Udemy Low Poly Landscapes

1. Introduction

Useful Shortcuts

1. Basic Concepts

Blocking out character with cubes

2. Block Man

9. Importing Reference Image

Drag reference images into blender scene. This adds an empty mesh that does not get rendered.

Alt A to get rid of rotation and Alt G to get rid of the location.

When placed into position, reference can be duplicated and rotated to be able to see on side view as well.

Adding block people references on both view planes (side and front)

10. Edit Mode

Toning reference opacity down makes it easier to see the objects you are adding to the scene.

Add objects using front view as reference, then adjust to side view.

Sometimes the front-view and side-view references will not match. Choose a priority one to take over (e.g. front).

Leg created from editing mesh in both perspectives.

11. Extruding Objects

Using extrusion to create foot toes.

Leg improved by extruding parts from foot.

12. Mirroring

When using mirror modifier, remember to remove faces from inside.

Remember to enable clipping to keep the shape manifold.

Add some roundness by making side faces smaller (not visible in the concept)

Body created using mirror modifier.

13. Mirror By Object

Add mirror modifier to one object, targeting a central part. Copy over using Ctrl L and copying modifiers.

Mirror left side of block man to make right side symmetric.

14. Collections

Useful to move stuff into collections.

15. Block Female

After adding references, it's good to move everything into separate collections.

Good making references not selectable by adding a filter to the object inspector (outliner).

Good position to rig characters for animation later is an "A" pose (female pose in the reference).

Duplicated male block to create female version using the reference. Morphing shapes to achieve the expected result.

16. Block Characters

Change character shape and proportions to create different types of characters.


17. Cyborg

Shift S and 1 to move cursor to world center.

Scale character using point between foot to keep on ground.

Alt E gives extra options when extruding. E.g. extrude along face.

I starts inset command. Pressing I again alternates to each individual face being inset separately.

My custom cyborg.

18. Cyborg Materials

Ctrl L to link materials.

Change background color: World material.

Cyborg character with multiple materials.

3. Full Character

20. The Torso

It's possible to only show references when axis aligned.

Scaling down reference and already modelling the character in the correct size is a good idea.

Nice to start out with chest. More central and more complex.

Auto-mirror add on to speed up mirror shape flow.

Torso model

21. The Head

Not much new, just shape the head following the reference.

Try to model more proeminent parts of the face first (brows/eye cavity/nose/chin)

Head model

22. Topology & Rigging

Test out some mesh for joins. Single split, triple split and triangular split. Each one behaves in a different way. Single split is worse even when keeping the volume after transform.

Pinching is specially worrysome for low poly models.

It's possible to see how each different type of joint do when being bent by a rigged armature.

23. The Arm & The Hand

Try to keep the square/rounded shape of the arm.

When get to the sleeve part, use G G to move edges and make it slightly thinner.

Extruding from torso all the way to the tip of the fingers. Thumb can be extruded from a side hand face.

24. The Legs & The Feet

When trying to rotate a prism face along an axis but want to keep the prism width, the face scale in that axis can be set to 0 instead.

Same thing

25. Female Character

Just select vertices and morph them into position.

Morphing male character into female using the blocky reference.

26. Both Characters

Append other blend file to add objects from it into your current object.

27. Stylized Teenager

Creating various characters by editing the mesh.

4. Detailed Character

29. Big Man

Modelling big man based on the reference.

30. Big Man Details

Making the tie and collar on the shirt.
With experience it's possible to clean up lots of close up faces into a single quad by dissolving.

31. Merging Vertices

When auto merge is enabled, vertices that get too close to each other get merged automatically.

32. UV Editing

Coloring with materials looks ok, but limited.

If flat colored but many many colors, using a color map texture is ideal. Place faces within certain colors in the texture.

Use closest uv filter so colors do not get blended.

Selecting belt: Select edge loop with Alt LMB. Grow selection with Ctrl +.

If interface is hidden by too small windows (e.g. UV Editing split screen), drag with middle mouse to find hidden options.

Easy way to separate objects to make it easier to change color later: Marking seams (Edge -> Mark Seams).

Now, when selecting faces with L, the linking will stop at seams.

Selecting all points and scaling to 0 makes it easier to fit in the color face.

Creating the material.
UV Editing.

33. Minor Edits

Changing mesh slightly to add some details like hair, eyes and a pocket.

5. Basic Rigging

35. Human Rig

Usually not good if you have transforms in the mesh. Apply rotation and scale.

Merging by distance with M after selecting the mesh helps removing confusion with the bone resolver.

Also check normals with overlays -> orientation

On Overlay -> Statistics to see amount of vertices and other values.

Possible to add rig by hand. Add Armature to the scene.

There's a plugin to add human rig. Edit -> Preferences -> Add-ons -> Rigify

Now when adding armatures with Shift A there will be multiple options.

"butterfly" button on top let you mirror movement in the bones along the X axis.

"Chest bones" prevent character chest to attaching to the arms instead. Wide characters require those to be more spread.

Character rigged

36. Strike a Pose

Parent the mesh within the armature with Ctrl P

Use pose mode to move the armature.

Alt R removes any rotation in the armature. Alt G remove any movement.

Character posing

37. Weight Painting

Sometimes the auto weight is not good enough.

Ctrl Tab - Opens mode menu

Edit -> Lock object mode - Untoggle to let select bones while in weight paint mode.

Enter weight paint mode with both object and armature selected.

With both character and bones selected in paint mode, holdint down Ctrl and clicking will select a bone. Makes it easier to edit the weight of it.

Painting head bone weights into vertices.

6. Female Character

39. Base Mesh

Modelling female character

40. Final Base Mesh

Adding detail and textures

41. Mixamo Animations

Nice tool from adobe to apply animations over meshes automatically.

Upload mesh, follow instructions, download fbx file with animation. Import into Blender

Sometimes texture get messed up after export/reimport

Ricardo Bustamante <ricardo@busta.dev>