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Old 24-12-2009, 03:26 PM   #1
dogfood
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Default text carved into a sphere

Hi guys, i'd like to do a rusty metal sphere with some text carved in it. I need it to be real geometry, not bump.
Seems to be a relatively simple task but is still beyond my skills.

The first approach i could come up with is displacement but in this case the texture is stretched in the carvings radially. Since the displacement is not part of the sphere i don't know how to do the UV mapping to prevent it from stretching. Besides i'd like to add a touch of bevel to the edges, i don't want them razor sharp. Also, displacement requires an insane subdivision, which makes UV editing almost impossible and rendering way too slow.

I suspect there's some way to do it with NURBS and boolean but the thing is, i'm not a NURBS yoda and didn't find any tutorial that covers this topic. It's not just the boolean but the text should follow the curvature of the sphere surface.

Any idea? Many thanx in advance.
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Old 24-12-2009, 03:35 PM   #2
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Or you could cheap it out, use polys, get your text geo, sit it in front of the sphere, use a bend deformer on the text to get the curvature and and then boolean.
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Old 24-12-2009, 05:38 PM   #3
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thought of that, but it's way too cheap indeed.
i'm hoping there's a more professional approach.
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Old 24-12-2009, 05:44 PM   #4
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" ...boolean but the thing is, i'm not a NURBS yoda and..."
Don't worry Yoda doesn't know how to work with NURBS either, I have heard he is quite good with a lightsaber though.
but that could be an unconfirmed rumour of some tabloid no doubt :p .

I would do what Gect suggested , metal is mostly shading and for textures you could use procedural 3d textures, in case your uv's are screwed up.
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Old 25-12-2009, 12:05 PM   #5
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Tried it already. The result is unpredictable and anyways i'd like to use a weathered bitmap texture that's very hard if not impossible to reproduce in a procedural shader. The bend deformer also didn't work the way i want it to. It works perfect in one direction but as soon as you apply another bend vertically the object gets distorted. (i've deleted the history after the first bend ofcoz.)

The only similar topic i stumbled upon is in a Rhino forum, which reassures me that NURBS is the only way to go. I'm afraid i'll need to dig deeper into NURBS modeling if i want to get this done.
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Old 26-12-2009, 06:33 AM   #6
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Hi, I am a newbie myself, but I think I would try to convert your text to curves, then project the curves on the surface and. Trim some holes with the curves and extrude it inwards.
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Old 29-12-2009, 10:49 PM   #7
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thanks, i'll give it a try and let you know if it works
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Old 30-12-2009, 01:50 AM   #8
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The rhino forum would only suggest NURBS, cause that's all rhino can do.
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