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Bolos

Nike Air Force 1 modelling

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  • Decided to work on it today, here's the progress :

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    There's at least a couple triangles that I can't get rid of but I'm pretty happy with it. Next step is to model the tiny stars patterns on the front and back.

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    Well done for modelling it, as opposed to building it out of separate parts. And you've done a pretty great job of all the step-ups to the logo area. How long did this take you out of interest ? I don't envy you the stars though if you're going to model those 'properly' - that is gonna take 'some time' ! Surely you'd make those as separate piece right ?! :)

     

    CBR

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  • Thanks CBR, coming from you that means a lot!

    Modelling the logo and bridging it to the slopes was pretty straightforward, I think it two me around 2 hours. But I had a lot of trouble making the slopes and bridging the concentric circles to the outer sole. I also had some pinching when modelling the outer dents and needed some time to make it really smooth. Finally, this is my second attempt at modelling it with polygons, the first version had too much and the bridging part was a nightmare, so I found an easier way relying more on the weighting tool.

     

    In the end I have no idea how much time the whole thing took me. If I only take the second attempt I think it's around 20 hours.

     

    Edit : About the stars pattern I was thinking about using displacement, modelling those with polygons seems nightmarish, especially with a five pointed star.

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  • Update, finished the sole. I guess the hardest part is done.

     

    So I ended up polygon modelling a star and used the Sculpting tools to project it to a plane, then baked the displacement from the plane.

     

    Finally, I used the resulting displacement .tif in photoshop to create the stars following the UV map. Not sure if it's the best idea but that's what came to my mind :)

     

    PS : Maybe the topic could be moved to WIP ?

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  • Do you guys have any useful tips to create smooth SDS surfaces without spending hours (if not days) adjusting points manually ?

     

    As I have a better understanding of modelling, I enjoy a lot the early process of it. Quickly creating shapes with the Polygon Pen finding the best "Edge flow". But once done, getting real smooth curved surfaces is really hard and it's kind of killing the fun. Fine tuning points positions is boring.

     

    I use the smoothing brush a bit, but not so much since I feel like it mostly flatten things.

     

    I guess there's no easy shortcut but I spend way too much time on this to my taste.

     

    Thanks in advance.

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    The tweaking of points is a constant necessity in SDS modelling, and although there are tools that can help, there is no getting away from it to any significant degree with a serious model like this one, where you need extremely specific, relatively high density topology pretty much right from the get-go. To be a brilliant SDS modeller the primary skill you need is legendary patience while you do all that tweaking ! 

     

    You are right, the smooth brush flattens stuff, which can seriously limit its usefulness, the iron tool can't solve / help everything, and soft selection, whilst definitely having its place, has its own sometimes frustrating characteristics and problems which limit its usefulness in achieving flawlessly curved surfaces. The more polygon density you have the more you have to work to get (or keep) surfaces artefact-free.

     

    There are lesser-known tools that can help. The sculpt brushes, which now work on any poly mesh, sculpt tag or not, have a different type of smoothing, and one that can be combined with other features like pull and grab so that as you move points around they auto-smooth as they go. That has saved me time in the past. I also spent an inordinate amount of time in the slide tool moving not just single points but whole groups of edges to restore curves that smoothing has reduced, and the 'preserve curvature' function of the knife tools that have it is very helpful and the closest we get to Max's much admired 'set flow' functionality.

     

    And we should mention the most important modelling plugin, the HB modelling bundle, whose incredibly useful tools should be permanently in the toolbars of all serious modellers. Instant quadcaps, points to circle, even distribution, lining up of edges, smooth edge, an improved solo mode, awesome retopo setup, the list of helpful bits in these scripts goes on and on.

     

    As for feeling like you are spending too much time on tweaking, that's never going to going away completely, but will get less over time the more you do it. Eventually it will be instinctive to establish curvature early, and then not to break it when you add more detail, which can lead to less fixing time, but will never eradicate it completely.

     

    My best advice is to accept that, and try and find the calming rewarding sense of zen tranquility in perfecting polygons as you tweak. Time spent perfecting polygons is not wasted. Cinema might not yet be the best modeller in the world (Max retains the crown for me) but it still remains my favourite environment to model in, so even if you're wrangling for a while, it is at least lovely to look at while you do it  :)

     

    CBR

     

     

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  • Thanks a lot for the in-depth comment!

     

    I think the most frustrating thing is when you adjust points but then creates another flaw to adjacent points. Making me feel I'm doing useless sh**. I guess I'll have less of these moments with time. Having no idea about how to handle edge flow wasn't so long ago. Even after watching videos saying to myself "Yeah makes sense, that's easy", I needed some time to digest it.

     

    I also use the HB modelling tools and use most of the scripts you mentioned but somehow didn't used them on the upper part. I remember being really frustrated when learning that C4D did not had similar tools to Illustrator's Align/Distribute tool. Discovering the HB scripts was a revelation, lol.

     

    Finally, yes, I think you're right about accepting the fact that some results can't be achieved without time and sweat (maybe that'll change sooner than later with AI ?). I think I just need to spend some time on another project to get back to the shoes later with a fresher state of mind.

     

    Edit : Already heard about using sculpting tools on polygonal meshes not that long ago but thanks for the reminder, I'll try it!

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    @everfresh

    Quote

    basically does the same as soft selection with the right fall-off type, but the big advantage is that it is procedural, so you can leave the effector in place at first and play with the curves, add loops if needed, test render and so on until you're happy with the result. with soft selection you'd have to undo and redo all the time until you get the desired result.

    Thanks, I had a good play with the method and quickly realised it is a far more controllable alternative to soft selection. I like it, and glad I've happened upon the technique so cheers for that!

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