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This course provides an overview of modeling, animating, and rendering 3D graphics in the open-source software Blender 2.6. Beginning with a tour of the Blender interface, author George Maestri shows how to create and edit basic objects, work with modifiers and subdivision surfaces, and apply materials and textures. The course also demonstrates lighting 3D scenes, setting up and using cameras, animating objects, and assembling basic character rigs.
Now let's go ahead and start putting our modeling skills to use and build an actual character. We are going to build this little creature here and we are going to start off just very simply and just build him using a number of Blender's tools. So the first thing we want to do is just hit File>New and I just want to start off with a new scene. Now we are actually going to just build him up starting with a cube. So the first thing I am going to need is some additional detail with which to model.
So the first thing I want to do is subdivide this cube. So I am going to hit the Tab key and then hit Subdivide in the Mesh Tools widow and then our Number of Cuts, I am going to bring it up to about 3. Now what I want is enough detail to model, but not enough so that I have too much detail. So with modeling it's always kind of a balance between enough detail and too much. So let's start with three cuts in the Subdivision and then I'm going to go into Edge Mode here and I'm going to Alt+Select and then Shift+Alt+Select these vertical edges.
Okay, so what I want is I want all four edges of that cube selected. And now I'm just going to use my Scale Tool and I don't want to scale this evenly, I just want to scale it in the Y direction and then in again along X, I don't want to scale it vertically. So if I use just a global scale, it would shrink it down vertically. And really what I am trying to do is just kind of soften those edges just a little bit, so that way I don't have corners so to speak when I'm working with this character.
Now next thing I want to do is as I've got this all selected, I am going to hit the A key twice to select all and I just want to scale that up a little bit, he is actually a little bit taller than what I had and then let's go ahead and start moving him up. Now if I want to I can actually apply a Subdivision Surface Modifier to this, so I can see what my modeling looks like. So let's go ahead and do that and then we'll start adding some more detail to this character. So I am going to go again over to my Modifiers Panel here and just add Subdivision Surface and then in terms of Subdivisions, 1 is fine, if you want you can bring it up to 2 that should be enough for this type of modeling here.
Let's go ahead and start working on the legs. So I am going to move this up and I'm going to go into Face Mode. So I am going to hit Ctrl+Tab, select Faces and then just right-click and then Shift+Right-click on these faces, okay. And then in order to get the legs, the easiest thing to do is just do an Extrude Region, so I am going to extrude those down, just a little bit at first because really I want enough for a leg joint. And if I want I could actually scale these in just a little bit. I want to make sure that my Pivot Point is on something that will work, either Individual Origins or Bounding Box Cursor or something like that, and then just scale that in so those are somewhat square.
If you look each one of those is square and then let's go ahead and Extrude again and Extrude one more time. Now what I am trying to do is kind of a smaller Extrude towards the bottom and that will give him a little bit more of a footpad there. Okay, so now we've got his basic legs. Now if we want we can start reshaping the body a little bit and again I'm just roughing this out. So, let's go ahead and actually go back to Edge Mode. So again, I am hitting Ctrl+Tab+Edge and then just right-click on the edges here towards the front of his body, so basically that, and then let's just go ahead and move that up and in perhaps.
Again, I am just kind of trying to give him a little bit of a belly and again we're just kind of, just playing with this a little bit. Now one of the things also is that we do need to start blocking out the area for the character's arms and his mouth, so let's go ahead and actually start with the mouth. The first thing I want to do is I want to get a little more detail in this area so that I can start working on the character's mouth. So what I need to do is add in some Edge Loops. So I am going to do a Loop Cut and Slide, and first I am going to do a vertical one right here and I'm not going to really slide it, I am just going to keep it in the middle.
We'll worry about positioning this a little bit later. I am going to do that again, right here. Okay, so I've done it on either side of that center line and then let's do one across this way. Now this should give me enough detail to start modeling the character's mouth. Now I am actually going to do it what seems to be a little bit high, but I'm going to take this Edge Loop here and just move it up a little bit and then I am going to start moving vertices down to make his mouth.
So I need to go into Vertices mode, go here Vertex, middle click on that one, move it down and then right-click on that one, move it down and then Shift+Right-click on each one of these and move those down. Now what I am trying to is get this area to look a little bit like a mouth, we can certainly fine tune it after we get the detail kind of blocked in. So again, I am just starting rough and then we are going to be adding detail as we go. So now that I have this you can see that these four faces can be at the start of the character's mouth.
So actually I am going to kind of flatten that out just a little bit like that, okay. So now I've got something pretty close and again, we can change this later. So let's go back into Face Mode, again Ctrl+Tab, right-click on these four faces. Now this is going to be the character's mouth. So let's do an Extrude Region and the first one, I am just going to Extrude it just a little bit, because I want a harder edge to that mouth cavity. So right now I am just going to bring it in just a little bit, in fact it might be better to hide my Subdivision Surface Modifier right now and just see exactly what I'm working on in the mesh.
So if I make this deep like this, then we're going to have a very gradual edge to his mouth. I really want this to be fairly shallow like this, so that way we kind of have a hard edge going into his mouth. So I am going to hit Extrude Region one more time and this will create his mouth cavity and because this is his mouth cavity we can also scale this up a little bit just to give a little bit of room to make it look a little more like an empty mouth, and then let's go ahead and just turn this on again. I'm going to go over to my Subdivision Surface Modifier, turn on my little Eyeball here and you could see now I've got the basics of a mouth.
So as you could see, we're starting to block out the basic shape of the character. We still have a lot of refining to go, but let's do just do a little bit more. I am going to go ahead and select these faces at the top and let's choose a little bit of proportional modeling here. So I am going to go ahead and Enable Proportional Modeling and then just kind of pull his head up just a little bit. So again, we are trying to get that curve at the top of his head and so now as I lift this up you can see that the mouth also proportionally is a little bit lower on the character, so that makes it a little bit easier in terms of size.
And if want, I could actually scale of this. Hit the S key, scale that head up just a little bit and as you can see we're starting to block out this character. Now I am going to go ahead and stop here, because our next step is modeling the character's arms. I am going to use another modifier with that. So, at this point we've blocked out the basic shape of the character, his legs, his mouth and the shape of his head. But we still have a long way to go. But just remember, when modeling something like this you basically just start with a simple shape and then just add detail as needed.
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