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Displace entire surface at once

I would like to be able to apply a displacement alpha to the entire surface of a sphere evenly at once. I'm making a pom-pom for a hat (kind of like a marching band hat); since it will be 3d printed, I have to keep the polygon count reasonable (so I can't have individual cylinders radiating from a center point like a real pom-pom's threads). I've tried applying texture by hand with a displacement brush, but it's too uneven. I keep thinking there must be a way to select the entire surface and just apply the alpha. If not in hexagon, maybe in Zbrush?


  • GhostmanGhostman Posts: 213
    edited December 1969

    In Zbrush I would try it with the Noise function

  • mjc1016mjc1016 Posts: 14,740
    edited December 1969

    That sounds like an incredibly high detail level...

    Won't a simple noise map to the surface to give a soft, bumpy feel to it be enough?

    Otherwise, I'd say just drop the pompom and glue a cloth one on to the finished 'print', because to get that fine of a detail, the poly count has to be pretty high (more like extremely, astronomically high...).

    I'm not familiar with the ins/outs of all the various 3D printing options, but if what ever you are using is capable of accepting normal maps, you may be better off, if you can't actually glue on a cloth one, to create the sphere with the cylinders and then use it to bake some normal maps to use on a 'blank' sphere.

  • edited December 1969

    Thanks for replying. I've designed and printed piano keys on a piano that's only an inch tall, so no problem on the level of detail--.01mm embossed detail is ok, and the bumps wouldn't be deep enough to be defined by the rapid prototyping folk as a "thickness" as opposed to "embossed detail".

    This is a commercial figure that is an inch tall, and although I could sculpt texture on a smooth ball after output, the goal is to eliminate that step.

    So is there a way I can take say an 18 point sphere and just depress every-other vertex inward toward the center a small amount without hand selecting every second vertex? Or alternately selecting every second face and doing the same? If I could just select a pattern like that easily, I could resize the selection in or out. When the whole thing is only 1mm round, it will look adequately bumpy.

    ...Or any other method that might work. There are still big segments of the body of knowledge I haven't learned yet, and surface texture beyond simply displacement tweaking is one of them. Is there a tutorial on normal maps you would recommend?

    Thanks for your patience with me!

  • edited December 1969

    ...also working with noise in Zbrush, and getting something I might be able to use (but not really understanding the underlying principles).

  • edited December 1969

    I think I can get by with this--gives a little fluffiness to it without making detail too deep to output. Ended up doing it by displacing dimples into a low-res sphere with hexagon. Keeping everything with such a low poly count means really limited texturing options. Thanks, and I have some studying to do!

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  • RedSquareRedSquare Posts: 0
    edited December 1969

    So is there a way I can take say an 18 point sphere and just depress every-other vertex inward toward the center a small amount without hand selecting every second vertex? Or alternately selecting every second face and doing the same?

    Not quite; If you select the 1 over n function you can do more or less what you are looking for, but not quite as you will find out when you try it.

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  • RedSquareRedSquare Posts: 0
    edited December 1969

    Look in the top right pallet you will see the adjustment for selecting n

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  • RedSquareRedSquare Posts: 0
    edited December 1969

    Again top right hand tool pallet showing adjustable n

    You can do it with verts; with edges; with faces.

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  • RedSquareRedSquare Posts: 0
    edited November 2012

    The above looks a bit weird because I happened to use an example with extra verts on the object. So when you try it shouldn't look so odd. Unlike other similar adjustment methods in Hex you cannot overide the whole numbers by introducing {typing} fractions of an n.

    Post edited by RedSquare on
  • edited December 1969

    Brilliant, that's exactly what I needed! Thanks for your help!

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