Vertex Groups

I am going through and trying to document functions and how they work to teach myself the package. I’ve dug through the tuts and I couldn’t find this answer. Perhaps a wise one on here could help.

Blender 2.32

In the mesh editing window, in the “Material and Links” panel there is an area called “Vertex Groups” From what i read, this is a way one can select a set of vertices and assign a name of them for selection later. Right next to that is an area (not sure what the name is?) where I can assign materials to a selected set of verties (faces that make up them?). Other than the material assignment, how do these two things differ? Would it be fair to call the material area “Face groups?” and the other area vertex groups? I’d appreacte any clarificaiton anyone can offer me here.

The first one is mostly for use with armatures. Every bone in an aramature has a corresponding set of vertices that are it’s children.

The material area is called Material Indices. Contrary to Vertex Groups, Material Indices are assigned to faces and moreover, one face cannot have more than one Material index.


So both of these “tools” offer a way to group specific mesh items in a re-usable way? Vertices by a name and faces (which are composed of vertices) by a material index? Or am I trying to see a relationship between the two (due to button placement proximity) that doesn’t really exist?

There’s no relationship between the two. Other than that they offer more or less the same functions to the user.


A “vertex group” is used with armatures, in animation.
Go here next:

An “armature” is the skeleton of a figure; the mesh shape it’s associated with is the skin. When you move the armature, what portions of the skin are to be moved by a particular joint? That’s determined by “vertex groups.” You say that, “when elbow_1 moves, vertexes in such-and-such group are to move with it.”

I understand that (based on an earlier post by Modron and your’s now) . but the fact that Blender allows me to use this function outside of armatures (and I see some uses there) had me thinking. I appreciated theeth’s explanation of (paraphrasing) even though they have similiar functions (from the user’s point of view), any relationship is coincidental. :slight_smile:

Just a side note. Limiting the use of vertex group to armature deformation weight groups is tossing away a good part of what it can really be used for. Saving deformations groups for easier RVK handling and preserving different selections for easier editing are two other things where vertex groups really shine.