Help Needed: Difficult Things to Learn for Beginners

Thanks Rob, thanks for the explanation and some Good points there…

As a beginner what I’m missing is a top down description of what Touch Designer does. The Wiki is bottom up - this cog does this, that lever controls that. I need also a design philosophy.

Example - trying to create a rectangle on screen, simple experiment. I have tried all kinds of TOPs because where I am coming from the same principle that would input an image or generate noise would generate a shape. (I’m coming from analogue video where I would try a square wave). But after banging around I think it’s better done with 3D objects, but I’m really not sure. That’s a ‘top down’ design flow.

What is the flow of working? I see it being used in the tutorials and I can emulate it but for a designer to explain it would be great.

Another request is that I be able to make the Wiki into printable sections, not just printable pages. That means I can read a bunch of related information while away from the computer and get a ‘big picture’.


Thanks for your suggestions Tom. We found a lot of new user in our workshop say the same thing, good documentation but no description of where to start. We’re looking at it and considering what it will take, its not an overnight fix.

We are also working on an offline version of the documentation for when you are not online, I’ll be sure to bring up the need for printing when this is implemented.


One other thing I’m noticing now, spending more and more time with Touch, is the lack of clear learning path for scripting and expressions.
Seems like things can be done in different ways, and maybe a project that breaks down how a TUIK element is created or something of the sort would be very helpful


Just throwing this in for the designers of TouchDesigner as it is a great article on how to make a programming environment and a language more understandable and learnable.

I think Touch, with its viewers in tiles, is potentially amazing for learning. I think that, that the concepts outlined in the article should be taken to heart by anyone making something like TouchDesigner.


Interesting thread!

I guess you guys will soon read a post by me. Still have to explore first though…

Now that would be amazing. To be able to print out, just like TomEllard wrote, sections depending on where you are in the learning stage. Maybe convert sections as PDF-files and import them to your smartphone or tablet.

  1. Building a simple character and setting up simple control rig
    Nothing nuts, just simple modeling with pulling a few points around, and maybe shape animate it, or Lattice, or single IK chain.

I really wish there was more character animation examples. I really need an explanation of how a pre-rigged/skinned model can be imported into touch, then control rigged and manipulated. I would really love to be able to do kinect puppeting but I really can’t get my head around IK/Skinning/Bones in TD.

Almost all of the character animation done in TouchDesigner is via FBX models imported from other packages such as Maya, Cinema4D, Houdini, etc. As you have found, the modeling tools in TouchDesigner are limited with respect to character creation. We don’t have plans to spend too much time overhauling these tools for character work as there are already more mature packages available which are the go to favourites for character setup.

However, we will continue to improve the learning materials and features for general modeling and the included 3D tools.

Have you checked out the OP Snippets in recent builds? They are found under the Help menu can consist of hundreds of examples of OPs in action. The more popular OPs are covered now, but we’ll continue to add examples to this until every OP has a few examples.

OP Snippets is available in the new official build 23400 just posted, or any of the experimental builds from the last couple of months.

We hope you find them helpful, comments welcome.

Where to download some demo projects in touch designer? I just want to open and see how they were made and so on, does anyone know a good place where to get the projects? :slight_smile:

If you open the Palette you can drag examples into your network.

Also see the Shared .tox Components forum

Hello, I am also new here.

Also if you go to Help menu -> OP Snippets there are “in-network” examples of many nodes (not all) that give you an idea of how to use them in some context. Can also just drag and drop them into your projects and expand from there.

I have a regular Sphere polygon object, I selected a Group node and selecting primitives by Expression. How to select random polygons withing sphere’s points? Basically, I want to randomly select some polygons, around 20-30% of the entire number.
Can’t find a way to do it yet. :unamused:

I think that you should include snippets for all OPs!!!
At least for those whose use is not immediate, e.g.
Bone Group, Clay, Curve Clay, Deform, Capture, Capture Region…

Thanks, we continue to work on them all the time and keep adding them as we go. OP Snippets is only a couple of years old and the list is long!

Thanks for the feedback.

Hi, I am beginner and I have read the pdf of Elburz and I watched video tutorials of Norway Workshop, Lynda and some others from nVoid site but I am still confused with this software, I don’t know how to use the the containers, parameters and operators. I know the basic things like using the hotkeys, Anatomy of the software and… but I am still searching the basic script that explains me how I can use it. pls somebody help me :frowning:

Here is an introduction to the parts of TouchDesigner over 3 hours, it puts together rendering setups and explains what they different operators do to get you started.

Then you can also dig into the other workshop videos here:

But perhaps workshops aren’t your style of learning, in which case please ask what you are trying to build or more specifically what you are stuck with. Have you tried the Facebook Help group or asking specifics on the forum here?

Also, please look under the Help Menu at OP Snippets, they show small examples of how to use many of the operators. The exampels you can copy into your own projects or use as a starting point to learn more about the operators.