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Thread: Poles and Loops

  1. #41
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    I'm sorry that I'm not that active the past months, I'll try to get back in the groove for there is much to tell. I answer the questions of everyone in due time too.

    I'll continue where I left off. Observe this loop:



    When placing loops, always try to envision how the underlying structure looks like and how it should move. Poles offer some isolation for your model in the sense that loops could stop at poles. The advantage of that is that your model will stay light and when animating, you are not pulling a loop that is going in areas where the movement doesn't agree with the placement of the loop.

    This one is a no brainer because there aren't any facial muscles that are attached below the eye and travel across the side of the face and under the jaw. Besides there is a funny curve in the edge loop. If you want to curve you loop, let a pole do the job. There maybe more of such loops in this model and I will delete them assuming that you can guess the reason for deleting it.



    A little bit better. Still... :\

    (to be continued.....)
    Last edited by toontje; 13-Jun-07 at 11:40.
    -- Do not put off till tomorrow what can be put off till the day-after-tomorrow just as well.
    -- Beauty is in the eyes of the beer holder



  2. #42

    pdf?

    lot of good info in this post
    still have to go throu some exercises
    any chance of putting some of this in a pdf?

    you could use open office(free i think) to build a pdf



  3. #43
    Member jessethemid's Avatar
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    awesome thread... thanks, really great info.

    I would perhaps be able to put this in a differant media (pdf, html [i could host it on addertooth.net or just build it for you], or other format if you'd like...)

    only with your approval of course. if you want me too pm me and we'll work out the details.


    again, great stuff. keep it up!



  4. #44
    Thank you SO much for this thread! Its helped me tons, although I'm still having a lot of trouble cleaning up my head model (here if you're interested). But I'm working on it.

    -Lando



  5. #45
    Member ristesekuloski's Avatar
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    This is one of the most valuable modeling instructions that I have read ... ever! It demystifies some modeling practices that I have seen watching some educational videos or following more than a few tutorials. I have used some of those techniques without understanding them. Ppppplllleeeeeeaassse collect those gems of modeling excellence and make one pdf book!!!



  6. #46
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    Hi, thank you all for your encouraging words. A lot of you guys out there are asking me to put this into a pdf, a book a website. All in due time. And I really appreciate the offers.

    Also there are a couple of request from some of you with questions about a model you are currently are working on. I love to help you all out, I have a lot to tell however. I will pick up some of your modeling problems to emphasize stuff I discussed before.

    There is really so much to tell. I have in mind too to demonstrate how to recreate a model when the wire frame is given. I believe that all that is achievable by mastering poles and loops.

    To pick up where I left...


    I have reworked the nose area a little bit. And maybe you could have seen that 2 adjacent triangles has been created that could be easily be merged into a quad.


    Should those 2 triangles be merged, then that nice flow (blue) that defines the nostril will disappear. So don't remove triangles just for the sake of it. But don't be mistaken: those 2 triangles will be removed while keeping the nostril flow.

    And now the biggest part of this job: cleaning up the nose topology.

    (damn... motherboard keeps failing.... I'll continue later)
    Last edited by toontje; 01-Jul-07 at 21:59.
    -- Do not put off till tomorrow what can be put off till the day-after-tomorrow just as well.
    -- Beauty is in the eyes of the beer holder



  7. #47
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    Don't be long. An unused Sticky collects dust bunnies.



  8. #48
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    Me love this thread long time. Seriously extremely good stuff, I've been reading the thread on subdiv forums and I'm glad there's more hot tips and tricks and methods of extreme topological flowcontrol. Please do continue.



  9. #49
    Hi Toontje
    This thread is really the best modeling tutorial i have ever seen.

    I have been using blender for two years..I saw the thread by someartist in sub-div forum .. it gave a lot of information ,but since it was not organised i couldnt understand any of it...but this thread has given me something ... You have shown many methods to create poles ,move them , ....etc.

    In all the examples you showed a E pole and N pole come in pair

    I did like to know the following

    1.I have seen an E pole alone ,How do you move it? (is there some general method)
    2.Similarly how to move N pole ?(when it is alone)
    3.how to remove E pole ?(when it is alone)
    4.How to remove N pole?(when it is alone)

    Fazil Abdul Lathif



  10. #50
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    A very fair question.
    I is not very common to have a lone N-pole or E-pole on your mesh, especially if your mesh is closed.

    But if you happen to have a mesh with a single E-pole or N-pole, the usual unpolling techniques will move them around or even eliminate them.

    In the next gif animation, I move the only E-pole present by the same unpolling technique. If you keep moving the E pole, it will reach the edge of the edge and vanish.



    which results in this:



    With each unpole you introduce more edge loops. You may want to remove these extra edge loops afterward.


    To remove a N-pole you should follow the chart below:



    Just cut along these red lines and join triangles.

    To continue where I left off, I was working on the nose area. There are some standard topologies widely used for the nose. It all depends if you want a anatomical correct solution, or a topology that deforms well etc.




    The red loop should be always there IMO because it will make the nostril look like it sprouted from the face. The nose should be somewhat in its own topological region, separated from the upper lips in any case. The green loop is what I see a lot in the 'old days'. It ends at the eye. I find faces with this setup look very CG-like.

    The purple loop will form a C-loop. It will form a nice face with well defined cheek bones. This loop travels around the eyebrows.

    The blue loop will lead to a X-topology which is just awesome. A lot of very professional looking models has this X-topology. It always seem that the wire frame is light and clean.

    But in this case I won't be aiming for any loop in particular because the nose area is so messed up... so I'll take it from there and I see from there where it will take me.

    To begin with, the mouth loop flows right into the nose



    Let's get rid of the mess on the side of the nostril first:
    step one: move two key e-poles around





    Some action in the animation above may seem new. Well, another way to move a E-pole around is by selecting those 2 rows of edges and then collapse them (Mesh menu-->edges-->collapse). This method decrease the mesh density instead of increasing it when using the former method. In this case I think less mesh density is better because you have a better overview of the base topology.




    As you can see, the loops at the tip of the nose are forming nicely, but the loop that goes around the chin-mouth-nose is a little messed up. This is easy to fix:

    Last edited by toontje; 15-Jul-07 at 23:25.
    -- Do not put off till tomorrow what can be put off till the day-after-tomorrow just as well.
    -- Beauty is in the eyes of the beer holder



  11. #51

    Hi

    Wow! you are back again.Thanks for the reply.I have one more question.

    Two Poles(the Epole and Npole) are introduced in the methods that you have suggested long back. Is there a method to remove any one of them?(.So that i can create a E pole or N pole whenever i need it in my mesh).

    I am interested in making a good tutorial out of this subject. I know some Flash . I do like to contribute something . And I am currently at home with plenty of free time.
    We can start from the very basics of modeling in blender. Step by step creation of some character that has some features(ugly features that makes room for box modeling,poles,edgeloops, topology.....).

    Fazil Abdul Lathif



  12. #52
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    Hi Fazil, I'm very honored that you are considering this material worthy enough for a tutorial. My own skills are very noobish at best

    For me it is a journey too. It is all mostly self study because it seems that the better modelers won't or cannot explain the process. So I have to dissect everything to its bare essentials and find out how it fits together.

    I have barely scratch the surface here, so it would be premature to begin working on a tutorial.... otherwise it will look like 'magic' and incoherent. Of course everyone is more than welcome to use all that has been discussed before for their own purposes... this is an open forum after all.

    So... where were we? The nose is still unfinished. I think I'm going for that super cool X-topology anyway. I never have done this before, but with the knowledge we have so far it should be a breeze.....

    First: a nice loop under the base of the nose and around the nostrils.



    And now, to finish the whole mouth nose topology just right (especially dealing with that nasty 6-edged pole there!).








    Almost done... just one more step and the mouth-nose area will have a totally clean topology.




    And like animation for example, one has to scrub through his work to fix some left overs. In this case there is that face loop that ends in the nose once again.




    Personally I think that this is not correct topology. This face loop may be removed by using the edge collapse tool. "Edge collapse" and "edge loop delete" are closely related. Edge collapse deletes face loops, and edge loop delete deletes... well.. edge loops. I'm loving the edge collapse tool every day more and more. The coder who made this should win a Suzanne award!

    Anyway:



    Hereby I declare the mouth and nose topology clean!




    Next I'll be fixing the eye socket topology.
    Last edited by toontje; 17-Jul-07 at 22:33.
    -- Do not put off till tomorrow what can be put off till the day-after-tomorrow just as well.
    -- Beauty is in the eyes of the beer holder



  13. #53
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    toontje you're a wizard. Have you ever tought of putting all this awesome stuff into a one magic PDF document ready for printing? I'm sure it could be one of the most downloaded and adviced tutorials out there. Good work guy!
    You can\'t live with women, you can\'t live without women.
    Fuzzy logic example.



  14. #54
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    toontje,
    Thanks SO much for this explanatory thread. Like you said, most other tutorials I've read are more like magic. Good idea converting those to anims to GIFs - whichever eager fan makes the PDF can easily unpack the frames, a printed reference is so handy.

    On the other hand, some of the animated GIFs demo your points so compactly, a printed reference might be much larger - a complete video tutorial of it all would be a tempting alternative. I'd love to help with either but looks like there's lots of volunteers with copious free time.

    Incidentally, maybe slow down those bigger GIFs just a bit, I had to watch some a dozen+ times trying to catch what exactly you were doing.
    See ebeltech.com for a bit of web design, with a few drawings, photos and 3D experiments.



  15. #55
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    Final touches

    OK, the rewiring is about done. Don't mind the shape of the model, that is another subject.




    This is the final topology (I added a chin loop)




    Next we are going have some fun together. We are going to model something not too easy and not too difficult: the nose. As an excersize it is a fine opportunity to see if all what we talked about are applicable. Although I keep stranding in very specific situation, I will try too keep it general, because when all this is over, we should be able to model a horse or a bulldog or which organic shape whatsoever by just studying the shape.


    edit: to answer some questions:
    @ Fazil: it is quite hard to put just one single N-pole or E-pole where you want it. Maybe with the poly by poly method is could be quite possible, but I find it to be virtually impossible to place either as a single pole.

    There is a lot of situations though where you have lots of e-pole and no N-poles. How can this be possible? Well, take the mouth of eyes for example, it is surrounded by E-pole, and there used to be N-poles where the mouth or eye-socket was. But technically speaking, the edge of a mesh is also a N-pole (3 edges that are connected at one vert)
    -- Do not put off till tomorrow what can be put off till the day-after-tomorrow just as well.
    -- Beauty is in the eyes of the beer holder



  16. #56
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    Let's model a nose

    Oh boy.....
    I don't know if this explanation will clarify things or not. I will try to explain things from a totally different perspective then what other tutorials do. Other tutorials 'just' show how to shape the form and the and how the loops are applied remains a total mystery.

    The following method is NOT the way to model, but you will see the benefit of having correct loop flows, because the shape is also implicit in the loops.


    The way I look at it is that I consider the mesh like a canvas. On this canvas you will try to 'draw' loops on.

    step 1: setup your canvas. Just a grid , mirror modifier applied to it.



    Now don't go counting vertices and stuff. Just produce some kind of grid. Don't make the mistake of those step by step instruction. What I'm aiming for here is the mindset you should have when modeling.


    step 2: It is good to think ahead a little . I will make some hole for the mouth, the eyes and nostrils. It is a good thing to make holes, because when you make loop cuts, it will terminate at a hole instead of traveling all the way around the mesh. Also one thing to keep in mind is to avoid holes that touches each other, otherwise you'll get those nasty 6-poles.




    step 3: I see that there is too little room to maneuver between the eyes and nose. I will up the mesh density a little so I can put some nostrils there somewhere.




    step 4: Placing some loops. A little theory first. Those E-poles and N-poles almost always comes in pairs. The E-pole and N-pole pair causes displacement on the mesh:



    So what do we do now? We are going to draw loops, knowing where E-poles and N-pole will be placed. Those locations are where we want to displace the mesh. So where does the nose get displaced?




    The arrows point at the locations where I might want to place E-poles. The blue lines indicates how I might want to cut on the grid.

    You might ask why I place a loop that links both nostrils? Well, anywhere there is a E-pole, the form gets a little more accentuated. For example, if have a feature that really sticks out, you might want to do that.

    Step 4: filling in the loops. I won't go all the way to the smallest details just yet.

    (next day edit...)

    I have to revert back to a previous action. In hindsight I don't think it was the right choice to punch the holes for the nostrils after all. The density is to low in that area to permit much detailing. Instead I should fill in the nostrils back and block out the nose:
    Last edited by toontje; 30-Jul-07 at 12:00.
    -- Do not put off till tomorrow what can be put off till the day-after-tomorrow just as well.
    -- Beauty is in the eyes of the beer holder



  17. #57

    Hi

    Toontje
    I just started the model of myke (character from monster inc (i have put it as my avatar),I dont have a good reference and I could do the eyes and mouth but got stuck with the elbow and the hand ( I have no idea about how loops should be placed there)And i have no idea about how to finish the back part of the model.
    I have also done the same model using box modeling but it lacks features.
    .Anyway please give it a look.



    the link is the model(only the eyes and mouth)-->using poly by poly(158KB)
    http://www.speedyshare.com/648404928.html
    the link is the model created using box modeling(no features)(135KB)
    http://www.speedyshare.com/842980864.html
    Fazil



  18. #58
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    OK, time sure does fly. I was a little bit lost about the explanation on how to model the nose. To be frank with you, I forgotten how to do it. I was doodling about for a couple of minutes (4 minutes tops), and I got this:




    I really can't reproduce this instinctive construct. And on hindsight, maybe it is not the best thing to try to explain molding forms starting from a UV layout like situation. But don't worry, I have a different, easy and quick explanation to construct the nose. But before I get to that, I want to clarify avoiding 6-poles and the use of isolation first.
    Last edited by toontje; 20-Nov-07 at 10:30.
    -- Do not put off till tomorrow what can be put off till the day-after-tomorrow just as well.
    -- Beauty is in the eyes of the beer holder



  19. #59
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    Avoiding 6-poles and isolation

    This little side step is necessary because this is an explanation of what the mindset means.

    Avoiding 6-poles
    It goes without saying that 6-poles should be avoided. 6-poles are created when 2 E-poles overlap. For example:



    Like I said before, overlapping loops shouldn't pose a problem, but watch out when you find yourself creating 6-poles. If that happens, just undo and put some distance between the first e-pole and the location where you are going to place the loop. Insert a distance by cutting the mesh at the location or placing a loop (if it makes sense to you) if you don't want to cut along the whole model.



    Isolation



    I find that this is a term that's hard to define. It surely helps when animating, but it should help too when modeling. It could even be overkill sometimes. Most of the time isolation is more like a finishing touch on a topological region. I think that isolation helps also to mold your model better.

    We all have seen how a noob face model looks like. Often the nose look weird, even if the edge loops makes sense. For example, the nostrils looks like a piece of skin that has been pulled from the face.
    An vice verse, the cheek area is looking to fuse with the nostrils. In such cases, isolation is the solution. Better still, isolation loops could be topological loops too, meaning they add further to the shaping/ detailing of the model.

    I reckon that doesn't makes box modeling better understandable, but with the next example "modeling the nose", I hope it becomes clear. It really answers the WHY.
    Last edited by toontje; 20-Nov-07 at 10:26.
    -- Do not put off till tomorrow what can be put off till the day-after-tomorrow just as well.
    -- Beauty is in the eyes of the beer holder



  20. #60
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    Hey, I'm just going to mention that I checked this thread a couple times last night. Good stuff, especially in the post-modelling 'moving poles around' department



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