Creating Character Skins

One of the key uses of 3D packages is making models of a characters, usually human but also cartoons, animals, mythical, aliens or robots.  Often the word humanoid is used meaning human shaped i.e. two arms and two legs.

Models of bodies/body parts are called skins. Skins can be connected to an armature (skeleton) to create a rig that can be posed and animated.

To get you started here is a video tutorial split into two parts that shows how to create the upper body (torso, arms and neck) of a humanoid character.  This tutorial is based on a tutorial in Roland Hess’ book ‘The Essential Guide to Learning Blender’ –

Blender 2.5 Tutorial – Using Mesh Modelling to Create the Upper Body of a Low Poly Character Part 1

this tutorial shows –

  • How to use subdivision to add geometry to a cylinder so that it can be deformed. You need a reasonable number of vertices, edges and faces, evenly spaced, before you can deform a mesh.
  • How to extend a surface by adding faces (shoulders).
  • How to use vertex and edge selection modes, how to use the Alt key to select a line of edges and how to use the ‘Limit selection to visible’ button.
  • How to use proportional editing with grab and scale to deform a mesh.
  • How to use the smooth and mirror modifiers.

Files created in tutorial –

Blender 2.5 Tutorial – Using Mesh Modelling to Create the Upper Body of a Low Poly Character Part 2

This second part shows how to add arms and a neck to a torso shape.

 

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