View Full Version : Bend surface in multiple axis whilst holding boundary? (3ds Max)
07-13-2011, 03:40 PM
I've yet to find an easy way to bulge a surface (bend it in 2 directions) whilst holding the boundary edges.
Is there a good technique for doing this?
Ps Are there any other programs that have a tool for doing this?
07-14-2011, 12:52 AM
07-14-2011, 06:51 AM
Soft Selection: To accurately set it up for this is slooow. Not useful when making multiple changes.
FFD: doesn't allow you to alter the control cage to any shape other than rectangular, so the boundaries would not be held. It also doesn't work on a flat plane.
Skinwrap: You'd have to create a low poly version and then accurately set up a soft selection to that too to get the falloff. Long!
It would be great to have some more dedicated tools for curved hard surfaces. Maybe something like putting a bezier curve on a vertex that you could pull out and it would effect the rest of the polygons.
If it's not easily deformable, then how about the best way to create shapes like these? The way I do it, is having it low enough poly and manually tweaking the verts. But a lot of the time I need to work with denser geometry and manually tweaking is sh*t. A cleaner, more automated technique, is welcome!
07-14-2011, 07:05 AM
07-14-2011, 07:25 AM
Nurbs Surface? It gives you a few control points, you pick one and pull it up. It's a bit like soft select but more forgiving when you push and pull things around.
Soft Select will recalculate after you drag so if you drag up, let go and select it again, you get a slightly different selection, nurbs surfaces don't do that, each point controls a set area.
With NURBS surfaces, moving a point up, letting go, and moving it back down to the exact same spot will give you a flat plane again, not so with soft select. NURBS surfaces used to have a set tools that enabled the use of Bezier handles but I can't find any documentation on it and I haven't used it in 5-6years so it might of been something they overhauled, or maybe its still burried deep...
But it really depends on what you're going to do. You can also make a soft selection and use modifiers to operate on that soft selection, so the section never changes but the modifier do. For as cool as I make NURBS sound, they can be a royal pain to work with, so most people stick to poly modeling but for some rounded hard surface shapes they can help out.
Skinwrap is going to be a bit flaky when the mesh density isn't all that close. It works off of vertex proximity if you skinwrap something dense to something low poly that leaves a lot of verts looking for a source vert where it can't find one.
07-14-2011, 07:33 AM
In 3DS Max you can convert a Plane primitive, with two segments, into an Editable Patch. This will give you control over the surface/edge deformation and still keep it relatively simple.
07-14-2011, 08:19 AM
Editable patch... that's what it was... /forehead slap
07-14-2011, 09:40 AM
I was hoping that I was missing a nice technique while working in editable poly. I don't have much experience with patch modeling so I'll test it out. That seems to be the result that I'm after. I'm hesitant relying on techniques where the toolset's development seems to have ceased though.
I'd love an editable poly tool where you could do something like select edges to define your fixed boundary, then select and move an inside vertex to define the peak of the bulge. On that vertex, a control gizmo could alter the % effect (bulge/pinch) between the vertex and the boundary vertices. This would allow for quick/even control of bubbling/pinching between the peak vertex and the boundary. The gizmo could control it in multiple directions, think like a multi-axis bezier control.
I can draw up what I'm thinking if need be. If anyone fancies making something like this, get in touch, I'd love to get involved with creating the design of it. It'd be great for cleanly manipulating hard surfaces.
07-14-2011, 02:35 PM
I hear you. I don't use Editable Patch that much, but it does come in handy every now and then.
Thinking about what you want reminds me of something similar that I wish Max could do: Freeze sub-objects in Edit Poly (freeze certain S-Os while working on others). For instance, freezing the border edges of the example above would let me alter the interior all I wanted. Something like this would really be handy using the Freeform Shift tool, etc.
07-14-2011, 05:36 PM
I've wanted something like that for Maya for a while. Soft selection can be masked off, or skin cluster groups can be assigned, but like you said, it takes too much time to set up, and usually for a small effect.
My idea isn't far off, but more direct I think; select the components you want affected by a soft select, everything else isn't considered. Then you'd pick components within that selection to be the base for soft select or whathaveyou. (insert some mechanism to leave the first selection here)
It sounds like you want a bit more control over the shape than what a soft selection can manage, but a sub-selection keeps things simple.
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