How to draw a 3D Truck step by step

how to draw 3d truck and how to make 3d truck and how to 3d model a truck and how to make a 3d truck out of paper
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Published Date:26-10-2017
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Low-Poly Racer  Building the Mesh In this chapter, we'll build a low-poly model for use in a racing game. We'll look at several ways that game models differ from the projects we've created so far. We'll also look at some pros and cons of various methods, and important considerations when building these types of models. Building for external applications Starting the truck model Manifold versus non-manifold meshes Adding details Building for external applications Up to this point, all the models we've done have been strictly for Blender use. In other words, we knew that all of the texturing, rendering, and animation would be done completely within the Blender software. However, sometimes you'll want to create 3D models for use in external programs.Low-Poly Racer – Building the Mesh For instance, Blender is an excellent tool for creating 3D game models. You can build and texture the model in Blender and then export it to other formats. Let's take a quick look at our export menu to see what options we have: These are the formats that Blender can directly export to (and there are more that can be activated with add-ons). Additionally, there are other methods (some online) that can be used to convert one model format to another. Many game and simulation platforms also have import functions, allowing you to bring in a model from another format. When you're talking about export and conversion, it's important to note that not everything carries over from Blender. You'll want to create your models in certain ways to prevent data loss and maximize compatibility. 302 Low-Poly Racer – Building the Mesh Mesh data is (almost) universal, which means that the physical structure of a model should be usable in most 3D and game programs. One thing to bear in mind, however, is that N- Gons are not universal. They are increasingly common, but there are still several popular platforms that don't accept them. So when you're building for export, I highly encourage you to use only Tris and Quads: The polygon count is very important for these types of models as well. If you're familiar with flight simulators, you'll know that a typical aircraft looks far less realistic in a game than it does in a Hollywood movie. Both are 3D models, but they have very different requirements and uses. Let's take a look at two models I did of an F-18 Hornet. The first is for 2D rendering only (or non-real-time animation). Since I could afford to spend minutes (or hours) on rendering, I was able to model a lot of complex detail into the mesh itself: 303 Low-Poly Racer – Building the Mesh By contrast, here's another F-18 model I did for a simulation: You can see that it's far less detailed because it needs to be rendered in real time (in other words, it's constantly rendered as the user flies the airplane). So as we build our model, we'll need to keep the polygon count as low as possible. How low does it need to be? Well, that really depends on the application. Some truck models (like the kind we'll be making) may only be few dozen polygons, while others can reach into the tens of thousands. It all depends on your application. For this project, we'll shoot for around 5,000 polygons (or about 10,000 trianglesmore on that in a second). That should be usable for the majority of real-time render engines. Starting the truck model Let's start by creating the basic shape of our vehicle. We'll make this an off-road racing truck, so let's just block out the basic shapes. We'll start with the rough dimensions of the body: 304 Low-Poly Racer – Building the Mesh Then, I'll just run a couple of loop cuts around the cab and add a slight curve to the front of the truck: Next, I'll bevel the edges very lightly. If we were going for maximum polygon savings, we probably wouldn't bevel them at all. However, beveling doesn't add too much geometry here, and it makes the vehicle look a lot nicer. Next, I'll add an edge split modifier to the mesh. We'll use a split angle of 47 degrees or so. I wanted to make sure all the 45 degree angles were smooth, so I just added a couple of extra degrees in case there was a weird corner in the mesh somewhere. 305 Low-Poly Racer – Building the Mesh It's important to note that the Edge Split modifier is only temporary. Since the model is going to be exported, the smooth and flat shading will be determined by whatever game engine you end up using. It's still useful, however, as it can show us when corners are too sharp (or not sharp enough), and we can make corrections as we model. Earlier, I mentioned that we don't want to use N-Gons. However, sometimes you end up with them by accident or force of habit. At any time, you can go to your Select menu and pick Select Faces By Sides: 306 Low-Poly Racer – Building the Mesh Then, you can select all the faces with a number of vertices/sides greater than four. This will highlight any N-Gons that may have slipped in: The front quarter panel would need to be redone. Of course, we need to cut out the wheel area anyway, so we'll just go ahead and delete that face. Then, we'll set our cursor to the middle of those edges: 307 Low-Poly Racer – Building the Mesh Next, we'll add two things. Within the mesh, we'll add a circle to form the shape of our wheel well. Be careful how many sides you use here. Round objects (circles, cylinders, spheres, and so on) are notorious for consuming polygons. We'll go with 24 sides to this circle and add it in. I'm also going to add an here. This will allow us to keep track of the original center point of that circle (in case we want to add a tire at that exact point later).I'm also going to add an Empty here. This will allow us to keep track of the original center point of that circle (in case we want to add a tire at that exact point later). 308 Low-Poly Racer – Building the Mesh Next, we'll eliminate the parts of the circle that we don't need and build it into the mesh. I'm going to create a ring of faces around the outside of the circle, which will allow us to add a slight flare to the fenders. Before going any further, I'll add a mirror modifier to the model and delete half of it. Next, we'll add a little detail to the bed of the truck: 309 Low-Poly Racer – Building the Mesh Now, I'll set the 3D Cursor back to the Empty and add another circle. I can match the exact size and position of the original circle we cut in, and then move it back to create the rear wheel well. Using the same technique as before, we can create the cutout for the rear wheels: 310 Low-Poly Racer – Building the Mesh Afterwards, we'll duplicate a portion of that circle and move it in towards the center of the truck bed. This way, we can create the shape of the wheel well inside of the bed. Then, we can delete the faces we don't need and build that wheel well into the mesh of the bed. I'm just going to bevel the inside of the bed slightly. Sometimes it's easier to delete the middle portion of an object first and then just extrude the edges back to the center once you're done beveling. 311 Low-Poly Racer – Building the Mesh Now, we can run a loop cut around the ring of faces that makes up the wheel well. We can use Alt + S to give ourselves a slight flare to the fenders. Again, you probably only need one loop cut heredon't add too much geometry in an attempt to make it look smoother. Manifold versus non-manifold meshes Before going further, there's an important topic we need to touch on. Right now, we can see the back side of our body panels from certain angles. In other words, when you look into the wheel well, you can see the back side of the faces that make up the truck's tailgate. This generally isn't a good thing, because it reveals the single-sided nature of the faces (and can sometimes have odd effects on your shading and materials). However, you can often get away with it in Blender. If you happened to see the back side of a body panel during an animation, it would be hidden in shadows and probably wouldn't look too bad. This is especially true with a low-poly model like this, where you're not expecting perfect realism. 312 Low-Poly Racer – Building the Mesh The problem is that some game engines aren't as forgiving as Blender. To increase rendering efficiency and reduce CPU/GPU workload, they simply don't render the back side of polygons. Instead, it will appear that those faces are missing from the model. So a model that looks okay in Blender may not work in another program. Just to clarify, this topic is only slightly related to the Double Sided option under the Mesh tab. Regardless of whether this option is checked, Blender will still render both the front and back of a polygon. The box just allows you the option to display materials and textures regardless of the direction of your normals. 313 Low-Poly Racer – Building the Mesh To make sure we don't have any problems with the back side of polygons, the best solution is to fill in the geometry so that we have no open or non-manifold meshes. The concept of a non-manifold mesh can be tricky to understand at first. A good way to grasp the idea is to ask whether a given mesh could exist in the real world. So, let's fill in the bottom of our truck to avoid this issue. 314 Low-Poly Racer – Building the Mesh Adding details As we build our model, it's generally good practice to use as few polygons and vertices as possible. However, you may sometimes decide that it isn't worth it. For instance, you can technically save two polygons by filling in the fender area in a nonstandard way: This tends to look a bit messy, though, and can sometimes make it difficult to see how meshes are put together. You'll have to decide how important polygon efficiency is for your application. In this case, I don't feel that saving two polygons is worth it. The final truck is around 5,000 polygons (as mentioned before), so we're talking about less than a 1% decrease in efficiency here (0.04%, actually). At this point, we've completed the basic shape of our truck body. You can see where we're at in terms of polygons and vertices. 315 Low-Poly Racer – Building the Mesh One thing we haven't really discussed yet is triangles. We've talked about using triangular faces (Tris), but that leads us to a larger point. The reality (at least in most programs) is that every polygon is actually made up of triangles. Quads and N-Gons don't really exist at render timethey're just a modeling tool to create more efficient collections of triangles. For instance, we used many Quads to model our truck body. At render time, however, Blender looks at it like this: Why is this important? In the case of our truck, it really isn't. But with other game models, the number of triangles can be significant. Let's say that you're building a model for a game engine that does accept N-Gons. You might add a circle with 200 sides and fill it in with one face: 316 Low-Poly Racer – Building the Mesh Sure, there's only one polygon being displayed, but you're using 198 triangles. What this means is that your mesh isn't nearly as efficient (or low-poly) as you thought it was. Again, this doesn't really affect us on this project, but it's something to keep in mind if you're going to be building a lot of game models for export. Now that we've got our basic truck body done, we'll go ahead and add some detail. I'll start by extruding portions of the hood to create a cowl and front headlight: Next, I'm going to extrude the windows in just a bit. This is another area where we could actually save polygons. If we didn't extrude the windows in, we could just texture them later on. However, it doesn't cost us very many polygons to do it this way, and we can later add a glass material to just those faces (rather than using a texture map to differentiate between different types of material). So while this isn't the most efficient way to do it in terms of polygon count, it is more efficient in terms of the time you need to invest (and the required number of texture maps). 317 Low-Poly Racer – Building the Mesh As you will quickly discover if you build game models, there are pros and cons to just about everything. Sometimes, we just need to make a choice. Next, I'll add some tubular roll bars to the bed of the truck. You can do this however you'd like, but I just started with a Torus object and extruded a portion of it (as we've done several times before). Since the end of your torus will be sticking inside of the truck and won't be visible, you can leave that particular part as non-manifold geometry. Alternatively, you can create an N-Gon at the end of it to seal off the mesh. In this case, I am only using six sides on each section of tube-they're fairly narrow, and I think that's consistent with the rest of the model. Again, anything circular consumes polygons very quickly, so try to get away with as few sides as you can. 318 Low-Poly Racer – Building the Mesh I'm also going to add in a few extra lights for our truck: Next, I'll create some wheels (as a separate object): Remember, since the truck has four wheels, every polygon you add is being multiplied by a factor of four. You can add as much detail to the wheels as you'd like, but just keep an eye on how much geometry you're adding. 319 Low-Poly Racer – Building the Mesh Another thing to keep in mind is the level of realism you're going for. If this truck is going to be used in an off-road racing game, you may want to create shock absorbers and various suspension pieces. That would certainly increase the realism. On the other hand, it will add polygons to your model and require additional work when you set up your game. You'll have to make sure that the various parts all fit and move correctly. By contrast, you could skip most of the suspension parts and just add an axle and some blocked-out shapes. This will make it much simpler to import the truck into a game, but of course it won't be quite as realistic. If you choose to use oversized (off-road) tires, you may need to go back and adjust the fenders so that everything will fit: 320

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