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NURBS Multipatch Modeling

So far in this chapter, you have been modeling several kinds of basic NURBS shapes to create the skin of your character with as few NURBS surfaces as possible. This approach minimizes the seams between surfaces, but often lacks tangency in areas where an open NURBS edge branches off the center of a closed NURBS surface. This occurs on your character’s head where the eye patches connect to the main head, where the limbs branch off the torso, and where the fingers and toes branch off the hands and feet. Unless your character models were designed to incorporate seams whenever a limb branches off a main surface—for instance, if clothing items have similar seams—this method of modeling will always have tangency problems. In each of these problem areas, the underlying geometry prevents you from ultimately creating a seamless skin. In this section, you use a different NURBS modeling approach to create a skin with more surface continuity in these problem areas, called a NURBS multipatch skin. This involves cutting up your NURBS character into many smaller rectangular patches so that you can remove overlapping geometry and create open edges on the head and torso to better line up with similar open edges on the eyelids and limbs. Using multipatch modeling techniques, you can create a character skin with smooth transitions between body parts (see Figure 2.45). Multipatch skin enables you to take your character model to the next stage of the modeling process, which is a seamless polygon skin. Keep in mind, however, that there is not one right way to multipatch model a character. The methods shown in this section are just a few examples of how to approach such a task.

2.45. Using multipatch modeling techniques, you can create a character skin with good surface continuity between the eyelids and head surface, and between the limbs and the torso (character model by Nick Miulli).



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