Newbie question about the model to shape


I’ve just started working with 3D modelling. In particular, I’ve followed the first “settling in” tutorials found on Blender Cookie (under the Blender Basics tab), as hinted by the Blender website (installing, interface & navigation, modeling) and I’m going to continue following tutorials and reading the book I’ve bought (the Blender Foundation’s “the Essential Blender” edited by Roland Hess).

So far so good.

Now, I’ve seen a lot of YouTube demonstrations on how to shape a model and I almost always saw that people like to shape the forms using background images (concepts or photos).

My idea is to shape an Ouroboros, in order to 3D-print it. Initially I want to do nothing special for the body (I’d like to shape the scales once I’ve finished the base structure).

The main question I’ve got is: where can I get an artwork of a biting snake, or a photo, with the front/top/side images of the head? Or how could I start elsewise? I don’t think that free-handing it could be that “easy” (it’s not easy to start thinking in 3 dimensions using a mouse and a keyboard at all :stuck_out_tongue: )

Thanks for any reply :slight_smile:

the head shouldn’t be too problematic. I would suggest box modelling technique, though other techniques might work equally well. I don’t know how easy it would be to find the exact views you are looking for, of the exact same snake, though. what I would try: google images for rattlesnakes, or whichever species you decide on, then, from those references, make a drawing(s).
(edit) here is how I would start off, were I to box model a viper head.

(more to come…)


note that on #5, I have added then applied, a subsurf modifier, then on #6 I have seperated the middle edge, using the rip tool, hotkey V.


Thank you for the tips :slight_smile: I’m gonna try it out :slight_smile:

For reference images just google “snake head reference image”

Very cool method Modron !

Moving further-along with this reptile, probably the next step would be to create the body of the thing as a 3D curve with an appropriate profile shape … a curve carefully shaped to match the back of the head. At some point you will probably want to convert that to a mesh … but save the curve from which it was made in another (hidden) layer because you will no doubt need it again.

And, as usual, before you go very far along the modeling route, try to figure out exactly how much snake you need and how you’re going to present it in the final shot. If you’re not going to see it, you don’t need to model it. If you’re not going to see it clearly, you don’t need to model it in detail. And so on. Decide in advance what you’re going to see, using the “OpenGL render” features very heavily, so you can focus your efforts on (only) what will pay off.

Indeed I’m trying to create some artwork about the final thing. The cool thing about 3D-printing is that you can even make separate objects nested one into another. For this, for example, you can fit a pin of an element into a socket of the other (or the same 3D-model replicated).

Also 3D-printing may be very expensive. For this, it’s a good idea to create hollow designs and, as you suggested, keeping the simpliest possible (i.e. not modeling at all parts you won’t see).

Being expensive, I thought about creating a carved figure. So instead of having eyes, I may carve them out. Instead of the nostrils, holes and so on so forth. Instead of a full body, I may create it carving so it results being only half of it (carving the womb)

Printing is expensive, indeed, but milling is not, being less acurate, but more wide-spread, and producing a more durable result, e.g., from a monolithic PVC block.

I couldn’t leave him in quite such an unfinished state, so I worked on him just a little.