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Cheek guards of historical helmet topo

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It seems people are more keen about modeling fantasy helmets or pseudo historical helmets seen from movies but little is known that actual helmets used along in history are equally fascinating. One forgotten era where there are superb examples of fascinating helmets is the hellenistic one (time period after the Alexander conquest of the Middle east followwed by the establishing of Macedonian dynasties in these lands). The constant wars between the Alexander successors, huge scale of these wars, the mix between the locals and the greek culture gave birth to a fascinating and refined panoply of weaponry within their armies.




What draw my attention lately where the helmets used by the soldiers that fought in the Macedonian style Phalanx. Some are very complex with dense decorations like a bearded cheeckguards, most of them were richly handpainted , addorned with big horse hair crests and feathers but I just want to model the most simple and still very well executed most common ones and later bother with the addornings.


The most intriguing part for me seems to be the cheeck guards shape which in this period had known a crazy variety and develop , the focus being offer a great protection but also a nice commodity and fitting for the soldier, unlike the more well known in pop culture spartan or better said corinthian helmet which was used in the previous centuries which was bassically a closed one and the cheeck guards were more simple.


Ok Ive seen a couple of tutorials more or less at the right pace regarding helmets modeling in general with various softwares. One from Mike Hermes on youtube for Maya deals exactly whith one of this historical type He achieved a presentable result but in my opinion the cheeck guards can be way better shaped and defined and would probably need a different aproach.
What would the best way to approach such complex shape modeling order to achieve a very good matching with the original references. And what would be a good topology example for them. Im talking about traditional polygon modeling (no sculpting or anything else).


Thracian Kopais




more refferences here 


Thracian Melos 1


more refferences here


Thracian Melos 2



more refferences here 


Thracian Beotian




more refferences here

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You can build the cheek plates very low poly initially, defining large-level curvature in as few polys as possible and then let SDS do the work for you.

Then you can smooth subdivide that, and refine the form further. As long as you keep your polys even and almost square in form they will be suitable for poly modelling in further detail or sculpting it in later...


You would begin flat in a side orthographic view and then use the poly pen or other tools to place your initial polys , or you could start off with a plane (maybe 3 x 6 or so)...


Something like this maybe ?




or this...





Once you have moved the points in the front view too the next step would be to redirect the edge flow around the perimeter of this form then to add further loops which would help you better refine curvature...



Edited by Cerbera
added info... pls refresh page

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Here's how we might proceed with Helmet 1 above after that. Hopefully you can see how we can get surprisingly attractive and controllable curvature with a minimum of polys...







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