What is the thought process to use geometry nodes without a tutorial?

I’ve actually done it once or twice many months apart after looking at a tutorial but after going through the entire list of nodes just now I find it impossible to deduce/figure-out/guess what combination of nodes will do this.

Anyone here ever figured it out on their own without a tutorial?

Can you give me an overly verbose description of your thought process when you achieved this?

This is where I’m at

Where the hell do I plug in the cube’s geometry to ask the questions:
what is the distance from the faces of the man to the cube?
if the distance is less than 1cm then select that face for deletion.

If you think this is easy and want to just tell me because you think it should be obvious, skip this.
I need verbosity and minutiae.

Like, should I be thinking backwards? Should I think backwards then forwards then backwards? Should I always start with trying to have something visual happening that is relevent to my desired outcome? How to start that way? Should I always start with 2 planes? Like in material node tutorials they always demonstrate things on a flat plane before moving on to the real application.

Is it not possible to see both the viewer output and the node tree output at the same time?

here is an example.

In this case I have a sphere with the geometry node and a monkey. (sorry the sphere was a cube :rofl:)

The faces of the sphere that are less than 0.7 from the monkey are deleted.

If I move the monkey towards the sphere (or the sphere towards the monkey) more faces are deleted.

You do have to think backwards (and forwards a bit)

The geometry proximity’s geometry input needs the monkey’s info (NOT the spheres info) it is Important to set to relative so that its transformations are taken into account.

The delete geometry node deletes faces of the sphere so its geometry input is the sphere it’s self. The result of the distance boolean determines which faces are deleted.

In your example you are attempting to get the proximity of your character to it’s self, if you see what I mean, you need to plug the cube geometry into the proximity node’s geometry input not the character. Also you need a boolean to select the faces, the distance will not work you need a criteria that uses the distance to produce a boolean, (I used the compare node)

Thought process - forwards you have a character that you want to delete some faces from.
Backwards- You need to select the faces that are less than 0.7 form the cube.