View Full Version : Morphing with differing topology?

04 April 2006, 03:56 PM
This is a long shot as I'm not sure that its possible, but a client wants a model to morph into something completely different. Hires meshes as well. I think it will have to be an effect rather than an actual morph; any ideas? Maya or Max.


04 April 2006, 05:03 PM
Are they characters? If it's static objects, then it's possible, but a bit of a hassle if a 2d morph will do.

Blendshapes are a possibility with a non animated mesh, if you build a kind of "double topology". So you build both of your meshes normally, but only use one as a reference. Then duplicate the mesh that isn't your reference, and apply this duplicate as a blendshape to the non reference mesh.

Remodel the blendshape by point snapping the vertices from your blendshape to the reference mesh. You can then start hacking into your blendshape with a second topology that will help it fit the reference mesh better. Maya 7 has a feature that lets you automatically update blendshapes, if you don't have it you'll have to update by hand.

Of course, the final mesh will be unusable for anything other than the morph, and also the morph will be totally linear (although you can change that to a degree with more blendshapes)

The attachments are of a morph I did this way last year. As you can see the resulting topology is not the prettiest :)

Since then I've been looking into better ways to do it, which use rigs and animated displacement maps in addition to blendshapes, which lets you actually animate during the morph. Depends on what it is you need to do I guess.

04 April 2006, 08:05 AM
Cheers pal will look at that. Think they might be being a touch ambitious though! Thanks for the help!


05 May 2006, 12:29 AM
I think if its drastically different, film trickery can be used to achieve what you want, which would be a 2d morph program.

05 May 2006, 06:49 AM
perhaps with 'conform' in 3dsmax, but needs to be prepared
this is a fast test (2003) :

max morph (

the mesh wires can be different, but should be proportional..
a duplicated face has to be adjusted, eyes - ears positions, etc.. you don't have to recreate it, if I'm not wrong you just have to adjust proportions especially ears nose..
apply conform, and readjust a little

it'd be a lot better if the wires topology are similar and well prepared, .. in the flash, the wires of both faces are different, especially the ears wich looks bad.
the idea is to create targets with conform

you can also replace , the final frame in the morph, with the original face iin case there'd be wrong vertices.
2 levels of subdivision instead of 1 or none, could help
If you have models radically different, it would be more complicated, in that case I would try what OptimusDinkus says.

this method needs more tests to see if its posiblle to get a perfect morph


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05 May 2006, 06:49 AM
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