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Maya 2009 Essential Training is designed to provide a strong foundation in this 3D modeling, rendering, and animation tool. George Maestri covers everything from the basics of the interface to bringing models to life with complex animation. He explores object manipulation, NURBS, UV editing, paint effects, and mental ray rendering. George demonstrates Maya's full functionality by building a robot from scratch. Exercise files accompany the course.
So now that we have the body blocked out, let's go ahead and do the arms and legs. Now I stated this out in a file called Robot_01.mb. So if you want to follow along you can. Now I added one little thing to that file and that's just two NURBS Curves and those actually allow me to make the legs. So we are going to start with the legs and the feet and then move on to the arms. So if I want to I can just select both of these curves and go Surfaces, Loft and that creates -- in fact, let's go ahead and shade this. Let's go into Hardware Texturing there. That creates one of my legs. Now if I want to I can actually select that surface and just create another leg from that first leg.
So I can create the mirror opposite of that leg and probably the easiest way to do that is with Duplicate Special. Let me show you how this works. If I go to Duplicate Special and click on this box here, I have all sorts of options. Now the option I want to show you is that I can scale as I duplicate. So if I want to I can scale a negative 1 in the X direction which is right down here and when I do that it actually takes my leg, duplicates it and then adds a negative 1 to the scaling which actually just mirrors it, which is exactly what I want and that's how I make that second leg.
Now let's go ahead and make the foot. Now the foot is easy to make. It's very similar to what we did with the body. We are just going to take a box and we are going to bevel it. Drag it out so that it's the size of the foot and then drag to set the height, there we go. In the side view, I can certainly see this and move it and I can also again affect the height of this so that it's about the right width. Now I can also just bevel that top edge, just by going Edge.
And then just probably in my Perspective viewport here, just select one, two, three, four; Polygons, Mesh > Bevel. Hey! But of course, I need to make my offset a little bit less and then just add a few segments to round that off. So there is my foot. And then all I have to do is just select the foot itself, duplicate with Ctrl+D and then just move that over here. Now as I go, I probably should be naming these, but I am just going to continue on right now, so that we can see just the process but typically I would be, as I create these, I would name them right and left foot and so on.
Now for the arms, we probably should start with the shoulder there which actually is kind of a box shape on this side. But if we look at it from this side, we see it's actually circular more of a cylinder shape. So we are just going to take a default cylinder and I am going to drag that to make the rough outline of that arm. And then I need to again drag this out, so I am going to into Wireframe mode so I can see this. Now when I drew it, it started at zero, which is inside the body of the robot.
So I just need to drag that out and again, I am just going to estimate the width, I can always adjust that later. I will turn on my Shading here and I can move this out to exactly the size I want. Now I can certainly change the size here by changing the height, so it's about the right width. Now the other thing is I just need to change the Subdivisions in terms of Height. So one, two sub divisions, I have got a little bit of space here, a little bit of space here and then the extrusion for the arm. So basically I want to be able to extrude that arm out. So this gives me the amount of detail I need to do that.
So I am just going to select these vertices and scale them. Now I have my detail in the right place to create that arm and all I have to do is select these faces underneath. In fact, let's go through here to match what I have here. So I need these faces to be from here to about here. In fact, we can probably take a look at that in the side view here. In fact, if we turn on X-Ray we can kind of see how that works. So basically, I want this to match this and this to match this. I need to take one of these away here, there we go. So that's what I am going to extrude.
So let's go ahead and do that. So we are going to go Edit Mesh > Extrude. Make sure we have Keep Faces Together on and then I am going to extrude this. Now the problem is that it's just extruding out according to what the normals of this are. So we need to kind of squish this back together, but I am just going to extrude it at this point and then come back and fix it. I can do that by selecting these vertices and the first thing I want to do is flatten them out. I can do that by scaling, just scale them down so they are flat and then scale them together. Now I have got the sort of detail that I want.
So sometimes when you extrude, it's not going to be exactly what you want but you always can model it back in later. So now I am just going to hit E for rotate and rotate this around and move it so it's pretty much in how I want it, maybe even scale it just a little bit. So there is my basic arm. Now if I want I can also bevel those edges again, so let's just go in my edge here, select that one, hit the up arrow to get my Edge loop, Edit Mesh > Bevel and then again just Offset. So I can bevel that edge just a little bit, same for this one, Bevel and again fix my Offset. So now I have got my top version of that, in fact, let's go ahead and see this in non X-Ray mode.
So that's my top part of my arm. Now I just need to do the same for the lower part of the arm. I already have the basic structure that I need, so all I have to do is just take this and duplicate it. So I am just going to go ahead and do Ctrl+D, duplicate this part of the arm and use it to make the lower part. Now this is a little bit bigger but what I can do is I can certainly scale this down just a little bit. And then rotate it, so that I have my second arm and then select these vertices and again move them over and maybe rotate them and so on and so forth.
Now the only other issue that we have here. In fact, let's go in Object mode here. Now I can certainly move this over, now the one thing is I do want to create kind of like a little notch for this top arm to fit into the bottom arm and I can do that by just selecting some faces. So for example, these faces along here and I can do another Extrude, just extrude those down. If I hit the blue one, I can extrude them down and then I could scale them in just a little bit. So now I have kind of a notch for that other one to fit into. Go back to Object mode and move that into place.
Now there is still a little bit of fitting to go here. In fact, I can just make that a little bit wider, just like that and there we go. So now pretty much fits. So now I have got the arms and I have got the legs. Now all I have to do to create the other arm is select both of these and then just duplicate them and move them over. So let's go ahead and do some more robot modeling in the next lesson.
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