Head topo help.

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  10 October 2010
Head topo help.

Hi all. I'm in a character animation class this quarter and I'm trying to get some topology input. I'm fairly new to character modeling (and 3d in general) and I have absolutely no experience with character animation. I know that good topology is key, but I'm not sure what is good for deformation and what is not.

Here is the head I am working on. Any comments or crits are welcome.

My reference image:

And a couple of more questions of you guys dont mind.

What do you typically do for the inside of a mouth? Just keep extruding edges from the inner lips back down the throat? Create the teeth and gums separate?

And should I fill in the eye sockets, or just leave holes in the mesh?

Any input would be great.

  10 October 2010
Hey FatherO,

that topology is looking very good. Lots of edge loops in the right places. For animations Id extrude the inside of the mouth as you mentioned. Teeth and gums Id model separately, you wont see the areas where the gums connect to the head unless youre doing a film about dental operations. The eyes shoudl be modelled as separate objects for easier rigging. Also, you should think about modelling a tongue

I dont know if youve read "Stop Staring" by Jason Osipa. Its a wonderful book with lots of insight defining the relations between modelling, rigging and animating believable CG faces.

Are you planning on rigging/animating the head?

Have fun

  10 October 2010
Clean topology, nicely done.

I create the mouth just the way you said and do the same for the eyesocket (minus the gums and tongue of course :P ).

Some small nitpicks...
The topology of the jawline, something feels off but it probably won't cause problems.

The other thing is anatomy related and might be a side effect of perspective distortion...the back of the skull (if you draw a line from the corner of the eye to the back of the head) i think you could pull back that area a little bit, since the ear is usually sitting at midpoint of the head, right now there's more "facial" mass than cranial mass if you know what i mean.

Good stuff!
  10 October 2010
Thanks for the comments guys!


Thanks for the recomendation on "Stop Staring". Me and one of my classmates are gonna split the bill and order it tonight.

And yes, I will be rigging and animating the head, or at least trying my best.


Thanks for the input. I'm wondering shoud I model in the eye sockets, or just leave holes in the mesh behind the eyes?

Also I would love any info you can give me regarding the jaw line. Could you give me a paint over, or an image of better jawline topo if its not too much to ask? I want to learn as much as I can so any critique you can give is welcome.

I will get to fixing the cranial mass as well.

Again, thanks for the input guys.
  10 October 2010
Yes, you should create polygons for the inside of the eyesocket, simply select the lids' edges and shape them into a ball, just like the inside of the mouth.

I think your jawline should be ok for deformation, but the spots that stand out are the near the ear and the jaw/chin/mouth transition at the front...

In image below, the top left picture has a good exemple of what i usually prefer when modeling the jawline. That area is a major landmark since the bone is pushing directly against skin/fat and can be quite apparent on thin people. If you translate real world construction into 3d, then that area would be "hard edged" topology wise. Of course this will not be true all the time, a fat person topology won't have such a defined jawline.

  10 October 2010
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