Curving objects to the surface of an globe


I’m having a project which includes quite large amount of objects like buildings, bridges, towers and other stuff to be modeled onto a surface of an earth-like globe. These objects are going to be quite big in comparison to the sphere itself, so that they need to curve along the shape of the globe.

If there is any method that anyone could think of, which could either allow me to model them as flat and then somehow curve to the surface of the globe or model the whole thing as flat ground plane (with also hills and rivers and stuff) and do some camera perspective magic to render the thing out in the way these panorama sphere images are done it would be very helpful.

Thanks for any advice.


Ask 10 people and you’ll get ten different ways to do this. I would subdivide my objects a few times and use a lattice or curve modifier. The same lattice could be applied to modify each object. If the geometry isn’t too complex, then a “Simple Deform” modifier set to taper might be effective.

If you need a quick way to populate a lot of items on the globe, group them and consider using a particle system. Attach it to the sphere and set it to select items from the group. And of course you could also do this with Duplication Groups, but that isn’t random.

One answer was right inside my question. I took a panorama from my flat scene and then made it to a sphere in Photoshop using polar coordinates filter and results are exactly like the sample image. :smiley: It’s not like obvious or anything that 3D panorama behaves quite the same as real photograph one.

Thanks for the advice anyway. I’ll try that if I run into some problems with this.