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Chapter 2. Modeling the Skin of a Biped ... > Modeling a NURBS Torso and Limbs

Modeling a NURBS Torso and Limbs

In this section, you will learn techniques for creating your character’s body parts. A special emphasis will be placed on orienting the isoparm structure on each NURBS surface so it will bend correctly during animation. Techniques will also be shown for creating tangency between NURBS surfaces with very different surface orientations. This will make it possible to make surfaces that cannot be attached still appear as continuous organic surfaces.

Roughing Out a NURBS Torso

As you are modeling the various body parts for your character, keep in mind that where you place the edges or poles of each body part determines the isoparm orientation and determines how well your character will deform when animated with skeletons. No matter how good your character model looks when static, it will only bend correctly if you place isoparms in the correct places at all the joints. When creating your character’s body parts, avoid stretching isoparms in unnatural ways across areas that will bend. Because NURBS surfaces are rectangular shapes, for instance, it is impossible to make a NURBS torso with branching limbs from a single NURBS patch. You therefore must position several separate NURBS surfaces together to create a torso with limbs. Now it’s time to examine the two main ways you can create a simple NURBS torso from spherical or cylindrical patches, and thereby ensure the surfaces bend correctly during animation. Keep in mind that the torso must bend mainly at the waist, and the arms must bend at the shoulders and elbows.


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