Join Scott Onstott for an in-depth discussion in this video Shaping the courtyard as a NURBS surface, part of AutoCAD: 3D Architectural Modeling (2014).
- Our next project is to build a terrain surface for the inner courtyard. Let's create a new layer called 3D-Terrain. Make it current and give it a color. I'll choose a dark green, color 96. I want to fill in this courtyard with earth. To do that, let's begin by drawing a closed polyline representing the boundaries of that area.
In this case, I'm going to extend the polyline perpendicular to this wall, and then continue my way around, snapping to the top surfaces of this red wall. Then over here, I'll type C, Enter to close the polyline. I'd like to create a flat surface, so I'll use the PLANESURF command. Use the Object option and select the polyline.
Press Enter. Now we have a completely flat surface, but I'd like to make this surface have very subtle relief so that it's a little bit higher in the middle. That way, water will drain off to drains that would be built around the perimeter of the courtyard. To give this surface relief, we need to go to the 3D Modeling workspace and choose the Surface tab. Here you'll find a tool to convert the surface to NURBS.
NURBS stands for Non-Uniform Rational Basis Spline. Essentially, it's another kind of mathematical representation. If I convert this surface to NURBS, that's happened, but nothing is really evident, except that it says Surface (NURBS). We need to show the CVs. CV stands for Control Vertex. Now we see a very subtle difference. If you notice, there are little blue grips on each one of the corners of the surface.
Those are CVs. This doesn't give us enough editability yet. We want to have finer control over this surface, so it's necessary to then rebuild the surface. Choose Rebuild, select the NURBS surface, and you get this dialog box that allows you to change the number of control vertices, or CVs, in both the U and V directions. Every NURBS surface has U and V lines running on it, and I'm going to change these numbers here so that we go from two to five in each direction.
I want to use an odd number, because I'd like to have a control vertex running in the very center of this surface. Now we have more CVs, and that means more editability. Hold down the Ctrl key, and then click on individual CVs to select them. I'll select these three CVs in this particular row, and then I'll position the cursor over the blue axis tripod, click, and move that up a little bit.
Not too far, we don't want to make a giant mound, we just want to have a little bit of surface relief here, and then press Escape to de-select. You can see now, there's a very subtle rise there in the courtyard. That's all we really want to simulate here. When that's accomplished, choose Hide CV.
- Arranging elevations and sections around a plan
- Rotating objects in 3D
- Extruding walls, interior partitions, and headers
- Building slabs
- Modeling doors, windows, and stairs
- Sculpting terrain
- Creating a second floor
- Building roof surfaces
- Sculpting watertight solids from surfaces
- Modeling a tower
Skill Level Intermediate
1. Cleaning Up 2D Drawings
2. Modeling the First Floor
3. Modeling Doors, Windows, and Stairs
4. Modeling Terrain Surfaces
Sculpting a sloping terrain4m 51s
5. Modeling the Second Floor
6. Completing the Second Floor and the Roof
7. Modeling the Tower
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