Edge Loops Anyone?

Hi all…I’m using this tutorial —> http://www.secondreality.ch/ for modelling a body. I’m actually doing fairly well with it…So far anyway…I’ve got it looking like the pictures. My problem is it tells me to add edge loops but I can’t find anything in the wiki manual thingie about edge loops and how to add them. Could someone please give me a little nudge here? Moving around everything and shifting and shaping I can do. I know…You’re probably thinking what a ditz…But I’m blonde. :stuck_out_tongue:

Torq’s “Better Face Tutorial” is always a good place to start for this sort of thing in Blender:
*Read as much of that thread as you need to get going.

One quick tip:
The “loops” are just connected edge segments. You can create them by adding a plane mesh then deleting two or three verts. Select one remaining vert then extrude or LMB to create edges and move the verts around to where you want them in 3D space. Do much the same again for each new loop (You can duplicate vert(s) from the first loop to start the next one. ONce you have your loops, you can select corresponjding edges to make faces (FKEY) - so be sure to keep your vert counts same/similar for good matching.

Once you’ve come to grips with the Blender workflow, the other tutorials out there will be easier to deal with.

Thanks Andy. I know I’m probably going the long (and wrong) way around to learn this. The method I’m using is “learn it as I need it”. When I pulled up the wiki manual I just did a quick search for “edge loop” but apparently they call it something different.

I thought you added edgeloops by pressing Ctrl-R. Or by pressing K and choosing Loop Cut. Torq’s tutorial is more for modeling a face, not a body. It is a very good tut tho for when you get to the face :slight_smile:

I thought you added edgeloops by pressing Ctrl-R. Or by pressing K and choosing Loop Cut. Torq’s tutorial is more for modeling a face, not a body. It is a very good tut tho for when you get to the face

Re-reading the existing question, you’re probably right. CTRL-R is used for adding loops to an existing mesh. Go into edge-select or vert-select mode and press CTRL-R then navigate the mouse across an edge perpendicular to the intended loop. A visual hint is provided to show where the loop will go (it will travel as far as possible along a set of connected faces). It initially places centrally in the face loop but you can slide it as soon as you’ve placed it.

K-Key brings up the Cutting menu options (including loop cut). Try the various knives to see the results. For human body creases, I usually find it beneficial to delete the faces at each end of where I want the crease to be, then make the cuts, then reconnect the verts how I want them. This avoids Blender adding triangles where I don’t want them.

As for Torq’s tutorial, it is written for faces but its application is universal for organic modelling. Anywhere you need loop control, the method works.

Hey, my body is eventually going to need a face. :stuck_out_tongue: So the face tutorial I’m sure is going to be beneficial as well. Thanks for the Ctrl-R tip. It works beautifully.

Following a step by step tutorial is the worst thing to do because you’ll get stuck at some crucial part, and then you’ll come back to a/ this forum with the most fundemental question: WHAT IS AN EDGE LOOP?
Advise: understand first what edgeloops are about. Forget about TORQ tutorial (all due respect to TORQ and it IS a good and sound tutorial). It is fun for a newbie to make his first head quickly. That proves that you can master some functions and that you interest in Blender went to the next level. Most newbies ask the question “how to finish the back of the head?” after finishing the TORQ tutorial.

OK, some good websites about loops and forms:
And a good discussion is going on here:
Take the patience to read through all this, I mean it!
Also collect a lot of wireframe references. Study those wireframes, what discision did the artis make in respect to the form, anatomy and animation issues? Don’t try to rebuild, imitate or reverse engineer those wireframes.Try to identify those wireframes that are just plain wrong (even though they look profesional).

I understand that most newbies don’t how how the hell they should start. In the case of the head, start with the box, subdivide it once or twice. Use the proportional edit tool and in side view pull the chin, the skull etc, untill you have a very blocky and raw head. Add a little more resolution by cutting once or twice horizontaly and verticaly in the face. etc etc… that should be the initial workflow.

That is one way to model a head. It is fun to create one that way. But when using a reference, trying to get the shape to actually look like the picture, I think Torq’s method is better.
As for following tutorials being a bad thing, maybe you are right. But I think it is important to have fun while you learn. You get more out of it and your interest stays strong. Im sure “studying” wireframes, reading manuals from cover to cover, and understanding “3d widom” is all very important, but it is not a requirement to create awesome renders with Blender.
I just think before you tell someone “they are doing it all wrong”, to remember that you are not a professor at a college, you are a dude in a forum helping someone out with a simple problem of explaining how to create an edge loop.

I think it’s different strokes for different folks. How you “should” proceed depends largely on your prior experience. I didn’t know what an edgeloop was but with a long background in art, 2D graphics and a vague understanding of animation principles, it didn’t take long to work them out (after reading a lot of sites and threads dealing with the topic - and messing with head models).

As I mentioned elsewhere recently, I think the real trick is to not expect any particular level of progress. Just investigate, read, try, read more, ask, read more and more and just work your way through things, learning as you go. If the first few heads you make have poor topology, so what? They probably have lots of other problems too (triangles, pentagons, poles, heavy mesh, crappy ears…) and before long they will end up on you own, private Blender scrapheap :slight_smile:

Well, there is also no real replacement for practise. Practise practise practise. But also, experiment, do what you think that has to be done. Building faces is not a question of having wireframe templates stored on your harddrive. If the goal of a newbie is to be a good organic modeler, than learning everything that could be learned from this immense though subject should be fun. Learning the theories on organic modeling, keeps your nose pointing in the right direction. Copying wireframes wont.

The goal is to know why you have to model in a certain way, an not wandering after a year why TorQ or Stephen Stahlberg did it the way they did it.
@ oldskoolPunk, I know that the question was simple and the answer is simple as well (ctrl+r or k), but magnoliablossom being a newbie, one should read what’s behind that question. It’s like a 4 year old asking what a combostion engine is. It is an engine running on gas. OK, cool, but what lies behind the question?

I would recomend TorQ’s tutorial, but his reference pictures aren’t the best.

toontje, didn’t you once write a tut on head modeling, using spheres or something? I think I PMed you.

Yeah I did :slight_smile:

In fact, the sphere method was inspired by how Andrew Loomis constructs his heads. I never finished that tutorial though. I think it is a question of prefrences also. Lately I’m doin more traditional box modeling, in part because what I am learning from what SomeArtist is posting over at subdivisionmodeling.com. Also by engaging in this, I am learning new things myself that to my knowledge are mentioned nowhere.
I realy want to submit a boxmodeling tutorial from a to z for the upcoming Blendermag. But if I do, I probaly do some improvised crazy stuff, because when you do human heads, and if it happens to look good, newbies will lock on it and never let it go. If I do some improvised phantasy whatever, the proces and methods would be more clear.

Inevitably you have to learn the ‘wrong’ way before you learn the ‘right’ way. You begin by learning to model and until you’ve had enough practice to become intimate with the interface you’ll need to ask, search or rtfm just to get the model fleshed out; the general shape. Then, when you rig it you’ll find that modelling involves more than just getting the shape of the object right and will need to handle deformations predictably. Then, when you add Shape Keys and some of the Constraints you’ll have to rethink your modelling method completely. I doubt the average user can get to the third stage without going thru the first two.


I’m with Fligh on this one. The reality, as I see it, is that the person who copies a wireframe tute without considering the “why’s” - either while modelling or at some later point - is just driving Blender and is not destined to to ever master it.

The person who is likely to master Blender - and 3D in general - will be naturally inquisitive about why things are done the way they are. Some will ask why and other will have flashes of brilliance as they progress (as Fligh said - when they realise some ways don’t work). For most, it will be a combination of the two. I don’t think you make someone inquisitive though.

So, to use a recent analogy :wink: , some people are destined to only know how to fuel the car and drive it to the shops - others will learn to strip down the combustion engine, rebuild it and compete with Michael Schumacher.

reason for edgeloops the wuick and dirty way -

the main reason for edge loops on an organic model is because they allow for the correct deformation of the mesh in order to reflect reality. Edge loops are created over where musculature would be so as to create the effect of muscles pushing and pulling on the body.

My personal edge looping method is to start with one loop, usually the outer most edge of the lips, I then extrude inwards to create the mouth and then outwards to create the res of the head.

Quoted for agreement. There are some other reasons too for edgeloops like defining the form using less polys/ verts.

I think that I didn’t make myself clear. I respect everyone trying to test drive Blender or trying to make a UV sphere and poke some holes in it. But I’m aiming at the more serious newbie who wants to advance to a higher level. Of course you should make yourself acquitainted with what there is out there. No need to reinvent the wheel. There are plenty of face topology to study. But study it to find out the phylosophy behind organic modeling, not to reverse engenieer it. A head topology is a very narrow field of organic modeling (although very specific and it’s something you see every day). But lets say you want to model whatever phantasy creature you want. You obviously can’t use the ‘standard’ face topology. It is then that you have to know the why! In my opinion @ndy, Endi and Robertt are amongst the best organic modeler around here because they model other things than standard faces. They have to improvise on how to make the edgeloops flow for their creations. Once you know how to master the loops, the possibilities are endless.