Scott McClellan (pffsfs)

40 replies · posted

Old Dog learning new tricks

I'm in the beginning phases of Blender and going through the Learning Flows. Currently, I'm trying to do the tire/wheel modeling exercise and wondering if I'm being too anal about it. I've got a 'tire' with treads thus far, but to my eye there appears to be bulges where each array begins/ends.

I've essentially taken a torus apart and reconstructed it through arrays, mirror and sub/surf. Everything is good until I go to add loop cuts for treads. Then bulging appears at each array. I've about frustrated my way out of experimenting with anything I can think of. Even made a bunch of mistakes along the way (I guess that's called learning).

So, am I too anal, or is there a way to rid myself of these terrible bulges? On the tire, not my gut!!

Oh, and should I be worried abot what the inside of the tire looks like (because of the treads being extruded to the inside)?

And no "Shade Smooth" in object mode doesn't take the bulges away.

  • Who taught you to model a tire like that ? You already have 141.962 verts. Multiply it by 4 and you don’t even have the car yet. This tire has 7.776 verts.

    Here is the file, maybe you can do some revers-engineering. Tire

  • Yikes!! So much for subtlety. I like that. To answer your first question - ummm, nobody taught me. lol. It's called trial and error(s). I'm guessing it's not necessary to use a sub/surf modifier - just the smooth function in object mode. Back to the drawing board and try again.

    Thanks for the smackdown Dolores. I guess I needed that. Wasn't really paying attention to the Verts. I'll hold off on reverse engineering for now. I'd like to be able to learn this. If I need to cheat (lol), I'll pull up your file.

    I do appreciate the reply. And no I'm not offended. I've too many hash marks in life to get blistered by critique. That's how we learn - well, how I do anyway.

  • crew

    Hey Scott, no worries! You're just starting out so I wouldn't be too concerned, though having a ton of vertices will slow you down. To answer your question, it doesn't matter what the tire looks like inside, so feel free to poke the spokes through. That way you can have a simple torus for the main part of the tire, which will be smooth, and only the treads will have the array. The bulges come from having too many edges too close to each other, which essentially sharpens the shading in those areas. 

  • Holy bejeebers a person can tie up a tom of time tweeking and exploring. Thank you for the heads up Jonathan (not to be confused with Sir Williamson I presume). I did manage to array the entire tire plus treads. And able to keep Dolores happy at 7900 Verts  :-)

    Is it woorth trying to figure out how to add color to this beast? Also, I'm using Cycles rather than Blender render. Much slower as I'm using an underpowered laptop to do this stuff. But hey!! It works.

  • Google is your friend. There is now a rim and color has appeared. Cycles and Nodes are going to hurt my brain, but here it is thus far. The Old Dog might be slow, but I'm catching on.

    Still seems like it takes forever, but from all the tires I've modeled and trashed, I am getting quicker at then. So I guess it's all a matter of repetition.

  • Yip, you’re my kinda guy, pleased to meet you.

    Nice tire, you learn fast man. Looking forward to see the whole car one day.

    Mouse always happy :-)

  • A little late to the game, but I'm glad you're figuring everything out =]  Don't bow down to your age!  You can do anything with some determination.

    When I was first taught modeling (box modeling specifically, where you take a box and turn it into something else), I was taught as soon as you add in an edge loop, you must go around and "round things out" before adding another edge loop.  This will do a couple things: 1. It'll force you to think about the whole form, where it should be rounded and where you should place your sparse edge loops.  Pinching the everloving crap out of your pennies kind of mindset.  2.  It'll stop you from adding too many edge loops too fast and then losing the overall form by getting caught up in the details.  So, start broad, then get narrower in scope with each pass.  Also, don't depend solely on using the subsurf modifier when doing the bulk of your modeling.  It'll lead you astray.  What looks good in smoothed shading can mess up your underlying geometry.  Start with a good foundation first and that should lead you to having a clean smoothed model later.

    I'm also coming at this from a character/game artist mindset, but I still think it's a valuable mindset no matter if you're making game assets (limited face/vert budget) or film assets (much more forgiving on face/vert budget.)

    I'd rather you be anal about something because that'll lead you down the curiosity/learning path, especially since you're learning something new.  You'll build up your skill set, get faster and better at this stuff, and you'll understand what you know you can get away with or not.  You got this.  Keep going!

  • Well.... Finally ahve something to turn into for grading. woot woot. Looking at other ideas, it looks like I could've taken a different route in modeling the tire - involving lattices. I'll try that next. Gotta get comfortable with those too I suppose. Learned by mistake - apply modifiers top down. Had to redo my tire with that mistake (again... called learning)

    Still have to work on lighting.

    Question... now that I'm forced to use Cycles for rendering, is 3-point lighting necessary? or helpful?

    Thank you Dolores and thank you SilentHeart for your words of wisdom. And it doesn't hurt to be late to the party. I appreciate the insight at any time. I always read any comments and try to apply criticsim to what I'm working on.

    Now to try and figure how to submit this. Come here SketchFab. Where are ya boy??

    Why... does the SketchFab render look nothing like the Blender rendered version?? Is there something I'm doing wrong, or is that just the way it is?

    • Sometimes materials can get lost in translation.... I'm still trying to figure out how the hell to get materials from Blender into Sketchfab.  From what I understand, you need to bake out all the different maps, zip it together with the scene file, and then you can apply them within Sketchfab (if you want utmost precision.)  This is one possible route.  Were you using the plug-in or uploading directly from Sketchfab?  Those could have different possible outcomes.  I'm still trying to figure out Sketchfab, too.  Some of the tutorials don't make sense to me, but maybe that's because I haven't found the right tutorial talking about baking things quite yet.

      For 3-point lighting, it's a very flattering type of lighting, esp. for things like portraits or characters.  What happens is you have the key light (main light) casting the bulk of the lighting.  Then the fill light (secondary, weaker light) is to help fill the shadows or make them less intense to see the detail better.  The third light (same strength as the fill) is pointed at the back to create a rim light that helps separate the form from the background.  I believe that's what it does.  A general rule of thumb for intensities is a ratio of 2:1:1 for Key, Fill, and Rim.  You can choose to have 3 point lighting, or you can use something called PBR in Sketchfab to light the object.  I think it's on by default, which is probably why you're seeing different lighting compared to what you see in Blender.  I don't know what PBR stands for, but I think it's an HDR (high dynamic range) type of lighting where it uses a picture's lighting information.  HDRs are better than "normal" pictures because they contain more precise data about the lighting so you get smoother, more realistic lighting.

      I hope this helps =]

  • Silentheart summed things up, i'll add that regarding lighting on a scene you'll have to think what you want mood be, what the final render will convey. After that it comes to choose what you need.

    PBR, Physical based rendering, in short having materials that act like their real world counterpart, a path to make realistic looking renders. Using HDR's is also for better reflections, you'd still want to have extra lights in the scene to change the outcome.

    doing great! keep it up! :)

  • Can you post the file Scott, need to have a closer look.

    Mouse is European, CTZ +7 hours :-)

  • Oh my?!? When it comes to baking, did I screw myself in applying all my modifiers to the objects - as far as unwrapping UVs is concerned?

    And am I getting ahead of myself? Or should I just be happy learning what I need to "at this time"?

  • Scott, here's a link to a guide for getting your Blender project on Sketchfab:

    I don't know if you actually have to bake anything to make it work. I don't think I had to, but it's been a while since I've put anything on Sketchfab. So I can't recall! (Oh wait, the guide said you do need to bake...oops)

  • Well, the New Year has happened and I've been busily putting in computer time as opposed to the previous timesI've tried this.

    Unfortunately, I've found that my expectations are set way to high: I figured I could just wiz through the Learning Flows and do the projects and all would be well with the world. Nope. Nope. And NOPE!!! It just doesn't work that way.

    Plus I kinda feel like a kid in the candy store... oooo Sculpt January. oooo Live Stream classes. oooo (fill in the blank). I've found I need to just go through the tuts one at a time and then redo them a couple times and hopefully not need to go back and reference the tuts - to see if things sank in. 

    So as a result you poor peeps see multiple attempts at Melvin (the latest), the retopologizing of the RoboOrb (the latest of that too), and in the future a plethera of other tut stuff.

    It is getting easier working my way around Blender (at least with the stuff I know now from the tuts), and I've made plenty of mistakes that have cost me hours trying to figure out the fix. I know that's' part of the learning curve/process, but I tend to be impatient. I have to learn how to slow down and enjoy this process.

    In the meantime, I'll keep this thread up to date with how things are going and pitfalls and successes.

    Thanks for putting up with the Old Dog.

    Scott McClellan

    • hehehe, that reminds me of someone i know.. oh wait that's me. :D I'd say most important thing has already happened, you've realised it takes time and effort and haven't quit. Tricky part is to keep motivated when those walls come. 

      don't feel bad if you need togo back to check something from a tutorials. i've lost count how many times i've gone back to check some shader issues/node setups etc. there is just so much you can keep in your active brain parts. :)

    • No problem.  I've enjoyed watching you improve, and to be fair, you're moving at a pretty good clip.  Now you have a better idea of what you can do, and that's good.  Keep pushing forward.

  • Well... One week of 2018 is officially in the books and I can say that I've been doing at least something daily - whether it be going through a Learning Flow or redoing a project from an old one (hopefully with no help) and then the latest to take up my time with CGCookie...

    ... Kent's Korner (the new Live Stream Classes and Homework). I think everyone attending that session is having a good time. This week's assignment really makes one appreciate all that Blender really is capable of - having to make a scene using merely primitives and not getting out of  'object' mode.

    Here's what the Old Dog put together - keep in mind, it's nothing but primitives.

    This afternoon, I've started getting my frustration on by going through Jonathan's Flow - Hard Surface modeling. It'll be a fun course. I've already learned through a plethera of mistakes and can't wait to learn more. I'm hoping to be able to get through the entire tut by next weekend and hopefully have something to show for my efforts. In between, plans are to try sculpting another model (I think maybe one of those sheep Melvin finds so tasty - if I can find a good sketch).

    Thank you to Kaj and Silent. Hope I'll have other stuff for you to feast your eyes on soon. lol.

    That's a wrap. Or maybe I should just say, "...and scene."

    Old Dog

  • Damn good !

  • "model and trash" ... "rinse and repeat" ... best method of learning that I have ever used :)

  • Looking good.  I like the bright colors.  Feels happy.  Lord of the Rings?

  • Good grief... Who knew taking 3 months off for RL would have such an impact on the learning curve. Time to make this RL from now on. First day back and a rookie mistake pops up during the Hard-Surface Modeling Lesson flow: Background images are seen in Ortho View NOT Perspective - 10 minutes killed trying to figure that out.

    Is there a way to blog this as to not bore those who really dont want this coming up as a Community Thread. *very social media challenged*

  • I feel completely overwhelmed here right now. I wanted so terribly to follow along with the Live Stream classes and stuff happened. Now it looks like there's been a ton of new stuff and I haven't learned the blasted basics yet. Trust me, that's absolutely no reflection on you Kent. I've enjoyed watching all the content on this site.

    I'm back to trying to get that plane of Mr. Williamson's in the air and have stumbled onto the mesh bootcamp, so am goin gto try to do accomplish both concurrently.

    Kent, I hope to also go back to the Live Stream archives and go through them as well. I'll submit the work somewhere in hopes that someone may look at them and give me some direction (positive or negative). Thanks all for the welcome back. Learning - pulling hair - learning.

    Old Dog

  • Hey peeps!!! Got through the Coffee Cup demo and even modelled one from the kitchen cabinet along with a saucer to go with it. I think I will start a second thread with just the work from exercises/learning flows and such. Feeling much better about the process I think. Time to maybe hop back over to Mr. Williamson's plane and take on the next phase.