Topology dilemma (Male body)

Welp where do i start, hi, it’s nice to be here :sweat_smile:, I’ve been doing animation and modeling for at least 7 years, my thing is male bodies for renders and stuff, i work myself for getting a nice and proportioned anatomy and build on every character.

The thing is, one of the worst parts of this is of course, building the mesh over the sculpted body, my first model during 2020 had np base sculpt so i kind of made the thing out of thin air? But the last one i made was …twice as hard, not only because i was putting extra effort on proportions and topology but because it was my first time actually following a base sculpt accurately and omg if it was hell :skull:

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Now that i have a new laptop i tried to go a little beyond and actually do a full body model (never got to finish the 2021 one :‘’) ) and needles to say it’s being the biggest struggle i ever experienced, maybe is because im doing this alone, all my models i made were with the supervision and tips from a friend of mine but… unfortunately that person is not here anymore :sweat_smile::sweat_smile: so i gotta fight this alone and see what happens.

The base model looks pretty much like the first one but im trying to have a little more detailed and less messy jungle of wires i mean topology.

The initial idea was to have a flow that goes kinda like this, following the ribs under the pecs

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However that’s not what happened at all :), i got to cover the pectoral zone but if i try to go anywhere from there it doesn’t work as planned,

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The topology work from your 2020 Model looks perfect, why do you want to do something different now?

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Seconded- if your only goal is to add nipples, you could do this much more easily with normal maps. They don’t need their own topology

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the goal is not to add nipples but other kind of details like the dorsal, the 2020 is good at almost anything but i wanted to remake it because it started looking a little bit too simplified and cartoony, specially around the torso and waist

indeed perfect (even tho i dont like to say that kind of stuff of my work) but after learning a little more about anatomy i feel like it didnt age well, specially when you try to aproach a more realistic style putting attention to make a more clean flow and not go like “o this vertex has 6 conections…a who cares as long as it looks good from the outside”

The main goal about topology is that it should be simple and clean. Of course topology is only relevant when you want to do some animation on the base model. If not you can just free sculpt the entire thing like you did.

It seems to me that your attempt on topology is way too complicated, that it kind of destroys the main goal of topology itself. With that topology, you’d get less but still a lot of problem when you try to animate it. And besides, a base mesh with good topology should be reusable, meaning that you can reuse the base mesh for different types of characters in the future, be it a skinny, fit, muscular, or fat ones. With the topology you currently have, you’re pretty much stuck with muscular characters, because it’s kind of tailored to be muscular, and it will look weird when you shape a muscular body topology into a different body type.

It’s a long topic to be discussed in a comment section, but I can teach you about human form with good topology. If you’re interested, feel free to leave a message in my profile.

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Well, that’s just not really true. If he’s already laid the groundwork for a Muscular topo he can simply sculpt these away, yet work over them easier rather than “Taking” This out.

I mean, if this isn’t going to be going into a game-engine or doesn’t need to be game-ready nothing like this really matters, unless you need to showcase this to a Company, then you’d like to do things as @joseph Mentioned, you shouldn’t even be worrying about nipples, “Smooth” Topology flow unless strictly necessary because of the workflow you’re going to use, or the pipeline requires this

Start off with a very simple retopology layer, most important thing is to keep the loop structure for deformation. Test the body with a rig THEN go in after and make adjustments and keep testing every few modifications.

I deal with freestyle lines at the moment and I get too carried away with each detail so that the freestyle line will show up but honestly it becomes a mess quickly and I end up starting from scratch with a simple workflow.

Honestly your first image was pretty much perfect.

About your mention of anatomy, most of this can be sculpted “after the fact” as long as you keep the loops in place for deformation.

It looks like you do retopo in revese.
You can try to retopo seams first (since they form the demand loops) and then fill the gaps.
This is regular order in stripe modeling technique.