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How to create a realistic looking turtle - Modelin
How to create a realistic looking turtle - Modelin
sdb1987, updated 2005-09-08 06:00:08 UTC 128,200 views  Rating:
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How to create a realistic looking turtle - Modeling part 1
by Denis Zen

What follows is the first part of a tutorial which will show you how to model, texture, illuminate and animate a turtle. At the end your turtle should look like the one in the picture below:

Ready? Let�s start.

The first thing you need is�a turtle to take some reference photos. If you have any, you can use the images included in this tutorial. I used them to draw the reference profiles, to model the different parts of the turtle and of course to get the images I used for the texture maps. Let�s see how I did.

First, you have to load the images in Maya workspace to draw the different profiles; to do this you have to create an Image Plane for the side and the top camera:

(Tip - If you want, you can speed your work creating in the shelf the thumbnails of the commands you use the most by pressing Alt+Ctrl+Shift while selecting the command from the menu).

The thumbnails in the shelf

Window > Rendering Editors > Multilister In the Multilister, click the Cameras tab and doubleclik on top shape.

The Attribute Editor of the side camera opens; scrool down until you see the Environnement tab; open it and click the Create button near Image Plane:

A new window opens: set the parameters as follows:

Image Plane Attributes

Display: looking through camera

(if you want to see the image only in the top camera view, otherwise select in all views)

Display Mode: RGB

Image Plane: Fixed

(this way when you move the camera, the Image Plane and the refence curves you draw will follow it)

Type: Image File

Image Name: here you have to load the file you will use as reference (in this case load the file bottom.tga)

Placement Extras

Center: 0 0 0

Width: 10

Height: 10

With the image in the workspace, draw the top and bottom profiles of the tortoise-shell with the CV Curve Tool:

Create>CV Curve Tool Make sure the curve degree is set to 3 Cubic. If not, select it or click the Reset Tool button.

( Tip � When you draw a curve you have to use less CV as possible; this way you will control the curve easier and your model will be "lighter" too. In this case you don�t need to pay great attention to this because the curves you draw will only be a reference).

Once you have drawn the top and bottom profiles rename them bottomProfile and topProfile (Tip � When you rename something in Maya, it�s better not to use spaces or underscore. Try to use compound words with capital letters; this will work better especially when you will use expressions).


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