Blender 3D: Characters, Machines, and Scenes for Artists

Gain the insights and techniques you need to give life to your own custom characters, machines, and scenes in Blender 3D

Blender 3D: Characters, Machines, and Scenes for Artists

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Enrico Valenza et al.

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Gain the insights and techniques you need to give life to your own custom characters, machines, and scenes in Blender 3D
$69.99
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Book Details

ISBN 139781787129665
Paperback1257 pages

Book Description

Blender 3D is one of the top 3D animation software available. As the Blender software grows more powerful and popular, there is a demand to take your modeling skills to the next level.

This learning path is divided into three modules that will take you on this incredible journey of creating games.

The first module will take you on a journey to understand the workflow normally used to create characters, from the modeling to the rendering stages, using the tools of the last official release of Blender exclusively. You will be making production-quality 3D models and characters quickly and efficiently, which will be ready to be added to your very own animated feature or game.

The second module will help you develop a comprehensive skill set that covers the key aspects of mechanical modeling. You will create many types of projects, including a pistol, spacecraft, robot, and a racer. By the end of this module, you will have mastered a workflow that you will be able to apply to your own creations.

The final module will help you to create many types of projects using a step-by-step approach. Each project in this module will give you more practice and increase your knowledge of the Blender tools and game engine.

This learning path combines some of the best that Packt has to offer in one complete, curated package. It includes content from the following Packt products:

  • Blender 3D Cookbook, Second Edition by Enrico Valenza
  • Blender 3D Incredible Machines, Second Edition by Christopher Kuhn
  • Blender 3D By Example by Romain Caudron and Pierre-Armand Nicq

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Modeling the Character's Base Mesh
Introduction
Setting templates with the Images as Planes add-on
Setting templates with the Image Empties method
Setting templates with the Background Images tool
Building the character's base mesh with the Skin modifier
Chapter 2: Sculpting the Character's Base Mesh
Introduction
Using the Skin modifier's Armature option
Editing the mesh
Preparing the base mesh for sculpting
Using the Multiresolution modifier and the Dynamic topology feature
Sculpting the character's base mesh
Chapter 3: Polygonal Modeling of the Character's Accessories
Introduction
Preparing the scene for polygonal modeling
Modeling the eye
Modeling the armor plates
Using the Mesh to Curve technique to add details
Chapter 4: Re-topology of the High Resolution Sculpted Character's Mesh
Introduction
Using the Grease Pencil tool to plan the edge-loops flow
Using the Snap tool to re-topologize the mesh
Using the Shrinkwrap modifier to re-topologize the mesh
Using the LoopTools add-on to re-topologize the mesh
Concluding the re-topologized mesh
Chapter 5: Unwrapping the Low Resolution Mesh
Introduction
Preparing the low resolution mesh for unwrapping
UV unwrapping the mesh
Editing the UV islands
Using the Smart UV Project tool
Modifying the mesh and the UV islands
Setting up additional UV layers
Exporting the UV Map layout
Chapter 6: Rigging the Low Resolution Mesh
Introduction
Building the character's Armature from scratch
Perfecting the Armature to also function as a rig for the Armor
Building the character's Armature through the Human Meta-Rig
Building the animation controls and the Inverse Kinematic
Generating the character's Armature by using the Rigify add-on
Chapter 7: Skinning the Low Resolution Mesh
Introduction
Parenting the Armature and Mesh using the Automatic Weights tool
Assigning Weight Groups by hand
Editing Weight Groups using the Weight Paint tool
Using the Mesh Deform modifier to skin the character
Using the Laplacian Deform modifier and Hooks
Chapter 8: Finalizing the Model
Introduction
Creating shape keys
Assigning drivers to the shape keys
Setting movement limit constraints
Transferring the eyeball rotation to the eyelids
Detailing the Armor by using the Curve from Mesh tool
Chapter 9: Animating the Character
Introduction
Linking the character and making a proxy
Creating a simple walk cycle for the character by assigning keys to the bones
Tweaking the actions in Graph Editor
Using the Non Linear Action Editor to mix different actions
Chapter 10: Creating the Textures
Introduction
Making a tileable scales image in Blender Internal
Preparing the model to use the UDIM UV tiles
Baking the tileable scales texture into the UV tiles
Painting to fix the seams and to modify the baked scales image maps
Painting the color maps in Blender Internal
Painting the color maps in Cycles
Chapter 11: Refining the Textures
Introduction
Sculpting more details on the high resolution mesh
Baking the normals of the sculpted mesh on the low resolution one
The Armor textures
Adding a dirty Vertex Colors layer and baking it to an image texture
The Quick Edit tool
Chapter 12: Creating the Materials in Cycles
Introduction
Building the reptile skin shaders in Cycles
Making a node group of the skin shader to reuse it
Building the eyes' shaders in Cycles
Building the armor shaders in Cycles
Chapter 13: Creating the Materials in Blender Internal
Introduction
Building the reptile skin shaders in Blender Internal
Building the eyes' shaders in Blender Internal
Building the armor shaders in Blender Internal
Chapter 14: Lighting, Rendering, and a Little Bit of Compositing
Introduction
Setting the library and the 3D scene layout
Setting image based lighting (IBL)
Setting a three-point lighting rig in Blender Internal
Rendering an OpenGL playblast of the animation
Obtaining a noise-free and faster rendering in Cycles
Compositing the render layers
Chapter 15: Sci-Fi Pistol - Creating the Basic Shapes
A project overview
Creating the barrel
Summary
Chapter 16: Sci-Fi Pistol - Adding Details
Finishing the handgrip
Cutting shapes into our gun
Circles, angles, and edge splits
Adding final details
General workflow for detailing
Summary
Chapter 17: Texturing and Rendering Your Sci-Fi Pistol
Preparing our scene
Enabling GPU rendering
Adding materials and textures
Summary
Chapter 18: Spacecraft – Creating the Basic Shapes
Shaping the body
Creating the accessories
Summary
Chapter 19: Spacecraft - Adding Details
Refining our ship
Adding detail with pipes
Finishing our main objects
Do it yourself - completing the body
Building the landing gear
Adding the cockpit
Creating small details
Working with Path objects
Finishing touches
Summary
Chapter 20: Spacecraft – Materials, Textures, and Rendering
Preparing the model and scene
Creating materials
Adding decals with UV maps
Other possibilities
Summary
Chapter 21: Modeling Your Freestyle Robot
Modeling for Freestyle
Blocking out your robot
Creating the body with Subdivision Surfacing
Finishing the robot
Summary
Chapter 22: Robot - Freestyle Rendering
Preparing the scene
Marking Freestyle edges
Creating materials
Rendering and material options
Summary
Chapter 23: Low-Poly Racer – Building the Mesh
Building for external applications
Starting the truck model
Manifold versus non-manifold meshes
Adding details
Summary
Chapter 24: Low-Poly Racer – Materials and Textures
Texturing workflow
Adding materials
Unwrapping and baking
Adding detail in an Image Editor
Checking the Texture Map
Summary
Chapter 25: Robot Toy – Modeling of an Object
Let's start the modeling of our robot toy
Using the basic modeling tools
Summary
Chapter 26: Alien Character – Base Mesh Creation and Sculpting
Understanding the sculpting process
An introduction to sculpting
Choosing sculpting over poly modeling
Anatomy of a brush
Creating a base mesh with the Skin modifier
An introduction to artistic anatomy
Summary
Chapter 27: Alien Character – Creating a Proper Topology and Transferring the Sculpt Details
Why make a retopology?
Making the retopology of the alien character
Unwrapping UVs
Understanding UVs
The baking of an ambient occlusion
Summary
Chapter 28: Haunted House – Modeling of the Scene
Blocking the house
Blocking the bases of the house
Refining the blocking
Reworking the blocking objects
Breaking and ageing the elements
Creation of the simulation of a stack of planks
Modeling the environment (8 pages)
Organizing the scene
Summary
Chapter 29: Haunted House – Putting Colors on It
Unwrapping UVs
Adding colors
Doing a quick render with Blender Internal
Summary
Chapter 30: Haunted House – Adding Materials and Lights in Cycles
Understanding the basic settings of Cycles
Lighting
Creating materials with nodes
Creating realistic grass
Baking textures in Cycles
Compositing a mist pass
Summary
Chapter 31: Rat Cowboy – Learning To Rig a Character for Animation
An introduction to the rigging process
Rigging the Rat Cowboy
Skinning
Custom shapes
The shape keys
Summary
Chapter 32: Rat Cowboy – Animate a Full Sequence
Principles of animation
Animation tools in Blender
Preparation of the animation
Animating the scene
Render a quick preview of a shot
Summary
Chapter 33: Rat Cowboy – Rendering, Compositing, and Editing
Creating advanced materials in Cycles
The Raw rendering phase
Enhance a picture with compositing
Editing the sequence with the VSE
Introduction to the Video Sequence Editor
Summary

What You Will Learn

  • Use your sculpting skills to carve the character features from the mesh
  • Find the best possible flow for your edge-loops to enhance the character features and to get the best possible range of deformation
  • Mix both the Blender Internal and Cycles rendering engines in order to render materials as quickly as possible
  • Know when and where to use various types of geometry—something that saves time in one instance will pose significant problems in another
  • Create a 3D robot toy model from start to finish using the basic modeling tools of Blender
  • Make a full alien character using the skin mesh modifier and the sculpting tools with an artistic approach
  • Use re-topology techniques to create a clean 3D version of the previously sculpted alien
  • Model a full haunted house and its environment using more advanced modeling tools and techniques such as the Array Modifier, Instance duplication, and Curves

Authors

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Modeling the Character's Base Mesh
Introduction
Setting templates with the Images as Planes add-on
Setting templates with the Image Empties method
Setting templates with the Background Images tool
Building the character's base mesh with the Skin modifier
Chapter 2: Sculpting the Character's Base Mesh
Introduction
Using the Skin modifier's Armature option
Editing the mesh
Preparing the base mesh for sculpting
Using the Multiresolution modifier and the Dynamic topology feature
Sculpting the character's base mesh
Chapter 3: Polygonal Modeling of the Character's Accessories
Introduction
Preparing the scene for polygonal modeling
Modeling the eye
Modeling the armor plates
Using the Mesh to Curve technique to add details
Chapter 4: Re-topology of the High Resolution Sculpted Character's Mesh
Introduction
Using the Grease Pencil tool to plan the edge-loops flow
Using the Snap tool to re-topologize the mesh
Using the Shrinkwrap modifier to re-topologize the mesh
Using the LoopTools add-on to re-topologize the mesh
Concluding the re-topologized mesh
Chapter 5: Unwrapping the Low Resolution Mesh
Introduction
Preparing the low resolution mesh for unwrapping
UV unwrapping the mesh
Editing the UV islands
Using the Smart UV Project tool
Modifying the mesh and the UV islands
Setting up additional UV layers
Exporting the UV Map layout
Chapter 6: Rigging the Low Resolution Mesh
Introduction
Building the character's Armature from scratch
Perfecting the Armature to also function as a rig for the Armor
Building the character's Armature through the Human Meta-Rig
Building the animation controls and the Inverse Kinematic
Generating the character's Armature by using the Rigify add-on
Chapter 7: Skinning the Low Resolution Mesh
Introduction
Parenting the Armature and Mesh using the Automatic Weights tool
Assigning Weight Groups by hand
Editing Weight Groups using the Weight Paint tool
Using the Mesh Deform modifier to skin the character
Using the Laplacian Deform modifier and Hooks
Chapter 8: Finalizing the Model
Introduction
Creating shape keys
Assigning drivers to the shape keys
Setting movement limit constraints
Transferring the eyeball rotation to the eyelids
Detailing the Armor by using the Curve from Mesh tool
Chapter 9: Animating the Character
Introduction
Linking the character and making a proxy
Creating a simple walk cycle for the character by assigning keys to the bones
Tweaking the actions in Graph Editor
Using the Non Linear Action Editor to mix different actions
Chapter 10: Creating the Textures
Introduction
Making a tileable scales image in Blender Internal
Preparing the model to use the UDIM UV tiles
Baking the tileable scales texture into the UV tiles
Painting to fix the seams and to modify the baked scales image maps
Painting the color maps in Blender Internal
Painting the color maps in Cycles
Chapter 11: Refining the Textures
Introduction
Sculpting more details on the high resolution mesh
Baking the normals of the sculpted mesh on the low resolution one
The Armor textures
Adding a dirty Vertex Colors layer and baking it to an image texture
The Quick Edit tool
Chapter 12: Creating the Materials in Cycles
Introduction
Building the reptile skin shaders in Cycles
Making a node group of the skin shader to reuse it
Building the eyes' shaders in Cycles
Building the armor shaders in Cycles
Chapter 13: Creating the Materials in Blender Internal
Introduction
Building the reptile skin shaders in Blender Internal
Building the eyes' shaders in Blender Internal
Building the armor shaders in Blender Internal
Chapter 14: Lighting, Rendering, and a Little Bit of Compositing
Introduction
Setting the library and the 3D scene layout
Setting image based lighting (IBL)
Setting a three-point lighting rig in Blender Internal
Rendering an OpenGL playblast of the animation
Obtaining a noise-free and faster rendering in Cycles
Compositing the render layers
Chapter 15: Sci-Fi Pistol - Creating the Basic Shapes
A project overview
Creating the barrel
Summary
Chapter 16: Sci-Fi Pistol - Adding Details
Finishing the handgrip
Cutting shapes into our gun
Circles, angles, and edge splits
Adding final details
General workflow for detailing
Summary
Chapter 17: Texturing and Rendering Your Sci-Fi Pistol
Preparing our scene
Enabling GPU rendering
Adding materials and textures
Summary
Chapter 18: Spacecraft – Creating the Basic Shapes
Shaping the body
Creating the accessories
Summary
Chapter 19: Spacecraft - Adding Details
Refining our ship
Adding detail with pipes
Finishing our main objects
Do it yourself - completing the body
Building the landing gear
Adding the cockpit
Creating small details
Working with Path objects
Finishing touches
Summary
Chapter 20: Spacecraft – Materials, Textures, and Rendering
Preparing the model and scene
Creating materials
Adding decals with UV maps
Other possibilities
Summary
Chapter 21: Modeling Your Freestyle Robot
Modeling for Freestyle
Blocking out your robot
Creating the body with Subdivision Surfacing
Finishing the robot
Summary
Chapter 22: Robot - Freestyle Rendering
Preparing the scene
Marking Freestyle edges
Creating materials
Rendering and material options
Summary
Chapter 23: Low-Poly Racer – Building the Mesh
Building for external applications
Starting the truck model
Manifold versus non-manifold meshes
Adding details
Summary
Chapter 24: Low-Poly Racer – Materials and Textures
Texturing workflow
Adding materials
Unwrapping and baking
Adding detail in an Image Editor
Checking the Texture Map
Summary
Chapter 25: Robot Toy – Modeling of an Object
Let's start the modeling of our robot toy
Using the basic modeling tools
Summary
Chapter 26: Alien Character – Base Mesh Creation and Sculpting
Understanding the sculpting process
An introduction to sculpting
Choosing sculpting over poly modeling
Anatomy of a brush
Creating a base mesh with the Skin modifier
An introduction to artistic anatomy
Summary
Chapter 27: Alien Character – Creating a Proper Topology and Transferring the Sculpt Details
Why make a retopology?
Making the retopology of the alien character
Unwrapping UVs
Understanding UVs
The baking of an ambient occlusion
Summary
Chapter 28: Haunted House – Modeling of the Scene
Blocking the house
Blocking the bases of the house
Refining the blocking
Reworking the blocking objects
Breaking and ageing the elements
Creation of the simulation of a stack of planks
Modeling the environment (8 pages)
Organizing the scene
Summary
Chapter 29: Haunted House – Putting Colors on It
Unwrapping UVs
Adding colors
Doing a quick render with Blender Internal
Summary
Chapter 30: Haunted House – Adding Materials and Lights in Cycles
Understanding the basic settings of Cycles
Lighting
Creating materials with nodes
Creating realistic grass
Baking textures in Cycles
Compositing a mist pass
Summary
Chapter 31: Rat Cowboy – Learning To Rig a Character for Animation
An introduction to the rigging process
Rigging the Rat Cowboy
Skinning
Custom shapes
The shape keys
Summary
Chapter 32: Rat Cowboy – Animate a Full Sequence
Principles of animation
Animation tools in Blender
Preparation of the animation
Animating the scene
Render a quick preview of a shot
Summary
Chapter 33: Rat Cowboy – Rendering, Compositing, and Editing
Creating advanced materials in Cycles
The Raw rendering phase
Enhance a picture with compositing
Editing the sequence with the VSE
Introduction to the Video Sequence Editor
Summary

Book Details

ISBN 139781787129665
Paperback1257 pages
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