Well, I hope that everyone tried
to model as much as they could by themselves. Im sure
that the shape of the head wasnt much trouble using the
techniques that we covered last time. However, those of you
who are new to MetaNurbs probably had a bit of trouble with
the eyes and horns. Maybe you modeled them but they just didnt
look quite real. Well in this installment thats what Im
going to cover. Load the head model from last time and lets
Just to make things easier to work
on we will first select the polygon that we want to pull into
a horn and cut that and paste it into another layer. Fig 1 shows
the poly pasted into layer 2 with the rest of the head as a
background in layer 1.
As you probably notice the patch
itself is rather messed up. This is okay as when we past it
back in and merge points it will repair itself quite nicely.
This is assuming of course that we dont move the original
First I select the poly and either
smooth shift it or use the bevel command. Either option works
it just depends on how comfortable you are with one or the other.
I will do this several more time each time stretching it so
that it resembles the shape we want. The two things that you
have to remember here are dont move the original points
like I said earlier and you have to grab all the points on the
inside and set them to x=0. This is because when we mirror it
we dont want two horns, or maybe we do. I have actually
used that method on another creature and it looked really cool.
Try modeling your horn to look like the one in fig 2.
The trick to getting the horn to
look recessed in the skin is as follows. The example in fig
3 is highly exaggerated to give you the basic idea.
This technique works well for horns,
teeth, and just about any other type of protrusion that you
can think of up for your next character.
As for the horns on the back of
the neck I would actually suggest waiting and modeling those
later when we might have some more subdivisions to work with.
Assuming that you werent going to be using MetaMation,
you could just wait until you froze the spline patch and them
model them with all the extra detail. However I plan on showing
you how to animate using the MetaMation plugin. Here his how
I would resolve this little dilemma. Make another strip of four
point polys in another layer. Use the technique I just outlined
for making the little horns. Then once that is all done past
that layer back into the main layer and start welding points.
The thing that saves us here is the fact that MetaNurbs now
works with three point polygons as well as four. Once you start
welding make sure that the resulting polys are three point polys
as shown in fig 4.
You will need to be careful with
this method as three point polys with MetaNurbs give unpredictable
results. But with a little point pushing you should be able
to get a nice looking patch with no visible seams. Another thing
that you have to remember is that the OpenGL preview, while
good, doesnt really show you what is going to be in the
final rendered image. If there do happen to be seams that you
cant get rid of then the judicious use of mapping will
almost certainly take care of them.
Now, on to the eye. The eye is
pretty straight forward once you see how the horn works. The
eye socket is pretty much the same except that instead of have
the horn come out you simply have the socket keep going into
the head to make room for the eye.
First off select the polys where
you want the eye and smooth shift them. Stretch them more into
the shape that you want and move some points if need be to get
the outline of the eye just right. Then smooth shift it again
and pull it back into the head a little bit to give the eyelid
some depth. Then smooth shift it again and move the area further
back into the skull and stretch it out so that it looks like
the back of the eyelids. Once that is done simply smooth shift
it one more time and pull that into the head to make room for
the eyeball. If you want to get really crazy you can even use
the planemeta splitter to give some more depth at the tips of
the eyelids and then add some eyelashes. Admittedly this isnt
appropriate for this character, but you always need to add to
your bag of tricks.
You probably noticed that I didnt
bother to give examples of the eyeball portion of the tutorial
as I figured that once you start to see how MetaNurbs works,
it really isnt very difficult to model whatever you can
see in your minds eye.
Well, in the next installment of
the series we will go into making the mouth and teeth. Lets
see if you can figure out how to make them using the techniques
that I already covered. I am going to be pulling a new trick
out of my bag next time, so stay tuned.