When is subsurface modeling normally used?

When is subsurface modeling normally used?

I’ve been trying to use it for character modeling (non-photorealistic/cartoony character - low resolution control geometry with subsurf applied to it), but I’m starting to get impression that it is the most suitable for smooth mechanical surfaces (sci-fi robots, futuristic cars, alien guns, etc), and not for making characters. Am I right about that?

The reason why I tried subsurf for characters is because I wanted to reduce number of points I have to deal with.

I wonder if I should give up on subsurf modfier and figure out efficient way of dealing with large number of points/polys on a normal mesh.

but I’m starting to get impression that it is the most suitable for smooth mechanical surfaces (sci-fi robots, futuristic cars, alien guns, etc), and not for making characters. Am I right about that?
Not really. So what problems are you seeing ? If you want to animate a character you really want to use the advantages of a subsurf modifier as it would be tedious to try and animate a high res model

and figure out efficient way of dealing with large number of points/polys on a normal mesh.
That would be sculpting https://www.blender.org/manual/en/sculpt_paint/sculpting/index.html

I want to make a base body mesh I could use as a template for the future models.

At the moment I’m mostly practicing - trying to recreate someone else’s models (to gain a bit more experience), dealing with topology issues (well, that one is due to inexperience), trying to make stuff from sketches, plus there’s this slightly annoying issue - when you add an edge loop to subsurfed geometry it causes all neighboring faces to “jump” and they often need to be readjusted afterwards.

I’ve checked out bastioni lab, and while he has nice-looking geometry it is very high poly, doesn’t quite fit the style I had in mind, and I think I won’t be able to quickly adjust something like that.

Related threads:


Are you talking about multires sculpting? I’m sorta interested in keeping topology sane, and dyntopo sculpting didn’t quite work for me (although it was fun).

There are alot of ways to create characters. An “easy” method is probably to use the subsurf and model the character. here is a tutorial series that is quite new, I dont even think the last part is released yet. This is just one example.

Another way is to use sculpting with dynamic topology. This technique divides the shaping and creation of a clean topology into two different steps. At first you don’t care about topology at all, you just create the shape with dynamic topology and sculpting. Then you create a new topology around that shape in a second step called retopology and there are different methods for this. This though is not really my thing and the only good tutorials I know is through cgcookie and that’s paid tutorials. But if you just google you will probably find some nice resources. However if you are asking this question, I would stick to the first method for now. Sculpt/retopo is much more advanced I think.