Subdivision Surfaces

Just wanted to ask the people in the know a few questions about SubSurfs. I haven’t been using blender all that long. But I’ve managed to become pretty comfortable with the ins and outs of the program. That after a lengthy, but necissary, learning curve.

I really want to know the best way to add detail to a subsurf? I mean adding things like bevels and raised designs to a subsurf? Would you do it using added geometry in blender? Bump mapped decals.

Thanks a bunch.


It really depends on what you want. Detail will look more ‘real’ with bevels and geometry, but costs render time. If your not zoomed in you can get away with a good normal map or bump texture.

have you tried the subsurf creases yet? shift-e in edit mode.

you can also make your subsurf mesh real with alt-c i , and add more details after that.

as far as the right way, it depends on what you are doing like masterhoshi said.

I’ve tried subsurf creases. That helps alot in getting hard edges. What I really wanted to know is how you guys go about creating bevels and raised line work (like weld seams in metal).

So far I have from you guys:

Alt-c to make mesh real and add bevels to the underlying geometry. Create a normal or bump map. etc. Anything else I’m missing?


P.S. I didnt’ know You could make subsurf meshes real. That’s a pretty big tip. Thanks.

I use different methods for different cases. Mostly I’ll use bump-mapping for grout on tiles or seams for welded metal. I’ll greeble(or add real bumped detail) for ships or object I want real detail mapped. It all depends. I’ve seen some models (like a really nice R2D2 model on SCIFI3D) with real geometry for every line on the body. Looks greate, but could also be done with a texture.