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Modeling a complex-curve shape "properly"...

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Trevor GilchristModeling a complex-curve shape "properly"...
by on Jul 2, 2015 at 10:06:33 pm

Hi all.

I'm predominantly a texture/lighting/animation kinda C4D user. I do a lot of broadcast motion graphics that don't really call for a lot of modeling — certainly nothing demanding.

Now I have a client who sells gift boxes that are miracles of cardboard engineering, with complex curves and taps and folds and... everything I don't know how to model...

I created the following shape using boole'd cylinders.

It's technically the exact shape I'm after (I used the original cut guides as reference planes etc), but of course, now I can't (don't know how to) chamfer the edges or make the darn think look like it's made of corrugated card, with thickness and imperfections, gaps etc. Also, I have to somehow end up with a UV I can work with to apply the proprietary print design the box carries... The end goal is to create a final object that can be lit and composed for a digital product shoot. There can be as many cheats as necessary to achieve that, but I need to be able to swap out textures, branding etc.

If i could have modeled it as a flat from the original cut guide in Illustrator, then folded it somehow within a cloth nurb with thickness. then all would be sweet, but folding along a curve is, I believe, not possible, right?

I know it's a big ask and not dissimilar to the ridiculous "please teach me how to model", but I would be SO grateful if someone out there could at least give me a clue as to how they would approach the building of this problematic shape.

Here is photo of the physical product, so there's something to actually refer to:

And many thanks in advance for any advice that comes my way...

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Trevor GilchristRe: Modeling a complex-curve shape "properly"...
by on Jul 2, 2015 at 11:36:05 pm

I've been able to fudge some improvements, using yet more booles etc., but there HAS to be a more scientific approach...

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Adam TrachtenbergRe: Modeling a complex-curve shape "properly"...
by on Jul 4, 2015 at 9:09:29 pm

Hi Trevor,

I did a quickie video demonstration showing how I'd start the object. Sorry if it's a little incoherent.

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Trevor GilchristRe: Modeling a complex-curve shape "properly"...
by on Jul 5, 2015 at 9:57:23 pm

Adam. Wow. What can I say? Such generosity to make a whole video tutorial.... I cannot thank you enough for paying it forward with such thoroughness. This is so logical, doable and within my skill set (once one knows how).

Thank you. I will post my results here as I go, just in case anyone else can benefit in the future.

My route to a solid shape is now clear and defined. I won't lie to you — I would LOVE to see how you'd approach the process of suggesting the actual structure of the piece, namely that its made from a single sheet of folded corrugated card...

I have no need to animate it or even unfold it, particularly, but the suggestion of thickness... double layers and etc. I would be fascinated to see.

I completely understand if that's asking too much — I truly don't want to exploit, but you went and spoiled me with such a great video... :-)

Thank you again.

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