View Full Version : What is organic modeling?

05 May 2006, 01:07 PM

i'm new and just want to know whats the difference between organic and any other modeling.


05 May 2006, 04:26 PM
At first I thought "that's a silly question" then I realized how abused that word is in today's venacular. Ex: Organic Food. Isn't all food essentially organic?
Organic modeling means modeling living things, or things that should be living, plants, animals, elves, humans, wookies, klingons, orcs, monsters, insects, bacteria. all of these things have soft edges and not many hard, geometric areas.

Hard modeling is cars, tanks, pens, pencils, helicopters, sunglasses, teapots, mobile phones...things with hard edges.

The tools don't matter. You can model organic or hard models with any method. Some methods are better than others for a given task, but remember, just like evidence at a Simpson Trial, the tools don't matter.


05 May 2006, 10:20 AM
Organic: something that deforms
hard: never deforms

Rod Seffen
05 May 2006, 12:10 PM
I'd make the definition even simpler. An organic model is a model that has a lot of curving, flowing topology and very little or no flat surfaces or corners.
I'd put teapots, helicopters, car bodies, sunglasses and mobile phones down as organic modeling.

06 June 2006, 07:51 PM
Wow, this is the only post under Organic modeling? I thought there would be a few more posts under this subforum at least....I think this officialy the least visited place on CGTalk!

07 July 2006, 03:37 PM
Something's organic is a thing that has a smooth connection to all its parts. It's an idea that can be applied to almost everything that is harmonious (it can be a speech, a plan,...).
Obviously when related to modeling "organic" means something with no hard edges, related to nature and living things.

08 August 2006, 01:11 AM
Well Organic Modeling is just as said above, I myself am working on one and have it modeled and now learning photoshop to learn hwo to texture it.

Organic modeling is modeling a actully living creature.

What i did is this.

(Search Google for Lizard Picture that look silmilar)
Study them
Pick a favorite one and set it up as an Image Plane on Maya
Start modeling (head then body then Legs then feet)
UV Map it
load the Uv texture in photoshop
Study pictures again
Start painting (with Tablet)

I post my work when i am finished with the work :)

09 September 2006, 11:53 AM
Material or Figure?

09 September 2006, 04:34 PM
I think that in general in the industry organic modeling is understood as modeling of living creatures.

10 October 2006, 03:21 PM
and very little or no flat surfaces or corners.

i can't agree, that's all a matter of style, you can still go for a very hard edged style on organic characters

11 November 2006, 02:54 PM
Lots of views no real Definition yet
for me I find madheavy opinion about this topic is best one yet keep this dissection Alive we need real and certain Definition For both Organic modeling and technical modeling

I find this sentence (living things, or things that should be living) isnt that comprehensive yet its the closest Definition yet

Mu xiaoshuang
11 November 2006, 03:00 AM
maybe motion is the key

Mu xiaoshuang
11 November 2006, 03:04 AM
the way of motion

12 December 2006, 08:37 AM
I agree somethign that is or was once alive. Generally something that would need to deform. (via bones) Even smoothed shaped non living things are different htey are much more regular in their curves so it is still a different art. Deformation is often where organic modelers are different often you need to model with deformation in mind.

12 December 2006, 06:36 AM
To me, organic is something that has no hard edges. Something very organic would be something that could be stretched and pulled into another shape. The opposite of organic would be modeling power tools. That would be mechanic modeling. Organic movement is bending/stretching. Mechanic movement is pivoting/telescoping.

Whether polygons or NURBS are used for modeling these things is for another discussion.

03 March 2007, 03:01 PM
A real simple way to think about it, if even previous good explanations didn't get through...

If it bends, stretches, flexes like Gumby, it's organic. If it pivots on hinges and moves about like a robot, it's not.

05 May 2007, 05:07 PM
Organic = Deformable, can be animated, alive somehow(characters for animations, Plants, toons )with topology in mind,
Hard = Solid, dead (Statues, Sculptures like zbrush, mudbox, dead things)

People is using the word organic, based on the appereances, I think this is WRONG, we should not define a technique this way, the process to model a statue is different from the process to model a character, and there is where hard modeling and organic modeling contrast themselves.

07 July 2007, 09:00 PM
I think there use to be a difference when people where using Nurbs as it was mainly reserved for product design for example, opposed to character modeling but nowadays I don't think anyone still uses nurbs therefore I wouldn't even make the distinction between organic modeling and hard edge. The only difference is the taste of the artist. Some people prefer to model tanks and other prefer to model hot chicks.


08 August 2007, 01:05 PM
for me the division was always based on whether or not I can pull single points or I must resort to edges and big surfaces... if I can shape my model by pulling single points [which makes me very happy ;)] then it's an organic model for sure!

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