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I've created a cube from a 4mm x 4mm square, extrude depth 4mm.

I need to rotate it fit a particular set of lines to create a pyramid (and other shapes). In the image below you I want to create the red cubes along the black lines.

enter image description here

I tried various entries into the dialogue boxes in the 3D Bevel and Extrude to no avail.

enter image description here

From which reference point and what exactly is being rotated per each dialogue box?

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You are using the wrong tool.

Illustrator's 3D Effect is object-isolated not global. Meaning each object is rotated/extruded from it's local center. There are no "scene" options in Illustrator's 3D effect.

If you need a 3d "scene" use a real 3D application.

  • I cannot spend time learning a 3d software to carry out this task, which I could do manually, albiet tediously. This seems to be the closest thing I can use to achieve what I need with some level of automation, if I just understood how it worked I could suss it out. – Aasim Azam Nov 11 '19 at 3:57
  • It works based upon the object itself. The rotation center is the center of the object. Nothing correlates or is related to anything else. – Scott Nov 11 '19 at 4:04
  • @AasimAzam it takes less time to learn a 3D application. I mean i know how it works and its still less work to draw it by hand than try to calculate the values. the reference point is center of object. – joojaa Nov 12 '19 at 5:43

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