Checking if my mesh is correct before starting shape keys

Hello,
I’m a beginner in Blender and I’m learning it thanks to tutorials.
I’ve modeled this head so far and I wanted to turn towards professionals to have feedbacks on my work.

Can anybody tell me if the mesh is correct to add shape keys (facial expressions), please?

Thank you in advance :sunny:

I’m not really an expert, but I tried a bit with face expressions. I would say the resolution is a bit to low.

Hi @3DrotTMNT, your approach is right. It is good to have clean topology before adding shape keys.

As a general rule it is best to have a mesh that consists purely of quads and to avoid triangles and ngons. Although triangles are necessary in some cases and poles are necessary to direct edge flow.

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For shape keys, triangles and poles should not be placed in areas which deform. Because that could result in shading artifacts.

Do you plan on using a subsurf modifier on this before rendering? A lot will depend on how you plan on using the model. If it’s for a low detail mobile game, I’d say you have too much geometry. If it’ll be displayed large and focused, you may need more and you’ll probably want to smooth out the edges of the model a bit and/or add a subsurf modifier. If you’ll be using subsurf, you probably don’t need to worry about the tris or ngons (well, maybe the ngons) unless they cause visible deformation issues.

The best and always the right answer to this question is:

Nobody is ever going to see your wireframe. Try it out. If it looks good, then it is good. If it doesn’t look good, don’t make excuses, make it better.
-Paraphrase of my animation school mentors

Polyflow is good to know, and is important to understand. But, at the end of the day, if it deforms well enough for your needs, who cares what the mesh looks like. Just keep practicing and studying others’ works.

Your polyflow looks decent around the mouth and eyes so that should deform pretty well. If you’ll be deforming the top of the “bill” (mouth protrusion?) then you may need some additional geometry there for those deformations to look good.

If you’re going off reference material, I’d be curious to see it!