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Old 03-09-2004, 05:14 PM   #1
geezbtw
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Default Snapping Edit Points of a Curve to a Live object

I'm trying to create a patch modelled head as described in the book Maya Character Creation. I've built a polygon copy of the head which I've made a live surface in order to draw the curves to make the patches with. Drawing a curve on the surface does snap to the live surface correctly. However when I modify any duplicate curves and move the edit points of the new curve it won't snap to the live object at all. Is there a pref setting or something I need to check ? I've deleted all the history from the duplicate curves, and the head, and its still not working.

Anyway, I have also tried to create patches by just creating curves and then using Surfaces>Square but whenever I do I get a SqrSurf error saying that my first and second curves don't intersect, what is causing that ? I've tried forcing them to intersect by dragging them through each other, and by snapping their endpoints together and I'm still getting the same error. Help!

Many thanks,
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Old 03-09-2004, 05:24 PM   #2
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When you duplicate the curve, make sure "Duplicate Input Connections" is checked.
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Old 03-09-2004, 05:33 PM   #3
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That doesnt work either. Its odd, even the original curve refuses to snap to the surface when any part of it is moved. Its driving me mad.
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Old 03-09-2004, 05:36 PM   #4
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Oh yeah... don't delete history when you do this. That will remove any connection it had to the surface.
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Old 03-09-2004, 06:13 PM   #5
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Okay. Nothing seems to work. Even if I dont delete history. If I just create a curve on a live surface, then manipulate the curve by moving points, it won't snap to the surface again. By what you've said is it then impossible for a curve to relate to a live surface unless it's in the live surfaces hierarchy ? Most of the tutorials I've read suggest otherwise. If thats the case the workflow I'm trying from the book is actually erm.. impossible. Because creating patch curves from a live surface wouldnt work. Because, in some cases you will have to copy out the curves of the patch created with surface>square and then adjust the curves to fit the surface and loft. If you can't get curves to snap to a live surface this workflow isn't possible. So... is the only way to patch model really just to create all patches from scratch without a live object ?
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Old 03-09-2004, 06:27 PM   #6
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Maybe I'm not understanding.

I believe the model has to remain in Make Live mode for the curve to adhere to the surface. It doesn't adhere like a projected curve, but instead, points you move on the curve will stay on the surface.

And as for patch modeling, I try to avoid the stuff as much as possible. :p
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Old 03-09-2004, 06:31 PM   #7
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Heh.. beginning to feel the same way about patch modelling, though I see the benefits, which are great when it comes to animating later as everything is going to deform very sweetly. Also, it will convert to a blissful no problem poly skin with all quads.

The object is live, at all times, could you try it just so I can make sure its not a problem with my prefs setup ? Just create a sphere, make live, create a curve on it, then try to manipulate it's points. None of the point moves snap back onto the surface for me.
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Old 04-09-2004, 06:46 PM   #8
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Default durr...

MMB to drag *sigh*
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Old 05-09-2004, 08:26 PM   #9
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Starting with a Poly is the problem. If I understand correctly You would start with a nurbs surface, Make live, Place on CV curves. Here is when you duplicate them so they are free floating. You will see your original curves can only move in U & V. Then your duplicated curves (nurbs) can be attached to your NURBS patches, not poly patches.
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Old 05-09-2004, 08:34 PM   #10
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Reading your question further: Don't try to connect curves to a live patch. They won't. They can be drawn on a live object, make Not Live to connect. If I didn't understand the Q please re post. Patch modeling is very powerful for accuracy but time consuming.
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Old 06-09-2004, 12:22 PM   #11
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Thanks, it's all ok now. I'm not connecting curves to the live poly, I'm drawing them on it to get the shape for the patches outline curves (using nurbs>square) and its working fine.

Basically I create a rough outline of the model using nurbs primitives, which I tweak to get the surface as good as I can. Then I convert them all to poly objects, and just combine them into a single object (no further tweaking). I then make the poly live, and draw patch outlines on the surface with EP curves. Some of the nurbs primitives from the original outline I may keep, rebuild for uniformity, and use their boundary isoparms for some of the patches.

My problem was that when I dragged the curves edit points they were not clicking to the live surface, because I wasn't dragging them with the middle mouse button. Heyho .

Anyway, this method is working pretty well for me, surface origin direction permitting (hair pulling, teeth gnashing moments here and there as you'ld expect).

The reasons I'm not using a NURBS live object and I've added a poly phase are:
Firstly the curves attach to one a little too well, and I dont want them following the outline of the primitives exactly, just to get from point A to B, roughly. The other main reason is you can't combine NURBS a la Polys you can only attach which would add a helluva lot of time to this process to get everything aligned and nice. It could be done, but would mean making one NURBS shape not live and then another live as I draw a curve over a boundary between each of them which would prolly push me off the cliff of patience

Agreed though. Patches are the best way for accuracy, and knowing your model. I can predict how it'll behave and how it'll convert. It can be very time consuming, but I can see the rewards further down the line.

I hope I've explained it now, I know it may seem weird, but I find shaping organic model surfaces using Polys and even Subds horrifyingly unpredictable and iffy. This I guess is because I don't yet have a 'feel' for the kind of topology and outlining curve shape I'm going to get out of extruded and rotated polys. Honestly, I don't get how people can build something like a torso with polys when I find I can knock one together with a few curves running its entire length rapidly rather than tweaking and splitting a poly. Hopefully, as I get more into polys (which I use for appendages from my initial patched nurbs models) I'll find other things I can do, prefer in the poly phase.

I saw this http://www.3dm-mc.com/tutorials/maya/dobby/
though and went OMFG!!! not a method I can wrap my head around .
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Old 06-09-2004, 01:25 PM   #12
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Hi geezbtw,
It sounds your much further along in patch modeling than I understood. I agree on the attach to poly made live, I also think it saves loads of time.
Good to see I can get some nurbs help. Even for yourself let me know. Sometimes it's more (reminding) help than anything. Between all maya has to offer, composit programs, sound programs . . . who can be "a know it all" or better yet "a remember it all". Looking forward, Bob
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