Over the next few weeks, guest columnist Anders Lejczak [bazze]
shares his Cinema 4D expertise with the Renderosity community.
Anders combines his passion for airplanes and his talent as a CG
Modeler to bring you this outstanding tutorial series: Modeling,
Texturing and Rigging a Republic P47. This week, Part 2:
In this section of the tutorial, I will explain my work process
while modeling the P47. I'm writing this primarily with C4D users
in mind, but users of other 3D apps should be able to follow the
work process. If you are a Wings3D user then you can simulate the
hypernurbs with a mesh subdivision trick (select the polygon edges
and set them to "soft", then subdivide). You can download the
reference setup file (.cd4 & fixed drawings) if
you wish to tag along!
Created a reference setup using drawings from Sky Corner.
This is an important step that involves some 2D work. It's very
important that everything is aligned and in the same scale. I've
painted the red lines to make sure that that all planes and cross
sections are correctly aligned.
Now we need to start with a suitable shape. The 10-sided cylinder
fits this purpose. Its always easy to add polygons if more are
needed removing them is much harder. Question: Is the
length of the 10-sided cylinder the same as the fuselage length?
It's hard to tell from the screen grab. Answer: Yes roughly
there is no need to make it exactly the same length because we
will adjust the point on both ends along the way.
I've sliced the cylinder vertically a couple of times and extruded
the polys where the cockpit should be. Then I have moved polys by
hand to create the shape you see in this picture. I'm constantly
switching between top view, side view, and free view to make sure
that my mesh has the same shape as the drawings. The cross sections
are really helpful in this step. Question: I was curious why
you chose not to use Loft Nurbs and create the frame splines for
it. Answer Wings3D, where I come from, don't have nurbs, so
I'm accustomed to working with boxes. This is probably not the most
efficient way, but creating splines along the cross sections and
profiles takes longer time than shaping the mesh from a box or
simple cylinder (in this case anyway). I tried lofting but found
out that I have less control over the polys in that way. This
probably has to do with my limited skills in that area. I've made
the reference setup file downloadable from the top of this page. So
if anybody would like to show alternate solutions and approaches I
would be more than happy to hear from you!
Question I was wondering at this early stage why you have
the whole fuselage instead of a mirrored half? Answer I
didn't mirror it since I get "holes" (caused by the hypernurbs
object) as you can see in this picture. The shape is still simple
and still easy to work with without mirroring it. I however select
points on both sides when I'm shaping the mesh to make sure that it
is symmetrical. Solution to get rid of the "holes. Select all
polys -> Optimize. [Thanks to "theglenster" for the tip!]
In this step I have made a new cut just in front of the tail and
extruded the tail fin. I've also put the cage into hypernurbs.
As you can see in this picture I have already begun thinking of
where I will cut out moving parts later on. I have therefore
aligned the polys around the cockpit and also made a vertical cut
near the rudder. Question The point view screen grab appears
to have 15 vertical knife cuts. Is this correct? Answer I
haven't counted. You can make as many or as few cuts as you like.
The important thing is that you have enough cuts to create the
intended shape and that your lines/polygons "follow" the shape of
the airplanes body. Here I have intruded the part around the
engine and propeller. I will come back to this later to adjust this
part of the airplane. The holes shape and depth aren't correct and
the edges will probably need some adjustments too.
Now let's start with the wings. I started with a box (3 Y-segments)
that I flattened, sliced, and roughly shaped as the wing.
Question Are the wings extruded from the body or created
from unattached boxes as the tutorial seems to indicate?
Answer The wing (it's only one but I have put it into a
symmetry object) is created from an unattached box. I have however
extruded the wings when I created some of my previous models (the
Spitfire, the Dornier and the J29 jet). I don't know which method
is the better. It's easier to get a clean cut/transition between
the wing and the fuselage when extruding, but I found it harder to
shape the wing. When creating the wing from an unattached box it's
easier to shape it but you will probably need to work some more
with the area where the wing is attached to the fuselage. I rotated
the wing (along the red axis) so that the correct angle is towards
the fuselage, and then I started moving points to create the shape
you see in this picture. I've also sliced in once along the blue
axis. Remember that the wing is thickest nearest the fuselage and
gets thinner towards the wing tip. It's also very thin along the
edge on the backside.
Now throw to wing into hypernurbs, and then into a symmetry object.
It's starting to look like something but it still needs some
tweaking to get the shape right. "Freeze" your hypernurbs (make
editable mesh) when you're satisfied with the fuselages shape.
Question When you "freeze" the HN to get the polygon
geometry, what's your Render sub-division value? Answer The
sub division value is set to 2. If I notice that the poly count is
too low somewhere then I fix it by adding a cut before I freeze the
I used exactly the same approach when creating the tail wings. As
you can see I have also finished the cockpit it's pretty simple
actually. I will explain how in the next step.
Select and copy these polys_ twice_. The 1st copy will be the glass
and the 2nd copy will be the cockpit cage. Slice them along the
diagonal line in this picture and delete the polys to the right.
Apply a glass material and to the glass object and scale it down a
tad. Use the knife tool again to slice the cockpit cage object so
that you can delete the polys where the "windows" should be.
Question I'm having difficulty in copying the canopy
polygons. I select the polygons, go to the structure manager and
insure that I'm in the polygon mode. Then I hit the edit tab and
select "copy." I hit the edit tab again, but clicked on "paste"
this time. Now I have twice the original number of polygons but the
copy is still attached to the fuselage. Any idea what I'm doing
wrong? I tried copying and pasting in the point mode and am able to
move the group points around freely. I can't do it with polygons
though. How did you do it? Answer There are my steps:
Here you see the glass object and the cockpit cage object. I used
the "Make thicker" plugin to make the cockpit cage a bit thicker.
Now you can delete the corresponding polygons from the airplanes
body. Don't forget to optimize (function -> optimize) your
meshes or you will end up with thousands of unused points. If you
wish you can add thickness to the glass parts too. Tips from
Becco_UK "Adding thickness to the glass will provide a
realistic refraction and also reflections probably more relevant
for large or close-up renders. Glass never comes in infinite
thinness! However, if this is destined for Poser it's worth keeping
in mind that Poser 4 is very poor when it comes to seeing through
transparency objects with thickness Poser 5 and 6 do a great job
- Selected the canopy polygons
- Copied the enitire object (new we have 2 objects)
- Deleted the canopy polys from the _original_ object
- Inverted the ploy selection on the _new object_ (now everything
except the conopy is selected on the new object)
- Deleted the selected polys on the new object and renamed the
new object to "canopy"
- Changed to point select mode and ran "optimize" on both objects
(this deletes all unused points)
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We would like to thank guest columnist Anders
Lejczak [bazze] for this outstanding tutorial series. Anders
has been a member of Renderosity for over 6 years. As a Cinema 4D
artist his Renderosity Art Gallery combines his passion for
airplanes and his talent as a CG Modeler. Jan 30,