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I have imported a variety of tree models from Artstation into blender. When I drag some of these models, the entire object moves together. For other objects, it's like the children are unlinked or something - dragging them with the mouse results in e.g. just the leaves or branches moving. If I select the parent object under the Scene Collection menu, then I can move it as a whole unit.

See the attached picture, the ones moving as a unit (Beech_forest) show triangles in the Scene Collection menu and the ones which seem 'unlinked' (Black Alder1/2) show what appear to be 3D axes.

enter image description here

What's going on here? How can I combine the Black Alder imported objects into one item which moves as a unit when I drag it without selecting it in the Scene Collection?

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  • $\begingroup$ Please clarify your specific problem or provide additional details to highlight exactly what you need. As it's currently written, it's hard to tell exactly what you're asking. $\endgroup$
    – Community Bot
    Sep 10, 2023 at 21:59

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"Beech_forest_12Xfo.006" and "Beech_young_8Xfo" are mesh objects (that's what the orange triangle means). "Black_Alder1" and "Black_Alder2" are empties which have 12 / 11 mesh objects parented to them, that's why there is an orange triangle with a 12 on the first and a triangle with a 11 on the second.

If you move them in the outliner by just dragging them, you only move the selected objects, i.e. in case of the empties just those, not the objects parented to them. Parent and child object can be associated to different collections, which means the children will not be moved automatically with the parent object in the outliner.

To move a parent with all its children to a different collection, right-click on the empty, choose Select Hierarchy from the context menu and then drag them where you want them.

If you want all children in a single object instead of separate objects parented to an empty, you could select all objects that belong to an empty and in the viewport press Ctrl+J to join them all into one object (therefore one of the mesh objects must be active i.e. have a brighter outline, not the empty) however without knowing the models I cannot recommend this because if they have different modifiers etc. on them they could all be reduced to whatever is set on the active object, which can change the appearance of the models in an unwanted way.

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