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Malo

[Solved] How to Sculpt sharp edges or the correct usage of Pinch tool

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Hi at all

As the topic says, i have problems to sculp sharp edges.

I have tested some stuff, but i cant figure it out, how that does work.

Lets take the basic cube. After some subdivision and smoothing, you get rounded edges.

But how could i sculp that edges sharp? The best way as far as i see, is the cut off, but what should i do when i wont cut the surface because i would keep it?

With the Pinch tool, i could create sharp edges, but they create some ugly artefacts near the corner, it is not a plane shape after the usage.

Any help would be nice.

Regards Malo

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Start with a Primitive Cube shape that is 3/4 the size of the 3D Viewport - and press "Enter".

This creates a cube of very high resolution and sharp edges.

If it is too much for your system to handle - just place a lower res cube in 3D space and turn on the 2D Grid.

Using one of the Orthographic Projections, Scale the cube so that it is only slightly larger than a set of the major grid lines (grid lines to serve as guides).

Press the "E" key and choose the rectangular tool.

Use the Voxel "Cutoff" tool to precisely trim the cube to the grid lines from a "Front" and a "Top" view.

Greg Smith

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Yes, this works fine, but what if i cant use the cut tool?

Or if i start with a highres cube. After i use the crab tool, to create the shape that i need, like a katana blade, all sharp edges are gone or i get ugly artefacts.

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If you use the Cutoff tool in Surface mode, it leaves a extra geometry right at the edges, to maintain the shape/edge. You can always use the Pose tool, with either a line, spherical, ring or with a selection mode from the E-panel, and simply scale along an axis to make a hard edged bevel or beveled edge hardened.

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You might also consider creating a base mesh, where the edges that you want to be "sharp" have more than one edge close together. Once you bring it in and smooth it, if those edges are close together, they should stay "sharp." Otherwise, I would do as AbnRanger suggests. I, too, have had issues with thin areas in both ZBrush and 3D Coat for different reasons.

The best way to handle those, I've found, is to increase my mesh resolution to a moderate level and while in Voxel mode, using the Carve tool while holding Ctrl (or Option on the Mac?). This should have enough resolution to hold the shape, as long as you don't need to downgrade and can still work with the model at that resolution. You should be able to add details without killing the blade, but I wouldn't downgrade. You might also consider doing the blade detail work AFTER you've gotten it to the Paint Room. At that point, you're only working with textures and normal maps, etc.

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Many thanks for the help.

As far as i see, it is impossible to create a sharp edge with the common sculpting tools.

Only Cutoff, a base besh from an other app or only modify the shape with the pose tool, could create/keep sharp edges with 90 degrees.

Chissel, flatten and other tools are not recommned.

Good to hear, so i could stop my trial and error with the pinch brush.

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I did the same thing the CutOff tool does with Carve inverted. You can also do a subtracting merge to boolean out a shape, depending on your resolution.

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Pinch isn't necessarily meant for operations like you were trying, but more for pulling skin together for wrinkles, so imagine pulling two close-by hills together. Using it on a wide angle like the edge of a cube isn't it's intent (albeit an interesting approach), in just about any app. Chisel is a great tool for getting rock-like edge cuts into a cornered area, etc. and flatten is what it sounds like...but can be used in a similar fashion to Chisel. I use Flatten if I have an area that just won't smooth out without really blurring the outer edges. You can also use T-Smooth on edges you want smoothed without killing the edge like Smooth can.

Did you try the Carve in Voxel mode? I hope this helps.

Edited by alvordr

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Yes, i have test it. works great on inner corners.

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Many thanks for the help.

As far as i see, it is impossible to create a sharp edge with the common sculpting tools.

Only Cutoff, a base besh from an other app or only modify the shape with the pose tool, could create/keep sharp edges with 90 degrees.

Chissel, flatten and other tools are not recommned.

Good to hear, so i could stop my trial and error with the pinch brush.

:)

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Many thanks for the help.

As far as i see, it is impossible to create a sharp edge with the common sculpting tools.

Only Cutoff, a base besh from an other app or only modify the shape with the pose tool, could create/keep sharp edges with 90 degrees.

Chissel, flatten and other tools are not recommned.

Good to hear, so i could stop my trial and error with the pinch brush.

No it is not. This is absurd, folks. Beat just complained about this recently, and I spent time recording a video recently showing you how easy I got a crisp edge simply using the Pinch tool in Voxels. Please record something to show where your problem is. I'm not seeing it...not at all. Please stop bashing the app if you aren't willing to back it up with some video showing where it's failing. I took the time. Now it's your turn.

I just use the pinch tool when I need a sharp edge. It's really not that hard. It's also not clear what exactly are you needing hard edges on. It sounded as if you needed it on something hardsurfaced. Well, I suggested the tool(s) I would use in that case...but I didn't mention what I would use for sculpting, because it didn't sound like that was what you were asking for. Please be specific. What exactly are you trying to do? Keep hard edges on hardsurface models you bring in? Simple...add resolution to the layer before you ever commit the object to a layer (ENTER key or hit APPLY in the Tool Options Panel). There is an Increase Res icon at the bottom of the VoxTree panel. Don't go crazy with it. Just enough resolution to keep the edge when you hit "Smooth All."

Are you trying to get a hard edge as you are using sculpting brushes? Use the Pinch tool in Voxels or the Pinch tool in Surface mode. The one in Voxels tends to be smoother. You also have CreaseClay (Surface Mode) which does a great job....you can hold the control key to make an outward crease/hard edge. You may want to experiment with the different brush alphas, You can even create your own brush (alpha) profile (click the + icon in the brush pallet), Falloff amount, and even brush size to get the desired effect. Once you do, save it in the Preset panel (Click the little arrow in the upper lefthand portion of the panel and choose "Add Preset").

In voxels, you can use the Plane tool, or Hide tool (use the Closed spine tool to select the area to preserve, and hit the ENTER key). Make whatever modifications you need to the remaining portion, and when you go to the voxel menu to choose "unhide" you should have a nice sharp crease/edge. I don't have problems getting a hard edge and have been using the tools for years. I don't understand some of the angst here, with sharp edges. You need enough resolution to maintain the edge, when you hit SMOOTH ALL. It's that simple.

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You can't make clean, well defined edges with smooth surface the way you would sculpt hard surface objects with clay.

You can ofc get super crips edges by deactivaing removestretching with pinch (I'm talking about surface mode, voxel is anoter issue) but you'll either destroy your planes on each side of your edge, or get wavy edges.

Yeah I'm probably one of those retards trying to sculpt hard surface stuff, you know, the way traditional sculptors do it...

Anyway, no I didn't do any video, I'm currently nearing the end of my v4 trial, I don't intend to upgrade seing 3dc doesn't meet my requirement as a sculpting tool, and I'm still in pain from a broken ankle and torn muscles thus can't spend much time in front of the computer.

In any case: I'm glad you can make it work, I was merely hilighting the fact that I'm not the only one feeling the limit of 3dc on this particular topic.

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You can't make clean, well defined edges with smooth surface the way you would sculpt hard surface objects with clay.

You can ofc get super crips edges by deactivaing removestretching with pinch (I'm talking about surface mode, voxel is anoter issue) but you'll either destroy your planes on each side of your edge, or get wavy edges.

Yeah I'm probably one of those retards trying to sculpt hard surface stuff, you know, the way traditional sculptors do it...

Anyway, no I didn't do any video, I'm currently nearing the end of my v4 trial, I don't intend to upgrade seing 3dc doesn't meet my requirement as a sculpting tool, and I'm still in pain from a broken ankle and torn muscles thus can't spend much time in front of the computer.

In any case: I'm glad you can make it work, I was merely hilighting the fact that I'm not the only one feeling the limit of 3dc on this particular topic.

If I need to drill a screw, I don't reach for a hammer. If I need a clean cut along a piece of paper or fabric, I'm going to use a ruler and exacto knife, rather than scissors. Is this such a hard concept to grasp? Likewise, if I'm trying to create a nice crease/edge on a hard surface object, I'm not even thinking about trying to use a brush. Why? Cause my hand is not all that steady. I can do a better job with a better tool (for the task).

You do realize that you can lay down a spline with the spline stroke draw mode > scale the brush radius' accordingly > with the Pinch tool selected hit the ENTER key....and get a nice clean result. Don't blame the application if you are using the wrong tool for the wrong task. Brushing by hand is always inaccurate...so use precision tools for precision jobs.

It's just mind-boggling to hear folks complain that 3D Coat can't model/sculpt hardsurface objects...when there are videos and gallery images full of examples of it doing just that. :blink: Hard Surface modeling is one of 3D Coat's strong suits.

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@AbnRanger

This has nothing to do with bashing an app.

OK, to be a little bit more specified.

I want to create a iceaxe (dont know the english name) for my adventurer.

post-24378-0-67910100-1371064401_thumb.j

I was not able to create sharp and clean edges with the pinch tool or any other common brush, so i started this threat.

This one is created now with the Cutoff tool.

To keep the question alive.

post-24378-0-88470600-1371064574_thumb.j

This is a cube with 4 corners and i want the edges as sharp as possible. I know now with much resolution and the pose tool i could creat it or i could use Cutoff for this job, too

But still no way with pinch and the other common brushed. Or did you see that different?

The handle of the axe.

post-24378-0-79916300-1371064737_thumb.j

How could i get this area sharp and clean? Same as above, but not with pinch or any other sculpting brush.

For hard surface modelling on armors on that you dont need realy sharp edges, then the pinch, chissel or flatten did a greate job.

So please tell me how should i do to create a axe blade like mine with pinch tool.

Edited by Malo

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"Brushing by hand is always inaccurate...so use precision tools for precision jobs."

True, I'm getting old, my hands are shaky, and Michelangelo used rulers and all to make beatiful flowing curves with hard edges.

I'm so stupid, ofc I can't do what I want...in 3dcoat.

We're definitely not using the software thee same way, so lets agree to disagree ok ?

What bothers me is that I can do just what I want in competitor products... but can't with 3dcoat's dynamic tesselation... But it's certainly me.

Anyway I'm off. I don't have time to make my point in video, nor time to be in pain to start a pointless debate.

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"Brushing by hand is always inaccurate...so use precision tools for precision jobs."

True, I'm getting old, my hands are shaky, and Michelangelo used rulers and all to make beatiful flowing curves with hard edges.

I'm so stupid, ofc I can't do what I want...in 3dcoat.

We're definitely not using the software thee same way, so lets agree to disagree ok ?

What bothers me is that I can do just what I want in competitor products... but can't with 3dcoat's dynamic tesselation... But it's certainly me.

Anyway I'm off. I don't have time to make my point in video, nor time to be in pain to start a pointless debate.

I don't know...maybe I'm stupid for thinking that the pinch tool does what it says it does, and that the Spline Stroke draw mode is there for a reason. I showed you both videos of the Pinch tool working properly...

http://www.screencast.com/t/jwyHgxMSdZKF

...and then Pose Tool creating hard edges or beveled, from a selection (23min mark of the following video).

But if you want to use a Hammer to drive a screw in ZBrush, go for it

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In the case of this ice ax, and knowing that you will need some parts of it to have crisp edges - I'd recommend starting with primitive shapes that already have the necessary resolution to make crisp edges.

After the primitives are assembled into what could minimally be considered the ice ax shape, use the "Cutoff" tool to taper edges (knife edges), and to produce oblique angled flat edges. You can always apply smoothing in a controlled fashion to an object that has edges that are unbelievably sharp or crisp. (Use the "Open Spline" tool from the "E" panel in conjunction with the "Smooth" tool, to get controlled smoothing).

The ice ax handle is composed of what looks to be a curved wooden handle section and a sculpted metal ferule with a rivet - to hold the metal ax portion. The ferule could be constructed with the "Vox Layer" tool at the desired thickness, with its edges defined by the "Closed Spline" tool from the "E" panel.

Up to this point, everything would appear fairly crisp along the edges. Use controlled smoothing to make the handle more organic, (if constructed from a rectangular primitive) - or construct the handle from scratch using the Voxel "Curve" tool and an appropriate profile shape.

Greg Smith

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@AbnRanger

This has nothing to do with bashing an app.

OK, to be a little bit more specified.

I want to create a iceaxe (dont know the english name) for my adventurer.

attachicon.gifSharp1.jpg

I was not able to create sharp and clean edges with the pinch tool or any other common brush, so i started this threat.

This one is created now with the Cutoff tool.

To keep the question alive.

attachicon.gifSharp2.jpg

This is a cube with 4 corners and i want the edges as sharp as possible. I know now with much resolution and the pose tool i could creat it or i could use Cutoff for this job, too

But still no way with pinch and the other common brushed. Or did you see that different?

The handle of the axe.

attachicon.gifSharp3.jpg

How could i get this area sharp and clean? Same as above, but not with pinch or any other sculpting brush.

For hard surface modelling on armors on that you dont need realy sharp edges, then the pinch, chissel or flatten did a greate job.

So please tell me how should i do to create a axe blade like mine with pinch tool.

Try using the Spline Stroke tool in conjunction with the Pinch tool (maybe switch to surface mode). Lay down strokes where you want to sharpen. Make sure the radius of the points is a bit bigger than the area you want to pinch/sharpen. Use a soft gradient brush alpha. Crank the falloff amount (toolbar) up to about 70% > Hit the ENTER key (as many times as it takes to sharpen the edges. You can save the splines and even use it with the pose tool, to create a selection > scale in or out the edges (you can invert the selection, too...CTRL + SHIFT + I).

Couple of different ways to approach it.

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@Psmith

Yes, thats the way i create it.

Starting with a primitve and cut off every thing with the different strokes.

And it seem that is the easiest way to create clean and sharp edges.

@AbnRanger

Sorry, no way.

This is my result

post-24378-0-14063300-1371072395_thumb.j

Sure i get some sharp edges with pinch and the spline stroke, but i always get some ugly disortations on the corners, too.

Not sure what i did wrong.

I have testet it on the basic cube with 2 Mill polys in Voxel and Surface Mode, always the same.

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@Psmith

Yes, thats the way i create it.

Starting with a primitve and cut off every thing with the different strokes.

And it seem that is the easiest way to create clean and sharp edges.

@AbnRanger

Sorry, no way.

This is my result

attachicon.gifSharp4.jpg

Sure i get some sharp edges with pinch and the spline stroke, but i always get some ugly disortations on the corners, too.

Not sure what i did wrong.

I have testet it on the basic cube with 2 Mill polys in Voxel and Surface Mode, always the same.

I did a little test on a cube that was relatively low res > Smooth All a few times to get really rounded/beveled edges (you do realize you're effectively trying to get toothpaste back in the bottle with this task?). When you have really rounded off edges and corners, you have shifted the geometry in those areas so low that it's hard for any pinch tool to both pull geometry together AND push it back out perfectly as well. You almost HAVE to use some form of modeling tool to push it back out and pinch at the same time. However, I find that CreaseClay may be the best option to try before resorting to using other modeling tools. That's because it both pushes and Sharpens simultaneously. It will also add extra detail to keep the hard edge.

The Plane Tool is also something you want to check out. You can use 3-4 points to create a straight plane or with some degree of curvature.

If the Spline Stroke and pinch tool aren't sufficient, then just like I did in the video (did you watch the video on the Pose Tool, I posted for your consumption yesterday?) then the Pose tool is a very good option. You can go into orthographic mode > choose the Pose tool > using the Line selection mode, select a small portion of the cube on one side > Scale inward along the local axis and Shazam...you got sharp edges on one side > Repeat and rinse. :D

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for cloth... i found close result using

surface mode - pinch

and a sharp generated new brush

using wacom... my radius is set to use mouse icon

strength 50%

falloff 30%

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sorry i forgot to link

3D Coat hard surface modelling tips #1

3D Coat Starfighter Detailing Volume #2

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Many thanks for the tip.

@AbnRanger

I watched nearly every video from you.

in those areas so low that it's hard for any pinch tool to both pull geometry together AND push it back out perfectly as well

This is exactly what i mean.

I have to use different ways like cutoff, pose tool and stuff like that.

Anyway, thanks for the help.

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If all else fails, what I do is simply model the thing in another app to get the basic overall shape I want then bring it to 3DC to unwrap and paint. I'm only saying this because regardless of whether or not this can be done in 3DC, if you are having problems and not enough time to push through it, this is an option.

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Also, keep in mind that no matter what you sculpt in 3DC, when you retopo it, it will have as clean and sharp a line as you want. The baking will give it the rounded normals and AO that results. The edges won't project well for normals if they're flush, so they need a bit of angle to get the proper normal projection.

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