I have never modeled w/polygons; should I start w/voxels?


I want to learn 3D modeling and animation. I’d prefer learning 3D modeling with a voxel editor. However, it seems most artists learn to model w/ conventional polygon (triangle based) suites like 3D Studio. Should I begin with said polygon based suites, to learn the basics of making 3D objects and then use a voxel editor to learn to model objects with voxels? My ideas are demonstrated by the lack of publications on modeling with voxel editors. The videos have not been helpful and I need a serious textbook. There are many books on conventional modeling suites, but not so for voxel editors. I believe you have to already know how to model in 3D before you can model in voxels. Am I correct to consider starting with polygons and then go on to model in 3D using voxels? By the way I am talking about 3D modeling in volumetric pixels (voxels). The use of a vector based polygon suite is merely desired so I may develop as a st.Once I’m an artist then I want to model objects using a voxel editor. I realize some people simulate voxels with their convetional 3D modeling suite. But, this is not going to make me an artist who uses a voxel editor.



You’re still generating polygons, they are just cube-shaped :slight_smile:

If modeling in voxels appeals to you for the simplicity, by all means develop your characters in Qubicle and then import them into Maya/3DS to do the skeleton and rigging. Just try to split up the parts so they make sense in Qubicle (there is a split function in the edit tools) and name them, so when you import you don’t have a bunch of “Matrix1_2” and whatnot.

Then get that sucker in there and start building your underlying bones and then apply a skin modifier to “attach” the vertex/polys to the bone, so they’ll move with it. Then you can auto-keyframe or place manual animation keys to make different motions.

Good luck, there’s a lot of tutorials that apply to animation even if you’re using voxels as a starting point. Once its in your 3D program its all polygons anyway.


I understand that it seems impossible to add to voxel based objects, using conventional 3D suites like 3DS - skins, bones, and animation. But does everyone think so? It could be that converting your voxel models to triangle polygons is the GPU friendly and typical way it’s done these days. But many developers build their own voxel editors in house. Then with a voxel engine they could use ray tracing…And now rasterization of surfaces, lighting, and shadows isn’t needed. Ray tracing and rasterizing are two different ways to affect surfaces, et al. You could also have a voxel based animation portion of your voxel engine. It would use algorithms based on the math of voxels.

So, what you talk about is one way to learn to model with a voxel editor-- but voxels are not (themselves) collusions of flat triangles.

What you talk about explains why there aren’t college textbooks for 3D artists on voxel editors – to most artists voxels are part of what is done 3DS/blender etc.

No wonder I keep finding mention of rendering voxels in unity (the lightweight engine for SoC based/mobile devices). It is about artists using the tools of the times.

So to develop as an artist means to model 3D objects with a voxel editor in conjunction with 3DS, etc.