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Introducing NURBS modeling

From: Maya 2011 Essential Training

Video: Introducing NURBS modeling

Before we get started, let's go ahead and make sure we have our project set. So I'm going to go File > Project > Set, and make sure we've set this to Chap_04. Maya has two forms of modeling. As we've seen, we can use polygonal objects to create surfaces in Maya. There's also another form of modeling, and that's called NURBS modeling. And NURBS is actually an acronym. It stands for Non-uniform Rational B-Splines. And that's the last time I'll ever say that.

Introducing NURBS modeling

Before we get started, let's go ahead and make sure we have our project set. So I'm going to go File > Project > Set, and make sure we've set this to Chap_04. Maya has two forms of modeling. As we've seen, we can use polygonal objects to create surfaces in Maya. There's also another form of modeling, and that's called NURBS modeling. And NURBS is actually an acronym. It stands for Non-uniform Rational B-Splines. And that's the last time I'll ever say that.

I have two spheres on the screen here. One's made of polygons. One's made of NURBS. The violet colored sphere is made of polygons. And as you can see, we've got all the standard stuff that we've been working with, which is vertices, edges, faces and so on. Now the one thing about a polygonal surfaces is that as you deform it, you get kind of this chunky behavior. Now we can get rid of some of this by subdividing it. But again, you really do need a fair amount of detail to get a good polygonal surface.

Now with NURBS, let's go ahead and select this, you'll notice that it has a lot less detail. The thing about a NURBS surface is that we actually have curved surfaces. It actually defines a curvature. Where here on a polygonal surface each face is actually flat, it's actually a flat plane, on a NURBS surface, it's actually a curved surface. It's defined as a curve, which is really great because you can zoom into a NURBS surface as close as you want, and it will still retain its curvature.

That's because its surface is mathematically defined. NURBS surfaces have different types of components than a polygonal surface. So if I right-click over this, you'll see, instead of faces and edges and vertices, I have what's called a Control Vertex, Isoparms, Hulls and a few others. The most important one is Control Vertex. So let's go ahead and select that. And notice how there's actually, again, less detail in the NURBS surface, but it defines a much bigger range of curvature.

So if I selected these Control Vertices, you can see that just manipulating these gives me a much more kind of rubbery, easier surface, a much more organic type of surface than a polygonal surface, which is composed of planes. Now we have a number of other types of components. Now if I take a look at the Hulls, you can kind of see how the NURBS surface is constructed. You can almost use an analogy of this is a polygonal model that's been subdivided, but there is some difference.

So don't take that analogy too far. But you can see how we have these Hulls, and around the Hulls we have kind of what we would normally call edges in the polygonal model, but in a NURBS model, it's called an Isoparm. So let's go ahead and right- click over it and select Isoparm. And then if you left-click and drag, you can just drag out any one of these Isoparm lines. These are very similar to what edge loops would do in a polygonal surface. But really, what we're just doing is defining a latitude or longitude line.

And in this particular case, these Isoparms really just determine a place where we will do some sort of action on a surface. So just really just know that they are there. So Isoparms, again, run in two directions. We have latitude and longitude types of lines. Now the other thing about NURBS surfaces is that they always are four-sided patches. So when you create a more sophisticated object, a lot of times you'll have to use multiple NURBS surfaces and tie them together in clever ways.

So actually, I'm going to go ahead and go back to Object mode here and select these spheres and delete them. And then in this file, I have a layer called Scooter. Now just go ahead and turn that on. And this is actually fully formed object made entirely out of NURBS. Now if I select on any one of these, you'll see that each part of this is actually a separate object. So what we're doing is actually we're creating objects that are kind of built out of sheets.

Each NURBS patch is, again, a four-sided patch. And then we can fold it and bend it and twist it in any sort of way to make interesting parts, like, for example, the front part of the shell of the scooter. You can see how it's almost of four-sided patch. And then the fender and wheel basically look like a four-sided patch. It's kind of revolved around. The back shell of this, you can see how it's wrapped around. And you can see also with these closed types of NURBS surfaces, you can see this darker line here is kind of where everything intersects, so it kind of wraps around.

Now as we start working with NURBS surfaces, you'll see how this actually works in practice. So this is really just an introduction to get you familiar with NURBS surfaces and how they're used to build sophisticated objects.

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This video is part of

Image for Maya 2011 Essential Training
Maya 2011 Essential Training

115 video lessons · 26345 viewers

George Maestri
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 3m 50s
    1. Welcome
      1m 34s
    2. Using the exercise files
      26s
    3. A note on screen resolution
      1m 50s
  2. 1h 0m
    1. Overview of the Maya interface
      7m 42s
    2. Working with files and Maya projects
      2m 27s
    3. Navigating viewports
      5m 56s
    4. Reviewing the Viewport menus
      6m 28s
    5. Configuring safe frames and grids
      3m 21s
    6. Selecting objects
      4m 33s
    7. Using the Move tool
      3m 48s
    8. Rotating and scaling
      4m 31s
    9. Manipulating pivots
      3m 59s
    10. Understanding the Channel Box
      5m 36s
    11. Working with the Attribute Editor
      2m 28s
    12. Using the Hotbox
      2m 59s
    13. Working with marking menus
      3m 6s
    14. Customizing the interface
      3m 36s
  3. 59m 25s
    1. Creating polygonal objects
      6m 28s
    2. Working with polygonal components
      4m 42s
    3. Selecting polygonal components
      5m 44s
    4. Working with Soft Select
      7m 3s
    5. Using the Extrude tool
      6m 47s
    6. Keeping faces together
      2m 42s
    7. Extruding along curves
      3m 27s
    8. Using the Polygon Bevel tool
      4m 14s
    9. Smooth and subdivision surfaces
      7m 6s
    10. Blocking out a character body
      11m 12s
  4. 36m 6s
    1. Working with edge loops
      3m 27s
    2. Inserting and offsetting edge loops
      3m 38s
    3. Symmetrical modeling techniques
      5m 53s
    4. Combining objects
      3m 50s
    5. Using the Polygon Bridge tool
      2m 7s
    6. Connecting components and splitting polygons
      2m 48s
    7. Poking and wedging faces
      2m 49s
    8. Working with polygon booleans
      3m 17s
    9. Modeling with nonlinear deformers
      4m 54s
    10. Modeling with lattices
      3m 23s
  5. 1h 18m
    1. Introducing NURBS modeling
      5m 3s
    2. NURBS primitives
      5m 54s
    3. Using the NURBS curve tools
      5m 7s
    4. Creating Bézier curves
      1m 59s
    5. Creating text
      3m 51s
    6. Manipulating NURBS curves
      4m 13s
    7. Refining NURBS curves
      4m 16s
    8. Offsetting NURBS curves
      2m 31s
    9. Editing NURBS surfaces
      7m 3s
    10. Refining NURBS surfaces
      7m 22s
    11. Using NURBS Revolve
      7m 31s
    12. Using NURBS Loft
      4m 11s
    13. Using NURBS Extrude
      6m 0s
    14. Using NURBS Planar
      4m 47s
    15. Stitching NURBS surfaces
      8m 52s
  6. 35m 53s
    1. Extracting NURBS curves from surfaces
      5m 57s
    2. Creating curves on a surface
      3m 53s
    3. Projecting curves on surfaces
      7m 2s
    4. Trimming NURBS surfaces
      3m 42s
    5. Using the NURBS Fillet tool
      5m 31s
    6. Sculpting NURBS and polygonal surfaces
      5m 52s
    7. Converting NURBS to polygons
      3m 56s
  7. 33m 22s
    1. Working with the Outliner
      4m 58s
    2. Grouping objects
      4m 2s
    3. Creating hierarchies
      4m 17s
    4. Duplicating objects
      4m 51s
    5. Understanding the Hypergraph
      3m 32s
    6. Working with Hypergraph connections
      2m 31s
    7. Hiding and showing objects
      2m 12s
    8. Creating layers
      4m 2s
    9. Working with selection masks
      2m 57s
  8. 40m 18s
    1. Overview of renderers
      3m 24s
    2. Understand the basics of materials
      6m 15s
    3. Creating and applying maps
      5m 13s
    4. Using bitmaps as texture
      2m 59s
    5. Working with the Hypershade window
      5m 12s
    6. Working with mental ray materials
      6m 57s
    7. Using displacement and bump mapping
      3m 14s
    8. Using the Ramp Shader
      2m 36s
    9. Using the 3D Paint tool
      4m 28s
  9. 30m 14s
    1. Texture-mapping NURBS surfaces
      5m 46s
    2. Projecting textures onto surfaces
      4m 0s
    3. Texture-mapping polygonal surfaces
      7m 0s
    4. Applying UV mapping
      8m 11s
    5. Using the UVW Editor
      5m 17s
  10. 41m 16s
    1. Creating joints
      10m 2s
    2. Deforming a mesh using the Skin tool
      5m 2s
    3. Creating IK handles
      6m 48s
    4. Creating blend shapes
      5m 39s
    5. Rigging nonlinear deformers
      2m 36s
    6. Finalizing the character
      4m 45s
    7. Rigging the character to the scooter
      6m 24s
  11. 1h 5m
    1. Working with the Timeline
      4m 16s
    2. Creating and adjusting keys (keyframes)
      5m 4s
    3. Editing keys
      3m 13s
    4. Modifying keys in the Graph Editor
      5m 47s
    5. Modifying keys in the Dope Sheet
      2m 51s
    6. Creating breakdown keys
      2m 28s
    7. Animating objects along paths
      5m 54s
    8. Animation playback using Playblast
      3m 10s
    9. Animating with constraints
      6m 16s
    10. Creating animation cycles
      8m 25s
    11. Using set-driven keys
      6m 13s
    12. Adding sound to animations
      2m 24s
    13. Finishing the animation
      9m 45s
  12. 1h 2m
    1. Lights and lighting types in Maya
      7m 29s
    2. Adding depth-map shadows
      4m 13s
    3. Using Raytrace shadows
      3m 28s
    4. Understanding the basics of cameras
      7m 14s
    5. Adding depth of field
      6m 31s
    6. Adding Bokeh using mental ray
      4m 33s
    7. Using motion blur in Maya Software Renderer
      4m 10s
    8. Using motion blur in mental ray
      3m 5s
    9. Raytracing reflections and refractions
      4m 41s
    10. Interactive rendering with IPR
      3m 33s
    11. Lighting a scene
      8m 29s
    12. Batch rendering
      4m 53s
  13. 25s
    1. Goodbye
      25s

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