The “World Origin” is the point where the zero locations on the X, Y and Z axes coincide. This center of the Cartesian coordinate space is present in most if not all three dimensional modeling programs. It is at once a starting point for the simplest and the most complex creations. The world origin is numerically 0,0,0 which in itself is pretty neat if you like numbers. I might have called this blog “000” if not for the insistence of WordPress that letters play a part in any blog name. Regardless, it’s unlikely that a name that cool would even have been available so I’ll instead use it for my first post.

The world origin is an important location when modeling pretty much anything and is the spot I almost always center a model around. There are a variety of reasons this is useful. The first being that many designs are symmetrical. If you center the model at zero, you can mirror your work to complete the form. This is not only true of most product modeling but also the case in organic shapes as well such as portraits. Even if some small asymmetries were applied for realism, a perfect symmetrical form would be required first.

Another useful observation of the world origin can be seen in architectural modeling. If a model is very far from this location, the polygonal meshes used to shade or render the model may look less than perfect. I’ve seen this issue repaired many times by simply moving the model closer to zero.