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 Subject: Modeling a Capitone-style cushion (step-by-step) tutorial

LuxXeon opened this issue on Feb 26, 2013 · 14 posts

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  LuxXeon    ( ) ( posted at 12:11PM Tue, 26 February 2013 

This tutorial is in response to prixat, in my WIP thread, where I'm modeling a Capitone-style, art-deco modern sofa.  This is how to achieve the creases and button holes in the cushion, while still maintaining (hopefully) 100% quadrilateral topology.

I'm using 3dsmax 2013 to model this object, but hopefully you will be able to translate the procedure to whatever modeling app you are using.  I know that Blender and Cinema4D have similar polygon modeling tools to 3dsmax, so people using those apps should be able to reproduce the same results easily.  It's not a difficult process, if you have the tools in your app to do some of the operations.

Ok, start by creating a box, with whatever dimensions you wish your sofa cushion to be.  The length and height don't need to be precise, unless you are modeling for an Archi/Viz scene where space matters.  However, the amount of edges does count to get the right results.  So, make your box with length segments: 6;  width segments: 12; and height segments: 2.  It should look similar to this image:

capitone01

The next step is to select every OTHER vertex on your box, in a step-selected, diagonal pattern, exactly like this:

capitone02b

It's important you select the verts in that exact pattern on each side. Once you have them selected, connect the selected vertices with edges, (in 3dsmax, just press "Connect" in the vertex subobect mode in the modifier panel) and you should end with a triangulated mesh that looks exactly like this:

capitone02

Now select your centroid vertices, and chamfer them to about 2 or 3 centimeters, so the topology looks like this:

capitone03

After you chamfer the vertices, you end up with a rounded Ngon where each vertice used to be. Go to polygon or face mode, and select each one of those Ngons, then Bevel them INWARD about 2 centimeters. They should look like this:

capitone04

capitone04b

Now, go to vertex mode, and select ONLY the inside vertices of all your new bevels, and WELD only the inner vertices of the bevels together, so that you only have ONE single vertex or point on the inner part of your bevel. In 3dsmax, you would just select the inner vertices of the new bevels, click WELD, and adjust the tolerance until there's just one vertex left. Your bevels should look like inverted icecream cones if all went well, just like in the image below:

capitone05

Next, go to edge mode, and select ONLY the cross-hatching edgeloops on your topology, as illustrated in RED in the image below:

capitone06

Now, with those crosshatched edges selected, the next step is up to you on how you wish to proceed. If you own 3dsmax, I recommend getting a modifier called "Quad Chamfer", and using that to chamfer those edges, and inset the results, in order to keep perfect quad topology.

However, in any other app, or if you don't care to use Quad Chamfer modifier, then just extrude those edges INWARD (AKA, "intrude", in some applications) as deep as you like (the deeper the extrusion, the more pronounced the cushion folds will appear once smoothed. It should end up looking something like this:

capitone07

capitone07b

Once you have your extruded edges, it's up to you if you want to add any support loops to the edges for a tighter appearance, but at this point, you should be able to add a subdivision smoothing with about 2 iterations, and you should end up with this:

capitone08

That's it! Easy, right? Now, further details would be to add buttons in each of the "holes", or a seperate trim on the intruded edges. This is where polygon count will skyrocket, but this isn't intended to be a model you will use if your polygon budget is conservative anyway.

Good luck, and hopefully this helps or gives you some ideas for your own techniques.

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  LuxXeon    ( ) ( posted at 1:21PM Tue, 26 February 2013  · @4045289

PS:  if you want the cushions to be more "full", then it's easy to do.  Just grab each vertex in the middle of each cushion "pouf", and pull it out from the world origin until you're happy with the thickness.  If anyone needs an example of this, I'll post a screencap, but I'm sure most of you know what I mean.

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  RobynsVeil    ( ) ( posted at 4:11PM Tue, 26 February 2013  · @4045384

Wow, elegant, LuxXeon!! I'll have to have a go in Blender... 😄 thanks for this. :thumbupboth:

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  prixat    ( ) ( posted at 4:51PM Tue, 26 February 2013  · @4045407


Thanks.

By leaving the n-gons (under each button), I think the resulting subdivision defects might have accidentally added to the realism.

regards
prixat


  LuxXeon    ( ) ( posted at 4:53PM Tue, 26 February 2013  · @4045409

Quote - Wow, elegant, LuxXeon!! I'll have to have a go in Blender... 😄 thanks for this. :thumbupboth:

Awesome. Let me know how it goes, and post the results if you can.  If you get stuck, just post about it and I'll try help you out.

I didn't invent the technique of course; it's been illustrated in several other tutorials out there for everything from chairs to pillows, but most of the other tuts I've seen didn't keep the procedure parametric (keeping all the vertex and edge operations contained in their own layers in the modifier stack).  If you can do that in Blender, I highly recommend it; especially for the vertex chamfering and edge selections.  If possible, try to save your selection sets along the way, in case you want to adjust them later.

Once you do it one time, you will find the procedure quite simple, and will probably find your own shortcuts and things to help speed things up.  Good luck, and definitely let me know how you make out.

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  LuxXeon    ( ) ( posted at 4:56PM Tue, 26 February 2013  · @4045412

Quote - Thanks.

By leaving the n-gons (under each button), I think the resulting subdivision defects might have accidentally added to the realism.

Wow.  That came out really cool. You could probably add a support loop to that ngon, and sharpen the buttons even more.  However, by leaving the ngon, there's a few creases that aren't visible.  It all depends on the kind of creasing you want.  Definitely experiment with different variations, for all kinds of cool results.  I like to add the buttons manually as seperate objects, but the way you did it also conserves polygon load.  Nice work!

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  airflamesred    ( ) ( posted at 12:04PM Wed, 27 February 2013  · @4045634

I'll have to take a different aproach with this without ngons.


  LuxXeon    ( ) ( posted at 12:35PM Wed, 27 February 2013  · @4045648

Quote - I'll have to take a different aproach with this without ngons.

The method I'm using doesn't leave NGons.  prixat did that on purpose in his attempt, but in the end, the ngon is collapsed, and you are left with all quads.

Unless you mean your software doesn't support vertex chamfering into more than 4 edges?

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  SpentWeapon    ( ) ( posted at 3:49PM Thu, 28 February 2013  · @4046198


Just wanted to say thank you very much for the outstanding tut! With the excellent illustrations and explanations I was able to follow along along and get very similar results, even with a very old( 0.99.04) version of Wings3D! The command names were different in Wings, but all the necessary functions were there, and I came out with a nice mesh with all quads.
   I hadn't done any 3D modeling for quite some time, but your tut has helped inspire me to break through a creative block, and even more has given me lots of other ideas to pursue based on this method. Thanks again.

 


  LuxXeon    ( ) ( posted at 7:31PM Thu, 28 February 2013  · @4046245

Quote - Just wanted to say thank you very much for the outstanding tut! With the excellent illustrations and explanations I was able to follow along along and get very similar results, even with a very old( 0.99.04) version of Wings3D! The command names were different in Wings, but all the necessary functions were there, and I came out with a nice mesh with all quads.
   I hadn't done any 3D modeling for quite some time, but your tut has helped inspire me to break through a creative block, and even more has given me lots of other ideas to pursue based on this method. Thanks again.

 

Very impressive result!  It looks perfect.  I'm really happy you found it useful!  It's cool to hear you did that in Wings, because that was the 3D application that got me started modeling.  I created my first complete model in Wings.  I still consider it one of the best pure polygon modeling applications out there, and if not for taking a few classes where the curriculum was based around 3dsmax, I would probably still be using it to model things.

I really hope you continue to model, and continue to be inspired!  Stay in touch.  If there's ever anything I might be able to help with, or if you wanna bounce modeling ideas or theory off someone, I will be hanging around here often, and I'm always on DA, or more recently, the AREA (Autodesk) Forums.

Great work!

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  airflamesred    ( ) ( posted at 5:11PM Sat, 02 March 2013  · @4046917

Quote - I'll have to take a different aproach with this without ngons.

Unless you mean your software doesn't support vertex chamfering into more than 4 edges?

No it doesn't, nor do I wish it to! 

Last evening I was watching a thing about Motorhead - yes, motorhead the rock band - on youtube. On the right, in the side bar came up a tut about modeling a capitone. I know LuxXeon hadn't laid claim to this tut, and I would like to thank him for posting this.

My question is, Has google gone too far? I remember when (I thought) they where great because they were the only ones who had image search (I'm going back 10 years here) but now I think they are just intrusive bullies.


  LuxXeon    ( ) ( posted at 5:47PM Sat, 02 March 2013 · edited on 5:52PM Sat, 02 March 2013 · @4046924

Quote -
No it doesn't, nor do I wish it to! 

Last evening I was watching a thing about Motorhead - yes, motorhead the rock band - on youtube. On the right, in the side bar came up a tut about modeling a capitone. I know LuxXeon hadn't laid claim to this tut, and I would like to thank him for posting this.

My question is, Has google gone too far? I remember when (I thought) they where great because they were the only ones who had image search (I'm going back 10 years here) but now I think they are just intrusive bullies.

Wow, Motorhead?  That's old school heavy metal.  I've heard a few of their songs I'm sure.  Yeah, there's quite a few tuts on this out there on how to do this technique, especially for 3dsmax.  The one I learned from was also on Youtube, probably the same one you found.  I didn't like how the instructor failed to use some of the selection tools though, as it would have made the process much easier if he had just used a few tools differently, but everyone has their preferred workflow I guess.  I don't lay claim to the process or technique of this in any way, but just to be clear, the screengrabs here are my own, and the actual modeling of the object is indeed mine as well.  The technique, however, was discovered by someone else for sure.  :)

Regarding Google, I'm not sure if it's an intrusive thing, depending on the content that appears.  If you had searched Youtube, for instance, in the past about modeling something, it will remember that search and give you similar results in the sidebar.  Sometimes it becomes distracting, and I hate when it throws in the occasional EXPLICIT result.  Like if I'm searching for kitty kats, even with safe search on, and I get images of ... well, you know what I mean. ;)

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  RobynsVeil    ( ) ( posted at 5:49PM Sat, 02 March 2013  · @4046925

Quote - ...My question is, Has google gone too far? I remember when (I thought) they where great because they were the only ones who had image search (I'm going back 10 years here) but now I think they are just intrusive bullies.

Oh well, you can always just ignore it. There are far worse things corporations do than collect information about preferences and throwing them back in your face, to be honest. In the realm of today's aggressive software/internet/marketing world, this really is small potatoes.

Me, I get upset when a movie I purchased and have a receipt for won't play on a given device because some corporation wants to decide what I can and can't play my DVD on. Or how MANY people can watch this DVD at the same time (and will spy on me to make sure I comply, or shut the device down if too many people are sitting watching it!). Or whether I can make a backup of the DVD in case it gets lost or stolen. Or - much the WORST of ALL - criminalising me for doing things things mentioned above those corporations don't allow.

That enrages me. A targeted ad based on something I'd surfed to before is really pretty much nothing compared to that.

Mint18/HighSierra/Win7Pro-Blender2.79-PoserPro 11(inches)-FinalCutProX

Wir sind gewohnt, daß die Menschen verhöhnen was sie nicht verstehen
[we realise that people hold in contempt that which they do not understand] 


  LuxXeon    ( ) ( posted at 6:29PM Sat, 02 March 2013 · edited on 6:34PM Sat, 02 March 2013 · @4046939

By the way, you can skip the Ngon part by chamfering every other vertice on the box after creating it; basically making them into a quad, then adding the additional edgeloops diagonally through those, as in the next step of this tutorial, manually.  Basically, you will end up with triangulated buttons, but it bypasses the Ngon phase.  You will probably need to add more supporting edgeloops to define the buttons later, so it's a little more work.

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