UV Unwrapping

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  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 15,431

    I'm seeing that I'm not alone in the idea that it's a lot easier to drag each element which is to become an UV Island out of the grid, and bring them back in as I go.

    Here's a kind of a cool video of a fellow UV Unwrapping on the fly in Silo 2

    I think that Carrara's UV Editor could really benefit greatly from some of these extra features, like smoothing brush and so on.

    As much as my buddy, Garstor, has me sold on UV Layout software, for half the price (with coupon) I can get Silo, which looks like one heck of a modeling tool as well - including the Sculpting style of modeling that has become so popular.

    Now, when it comes to "Learning how to Model", I'd like to state that it's just as important that we pick up on UV Unwrapping right along with out modeling training. I've said it before which was just reinforced to me by David Brinnen in another thread - who's said irtually the same thing: As we learn to UV Unwrap, we learn to model to better facilitate the whole process - or something like that.

    I used to just go in and start messing around with my mesh however I could get the shapes that I wanted. Now I actually model FOR my UV handling later - making the whole process much easier.

    I've never been that great at using Carrara's Unwrap feature, so I'll be focussing on that next. The reason being that I enjoy purchasing my human figures, dragons, animals, etc.,

    For one, it's incredibly convenient. It lets me focus on animating much quicker than if I'd first have to finish creating the model, then rigging it, then weight painting, then adding constraints... it's not for everyone - in fact, most studios have different people doing each of these tasks - so I'd never have to do that stuff anyways.

    For another, the artists that sell these figures make some really cool things! Pretty much just what I'm looking for! So hy not buy them and use them? Through Daz3d and other similar vendors, the price is so incredibly reasonable for outstanding work!

     

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 15,431

    Next, learning to make 3D models can be as hard as we make it. Getting too bogged down with instructional material without actually putting any of what they're teaching to practice will likely never get us anywhere - except, perhaps, more into buying models from vendors.

    I'm certainly not saying to NOT seek instructional material - videos, books, etc., heavens no. 

    In fact, I think that we can learn an enormous amount of great modeling techniques and practices for free, right from the internet.

    Carrara's tools are vast. We have Spline and Vertex modelers. Our Vertex Modeler even has displacement painting, replication and many other strong features that make it really formidable as a modeler.

    Through learning HOW to model in 3D, we Carrara Users don't have to seek out "Carrara Modeling" instructions - though Carrara-specific training does help, But we can also just search out modeling 'what it is we want to model' rather than refining it to any specific software choice - because Carrara's modeling tools are full-featured enough to where we can take the gist of any modeling tutorial and put it to practice.

    I haven't watched this through yet - I just found it while I was checking out Silo's cool UV Unwrapping features, which I'm really liking a LOT.

    There is actually quite a bit of free training available for Silo. This one really caught my eye, being a huge fan of the cancelled TV show: Firefly, and the resulting Movie to end it all: Serenity.

    This is a multi-part modeling tutorial (YouTube Playlist I made) by John Graham: Modeling Serenity - Firefly Class Cargo Hauler

  • In celebration of speaking with my friend, David Brinnen, in another thread, it has come up that he's using both Modo and UV Layout in his current workflow.

    Another friend of mine, Garstor, is using LightWave and UV Layout.

    I was looking into Modo myself, and saw this cool video... so now I'm wondering why use both Modo and UV Layout?

    It is not for me to say why other people would use both Modo and UV Layout, but I will happily explain why I do.

    The model I am building is initially organised by grouping things according to what I think will help me put the model together.  So it is about being able to turn off extranious parts to allow me to see the area I am working on in context with the things around it.  When I began there was a temptation to UV map as I went along and having the UV mapping tools to hand, as they were in Wings3D, it was easy to end up doing this.  However, if you do do that, and then see you need to change something, there is also a temptation to not make that change if you can get away with it because that will mean going back and tinkering with the UV map.

    So... I put the model together in groups and then when I have things how I want them, I pick through the model and regroup things according to what I hope are logical material groupings.  So for example, brass hinges could end up in the same group as brass light fittings.  This group will become a template and in turn be occupied by components that share similar material properties.  Here I try to give some consideration to how much area the unwrapped geometry is going to take up.  So perhaps split the floor up into four groups while putting smaller things in one group.  The aim to allow enough pixels in the textures for the area they are to occupy.

    These groups I then export as objects for UV layout.  UV layout is very good at picking up on gometric issues that Modo will otherwise tollerate.  So this is the time some fixes go in.  Also by dealing with the model in this piecemeal fashion it keeps the process linear and logical, which I find helps with larger projects which could get overwhemling if you have things all over the place some with UV some without, some with subdivision some without.  Think of it as a good filter.

    Into one end of this process goes potentially broken gometry without UV maps and good geometry with UV maps comes out the other side.

    The saved out UV'ed geometry I then collect up into Modo, apply materials to each component and gather them into one scene.  The bits are then regrouped for the final time with rigging in mind.

    Essentally then, in answer to your question, there is no compelling reason to split things up like this, but I happen to like to work like this and I happen to prefer UV layouts approach to UV mapping over Modo's - but that is not to say this is the "right" way to do things.  That's just how I do things.

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 15,431

    Very interesting. Makes sense too - my first read through! ;)

    In celebration of speaking with my friend, David Brinnen, in another thread, it has come up that he's using both Modo and UV Layout in his current workflow.

    Another friend of mine, Garstor, is using LightWave and UV Layout.

    I was looking into Modo myself, and saw this cool video... so now I'm wondering why use both Modo and UV Layout?

    Essentally then, in answer to your question, there is no compelling reason to split things up like this, but I happen to like to work like this and I happen to prefer UV layouts approach to UV mapping over Modo's - but that is not to say this is the "right" way to do things.  That's just how I do things.

    ...which certainly is the best way... for you! And that's important to any artist.

    Several people mess with me about sticking so firmly with Carrara. They actually have compelling arguments that cause me to go - well... doing what I've just been doing above - looking at promo and instructional videos regarding other products to see the differences. And always in the end, I seem to decide to just stick with Carrara, because Carrara makes me feel comfortable.

    But not so much when it comes to UV Unwrapping. Other methods and UV Editing... yeah... I'm fine with Carrara's editor - it works. But unwrapping complex shapes, even with heavy thought during the modeling process on how I'll be mapping it... hmmm... it's lacking those smoothing, settling methods that UV Layout, Modo, Silo, 3DCoat, etc., have.

    You know, when I look at what Modo is - what it's used for and what it can do to assist with all of that - it really doesn't seem to be too pricey really. I mean, yeah... it's way out of my current reach. But less than a couple of grand USD for something that amazing... LightWave is Really affordable for what it is, but I hear it's UV tools aren't so fun. Maya and 3DS Max are pricey - especially since it seems one never actually owns it. They're like a Grand USD per year and higher. 

    Silo is looking like it's going to turn my head far enough to drop some coin in their acount. Not just because of the low price, but because of its elegance.

    I've finally seen first hand what HeadWax was talking about with the knife tool which is missing from Carrara - and Silo's is fantastic (so is Modo's!!!) There are just so many functions that Iike about it, and I really like the UV Editing tools. 

    Another thing that almost has nothing to do with modeling, but everything to do with comfort:

    Silo has built in tools that allow users to build their own interface with as many different "rooms" as they like - assigning any image (custom icon) to do anything that the software is capable of doing. I don't know if I'd actually mess with that, but I have a feeling that I'd make it look just like Carrara! LOL

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 15,431

     I really appreciate you sharing your workflow with us. It's very interesting.

    ...and inspiring.

    Thanks, David

  • TangoAlphaTangoAlpha Posts: 4,520

    Buying stuff from vendors is good . . . wink

    I've had an indie subscripton to Modo for a while now, and I need to put a lot more effort into learning it. But for me, time is always the critical factor, and always my internal monologue goes something like this: "I'll build this prop in Modo: it'll be a good learning experience. Yeah, but you need it finished by the end of today, and Carrara can do it and you know it'll, be done. Okay, I'll build the next prop in Modo . . ."

    Plus, whenever I think about something that's tricky in Carrara, and wonder if Modo can do it. I find some tutorial on the web, and it always starts with "you need to run this script . . ." What's the biggest thing that Modo Indie doesn't support? Yup. Scripts.

    Oh, and whenever I've imported a Carrara obj into Modo, there's always one poly missing. Very odd that, not to say annoying.

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 15,431

    ...and at the end of the day - Carrara works - and we already know how it works.

  • TangoAlphaTangoAlpha Posts: 4,520

    Exactly.

    Are you pulling an all-nighter or something? It's late morning here, and we don't normally see you here for a few more hours  . . .

  • Well, I had different path, I started with Bryce and Wings 3D, and then Silo soon after, Carrara came in later in the game, I tried, I really did try to model in Carrara, but it was like pulling teeth in comparison to Silo, I guess, I just got used to Silo's very fast and clean approach to lots of things which were akward and unintuitive (to me) in Carrara.

    I do use vertex modeler though, but only for minor adjustments if necessary (ocassional UV fix is needed too, as we all know, and no one really talks about it, Carrara sometimes messes up UVs on import) , but I do not model there from schratch unless is something relatively simple smiley

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 15,431

    Well, I had different path, I started with Bryce and Wings 3D, and then Silo soon after, Carrara came in later in the game, I tried, I really did try to model in Carrara, but it was like pulling teeth in comparison to Silo, I guess, I just got used to Silo's very fast and clean approach to lots of things which were akward and unintuitive (to me) in Carrara.

    I do use vertex modeler though, but only for minor adjustments if necessary (ocassional UV fix is needed too, as we all know, and no one really talks about it, Carrara sometimes messes up UVs on import) , but I do not model there from schratch unless is something relatively simple smiley

    Yeah... that's exactly what I was feeling as I was checking this out. Simple, clean, fast. And I;m not knocking Carrara... it's a huge toolset. Like Silo's site says, what Silo does is impossible to achieve in these larger applications.

    So I think I'd use Silo as my main modeler - any time I set out to model something. Then just continue using Carrara as I do now. As a tweaker.

  •  I really appreciate you sharing your workflow with us. It's very interesting.

    ...and inspiring.

    Thanks, David

    You are welcome.  If I can offer a tip that I learned the hard way.  In my initial attemps at modeling I tried to make everything in one go.  So if I was making a chair, it would be one continuous piece of geometry - as if I was going 3D print it.  This then would have to be chopped up for UV mapping.  Making work for myself.  I don't know why I thought this was a good idea.  For me, it seems, that making things in logical pieces reduces the chore of mapping considerably.  Now I don't know if anyone else would be prone to falling into this trap.  But that would be what I suggest.  Look at how things are put together and repilcate that as much as possible.  Probably this applies just as well to other modelling and UV mapping applications as it does to the somewhat excentric approach I've taken.

     

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 15,431

     I really appreciate you sharing your workflow with us. It's very interesting.

    ...and inspiring.

    Thanks, David

    You are welcome.  If I can offer a tip that I learned the hard way.  In my initial attemps at modeling I tried to make everything in one go.  So if I was making a chair, it would be one continuous piece of geometry - as if I was going 3D print it.  This then would have to be chopped up for UV mapping.  Making work for myself.  I don't know why I thought this was a good idea.  For me, it seems, that making things in logical pieces reduces the chore of mapping considerably.  Now I don't know if anyone else would be prone to falling into this trap.  But that would be what I suggest.  Look at how things are put together and repilcate that as much as possible.  Probably this applies just as well to other modelling and UV mapping applications as it does to the somewhat excentric approach I've taken.

     

    Yeah... I think most people (possible exception - those trained formally) begin that way. I still find myself going a little too far on some pieces, but, for the most part, I've taken on the approach you mention doing now - somewhat. 

    I'm still not to the point where I get my UV islands set up as nice as they should - and I still have a habit of having too many shading domains in the end - I think. 

    I must say... I'm jealous! That Modo looks amazing! I've never tried Wings3D. Have you ever tried Silo? I'd love to hear from someone whom has used (to a point of really getting into modeling with) both Silo and Modo - as to comments regarding similarities, differences, etc.,

    To me, Silo seems entirely worth its weight - it's just a modeler and UV editor... and what I really love about that is that I don't really need the additional render engine, animation controls, rigging and so on that makes Modo really stand apart.

    Believe me though... if I had Modo... I'd likely be changing a lot of my workflow. Couldn't help it. I'm just saying that I really don't feel a ned to choose one over the other because it has all of this other stuff. In truth, switching that much would really through my work into a cyclone of change - and I'm not entirely sure I want that.

    Any thoughts on the other parts of Modo aside from the modeler?

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 15,431

    I am truly very lucky that I'm so happy with my current setup. I don't feel a strong NEED to go out and buy a new modeler or UV editor.

    But if I did, I'd certainly use it on a Pro level: making content more than working on my movies. So there's a down-side which creates an up-side - or is it the other way around?

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 15,431

    Exactly.

    Are you pulling an all-nighter or something? It's late morning here, and we don't normally see you here for a few more hours  . . .

    Yeah... I accidentally worked all night.

    Passed out... just woke up ;)

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 15,431

    ...and what about Hexagon?

    I've had Hexagon just as long as I've had Carrara. I've used it a few times, but only those few - and it was mostly just a shortcut for me into the morph loader dialog via the DS bridge.

    So I see here, at the Store Page, that Hexagon also has UV Editing tools. How are those to work with? Anyone familiar with them?

    Here I have this whole modeler at my disposal that I never take advantage of.

    Any thoughts? Testimonials?

    Talk about affordable. Even when it's not on sale Hexagon 2.5 is currently less than twenty bucks USD

    This video shows a process of unwrapping in Hexagon

    One big thing that caught my eye is that it says: If we add more polygons after UV Mapping, we lose the UV Map and have to start again! Yikes!

    I don't think Carrara is like that. We'll see.

    Playlist of Free video tutorial from CG Dreams

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 15,431

    Okay I'm now remembering what I've forgotten! LOL

    See how I get?

    Okay, I've been saying that I really don't mind UV Editing in Carrara, except when it comes to unwrapping, right?

    Well this video shows a step I've been missing all along. I've seen this a long time ago and promised myself that I'd try it, but my modeling has been so geometric since then that other operations have been working very well for me, and that's what I've been used to in Carrara, so... well... you know.

    This step is in the Operations tab: "Relax Ploygons" with an iterations slider. As much as I'd love to have a relax (smooth) brush, like in Silo, this might at least help.

    Also in this video, it shows how the artist switches the view to a much larger view when working with the mapping in the mapping pane. That makes a HUGE difference in how well the tools behave.

    Between this video and the one above for Hexagon, I'm seeing these artists unfolding, then unfolding again, and again... that makes me feel better. I feel a whole new level of confidence toward UV Unwrapping now.

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 15,431

    One thing that I don't recall seeing mentioned anywhere in this forum by anyone:

    Once we unwrap UVs and save the mesh, create the texture map for it, we can then further optimize the UVs to match the needs of the map if we need to.

    My first introduction to the world of 3D, that was my job - optimizing the UVs to the maps.

    Say the belly button looked stretched or some of the skin looked warped somewhere else. They'd send the mesh and maps to me and I'd fix it for them. I believe it was GMax with a plugin that someone made for me - but I don't recall the exact setup. But I still didn't know anything else about 3d modeling at that point.

    Funny, eh?

  • David BrinnenDavid Brinnen Posts: 3,132
    edited November 2016

     I really appreciate you sharing your workflow with us. It's very interesting.

    ...and inspiring.

    Thanks, David

    You are welcome.  If I can offer a tip that I learned the hard way.  In my initial attemps at modeling I tried to make everything in one go.  So if I was making a chair, it would be one continuous piece of geometry - as if I was going 3D print it.  This then would have to be chopped up for UV mapping.  Making work for myself.  I don't know why I thought this was a good idea.  For me, it seems, that making things in logical pieces reduces the chore of mapping considerably.  Now I don't know if anyone else would be prone to falling into this trap.  But that would be what I suggest.  Look at how things are put together and repilcate that as much as possible.  Probably this applies just as well to other modelling and UV mapping applications as it does to the somewhat excentric approach I've taken.

     

    Yeah... I think most people (possible exception - those trained formally) begin that way. I still find myself going a little too far on some pieces, but, for the most part, I've taken on the approach you mention doing now - somewhat. 

    I'm still not to the point where I get my UV islands set up as nice as they should - and I still have a habit of having too many shading domains in the end - I think. 

    I must say... I'm jealous! That Modo looks amazing! I've never tried Wings3D. Have you ever tried Silo? I'd love to hear from someone whom has used (to a point of really getting into modeling with) both Silo and Modo - as to comments regarding similarities, differences, etc.,

    To me, Silo seems entirely worth its weight - it's just a modeler and UV editor... and what I really love about that is that I don't really need the additional render engine, animation controls, rigging and so on that makes Modo really stand apart.

    Believe me though... if I had Modo... I'd likely be changing a lot of my workflow. Couldn't help it. I'm just saying that I really don't feel a ned to choose one over the other because it has all of this other stuff. In truth, switching that much would really through my work into a cyclone of change - and I'm not entirely sure I want that.

    Any thoughts on the other parts of Modo aside from the modeler?

    Er... well, really, I what sold me on Modo was the modeler.  I know it does other things.  I've tinkered obviously, like you do... but really, I don't know enough to comment.

    A couple of things attracted me to Modo, asside from the recomendation from Allan (which carried a lot of weight), one is that the software is regularly updated.  And two, the trial version was very stable.  Having beta tested several bits of software, I know how to break software.  And so stable software is a good guide to the dedication of the team behind it.

    I have subsequently had need to contact their support, having run into a bug, and my experiance with their support service is second to none.  They were prompt, curtious and most importantly, investigated the issue and provided a solution.

    The thing is though, you know, having sounded like a total Modo fan-boy...  This means nothing to you if you don't get on with the way the software works.  You have to try it and see if it suits you.  I tried it.  Spent a few days going "I'm never going to be able to get on with this I wish I was using wings3D - oh this is awful, what's happening now..." add your own swearing - I do.  Plodding through tutorials.  Fighting with the interface at first (there are options to make it "Wingsy").  But it all fell quickly into place.  Once you "get" the way Modo works, even things you don't know how to do, you can make a pretty good guess at and more than half the time, Modo will work how I think it is going to work.  Which saves time on finding solutions to modeling puzzels.

    As good as Modo maybe as a renderer.  I'd still favour Bryce or Octane because those are the ones I know.  And importing and exporting from Modo is easy, with lots of options and, like everything Modo does, robust.  Very few corrupted files.

    The other elements, the rendering, rigging, animation setup, while I say I don't use them - that's not strictly speaking true.  The rendering I do use to provide AO maps to help with texturing.  The rigging is incorporates procedural modelling which means you can create procedrual modelling rigs, something I've only dabbled in, but once you've got access to that, you soon find ways to use it even if only at a simple level.  And animation, though not used for that, is integral to the kinetic modelling, and I've shattered a few things before now and let the pieces fall.  The dynamics does a good job of creating plausable brokenness.  So while I say, I focus on the modelling, the other things do get used, but not for the primory purpose for which they might have been intended and far from the full extent of their capabilities.

    If there were somewhere I could go on a course to learn the whole of it, I'd be tempted.  I feel like I am missing out, it is a bit overwhelming really.  I'm just picking away at the edges.

    Edit.  Meant to say, I've not tried Silo though I did look at what people said about it.  I didn't know if it was going to offer enough of an upgrade over Wings to make learning it worthwhile.  I wanted to be as sure as I could that the software I chose would be more capable than I was ever likely to be, then I wouldn't end up having to learn something else over again because I had hit the limit of what it could do.

     

    Post edited by David Brinnen on
  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 15,431

     I really appreciate you sharing your workflow with us. It's very interesting.

    ...and inspiring.

    Thanks, David

    You are welcome.  If I can offer a tip that I learned the hard way.  In my initial attemps at modeling I tried to make everything in one go.  So if I was making a chair, it would be one continuous piece of geometry - as if I was going 3D print it.  This then would have to be chopped up for UV mapping.  Making work for myself.  I don't know why I thought this was a good idea.  For me, it seems, that making things in logical pieces reduces the chore of mapping considerably.  Now I don't know if anyone else would be prone to falling into this trap.  But that would be what I suggest.  Look at how things are put together and repilcate that as much as possible.  Probably this applies just as well to other modelling and UV mapping applications as it does to the somewhat excentric approach I've taken.

     

    Yeah... I think most people (possible exception - those trained formally) begin that way. I still find myself going a little too far on some pieces, but, for the most part, I've taken on the approach you mention doing now - somewhat. 

    I'm still not to the point where I get my UV islands set up as nice as they should - and I still have a habit of having too many shading domains in the end - I think. 

    I must say... I'm jealous! That Modo looks amazing! I've never tried Wings3D. Have you ever tried Silo? I'd love to hear from someone whom has used (to a point of really getting into modeling with) both Silo and Modo - as to comments regarding similarities, differences, etc.,

    To me, Silo seems entirely worth its weight - it's just a modeler and UV editor... and what I really love about that is that I don't really need the additional render engine, animation controls, rigging and so on that makes Modo really stand apart.

    Believe me though... if I had Modo... I'd likely be changing a lot of my workflow. Couldn't help it. I'm just saying that I really don't feel a ned to choose one over the other because it has all of this other stuff. In truth, switching that much would really through my work into a cyclone of change - and I'm not entirely sure I want that.

    Any thoughts on the other parts of Modo aside from the modeler?

     

    If there were somewhere I could go on a course to learn the whole of it, I'd be tempted.  I feel like I am missing out, it is a bit overwhelming really.  I'm just picking away at the edges.

    Edit.  Meant to say, I've not tried Silo though I did look at what people said about it.  I didn't know if it was going to offer enough of an upgrade over Wings to make learning it worthwhile.  I wanted to be as sure as I could that the software I chose would be more capable than I was ever likely to be, then I wouldn't end up having to learn something else over again because I had hit the limit of what it could do.

    Awesome feedback!

    Yeah... I remember when I first got Carrara, I "knew" that I never wanted to dabble with 'this' or 'that' (a whole lot of those) because it was just too much to learn. I had a very specific goal which already required me to learn a LOT.

    That changes after the initial goal-base learning curves smooth out. You'll see. You'll love having all of that robust glee you've invested in ;)

    Ah yes... Wing3D... Gotta go look at that now!

    I really love the fact that we can "Do It All" in Carrara. It's actually a lot more formidable than it gets credit for. Like anything else, the more one becomes familiar with working the tools, the more proficient it all becomes.

    Total change of subject, but when I went in to look at the current price of LightWave (just comparing everything - I'm not currently shopping) I had to watch the ChronoSculpt promos again... works with anything that can export/import MDD, Alembic and others... it enable us to edit the cache-stored data, for example allowing us to alter particle simulations along a time line as if it was simulated differently... really cool stuff!

     

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 15,431

     I really appreciate you sharing your workflow with us. It's very interesting.

    ...and inspiring.

    Thanks, David

    You are welcome.  If I can offer a tip that I learned the hard way.  In my initial attemps at modeling I tried to make everything in one go.  So if I was making a chair, it would be one continuous piece of geometry - as if I was going 3D print it.  This then would have to be chopped up for UV mapping.  Making work for myself.  I don't know why I thought this was a good idea.  For me, it seems, that making things in logical pieces reduces the chore of mapping considerably.  Now I don't know if anyone else would be prone to falling into this trap.  But that would be what I suggest.  Look at how things are put together and repilcate that as much as possible.  Probably this applies just as well to other modelling and UV mapping applications as it does to the somewhat excentric approach I've taken.

     

    Yeah... I think most people (possible exception - those trained formally) begin that way. I still find myself going a little too far on some pieces, but, for the most part, I've taken on the approach you mention doing now - somewhat. 

    I'm still not to the point where I get my UV islands set up as nice as they should - and I still have a habit of having too many shading domains in the end - I think. 

    I must say... I'm jealous! That Modo looks amazing! I've never tried Wings3D. Have you ever tried Silo? I'd love to hear from someone whom has used (to a point of really getting into modeling with) both Silo and Modo - as to comments regarding similarities, differences, etc.,

    To me, Silo seems entirely worth its weight - it's just a modeler and UV editor... and what I really love about that is that I don't really need the additional render engine, animation controls, rigging and so on that makes Modo really stand apart.

    Believe me though... if I had Modo... I'd likely be changing a lot of my workflow. Couldn't help it. I'm just saying that I really don't feel a ned to choose one over the other because it has all of this other stuff. In truth, switching that much would really through my work into a cyclone of change - and I'm not entirely sure I want that.

    Any thoughts on the other parts of Modo aside from the modeler?

    The thing is though, you know, having sounded like a total Modo fan-boy...  This means nothing to you if you don't get on with the way the software works.  You have to try it and see if it suits you.  I tried it.  Spent a few days going "I'm never going to be able to get on with this I wish I was using wings3D - oh this is awful, what's happening now..." add your own swearing - I do.  Plodding through tutorials.  Fighting with the interface at first (there are options to make it "Wingsy").  But it all fell quickly into place.  Once you "get" the way Modo works, even things you don't know how to do, you can make a pretty good guess at and more than half the time, Modo will work how I think it is going to work.  Which saves time on finding solutions to modeling puzzels.

    Absolutely. I would definitely be downloading trials when the buy-time came - for sure. But like you say, we need to know what to look to be impressed with - and what to not hold against the new way of doing things - which is where knowing someone using it really helps: "Hey Bill... remember when you said you liked.... how do you..." sort of thing.

     

     I really appreciate you sharing your workflow with us. It's very interesting.

    ...and inspiring.

    Thanks, David

     

     

     

     

    As good as Modo maybe as a renderer.  I'd still favour Bryce or Octane because those are the ones I know.  And importing and exporting from Modo is easy, with lots of options and, like everything Modo does, robust.  Very few corrupted files.

     

    Interesting. See? You still render using Bryce? I never want to switch render engines. I love my Carrara photorealistic option. Just love it.

  • TangoAlphaTangoAlpha Posts: 4,520

    ...and what about Hexagon?

    I've had Hexagon just as long as I've had Carrara. I've used it a few times, but only those few - and it was mostly just a shortcut for me into the morph loader dialog via the DS bridge.

    So I see here, at the Store Page, that Hexagon also has UV Editing tools. How are those to work with? Anyone familiar with them?

    Here I have this whole modeler at my disposal that I never take advantage of.

    Any thoughts? Testimonials?

    Talk about affordable. Even when it's not on sale Hexagon 2.5 is currently less than twenty bucks USD

    This video shows a process of unwrapping in Hexagon

    One big thing that caught my eye is that it says: If we add more polygons after UV Mapping, we lose the UV Map and have to start again! Yikes!

    I don't think Carrara is like that. We'll see.

    Playlist of Free video tutorial from CG Dreams

    Depends. Some things will break a UV map and some things won't. Say for example you decive that an edge needs bevelling. If you make the bevel with the Fillet tool, that will absolutely break the UV mapping. But if you use Quick Fillet (on the Extract Along, Extract Around etc drop down button), that won't break the UV. Other tools on that dropdown dont break UVs either.

    It's another good reason for modelling in lots of small component meshes - limits the amount of damage inflicted by changing the mesh post-mapping.

    BTW, that surgical arm lamp that I showed on another thread (more about rigging than UVs) had 22 separate meshes in the vertex object.

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 15,431

    Yeah, I can certainly see how I should start practicing more elaborate models - just to get used to that workflow.

    I've just been making large pieces mostly. Then my smaller things are broken up into smaller, individual parts, like you say. I just don't do that often enough.

    There's a lot of this side of Carrara that I've gotten pretty darned good at, but I don't do it all the time. Like rigging and weight painting... I don't like doing that for making human hands, but I love making a lot of other things.

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 15,431

    I'd also like to emphasize

    David Brinnen has a really good point, and I'm going to venture further into this:

    If we're going to model a lot on a professional level, it pays to use tools that make the flow work for us and ensure high-end quality.

    UV Layout would be a welcome tool to any unwrapper's toolkit. Just check out some of Garstor's Videos to see how smoothly and accurately we can unwrap using this high-end, dedicated tool.

    My projects in the modeling department have been mostly small, simple projects. Even the more difficult ones have been relatively small and easy to keep track of what's going on. But, as David and Tango point out, a whole bunch of smaller polymeshes might benefit greatly from using David's workflow towards running everything through a specific process.

    Nearly two grand USD on a modeler that includes one of the most favored UV editors on the planet, and he still buys UV Layout and adds it to his workflow. Why?

    Is it because he doesn't like Modo's tools? Nope.

    It creates a flow of quality assurance and efficiency - and that's magic when it comes to publishing through Daz3d. They have a high quality standard and are less than pleased if we don't run our products through good measures of quality control on our own before handing it to their incredibly busy QA staff. By the way... Daz3d QA staff are some really cool folks! I love 'em! One of the guys that tests my stuff tends to enjoy using my products after he's done testing them - on his own time. Feels good to get that kind of feedback!

    All along the line, it's just been a HUGE pleasure being part of the Daz3d team. They really try to help us succeed.

    I highly recommend anyone wanting to create great 3D Art to look into doing so through Daz3d. 

    This Link will take you to the place where you'll find all of the guidelines you need to know to get started. Once I decided to submit my first product for consideration, I sought out this information and went through every little bit of it that applied to me.

    Take your time and take notes.

    Ask questions.

    Then use the link found within to make your first contact. If you know a current Daz3d Artist, like me, David, Tango, etc., whom is familiar with what you're submitting, ask them to 'put in a good word' which can go a long way towards getting in.

    But nobody can make your presentation but You. So be sure to go out of your way to Dazzle them with your first impression. Make it Count!

  • DiomedeDiomede Posts: 10,682

    Thanks for the resources, Dart.  I don't mind saying that I am getting delusions of grandeur.  I have a goal to submit something to Daz3d in 2017. 

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 15,431
    diomede said:

    Thanks for the resources, Dart.  I don't mind saying that I am getting delusions of grandeur.  I have a goal to submit something to Daz3d in 2017. 

    I'm incredibly pumped to hear this! How long have I been after you? 

    If you need help with anything, give me a holler. Happy to help! wink

  • DiomedeDiomede Posts: 10,682

    I'm still a long way away, but I appreciate the encouragement. 

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 15,431
    diomede said:

    I'm still a long way away, but I appreciate the encouragement. 

    So modest! cheeky

     

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 15,431

    So, what about Wings3D and Blender?

    We're going over ways to do all of this in Carrara and with other applications, let's also look at some free options.

    I'm not really familiar with either of them, but here are some demonstrations:

    Intro to UV Unwrapping in Blender

    Whoa! In looking up a UV Unwrapping demonstration for Wings3D, guess whom I've found, waiting to tell us about it?

    Age of Armour! So Bill, can you tell us how to unwrap UVs in Wings3D please?

    UV Mapping in Wings3D

    Part 1

    Part 2

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 15,431

    Okay, so we're learning how to properly unwrap our models, giving them proper UVW coordinate mapping embedded into their mesh for the purpose of using flat 2D images to project properly onto the mesh(es), allowing us to give them materials in a predictable way.

    When we're done with our UV Mapping, we may Export a template which shows all of our edges and how they're mapped in UVW. We can now use these templates in an image editor to place color and texture where and how we want it. There are some artists whom do this texture map creation as their profession. In certain circumstances, like human figures, for example, this can be a difficult endeavor, even with the Best UV Mapping possible.

    It's really interesting to watch the process in action by folks that do it well. Often times for humans, they'll hire human models to be photographed, gathering the most proper angles on photos to help them get just the right pixels to apply to the template. When I've seen it done, they'll use those photos and grab portions as a brush and paint it down, using the template as a... you''ve guessed it... a template! ;)       Image taken from the internet

    From listening to John Knoll of ILM talk about how he's digitally recreated the first Death Star (the original practical model accidentally got tossed in a dumpster when ILM moved!) it sounded like he can perform an opposite technique from unwrapping the model, projecting an image into a specific shape. When ILM has a need, they have a genius or two (or more) whom can create a solution. The fun part is that their technology ends up trickling down, being shared with the rest of the world for all of us to use.

    When I used to tweak the UVs of a mesh along with editing the image map itself, I did what now might seem like a poor-man's 3D Paint. With the mesh open in the UV Plugin, I'd move the edges of the mesh to optimize it from its original unwrapping to remove any stretching that was showing up in game. At the same time, I'd have the image open in PhotoShop along with some layers containing the concept art for the model, which was a set of beautiful paintings that the model was based upon. Here's one of the ships I textured on right

    I'd make a selection on the concept art and grab that as a stamp. Then I'd rotate that around an flip it, etc., whatever it took to get it to stamp down what I wanted, where I wanted it. I'd do some editing on the image map and then update the image in UV - going back and forth to get the thing looking fantastic.

    Then I'd have to compile everything back into game assets and test it out in the game engine.

    It was all very addictive. My first project that I did, I created on my own and gave it to the community, which was a pretty big hit. Must have been a lot of guys playing the game, because it changed the clothing on all female playable characters as well as all of the non-player females as well, into fantasy-style metal bikinis and tattered cloth and leather. I complete overwrite of female clothing in the game. Silly.

    My next endeavor was a lot more involved, making backpacks that players could have their characters put on and take off on command in the game - mainly for role playing purposes... we could have a Dungeon Master player run campaign adventures for many of us online... very cool.

    Instead of just backpacks, I added various weapons, armor, clothing, robes, and one of them had your character pick up a fallen companion and carry him or her. Of course I also made some Rosie Hair! LOL A friend did all of the scripting for me, with modules of code that allowed me to tweak it myself. Pretty cool. 

      

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 15,431
    edited November 2016

    So to work with all of this information, try looking through the internet for modeling tutorials. Please don't include "Carrara" (or your current favorite modeler) into the search - just search for something you'd like to make - even if you're not going to actually make it.

    Watch or read the tutorial and imagine yourself performing the job in Carrara (or your current favorite modeler) - and notice the similarities. I often even see ways to make the process easier in Carrara. Sometimes we'll see processes or commands that don't directly relate to Carrara. But we should still be able to figure out how to fully complete the project.

    In the tutorial:

    • Is the modeler keeping UV Mapping in mind during the process?
    • Is the model broken down into various polymeshes (separate actual pieces of mesh) or is it all one piece?
    • Do you think you'd be able to mark seams and unwrap the model?

    If you're not sure about what to search for, or just want to follow an example tutorial, try one of these:

    Glen Southern demonstrates how to create a high-polycount Minotaur model for the purposes of rigging for animation using Silo

    10 part series

    Wei demonstrates how to model a low-poly face in Maya (Arnold Schwarzenegger)

    ​Model a Telescope in Modo - Edge CGI 3D Tutorials

    * In Carrara, where he's using the "Add Loop" tool, we could easily use the "Extract Along" edge tool

    ​Vertex Modeling in Carrara with Dimension Theory

    Just make anything you want using these fun and helpful skills! yes

    Part 1

    ​Part 2

    Post edited by Dartanbeck on
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