View Full Version : why am I so rubbish at head modeling?

07 July 2004, 10:43 PM
This is my 4th serious attempt at a head model and its still far worse than most peoples 1st attempts. Spent about 12-15 hours on this now and allthough it was looking good in the first stages I soon get to the parts of the tutorial where it says "smooth out these vertices" and spent hours on hours moviing little vertices about without noticing that I lose other details such as the dimple, jaw, chin and overal head shape. I have done alot of research on topology but I don't think thats my problem, I know where to put things...but not how to do them. Part of me thinks its down to me being obbsessed with drawing 2D since a early age and its banned my mind from thinking in 3D...maybe...

anyone else as bad as me?, does it get better after practice? (allthough this 4th design isn't much better than my 1st)


07 July 2004, 11:21 PM
Uhm, just chill out. You're talking about a realistic human head right?
first, that's just pretty hard.
second, how long have you been in 3d? If it's not to long, it might just be the lack of knowledge and software sk1llz.
Third, you probably work to fast or something, you should see what you're doing, not just move some random CV's. How can you tweak some stuff without seeing what you're doing? If you move something, the next step'd be to take a look and see how it suits the model.
Forth, have you tried posting a WIP on a forum? Usually you get really good C&C and Advise.
As for number five, have you tried any modeling video's?
Sixth, if you have drawn a lot before going into 3d, I might assume you know quite a bit about what the human body looks like, static and in different poses. So you should have a good basis.
Seventh, a lot of time it really helps to just work on the model and after having worked on it some time, just do something else, for like a day or maybe even longer and get back to it then. If you look at it later, you'll see a lot of thing like:" oh, that needs some work" or "oooow, (>_<) why havn't I seen that before! [tweak, tweak, tweak]

Hope these tips will help :D

07 July 2004, 11:39 PM
Thanks for the thoughts oshi,

- Been doing 3D for 2 years

- What I mean by saying that I do not see what is going that I am forever moving vertices slightly to make every single line flow nicely...but by doing that I make other lines lose their flow without noticing...maybe I am working too fast...but I am under the impression that 12-15 hours for a undetailed no eared head is far too much and is something a good modeller could do in under 2 hours.

- Yep I do spend long amounts of time doing this non stop...about 16-20 hours a day 7 days a week at moment as am on uni break. I do different kinds of modeling jobs...but yep, maybe I should go to that place which is outside, the one with a blue texture really high on the Z axis.

-Yep, could do with modeling vids...only got 56k though till I go back to uni.

Thanks again

07 July 2004, 11:50 PM
[EDIT] You might find this tutorial on box modeling interesting...if you havn't come across it already.

I'm finding that modeling realistic heads is rough but just keep practicing and it'll get better...I've been doing 3d modeling for about 1.5 years now and I'm -just- now figuring out which technique works best for me. That's one thing to do, switch styles. Try to model one poly by poly then try box modeling and see which style works for you. Also, working 16 to 20 hours seems like way to long to be in front of your computer in a day. Try breaking it up in smaller sessions. I like to work for two or three hours then go for a drive for an hour or so then come back to it. It helps clear the can go mad from sitting at his computer all day like that. :)

I havn't been concerned with topology when head modeling yet until I get the basics down on my own. Here's my latest head and as you can see my cage is sloppy but when subdivided the results are acceptable. Now that I have the basic shape I can go back and try to fix the bad poly areas and work on the edge flow.

07 July 2004, 03:54 AM
yeah im up to about my 4th attempt. the first attemp was bad and but my last atempt i was about 50% appleased with my results. But each time i have modeled a head i have got better and found things i was doing wrong, and i also found what method i liked the best.

07 July 2004, 04:53 AM
I did no less than 70 versions of a head before it began to get realistic.

Don't give up and one way to save your self 50 of those 70 versions I did is to use a reference image in the viewports. Once I did that my model became 100000% better. even if the person is not exactly who you want to model using reference helps you get the proportions ans shapes right.

07 July 2004, 04:59 AM
what i was gonna say about that one head mesh is it lacks poly flow. Im no expert but basically you just need to slow down and develope a style. Keep working use reference pics and tuts to develope your own style of modeling i use box modeling but you should try diferent types of modeling some people start with a plane and just keep adding on. My first head was a creature wich was good because i was able to learn the basics without getting frustrated trying to recreate a human head. I bomodeled the head the deleted all but the face and built the remainder poly by poly. Just keep trying and remember to take breaks. YOu may think your slow but i think your just rushing yourself. Dont get caught up in stuff like a competent artist could have done this in 20 minutes and it took me 2 days. Dont worry about it it will happena dn youll get better and faster each time.

07 July 2004, 12:29 PM
ok, thanks all...I have had a break from it and have the confidence to keep at it. I will post my future results in WIP thread next time. If any mods are reading this please feel free to delete BOTH identical threads (I accidently made two threads...doh)

07 July 2004, 01:03 PM
16 - 20 hours is a lot, but if you're motivated and really like:"yeah, this is going great" it's hard to stop. (I suppose we all know that) But, most of the time, the work done late at night, after sitting in front of the comp and being tired, isn't that good. You might think that you did a fairly good job, but in the morning when you take a look at it, you're like "AAAARHG :banghead: that really sux!!" (speak from experiance) So take a break, go see some friends, go see a new movie, I dunno, do something else and continue later on. If you do this, you'll be more relaxted, peacefull and stuff like that. If you sit 20 hours straight behind the computer being like:" I ... GOT.TA .... MODEL ... NEEDZ IT... DA PRECIOUS .... UHMMMGUAH ... HNNZHUUAG ..... MODEL ..YES..NEEDZ .... TO .... MAKE .... GOOD..MODEL... YES..GREAT I"ll BE ... YES ........MUHAHAHAHA"

:D Kay, I overreacted with the "being like" part :p But anyway, if you're totally like feeling you MUST do it, you will screw up. Just relaxe and look what you're doing. Say, you're working on the mouth. You do some rough set up. Zoom out and in, pan around a bit, get to see it from every angle and see what's good or wrong, then continue and repeat the looking part. When you really feel like, yeah, I really did something, post in on the forums.

2 years :O That's pretty long actaully. That shouldn't be the problem. Did you do anything besides realiscitc heads, more like the cartoony stuff and slightly go over to realistic? I'm no expert or anyting, but I find that it helps to do some simpler stuff first and slightly build up to the harder models. (I'm not THAT into modeling, more into animation, but the same goes for animation) One more thing, If you don't feel like it, don't do it, do it another time and do something else now. :thumbsup:

EDIT: I took a look at your site, and it doesn't look to bad. You'll get better by time and experience. The last part of modeling the head, the tweaking-everything-to-look perfect-part, is a hard part and takes time to learn. (I'm learning it too) Just five minutes ago I restarted my own WIP and I havn't done anything for like 2 weeks, and in those 5 minutes, my model already improved. This is of course just my way of working.

Could you post an image of the "rubbish" head? Add some wires too. This way people can give some nice advise :D

07 July 2004, 11:09 PM
It might be an idea to reply :hmm:

07 July 2004, 06:21 AM
This is my first character, his first evolution was pretty bad. I went back and put in another horriffic amount of hours and got it up to the second image's lvl. It was hard, but worth it. It's still not perfect, but it's not bad. The best part about it was how much better i got at free poly modeling in the process.

07 July 2004, 02:14 PM
:O Did you use reference? That's lesson number one. This makes you get the right proportions, after that, you can do some more free stuff. Modeling can be tricky, but it is learned by time and practise. If you worked really hard and put all effort in it you have and it's still rubbish, modeling might not be the thing for you. Maybe you're really good at animation or rendering. You should focus on that, if you like it of course. Else you should try even harder. Everntually you should get good enough :thumbsup:

07 July 2004, 11:10 AM
Show your wireframe.
Nobody can stress enough on how important REFERENCES are!!
Can't you import pictures in whatever program you are using? To start out, it really helps when you actually have lines that you need to follow. Get a side and front view of a head and import them in to your side and front viewports and start copying!
Technique is a big thing too.
How are you building your model. I haven't modeled in polys yet, so I can't help you there. If this were Nurbs I could help you quite a bit. Keep trying.
How do you put put images up? I know you type img or something like that, do you type the address of the pic on your computer there or do you have to have a link to a web address??
I'll show you what my first and second head looked like once I got a better technique.

07 July 2004, 11:17 PM
Definitely use a reference. I found using create polygon tool, outlining head against reference, extruding edge, deleting back and bottom faces, and converting to subdivisions to be an easier way for me. After that were many extrusions and use of the split polygon tool. Many lines are needed for a face.

I am glad I found this site... now I don't feel so desperate about my own growth. ;)

Good luck....

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