Start learning with our library of video tutorials taught by experts. Get started

Modeling a Character in 3ds Max
Illustration by John Hersey

Using TurboSmooth


From:

Modeling a Character in 3ds Max

with Ryan Kittleson

Video: Using TurboSmooth

In 3D modeling the end result is often smoothed to remove the blocky nature of polygons. This benefits the modeler by removing the need to create very dense complicated models. Instead you can make a less detailed model and then let TurboSmooth make it all soft and clean. I've got the exercise file open, and you can see it's pretty blocky. A polygonal model is never truly round or soft. It's always made up of flat polygons. The only way to make a model appear smooth is to have so many tiny polygons that you can't see the flat faces anymore.
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 7m 36s
    1. Welcome
      1m 2s
    2. What you need to know before watching this course
      52s
    3. Overview of the design process
      3m 26s
    4. Using the exercise files
      2m 16s
  2. 40m 7s
    1. Extruding edges and faces
      7m 42s
    2. Using Paint Deform
      8m 58s
    3. Working symmetrically
      5m 32s
    4. Using TurboSmooth
      4m 39s
    5. Setting up the image planes
      8m 28s
    6. Exploring edge flow
      4m 48s
  3. 1h 15m
    1. Creating the basic facial structure
      5m 26s
    2. Creating the basic facial features
      8m 51s
    3. Making the head and neck
      7m 55s
    4. Refining the mouth
      11m 24s
    5. Shaping the eyes
      10m 53s
    6. Building the nose
      6m 45s
    7. Crafting the ears
      6m 9s
    8. Making the teeth and gums
      10m 4s
    9. Modeling the tongue and eyebrows
      7m 43s
  4. 44m 38s
    1. Modeling the upper body
      9m 45s
    2. Building the hips, legs, and feet
      5m 8s
    3. Constructing the palm and thumb
      7m 14s
    4. Making fingers and finishing the hand
      7m 53s
    5. Fleshing out the body
      9m 22s
    6. Attaching body parts with different numbers of edges
      5m 16s
  5. 13m 39s
    1. Drawing the NURBS curves for hair
      4m 11s
    2. Sweeping the NURBS curves into polygon objects
      3m 32s
    3. Sculpting the polygon hair clumps
      5m 56s
  6. 49m 54s
    1. Modeling the pants
      7m 16s
    2. Making wrinkles in the pants
      9m 0s
    3. Modeling the belt
      5m 30s
    4. Making the belt loops
      6m 35s
    5. Creating the shirt
      9m 33s
    6. Making the shoes
      12m 0s
  7. 12m 7s
    1. Putting on the finishing touches
      6m 7s
    2. Thinking about artistic appeal
      3m 59s
    3. Recapping the most important concepts
      2m 1s
  8. 27m 24s
    1. Understanding UVW maps and seams
      6m 28s
    2. Using Peel to flatten the UVW maps
      3m 50s
    3. Dealing with UVW maps across multiple objects
      10m 5s
    4. Refining the UVW layout
      7m 1s
  9. 51s
    1. What's next
      51s

Watch this entire course now—plus get access to every course in the library. Each course includes high-quality videos taught by expert instructors.

Become a member
Please wait...
Modeling a Character in 3ds Max
4h 31m Intermediate Aug 30, 2011

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Modeling a Character in 3ds Max with Ryan Kittleson covers the process of designing and building a 3D human character that can be used for feature film, broadcast, and games. The course begins with an overview of the 3ds Max tools and techniques used in character modeling, and how human anatomy is represented using 3D geometry. Once this foundation is in place, the rest of the course goes step by step through the actual process used to model a simple human character from the ground up, including facial features, musculature, and details such as hair and clothing.

Topics include:
  • Extruding edges and faces
  • Working symmetrically
  • Setting up the image planes
  • Creating the basic facial structure and features
  • Modeling and fleshing out the body
  • Creating the hair with extruded NURBS curves
  • Modeling clothes
  • Putting on finishing touches
  • Understanding UVW maps and seams
  • Dealing with UVW maps across multiple objects
Subjects:
3D + Animation Modeling Character Animation
Software:
3ds Max
Author:
Ryan Kittleson

Using TurboSmooth

In 3D modeling the end result is often smoothed to remove the blocky nature of polygons. This benefits the modeler by removing the need to create very dense complicated models. Instead you can make a less detailed model and then let TurboSmooth make it all soft and clean. I've got the exercise file open, and you can see it's pretty blocky. A polygonal model is never truly round or soft. It's always made up of flat polygons. The only way to make a model appear smooth is to have so many tiny polygons that you can't see the flat faces anymore.

There's two ways you can do this. You can make your models with tons of polygons, or you can use TurboSmooth. The problem with really high poly counts is that it becomes hard for the computer to deal with so much data, and it becomes challenging to work with really dense models. The advantage of TurboSmooth is that you can work with lighter models that get automatically subdivided only when you want it to. So let's select Hank and go to our Modifiers, and I am just going to click the dropdown and click the dropdown and go to TurboSmooth.

What this is doing is dividing every polygon into four smaller polygons. The result is more polygons and therefore less blockiness. Let's turn on Edged Faces to see this more clearly. I'm going to right-click up here and then click Edged Faces, and then I'll just turn off the effect of TurboSmooth really quick. So you can see there are four times as many polygons. Down here you can increase the iterations. So instead of just subdividing once, you can also make it subdivide twice, or more.

I rarely go higher than two iterations, because not only is it way more smoothness than I need, but it could also be too much for my computer to handle. One cool feature is Isoline Display. Let's just turn this on. This mode makes it so that it only shows the original edges from the model before it was subdivided. This can make things easier to work with, because it can be hard to see what's going on when the model is showing every single edge. Now with this mode on, let's go back down to editable poly, and let's make sure we turn on End Results so that we can see the effect of TurboSmooth.

I'll just go into Vertex mode here, and let's make some edits to the model. Let's zoom in, and I'll just move some vertices around. So now you can see we edit the simple low-poly version, but we see the smoothed high-poly version. This can be a big advantage, because it's easy to work on a low poly model, yet you get to see what the high-poly version will look like. There's actually one way other than TurboSmooth to make a model look smoother than it actually is.

That's called Normal Smoothing. Let's try it out. I want to undo these changes here, and let's also get rid of the TurboSmooth. So I'll just click on that and then click on the Trash. Let's pick a different modifier. This time I am going to pick just Smooth, and let's click Auto Smooth. Normal smoothing keeps the number of polygons exactly the same, but it simply draws them on screen with smooth gradients between them, rather than flat hard shading. It looks at the angle between two faces and sees if it's more or less than the threshold.

So you see we can change the threshold and if we bring it down really low, it's going to keep hard edges between everything. If we increase that really high, it's going to smooth out between all of the different edges. So actually it can be easier to see if we go and turn off Edged Faces. I'll just zoom out, so we can see the whole character. So in the Threshold here, if we just bring this down, it's going to draw harder edges, depending on the angle between faces. I usually want to crank this all the way up so that the model is just completely smooth.

Now with the threshold at the highest, you can see that the model appears smoother, yet if you look at silhouette, you can see that it still has the same blocky edges. So I'll just zoom in, so we can see this more clearly. Along the edge of the model you can see it's still very angular and blocky, although it seems to appear more smooth. So when do you use TurboSmooth, and when is Normal Smoothing good enough? For models that will be rendered out, I like to use TurboSmooth because it's higher quality. However, if I am going to do something for real-time games, I'll go with normal smoothing, because with games you need to keep your polygon counts low, and normal smoothing is a quick-and-dirty way to make something look smoother than it really is.

You'll be using TurboSmooth a lot in character modeling because it allows you to work out on a simpler model while at the same time getting an interactive view of what a more subdivided model looks like.

There are currently no FAQs about Modeling a Character in 3ds Max.

Share a link to this course
Please wait... Please wait...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.
Upgrade now


Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ.

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

Upgrade now

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.


Mark all as unwatched Cancel

Congratulations

You have completed Modeling a Character in 3ds Max.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.


OK
Become a member to add this course to a playlist

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member?

Become a member to like this course.

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses.

Get started

Already a member?

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

The classic layout automatically defaults to the latest Flash Player.

To choose a different player, hold the cursor over your name at the top right of any lynda.com page and choose Site preferencesfrom the dropdown menu.

Continue to classic layout Stay on new layout
Welcome to the redesigned course page.

We’ve moved some things around, and now you can



Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.


Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from lynda.com.

Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

   
submit Lightbox submit clicked