Hard Surface Modeling
  • Don't know if any of you have seen my tweets about my daily models, but I have decided to jump on that 365 one-a-day project idea. But instead of a drawing or a picture, I decided to try and do one hard surface model per day. So far so good. Yesterday, I thought it might be neat to show off my workflow via animated gif.

    I figure it could be a good idea to post that here as well, since I know more than a few of you dabble with the 3D side of motion.


    End Result:


    You can view my blog here with the rest of the models I've posted: http://o3visuals.com/category/365_2012/

    (every model was made with 100% quads. I can't stress the importance of quads enough.)

  • All I can think of when seeing this is "How to draw an owl in 2 easy steps."

    Being a horrible modeler myself, I have to ask why quads over tris?
  • Well for models like this, quads are needed. To ensure a smooth topology (ie. no funky artifacts) when you drop a NURBS over it, it need to be quads. There are very rare exceptions to this rule, though. Like some 5-sided polys will work if it is actually shaped like a pentagon, but generally, should stay away from it. 

    This all boils down to subdivision. Quads are phenomenally easier to equally subdivide than tris or n-gons. Try to subdivide a triangle or a pentagon and have each division with equal points... you can't. Well, in the case of the tri, you can, but there is no guarantees that it will flow correctly from poly to poly. 

    Seriously, if you want to get better as a modeler, being able to quad model is probably the best advice I can give you. It is an invaluable skill on many different levels (smooth topology, retopology, setting up base models for sculpting, etc). I would be willing to write up an article about it at some point, as well as give tips and tricks. Notably, how to punch a circular hole into a non-circular surface.

    I'll also go over working with NURBS in general, and correct usage of support edges in order to generate a certain look. If you think that would be a viable article idea, that is. 

  • That sounds like a great idea. I know there's a lot of us who know our way around a 3D program, but seriously lack in the modeling department.
  • I'll see if I can start to put something together tomorrow evening.
  • As auxiliary material to what Jordan has been saying there's a great blog which has been re-opened, some very, very good posts over at 
  • Awesome! I did not know about that. Some pretty good info on there. I still haven't written anything up for an article. I am extremely busy gathering my thoughts for a technology talk I'm giving this Friday at a local site for the Global Game Jam. Hopefully after that craziness is over with next week, I can dig in and explain some good modeling practices. 
  • Nice, sounds like you have a lot on.. And good to see the link being put to use! Looking forward to seeing what you come up with..

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