Project: Creating Dynamesh for Blender

I’m going to be perfectly honest, I can’t think of a single person who uses Blender’s sculpting instead of ZBrush for reasons other than them not wanting to pay money. Between the tris and the awkward way of shifting resolution, Dynatopo is actually pretty useless, in my opinion. I was really hoping that with 2.8, we would have seen Dynatopo redone in the form of Dynamesh, but from what I can tell, most of the sculpting features that have been added are a bunch of small, less-significant things. I doubt I would mind as much if there were more options but for all intents and purposes, there are no ZBrush-style open-source sculpting programs.

I’m starting to think this is one of those situations where, if you want something done, do it yourself, so I’m planning on working towards creating a Dynamesh-style feature for Blender as well as hopefully increase the potential vert count to be closer to ZBrush’s potential. The thing is, I’m still pretty new to this kind of graphics programming; I’ve only recently ordered a book (Mathematics for 3D Game Programming and Computer Graphics, 3rd Edition) that would introduce me to this stuff. I’m looking for other resources and suggestions on how to go about creating a Dynamesh algorithm. If anyone else wants to help me with my project, it’d also be a big help.

4 Likes

hmmm… now you can think of one

Could you explain why you prefer Blender’s sculpting functionality over ZBrush’s? I’m trying to understand why there are so few professional digital sculptors who use Blender or, conversely, why so many of Blender’s users sculpt in ZBrush before using Blender for rendering, animation, etc.

Sure…

I can do anything with Blender’s Sculpting tool… really… For the things I do:
https://www.artstation.com/artwork/qaqKR
…now I am not a Pro at sculpting, as you will notice… I am more of an extruder… but just think about how much control I have within a single solution.

To be fair, I know nothing about ZBrush, never tried it… as I can not afford it by any means… and it is not like I am poor or something… it’s just not worth it… at least for my situation.

I do understand about the seamless workflow since you don’t need a whole lot of experience pulling off great looking sculpts (inside ZBrush) , as it provides you with all the stamps or brushes… or whatever (judging by the few things I have seen about ZBrush).
I am probably too much of a “do it yourself”-user… but I can not see anything that BLender lacks for pulling off equally professional sculpts.

If that makes any sense.

edit: or a later one for a terrain which I am working on (it is even done in 2.8):

You mean like this? :thinking: https://twitter.com/pablodp606/status/1106299593921347584

1 Like

Previously in other of his open threads I had already mentioned the Pablo’s project to this user.

If you really want to get involved with Blender code and not just do a feature request or talk about how bad is sculpt feature in Blender, this is the official forum for it:

By the way, as I mentioned in the other thread, although you do not believe it there are many happy artists with Blender sculpt feature, no matter that it is not as good as ZBrush:
https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=%22blender%22+%22sculpt%22+%22timelapse%22

Do not get me wrong but implementing this stuff is not so easy in Blender, it takes quite a while to understasnd the Blender source base which is a huge job of its own. It is doable and your speed will vary based on your programming experience. If this is your first delving into graphics programming, give your self quite sometime.

It is probably better if you start with fixing small bugs in Blender instead of diving right into a hard problem of such.

ZBrush does have a free one month trial, so you actually can try it without paying. It’s a little bit weird to get used to at first, everything feels super unintuitive, but after about an hour or two, it comes.

Anyways, what I consider ZBrush’s jewel to be is that you can use dynamesh to instantly retopologize everything to quads of roughly equal size and proportions (i.e. the mesh can be subdivided without issue, and sometimes even rigged right off the bat). I think this is an important feature for organic sculpting and detail work and Blender would be much more powerful if it had both a dynotopo and a dynamesh feature (albeit the latter under a different name to avoid legal complications).

Blender 2.8 introduced Manual Detail mode for dyntopo. It refines mesh only if you like it to do, with Flood Fill. It seems to be very close to ‘Dynamesh’. In manual detail mode, sculpting tools do not refine anything. Fast and fluid.

Imo, there is a main drawback on Blender dyntopo refinement. It does not give a smoothed mesh on finer resolution refinement. To see what I mean, just do a Flood Fill (Manual, 12 Detail) on an icosphere.

Its not that much of a problem, if refinement is limited to brush area. But thats not how Manual Detail works. Flood Fill affect every polygon.

I do some manual smoothing after this Flood Fill. Laplace smooth modifier could do. But … aahrgh:fork_and_knife: :tophat:

It’s not only that: You would have to design and implement a different mesh system to make a feature like Dynamesh possible.