View Full Version : How to learn modeling?

23-06-2015, 06:34

Sorry for the mistakes but I'm French and I'm not very good in English! ^^

Being in the second year of a 3d training to mjm Nantes , I'd pushed my capacity and I want modeling start own cars!

In project cars , the cars are extremely well done , it is undeniable so I 'd like to pose a question to the developers!

I do not know if he 'll be able to be answered or otherwise transmitted , but I try ! ^^

Well, I like to know that it was the best way to model a car! Is there such a car especially to model early when many a well-made and well explanatory tutorial ...

Thank you very much for your answer and your understanding and good day!

23-06-2015, 06:38
First port of call is detailed and accurate source material.

Modelling and CAD is my day job, and I've done modeling for games before, mainly Flight SIM.

23-06-2015, 06:54
If your level of patience is glacial, Blender is probably the best option for an all-round, do whatever the hell you want modeling package. Slightly Mad's artists all use 3DS Max for modeling, though.

As Dano said, you need lots of accurate source material as a starting point:
- Blueprints showing front, top, rear, side at minimum
- Lots and lots of close-up pictures of various subtle details
- Videos, diagrams, and an understanding of various mechanical systems (for animating suspension components, as an example)
- CAD data where applicable (not easily obtained, however)
- Pictures from odd angles, taken apart, build process, etc.
- Scale models can be good for reference, especially if you can take them apart or build them from the ground up.

To build a 3D model you then need the following to actually build it:
- Modeling program (Blender, 3DS Max, Maya, etc...)
- Image editing software, for textures (GIMP, Photoshop, etc...)
- Exporting scripts to convert the model to the game engine's source format (Slightly Mad's exporting tools and game engine are in-house developed, though)

Depending on the level of detail, it can take anywhere from a day or two (early Playstation 1 era detail) to several months (modern games) to complete a car model at the various detail levels (when running real-time rendering stuff you can't just use the maximum level of detail all the freaking time). And that's if you're good.

Jaroslav Turna
23-06-2015, 07:13
Get the tutorials ... there are tutorials online aimed specifically at car modelling (sorry, can't point you to any ... it is too long ago I've used one).
If you can, take as many photos of car you wanna create, as possible ... otherwise download the internet (whole :-) ).
Join the community ... there are probably lots, but for example I liked smcars.net a lot in the past (you will find tons of blueprints there too).
Post your WorkInProgress pictures to forums, so you receive some feedback in time (before you do too much to fix).

General modelling advice:
Pay attention to curves, proportions, keep things tidy (shape-wise and model-wise).
In places where references are not enough, think like you are creating real car, everything has its logic.
Have patience.
Have fun.

Btw. I'm using so called "boxmodelling" method, but there are more ways to build a car (AFAIK other SMS guys use other methods), you have to choose (or learn all of them).

One more thing - get some commercial modelling package. Blender may be good (and is free), but Maya or Modo can be now purchased via Steam for a price of a new AAA game and will do the work so much more comfortable and your achieved knowledge so much more usable in future ......

23-06-2015, 07:59
Reading and watching videos is the place to start. There are some fantastic all-inclusive tutorial series on youtube. I'd provide links, but the tutorials you use are dependant on the software you're using. So you'll have to decide on that first.
Have a play around with some trial versions of different programs to see which seems the most intuitive to you. (once you are comfortable with the concept of modelling you can easily apply your skills to different programs, you're not confined to one)
I started with 3DS MAX and still use MAX, as it's the most intuitive to me, and most game import/export plugins are developed for MAX.

General tips:
Check your work regularly. It's easy to unintentionally select a vert or a face and pull it out place. Regular checks from at least two perspectives before saves is good practice.
Save copies at different stages of progress, and name them accordingly. That way if you've made an unrecoverable mistake you have a number of 'waypoints' to pick up from.
Google is your friend. Many of the issues you will face have been experienced by everyone at some point. Check forums; your question will have been asked and answered many times.

23-06-2015, 08:53
thank you very much for your full and detailed answers!

I use software C4D, 3DS MAX and Photoshop.

So if I understand correctly, I would have found a maximum reference in all the corners and I look full of videos of the latter on the engine, Grommets , ...

I will also watch a lot of tutorials on youtube on modeling of vehicles to see as much technical and thus find mine! ^^

Thank you again enormously, your help is really great !!

PS : I want to modelize a Chevrolet Impala 1967 ! ^^

Jaroslav Turna
23-06-2015, 08:57
Good choice ... not too curvy for a start. Post your progress here too, once you begin working on it. Seems like you can find some fellow 3D modellers here too. And good luck, mate!

23-06-2015, 09:03
Thanks! ^^

Surely I will start Friday!
Tomorrow I have a final exam and Thursday I rest !! : D

I'll post my progress here with great pleasure and I await your reviews !! ^^

23-06-2015, 09:06
If you can't afford anything expensive, use Blender, it's completely free. It's also amazing. Even if you eventually choose another program to use, it's one hell of a place to learn.

23-06-2015, 09:06
Thanks! ^^

Surely I will start Friday!
Tomorrow I have a final exam and Thursday I rest !! : D

I'll post my progress here with great pleasure and I await your reviews !! ^^

Look forward to it!

23-06-2015, 09:13
If you can't afford anything expensive, use Blender, it's completely free. It's also amazing. Even if you eventually choose another program to use, it's one hell of a place to learn.

Thanks to my school, I have the right to student version software for free ! ^^

23-06-2015, 19:16
There is a huge Blender community out there that produces tutorials about every aspect of modelling.

Here is one on car modelling: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L9kA5LDJMLM
Another: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o9STM6bje9Y

Do a Google search on "car modelling blender tutorial" and you will find a ton more.
Even if these are for Blender, the basic principle is the same regardless of which modelling tool you use... Maya, C4D...

Olijke Poffer
23-06-2015, 19:28
And don't forget, you need to practice and practise and practise. Throw it all away and start with practice, practise and practice.
I have more than 17 years of 3D modelling experience manly with Maxon's Cinema4D and I know it is not that easy as it looks like...
I wish you all the modeling happiness as I had all those years.
And perhaps some of the members here know my 3D nick name or at least my ending in every post I made. This was as follows. Lol..

Rich_Art. ;-)

24-06-2015, 18:58
Hi everyone!
That 's for those interested , here is the advancement of today!


You think I 'm on track ?? ^^

Thank you very much and good day !!

25-06-2015, 07:37

That progress this morning !! ^^


25-06-2015, 08:05
Good start!

25-06-2015, 11:45

That progress this morning !! ^^


That is a great start. You've maintained quads throughout. You've cut out the prominent details early in the build; it shows foresight, which is essential in modelling.
I look forward to seeing how this progresses.

Olijke Poffer
25-06-2015, 12:33
Ahh C4D I see. Nice Choice m8. :-)

In the 17 years of C4D I only made only two cars. LoL I never was good at car modelling... Also made with C4D but with a lot older version than your current version. :-)



25-06-2015, 13:55
Thank you to everyone, its makes me really happy that her you like it!

Well, I will not stop there way , I'll keep her !! : D

Thank you very much to all !!!

26-06-2015, 08:31
I'm stuck ! :(

I can not make my car look like my references ! I watch tutorials, ... but I only get to have the basic shape ! :'(

Thank you for your help and good day !!

27-06-2015, 09:15
Can you post an image of your progress, and give a bit more of a description of what you're stuck on? I'll see if I can help.