever program you end up using.

Good luck!
posted by milqman at 11:44 AM on January 14, 2010

Best answer: Animating Section Cuts in Sketch-Up.
posted by sacapuntas at 1:27 PM on January 14, 2010 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Awesome, Sacapuntas, that's just what I'm looking for. If anyone else knows similar tutorials for other programs, I'd love to see them, but now I've got someplace to start.
posted by lore at 5:23 PM on January 14, 2010

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