How to 3D model a Spaceship

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Published Date:26-10-2017
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Spacecraft - Adding Details In this chapter, we'll finish modeling our spacecraft. As we do, we'll cover a few new tools and techniques. Mostly, however, we'll be expanding on what we have already learned, and applying things in different ways to create a final, complex model: Refining our ship Adding detail with pipes Finishing our main objects Do it yourself  completing the main body Building the landing gear Adding the cockpit Creating small details Working with Path objects Finishing touches Refining our ship We'll work though the spacecraft one section at a time, adding detail until it's finished. Spacecraft - Adding Details Let's start by moving everything but the main body to another layer. Then, we'll select the portions of the body that we want to remove (to create gaps in the hull) and delete them: We can use Alt + S to scale in some edges, then rip them with the V key: 138 Spacecraft - Adding Details I'm also going to use the Inset tool to create a door (or hatch) on the side of the ship: Then, I'll just bevel those edges so that they're more rounded: 139 Spacecraft - Adding Details Next, we'll create a series of cutout shapes to use for the top of the hull (just like we did on our gun model): Using the same techniques fromChapter 2, Sci Fi Pistol – Adding Details, we'll cut those pieces into our hull: 140 Spacecraft - Adding Details I'd like to point out that I've cheated a little bit here. Earlier in the book, I said you should never use N-Gons in curved areas. That's an excellent rule of thumb, but there are times when you can get away with it. For instance, I've done it here: That hull area is technically curved, but it's so close to being flat and the faces are so small that there's no noticeable distortion-it certainly saves a lot of time. This is really a judgment call. Next, we'll create some space for our mechanical area near the back: 141 www.allitebooks.comSpacecraft - Adding Details We can do this by just grabbing a good area of faces and using the Inset tool again: With my Knife tool, I can now create some nice diagonal cuts in those panels: 142 Spacecraft - Adding Details Using beveling again, I'll round out those edges: Next, we'll fill in those open gaps for the nose and side-mounted equipment. Start by adding a new Cube object and moving it into position: 143 Spacecraft - Adding Details Then, we can run some loop cuts where we want the borders to be: We can then merge those corner vertices, so we get a nice slanted line for beveling: 144 Spacecraft - Adding Details Now, we can use the bevel tool to create the shape we want. Then, we'll delete half of it (to make use of the Mirror modifier) and join it to our body: We can then delete the faces created inside the loop and bridge the top and bottom edge loops to create our final shape: 145 Spacecraft - Adding Details We'll use the same technique on the sides of the ship: Even though the missile launcher is different from the grappling gun, I'm going to make these cutouts in the hull identical (just for simplicity's sake). Next, we'll create some cutouts on the bottom for our landing gear: 146 Spacecraft - Adding Details If you'd like, you could create actual doors for your landing gear. Judging by the rest of the ship, aerodynamics isn't much of a concern in the design. So, I think, we'll just create holes for them to retract up into: Using the same techniques from before, I'll create some cutouts in the bottom of the ship: Even though we're not doing materials in this chapter, we are going to create slots for them. In other words, we'll create some materials that don't have any properties to them. 147 Spacecraft - Adding Details Here, I've just created one called Main_Hull_Material and assigned it a viewport color: This way, I can assign materials as I model. For example, I'll be adding some handles for people to grab onto during EVA operations. There are going to be 221 handles on my final ship model. It's possible to go through all of them and assign them a material later, but it's very inefficient. A much better solution is to just create one of them, assign it a material, and then duplicate it. In order to take advantage of this, obviously, we'll need to have some materials added to our ship ahead of time. 148 Spacecraft - Adding Details So, what I'm going to do is just add a bunch of materials to the ship now so that we can assign them as we go: I've given them all different viewport colors so that we can tell them apart: I think we're at a good stopping point now with the body. We'll probably want to come back to it and work on it later, but I'd like to get the rest of the model up to this same level of detail. 149 Spacecraft - Adding Details It's generally a good idea to work like thisadding detail in layers instead of finishing one part completely while another is still blocked out. So, let's go to our other layer (layer 2, in my case) and bring that top section back to the same layer as our body: 150 Spacecraft - Adding Details First, I'll just do some basic beveling to refine the shape a bit: 151 Spacecraft - Adding Details Again, we'll use a Shrinkwrap modifier to add cutouts. In this case, I'll just start with one: You can then set your 3D Cursor to the center of that circle and rotate the cutout piece into position (you'll have to delete the original geometry first). Once you do that, of course, you'll need to remove the doubles you created. This saves you the trouble of cutting all those shapes in one at a time: 152 Spacecraft - Adding Details Just to add a little detail, I'm going to grab some individual edges and rotate them around the center point as well: Once we bevel them, I think it looks pretty neat: 153 Spacecraft - Adding Details Next, I'll just add a little detail to the main cylinders on top. I'm not really sure what these are. They could be weapons, antennas, tractor beams, or something else altogether. It's up to you At some point, you'll want to join the top section with the main body. Once you do, you can assign some materials to the different parts: 154 Spacecraft - Adding Details Next, we'll work on this small antenna array near the front. There were five of these originally, but I've deleted the rest of them and separated this piece from the main model: Now, I can add details and materials, and then duplicate and rotate it around the center point: This is a good example of what I was talking about earlieradding materials first, then duplicating. It tends to save a lot of time. 155 Spacecraft - Adding Details Next, we'll bring in the engine section. I'll delete half of it, then add a Mirror and Edge Split modifier. I'll also add our materials to the engine so that we can assign them as we go. 156