Learn 3D Modelling - The Complete Blender Creator Course
4.7 (11,575 ratings)
Instead of using a simple lifetime average, Udemy calculates a course's star rating by considering a number of different factors such as the number of ratings, the age of ratings, and the likelihood of fraudulent ratings.
74,253 students enrolled
Wishlisted Wishlist

Please confirm that you want to add Learn 3D Modelling - The Complete Blender Creator Course to your Wishlist.

Add to Wishlist

Learn 3D Modelling - The Complete Blender Creator Course

Use Blender to create beautiful 3D models for video games, 3D printing, house design etc. No prior knowledge required.
Best Seller
4.7 (11,575 ratings)
Instead of using a simple lifetime average, Udemy calculates a course's star rating by considering a number of different factors such as the number of ratings, the age of ratings, and the likelihood of fraudulent ratings.
74,253 students enrolled
Last updated 9/2017
Current price: $10 Original price: $195 Discount: 95% off
5 hours left at this price!
30-Day Money-Back Guarantee
  • 48.5 hours on-demand video
  • 6 Articles
  • 17 Supplemental Resources
  • Full lifetime access
  • Access on mobile and TV
  • Certificate of Completion
What Will I Learn?
  • Use Blender and understand it's interface
  • Understand the principles of modelling
  • Create 3D models with simple colors
  • Learn the basics of animation
  • Explore and have fun with particle effects
  • Create your own materials
  • UV map and unwrap your models
  • Export your models to external packages
View Curriculum
  • Mac or PC capable of Running Blender Version 2.77 or above

This course is continually updated in response to student suggestions.

Blender is a fantastic platform which enables you to make AAA-quality models which can be exported to any game engine, 3D printer, or other software. Here are some of the reasons why you want to learn Blender with this online tutorial...

  • Create assets for video games.
  • Make unique 3D printed gifts.
  • Design your dream house, car, etc
  • Express yourself through 3D artwork.

Learn how to create 3D Models and Assets for games using Blender, the free-to-use 3D production suite. We start super simple so you'll be ok with little or no experience. With our online tutorials, you'll be amazed what you can achieve.

Ben Tristem is one of Udemy's top instructors, and Michael Bridges is an experienced 3D artist. Together Ben and Michael will provide world-class support, encouragement and plenty of challenges.

The course is project-based, so you will applying your new skills immediately to real 3D models. All the project files will be included, as well as additional references and resources - you'll never get stuck. There are talking-head videos, powerful diagrams, quality screencasts and more.

For each model you build you will follow this process...

  • Be challenged to build the entire model yourself.
  • Be shown step-by step how to build it.
  • Apply your knowledge regularly.

You will get full lifetime access for a single one-off fee. The creators are qualified and experienced with modelling and coding, so are able to explain complex concepts clearly, as well as entertain along the way. By the end of the course you'll be very confident in the basics of 3D modelling and rendering, and hungry to learn more.

If you're a complete beginner, we'll teach you all the modelling fundamentals you'll need. If you're an artist, we'll teach you to bring your assets to life. If you're a coder, we'll teach you modelling and design principles.

Note: access to this course comes with an optional, free community site where you can share games and 3D models, as well as connect with other students.

Dive in now, you won't be disappointed!

Who is the target audience?
  • Competent and confident with using a computer.
  • Artists who want to learn to bring their assets alive.
  • Game Developers who wish to expand their Skill Set.
  • Complete beginners who are willing to work hard.
Students Who Viewed This Course Also Viewed
Curriculum For This Course
278 Lectures
Introduction and Setup
14 Lectures 02:02:17

In This Video...

  • Michael is a IT tutor and 3D artist.
  • Ben is one of Udemy's top instructors.
  • You'll learn to make assets for games, 3D printing, home design and more.

You will start by mastering Blender's interface, move onto basic block modelling. We'll then make a bowling set, a chess set, a lamp, a bunny and more.

Preview 02:24

  • We’re excited because we get to see you change
  • Mikey’s your main instructor, Ben supporting
  • Section notes are on Google Slides, link attached
  • Section assets are downloadable
  • Mikey’s got a challenge for you.
  • You will find resources you need for this section against this lecture.
  • Please ensure you download these now.
  • Store them in a project folder on the computer.
  • They will be referred to in various lectures.
Welcome to The Course

Michael goes through what you are to expect in the upcoming section and how the course is structured.

Course Structure

  • This first section is designed for complete beginners. 
  • If you already have experience you might still find some of this beginning content useful.
  • You can speed up and slow down videos

Learning Journey

  • Aim to give you a breath of knowledge
  • Every lesson will focus on one key area of Blender.
  • Lessons will build on one another.
  • Skipping lectures isn’t recommended.

More Than One Way

  • Multiple paths to the same outcome.
  • Not a right way.
  • My way isn’t necessarily the quickest.
  • If you have another route, share with everyone your experience!

What's Coming up...

  • Where to download Blender from.
  • Installing Blender.
  • Check which version you have
  • Version 2.77 or Later
How To Install Blender

Help Others to Help You

  • We have a supportive community.
  • Start the conversation.
  • As you become more experienced help others too.
  • Finally I am always around to help, but it may take some time.

Ask Good Questions

  • Be specific about your Issue.
  • Tell us what you have tried so far.
  • Remember you can edit the discussion to add further things you have tried.
  • Include a picture of the issue.
  • [Question] Prefix to Discussion Title.

Have An Answer?

  • If you have solved your issue, let us know.
  • Tell us how you overcame the challenge.
  • [Solved] Prefix to Discussion Title.


  • If you have solved your issue, let us know.
  • Tell us how you overcame the challenge.
  • [Solved] Prefix to Discussion Title.

Where to Find Support

  • Blender looks the same on same on all platforms.
  • How to switch and change layouts.
  • The main sections of the Blender interface.
  • How to move and change Blender's layout.
Preview 13:20

  • Re-enforce Layout behaviour.
  • How to effortlessly switch between layouts.
  • How to use Blender on two screens.
  • Learn Shortcuts for editor types.
Advanced Layout Control

Check your understanding of the install process, and how to navigate the interface.

Mid Section Quiz
5 questions


  • F-Keys on a Mac - Fn Key required.
  • Other laptops also require the Fn Key.
  • On Linux Alt is a system Key, hold the windows key down at the same time…
  • No NumberPad.


  • Using Blender without a 3 button mouse: Using a trackpad or stylus
  • …still highly recommend a 3 button mouse and full size keyboard wherever possible.
  • Later on a stylus for artwork.

Blender's Visuals

  • You can change the appearance of Blender.
  • Personalise the interface.
  • Make it easier for you to see.

(Unique Video Reference: 6_IS_CBC)

Control Interfaces

Controlling The 3D Editor

Selecting and Taking Action

Basic Object Transformation

This Quiz is designed to test your knowledge and understanding of Section 1

End of Section Quiz
4 questions

  • We can add basic shapes, transform them
  • Limited knowledge usually inspires creativity
  • Placeholders and rough Mockups
  • You will see there are limitations to doing this.
What You Can Now Make

Michael goes through a really easy way of moving around your model and viewing it from different angles

Quick Win Moving Around Your Model

Section 1 Wrap Up
Your First 3D Model in Blender
26 Lectures 02:53:32
  • We're excited to see how you will change.
  • We'll be exploring the fundamentals of Blender.
  • Vertices: points in space.
  • Edges: lines between vertices.
  • Faces: closed polygons of edges.
  • By the end you'll be making simple placeholder assets.
Section 2 Introduction

  • This is the Lecture where you will find all of file you will need to complete the Section.
  • Please Download your Asset Pack now.
  • Your files will come in a Zip file ready for extraction to your computer.
Your Section 2 Assets

Michael goes through some basic modelling concepts on a whiteboard.

Basic Modelling Concepts

  • Learn about Object Mode and Edit Mode.
  • Naming your meshes.
  • Manipulate Vertices, Edges and Faces.
  • Understand their relationship.
Preview 07:46

Here Michael shows you how to make a basic wedge shape.

Making A Wedge Shape

  • How to control your model with more precision.
  • Blender's co-ordinate system.
  • Co-ordinates are always listed as (X,Y,Z).
Moving, Rotating and Resizing

In This Video…

  • We’ll take a closer look at pivot points.
  • How to change them.
  • Things to watch out for.

(Unique Video Reference: 7b_BM_CBC)

Pivot Points

  • Learn about Duplication.
  • Create one mesh from multiple objects.
Duplication and Merging

  • What is Version Control?
  • Why you would want to do this.
  • How to change Blender's Save Versions.
  • Your Other Options
Version Control

  • Explore Wireframe Mode.
  • How to merge 2 vertices into one.
  • Why you would want to do this.
  • How to control the sensitivity of the merge.
Merging Vertices in Blender

  • "Normal" means 90-degrees
  • Normals are vectors at 90-degrees to the faces.
  • Think of them like hairs.
  • Hairs should grow outwards!
What Are Normals?

  • Learn about Normals.
  • Why they're are important.
  • How to fix them if they have gone wrong.
Normals in Blender

This will test your knowledge up to this point.

Mid Section Quiz
6 questions

  • What exuding is.
  • Planning your model.
  • How it applies to Faces, Edges and Vertices.
Extruding In Blender

  • Learn how to use the Inset Tool.
  • Using the Outset Option.
Insetting in Blender

Michael asks a quick question for your feedback on keyboard shortcuts.
Insetting Question for YOU!

  • What edge loops are.
  • How to select an edge loop.
  • Show the power of loop cut.
  • How to control the slide function.
Edge Loops, Loop Cut and Slide

  • Learn more ways to select your geometry.
  • Border select.
  • Circle select.
Different Selection Methods

  • Learn another way to constrain movement.
  • Using the Snapping Tool.
  • How to snap objects into place.
  • Control whether or not you merge vertices.
The Snapping Tool

Here we combine the knowledge we have learnt so far to complete an extra challenge.

Extra Challenge- "Railings"

  • Your first modifier: The Array Modifier
  • They're non destructive… Until you apply them!
  • How to separate your geometry.
  • Updated (15/09/2017)

(Unique Video Reference: 18_BM_CBC)

Using The Array Modifier

  • Build on your knowledge of Loop Cutting.
  • How Face Loops are similar to Edge Loops.
Loop Cuts and Face Loops

  • What subdivision is.
  • The dangers of subdivision.

  • A useful export checklist.
  • Introducing left and right handed coordinates.
  • Demonstrating an import into Unity.
  • Where do you want to export to first?
Coordinate Systems & Exporting

Editing an object and transforming an object can look the same.

Transforms aren’t applied by default.

Not applying transforms can impact animation, particles systems, physics, beveling, modifiers….

Applying Transforms

End of Section 2 Quiz

End of Section Quiz
5 questions

  • We now have a lot of basic modelling tools to hand.
  • It’s time to re-enforce our modelling knowledge.

Extra Modelling Challenges

  • Well done getting this far.
  • Please remember to share in the Discussions.
  • Try making your own boat, house and tree.
  • Start the next section now!
Section 2 Wrap Up
Bowling Ball and Pins
18 Lectures 02:10:46

Introduction to section

Section 3 Introduction

  • This is the Lecture where you will find all of the files you will need to complete the Section.
  • Please Download your Asset Pack now.
  • Your files will come in a Zip file ready for extraction to your computer.
Your Section 3 Assets

  • Introducing lean production / rapid prototyping.
  • NOT pre-production, production, post-production.
  • Imagine these assets are for a bowling game.
  • Knowing how fast / how many iterations to do.
  • Knowing when to stop iterating!
A Definition of Lean Production
  • Eliminates waste created through overburden and unevenness in work loads.
  • Maximises flow of value (anything that a customer would be willing to pay for).
  • Maximises quality by discovering the 20% of gold.
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lean_manufacturing
The Pottery Fable
  • Teacher challenges class.
  • One half on quality, other on quantity.
  • At the end of the term, which wins?
  • Both from the quantity side.
  • Moral… quality follows quantity.
Lean Production Pipeline

  • Understanding your subject.
  • Planning your model.
  • Know the importance of research.
Knowing Your Topic and Specification

  • Has it’s own units called Blender Units (BU)
  • You can define a Blender unit as several units.
  • Works well between 0.01 - 100 BU
  • Rule of thumb: Use the Grid Floor as a stage.
  • Order of magnitude suitable for the Level of Detail

Scale, Level of Detail and Models

  • One model doesn't have to contain it all!
  • Use multiple models if necessary.
  • Imagine zooming in from space to a bacteria.
  • You would make multiple models for each level of detail.
Blender Model Scale

  • There are 2 ways of importing reference material.
  • Background images and textured planes.
  • We'll be using background images.
Importing Reference Material

  • Starting with a primitive with the same symmetry and shape as your target model saves you time.
  • It can be very hard to remove all traces of the original shape.
Choosing The Right Primitive(s)

  • What are are Bézier curves.
  • Why we're using them for our pin.
  • Drawing your first Bézier curve.
Introduction to Bézier Curves

Mid-Section Quiz
5 questions

  • Convert the curve to a mesh object.
  • Learn that a curve is still editable.
  • Using the spin tool we will make our pin.
Spin In Blender (Rotational Extrusion)

  • Introduce the material properties panel.
  • How to create & name a material.
  • About users of materials & “deleting” materials.
  • How to assign a material to a face.
Assigning Materials To Faces

  • How a .blend file may appear elsewhere.
  • How to export as a .fbx file with materials.
  • How using .blend is “leaner”.
  • About smooth shading & normals.
  • Why you may want multiple levels of detail.
Exporting Models With Materials

  • How to control the number of vertices.
  • Creating a Convex Hull.
  • Introducing the Decimate modifier.
Creating Collider Meshes

  • Learn that the sphere is the defining shape.
  • The mesh topology can vary greatly.
  • UV sphere, ico sphere and cube!
  • Brief look at subdivision modifier.
Choosing The Right Sphere

  • Use the Subdivision tool to add edge geometry.
  • Use 'to sphere' to create a circular hole.
Subdividing an Edge and To Sphere

  • Change the axis for extrusion for finer control.

(Unique Video Reference: 17_BP_CBC )

Extruding to a Normal

  • Showing you how to import multiple Blender files into a scene.
  • Learning the difference between append and linked.
  • Understanding that a composited scene can exist with both types.
  • When making a scene with multiple models.
  • You have control over the model, scale, position etc.
  • Can edit the model, like taking a copy into the current Blender file.
  • e.g. Coffee table plus two cups…
  • When making an object of components.
  • You have no control over the models position, scale etc.
  • You still cannot edit the model, done at source.
  • e.g. An anotomical model…
Importing Blender Files

Using the assets we have just created we will combine them in Blender into one scene and compose the bowling balls so they are looking dynamic and awesome!

Final Scene

End of Section Quiz
5 questions

A final lecture concluding this section.

We hope you have enjoyed in and will see you in the next section.

Section 3 Wrap Up
Low-Poly Chess Board & Pieces
33 Lectures 04:55:25

Mikey and Ben introduce this section.

Section 4 Introduction

  • This is the Lecture where you will find all of the files you will need to complete the Section.
  • Please Download your Asset Pack now.
  • Your files will come in a Zip file ready for extraction to your computer.
Your Section 4 Assets

  • Learn how to manage a larger project.
  • Store your files for quick recall.
  • This is just a suggested workflow.
Managing A Larger Project

  • Check out the design specs of a chess board.
  • Design our chess board using that info.
  • Decide on a working scale.
  • Play about in Blender to get it feeling right.
Planning Our Project

  • Start creating our chess board
  • Replace a cube mesh object’s mesh data
  • Demonstrate the grid mesh option too

Mesh Objects and Mesh Data

  • How to centre your model in the view.
  • Learn how to control an objects origin.
Re-centring Your Objects

  • Chose a style of chess set.
  • Decide on construction method.
  • Start creating our asset.
Construction Method
  • Split our models in two.
  • Make a standard base asset that we can work from for all the other models.
Creating A Standard Asset

  • Box model the chess piece base.
  • Using the bevel tool to round off our sharp edges.

(Unique Video Reference: 09_CS_CBC)

Using The Bevel Tool

  • Learn when you would duplicate an asset model.
  • Choose when appending would be better.

Duplicating Vs Appending

  • Appending picks out key parts of a blend file.
  • Other Scene data would have to be appended separately.
  • Duplicating would be exactly the same as the original file with everything intact.
Appending Or Duplicating

  • Learning the power of bridging edge loops.
  • Opps our pawn is lovely but has too many polygons!
Bridging Edge Loops

  • Open up the new LowPoly base piece.
  • Make sure you are working on the new Blend file.
  • Be mindful to keep the top sphere 8 segments.
Finish the Low Poly Pawn

  • Decide how we can manage our materials.
  • Creating materials in one blend file.
  • Each project will have a different way of handling materials depending on it's size and scope.
Materials In Our Project
  • 32 Pieces: Black & White
  • Board: Black & White & Wooden Surround
  • 5 Materials in the project.
  • We're going to assign materials in a Chess Scene Blend file.
Managing The Chess Scene Assets

The 3D Cursor and Origins

  • Learn how to select geometry that isn't visible.
  • Two straight forward ways,
    1. Switch view port shading to wireframe.
    • Toggle 'Limit selection to visible'.
  • Build the rest of the Bishop.
Selecting Hidden Geometry

  • Experiment with a boolean modifier.
  • Understand how to apply it to our model.
  • Can been used constructively and destructively.
  • It can work in edit mode.
  • Real time and live!
Boolean Modifier

A quick Mid-Section quiz to assess your understanding of what you have just learnt.

Mid Section Quiz
5 questions

  • Introducing the concept of an empty.
  • An empty is a null object, and has no geometry.
  • They can be used as a handle to control objects.
  • Used as a parent object for a group of objects.
  • Many other uses.
Keeping It Lean
  • Append the bishop into our chess scene.
  • Check everything is right proportion wise.
  • Start filling up our board, creating the white pawns.
  • Link duplicate our bishop and pawns.
  • Managing our models in this scene.
An Introduction To Empties In Blender

  • See how parents can group together objects, their children.
  • Create a hierarchy which is easy to navigate.
  • We'll be using this to logically group our pieces.
  • Parent>Child>Grand Child>Great Grand Child!
Parent and Child Objects

  • Great for working around more complex scenes.
  • We're changing the user preferences.
  • Demonstrate both zoom to mouse and rotate around selection.
  • Other view options available.
  • View>View Selected (NumberPad .)
  • View Dolly: Ctrl + Shift + Middle-Mouse / Ctrl+ Shift + +/-.
  • Walk/Fly Mode: Shift + F.
Zoom To Mouse & Rotate Around Selection

  • Understand that lamps apply to Blender Render.
  • Light is handled differently in Cycles.
  • Adjusting lamps properties and seeing it's affect.
  • We will switch to rendered mode in the viewport shading options to see this effect.

Further Reading on Blender Render Lighting:

Lighting in Blender Render

  • Discover it is useful when working on larger and more complex assemblies or scenes.
  • Control whether you are hiding groups of objects as well as individuals.
Hiding Un-Needed Objects.

  • Need to understand these for getting rendering right.
  • Looking at the two in isolation.
  • Combining them to see the effect.
  • Still using Blender Render.

Diffuse vs Specular Reflections

  • Both are types of reflection.
  • Diffuse is when Light scatters as it hits a surface.
  • Specular is direct reflection of the light to the viewer.
  • Materials are often a mix of the two.
Diffuse and Specular: Blender Render

  • Show you how to add a texture to your material.
  • Reinforce the defuse and specular settings.
  • Model the board surround.
  • Apply a texture to the board surround.
Using An Image As A Texture

  • Introduce procedural textures.
  • Apply some to the chequers on the board.
Using Procedural Textures

  • Better overall to make models using quads.
  • Explain what they are.
  • Whatever you use- it is being converted back to triangles in the background.
  • Watch out making things non planer…
Quads Vs Triangles and Ngons

  • Only happens with quads and NGons.
  • Rendering & Exporting always converts geometry into triangles.- Lose control over the rendering.
  • You cannot always see this in the 3D window.
  • Makes a huge difference with flat models and flat shading.

Triangles and NGons

  • If your model comes to a point you might need a triangle.
  • When sub dividing part of you model you are likely to create an NGon elsewhere.
  • You will break loops when doing this.


  • Good mesh topology from the beginning.
  • Be lean and check your model through.
  • Turn on mesh analysis (not 100%).
  • Manually make face(s) Planar again. Normal, SZZ0.
Non Planar Geometry

  • Learn about edge rings.
  • How they help you manage your geometry.
  • Definition: A series of edges which are not directly connected, but share faces.
Edge Rings

  • How to setup and use the Mirror modifier.
  • Start creating our Knight.
The Mirror Modifier

  • Focus on creating a free form model.
  • Ensuring faces are not triangulated when being created to keep with our style.
  • Introduce the edge split modifier.
  • This is the basis of organic modelling.
The Edge Split Modifier

  • Start the Rook from the “LP Chess Piece Base” we made earlier.
  • Remember to use the reference material for a rough scale and shape guide.
Modelling Challenge - Rook

  • Suggest using the queen as a starting point.
  • To make the King the right size by out specs, a base of 4 > 4.5 is a scale of 1.125.
  • Make the king your own, and have fun.
Modelling Challenge - King

  • Learn about camera placement.
  • They're a directional object.
  • Overview of the camera settings.
  • You can have more than one camera, but only one active camera.
Setting Up A Camera For Rendering

  • Tidy our folders for future access.
  • Export your model(s) as an FBX.
  • Import .FBX into Unreal and Unity game engines.
  • Opening Blender models in Unity 5.
  • About exporting textures and materials.
Exporting Your Chess Model

End Of Section Quiz
5 questions

End of the Chess Section.

End of Section 4
An Animated Lamp
38 Lectures 05:20:38

Mikey and Ben Introduce the Animated Lamp Section.

Section 5 Introduction

  • This is the Lecture where you will find all of the files you will need to complete the Section.
  • Please Download your Asset Pack now.
  • Your files will come in a Zip file ready for extraction to your computer.
Your Section 5 Assets

  • We are going to do many iterations though to the end, even though the lamp won't be built fully!
  • Later on rendering times are likely to be longer that the last section.
  • We'll be making and testing the Lamp as we go.
Being Lean

  • Blender Render is generally quick and you get a reasonable result quickly. - Uses CPU Only.
  • Cycles is a physical based renderer is accurate but takes longer. It is designed for GPUs but runs fine on CPUs.
Why Use Cycles?
  • We are going to use Cycles, since we are modelling a lamp!
  • The two are not cross compatible, no switching.
  • You can use other Renderers too, if you have access to them. We won't be covering these.
Render Time Difference
  • I will be showing you 3 Clips of a 4 second bowling ball animation.
  • Blender Render - 2 mins
  • Basic Cycles Render - 15 mins
  • Thorough Cycles Render - 4 hours!
Your Machine Specs : CPU
  • Lots of different machine specs- vary massively.
  • More Cores and Higher Frequency CPU.
  • You are unlikely to hit memory limits when using CPU Rendering.
  • You cannot use CPU and GPU at the same time.

Your Machine Specs: Graphics Card

  • nVidia cards- any that support CUDA.
  • AMD/ATi Cards - Support has started not complete.
  • You may hit memory issues if using a GPU.
  • If in doubt or having trouble switch to CPU rendering.
Cycles VS Blender Render

  • Cycles runs with AMD/ATi and nVidia Cards.
  • Install the latest drivers for your GPU.
  • If you do not have a dedicated nVidia graphics card you can skip the next few lectures.
Dedicated Graphics Cards

  • This Lecture is for Windows machines, please skip to the next lecture for a Mac Setup.
  • Show you how to check for your driver version.
  • Make sure you have the latest Version of Nvidia's Drivers for your computer.
Installing CUDA On Windows

  • Show you how to download nVidia's CUDA drivers.
  • Check for updates - have to manually check for updates via system preferences once installed.
  • Can install updates from system preferences in future.
Installing CUDA On A Mac

  • Optional, if you do not have a dedicated GPU, this lecture will not apply to you.
  • You may find that your GPU is slower than your CPU at rendering.
  • Your CPU is free to do other things…
Setup Blender For GPU Rending

  • How to change your Render settings.
  • You will have to run multiple tests.
  • Different scenes will have different characteristics depending on there complexity, but in general will follow a similar pattern.

(Unique Video Reference: 10_AL_CBC)

Lowering Your Cycles Render Time

  • Decide on a scale.
  • Create a basic environment for our lamp.
  • Run through a couple of options.
Creating A Backdrop

  • Show that lamps sort of work in Blender.
  • How to create a light source as geometry and then apply an emissive material to that object.
Lighting With Cycles

  • Show you how to render just a part of your scene.
  • Great for those with slower machines.
  • Great for complex Scenes on ANY computer.
Rendering A Small Area

  • Using curves makes it infinitely editable.
  • Changing the bézier handle type.
  • Generate a 3D object by defining curves.
Using Curves To Generate Geometry

  • Refresh our knowledge on this.
  • Converting our curve object to a mesh object.
  • We can then perform mesh operations on it.
  • We can choose to delete the original curve data if we want to.
Creating Geometry From A Curve

  • Culling Unnecessary Geometry
  • We kept the curve data so have two options:
  • Remake our mesh object, from those curves.
  • Fiddle about with the geometry itself.
Which path to take?
  • Both are OK- depends on stage of construction.
  • We'll be altering the curve resolution AND the mesh!
  • Tidy up the rest of our geometry.
Altering Curve Resolution

  • Use an existing face to create a new face.
  • Separate immediately creating a new object.
  • This allows us to match up parts of our model, even when they're not exact sizes.
Existing Geometry To Create New

  • Design a rough outline for the lamp.
  • Make it believable as an object.
  • I have chosen a simple and raw design.
  • Remember It can always be beautified later on.
Design and Considerations

  • Learn about the armature object.
  • Add an Armature to your model.
Introduction to Armatures

  • Learn how to use another object as the point of reflection.
  • Understand that it is the origin that acts as the point of reflection.
  • See other objects rotational values change the axes of reflection.
Revisiting the Mirror Modifier

  • Learn how to add additional bones to an armature.
  • Understand that a new bone does not have to be connected to the previous one.
Adding Bones To Our Armature

A quick mid section quiz to make sure you have a good understanding of the materials learnt so far!

Mid Section Quiz
5 questions

  • Be introduced to pose mode
  • Understand that we use this mode to test our models movement.
  • Know that this the best mode to be in to parent mesh objects to individual bones. and to make alterations.
Pose Mode

  • Understand the differences between rest position and pose position.
  • You can see the rest position when in edit mode.
  • How to clear the pose back to the rest state.
Rest Position and Pose Position

  • Be able to lock movement to a single axis.
  • Constrain the degree of movement possible.
Constraining Bones Movement

  • Create a 3D object from just curves.
  • Give the new object thickness using the solidify modifier.
The Solidify Modifier

  • Open up the node editor.
  • Create some basic materials.
  • Apply these materials to our model.
  • See how adjustments in the node editor affect our model.
Introduction To The Node Editor

  • Learn the differences between the two light sources when using the cycles engine.
  • Understand that there is time and place for both.
  • Use the blackbody node.

Lamps vs Emissive Materials In Cycles

  • Learn how to turn on Auto IK.
  • Realise that this is a starting point and not perfect!
  • Understand it applies to the whole rig.
  • See that it allows us to control the connected bones all at once.
Auto Inverse Kinematics (IK)

  • Be introduced to the timeline
  • Shown how to adjust the playback and rendering range.
  • How to alter the Frames Per Second (FPS) of your animation.
The Timeline

  • Understand what they are and how they are used.
  • Be shown how to automatically add them and remove them from the Timeline view.
  • Realise almost everything can be keyframed.
  • Be able to use key frames to animate your lamp.
Key Frames

  • Understand that the camera view is for our animation rendering as well as a normal rendering.
  • Setup the camera ready for the Animation.
  • Animate the Camera!
Setting Up The Camera

  • Learn how to render your animation.
  • How to stop the rendering.
  • What settings to use for good results.
  • How to preview an animation once it has finished rendering.
Rendering An Animation

  • Use multiple computers to render an animation.
  • Learn how to use multiple instances of Blender to utilise the CPU and GPU on your computer.
  • Decide on how many samples for the final animation.
Rendering Across Multiple Blenders

  • Be Introduced to the Video Editor.
  • Combine your rendered images in to a final video.
  • Explore various exporting options.
  • Export the images to a movie file.
Creating A Video of Your Animation

  • Learn how to setup the FBX Export and understand why we use it.
  • Realise that your model is currently only suitable for Blender. The Export doesn’t fully work in the models current state.
Exporting Your Lamp Model

  • Learn what a vertex group is.
  • Assign vertices to a vertex group.
  • See that because we created our model in parts, it is really easy to assign groupings.
Vertex Groups

  • Un parent your lamp meshes and join them together ending up with one mesh object.
  • Rename your Vertex Groups and Bones so that they match.
  • Test your new rig.
Re-Rigging Our Model

  • Export the model and test it.
  • Just watch if you don’t have unity or unreal installed so you can see the process.
Exporting The Final Model

A final test of knowledge gained in this section.

End Of Section Quiz
5 questions

Mikey talks through the end of section wrap up.

End of Section 5 Wrap Up
Fluffy Bunny
35 Lectures 06:33:14

Mikey and Ben Introduce the Fluffy Bunny Section.

Section 6 Introduction

Section 6 Assets

  • Get familiar with rabbits!
  • Look at the desired outcome and plan our modelling journey towards that goal.

Section Brief

  • Rabbit is sat in grass and is still.
  • It is a summers day with a light breeze.
  • There should be additional foliage around the rabbit.
  • The Rabbit does not have to be realistic.
Planning Our Scene

  • Re-enforce the importance of reference material.
  • See what happens when you just plough forward with out consulting your reference material, like I started to do!
Knowing Your Subject

  • Know how to turn layers on and off.
  • Turn on the layer management tool.
  • Understand layers are useful for working on separate parts of a scene or even model.
  • Realise if a layer is OFF the final render will not contain anything that was on that layer.

  • Learn how to add a meta ball.
  • Use them to quickly build up a base framework.
  • See they’re great for modelling organic objects.
  • Understand they need converting afterwards to a mesh so we can add further detail.
Meta Balls

  • Learn the basics of sculpting.
  • Adjust your brush’s type, strength and size.
  • Understand how ‘Dyntopo’ works and when to use it.
  • How to find a brush if you have deleted it!
The Basics Of Sculpting

  • See my solution to the ‘Define Your Bunny’s Shape’ Challenge
Basic Sculpting Solution Video

  • Understand that Even With a dedicated GPU you may end up with out of memory issue if your card doesn’t have enough RAM.
  • Some AMD cards may not render hairs correctly.
GPU Rendering In This Section

  • Create a particle system.
  • Understand children and how they relate to their parents.
  • Hopefully avoid crashing your computer! (or waiting a VERY long time)
Your First Particle System

  • Learn how to give your hair/fur colour!
  • Understand about Fake Users and how to use them.
  • Realise what the 0 before anything in Blender means.
Fake Users

  • Be introduced to the Particle Edit option.
  • Learn how to edit the particles
  • Style the hairs to make them flow in a more natural manner.
  • Learn how to reset the hairs back to default state.
Particle Editing

  • Use weight painting and vertex groups to control where the particle system actually appears, and where it does not.

(Unique Video Reference: 14_FB_CBC)

Weight Painting

  • Adjust the particle’s settings to get a more realistic and less uniform hair appearance.
Adding Randomness with Children

  • Add another camera to the Scene
  • Change the primary camera
  • Learn how to quickly move the camera around.
  • Change the Camera Properties.
Multiple Cameras

  • See how particle systems export from Blender.
  • Learn how to convert them.
  • Understand that this can break your modelling flow.
  • Realise you may be better off using the particle system in the other program you are exporting too.
Exporting and Particle Systems

  • Learn more about Hiding objects in Blender.
  • See how to Hide everything except the object you are working on.
Hiding Objects

  • Make the Iris for our Bunny.
  • Learn how to Export an image with transparency.
  • Only Use Blender- so there will be some limitations.
  • Understand there are better programs for image creation and editing (Photoshop, Gimp etc.)
Introduction To The Image Editor

Combining Shaders In Cycles

  • Understand an image texture replaces the colour of a material.
  • Learn how to Unwrap part of a mesh and apply the texture to it.
UV Unwrapping and Texture Mapping

  • Add a skybox to our scene.
  • Use that skybox as the primary light source for the whole scene.
Adding a Sky Box

Mid Section Quiz
5 questions

  • Understand you need both.- The texture has to exist on something!
  • See that Geometry is for detail and textures are for the illusion of detail.
  • Realise that the appropriate combination of both is used to create models
Using Textures Vs. Geometry

  • Setup the Add-on that enables you to import images as planes.
  • Be able to import an image into a scene.
  • Realise this can be another way of importing reference material.
Importing Images As Planes

  • Learn how to embed images into the blend file, both individually and collectively.
  • Understand this is essential when sharing a file with someone else.
  • Can create bloat if the external data becomes obsolete. -Show you how to remove external data
Packing External Data

  • Look at the Nodes that are created for the textures.
  • Learn about the different types of connection points and what the coloured dots are.
  • Which ones can be connected together and what they would do.
Node Type Overview

  • Learn how to use cycle’s nodes to apply transparency to your image.
  • Use groups for nodes for simplicity
  • Use those node groups again on other materials.
Textures With Transparency

  • Import an image without a transparent layer.- No Alpha Channel.
  • Understand that this is useful if you have no image editing software, no time to process a load of images, or just trying out images for your textures

What is Alpha?

  • If an image contains an alpha channel, each image pixel is represented has an value which specifies the opacity of that pixel. In alpha channels, 100% is opaque pixel and 0% is transparent pixel.

Not the best way…

  • Ideal to have a Solid coloured background, either 100% Black or 100% White to separate the image from the background.
  • It would be best if your images are processed to include an alpha (transparency) channel RGBA.
Textures Without Transparency

  • Name your new texture layer.
  • Turn back on the camera and lighting and the grass layer.
Testing The Grass

Learn about light paths and how there are critical when using transparency.

Light Path Render Settings

  • Play with the texture planes to alter their appearance.
  • Understand, the more complexity you add here the less you may need later on.
Making Textures Look More 3D

  • Learn how you can place hundreds of objects easily and fluidly using the particle system.
  • Control the distribution of particles using Weight Painting and Vertex Groups
  • Turn off outlines when they clutter the view.
Preview 16:19

  • See the Solution to the last lecture.
  • Use a series of particle systems to plant our various grass types.
  • Use low values during prototyping to get a feel of how the grass will look.
Layering Particles Systems in Blender

  • Turn on the sapling add-on.
  • Learn the fundamentals of sapling.
  • Understand to save before using sapling.
  • Learn how to prevent blender ‘crashing’ when using sapling.
Introduction to Sapling

  • Look at the tree presets.
  • See how to add leaves to your tree in sapling.
  • Learn where leaves are placed on the tree.
  • How to get it looking more like a tree at the base.
Using Sapling To Make A Basic Tree

End Of Section Quiz
5 questions

Mikey talks through the end of section wrap up.

End of Section 6 Wrap Up
Game Asset Pack (Ref: GAP_CBC)
48 Lectures 10:37:06
  • You are going to make several models.
  • We’ll be making both high poly and low poly versions of these assets.
  • We will emphasise how critical naming is when working with a larger project like this.
  • You will be able to create your own mapping, with these we can make the illusion of detail.
  • We’ll be constantly checking our model externally
  • This will be focused mainly on an interior environment.
Section 7 Introduction

  • Create assets to be exported straight into an external program, like a game engine.
  • Creating our own textures, and other maps from high detail models and apply them to a low poly version.
  • Focused on modelling the interior of the Gothic Church.
  • You can use this technique within Blender itself too for optimisation.
  • I am going to be testing my model externally as I go so you can appreciate the impact externally.
  • We’ll be looking at Level Of Detail, in detail.
  • I will be keeping my scene simple, primarily for teaching purposes!
  • I encourage you to add more detail, experiment and have fun. Wouldn’t the scene look much more interesting with a chess set in it…
Section Specification

Planning Your Project

An Overview of Source Control

  • The what and why of Version Control Systems
  • Choosing your Version Control System (VCS)
  • What files to include / exclude
  • Commit = save a local snapshot
  • Reset = roll-back to a previous state
  • Branch, Push and Large File Support later.

Popular Version Control Systems

  • Git
  • Mercurial
  • Perforce
  • Subversion / TortoiseSVN
  • Alienbrain (for art but of order $10,000)
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_version_control_software

About SourceTree

  • Free software by Atlassian
  • Visual front-end for Git or Mercurial
  • Mac and PC but Mac version is a little ahead
  • Good when learning as easy to visualise.
Version Control 2

  • Understand that there is NO one way of setting up your filing system.
  • Have a personal style of filing, if you don’t like mine, use yours.
  • Talk with your ‘team’ you will form guidelines from your own needs.

Some Rigidity

  • In a Team environment you will have guidelines or discuss with colleagues.
  • Some other software might expect certain things to be stored and named in a certain way.


  • In a Team / larger project it is critical that you can find assets, materials, textures.
  • Naming files well will help you and others.
  • There are some naming conventions that we will use in this section.

In Blender Organisation.

  • We are going to be making a much more complex scene than any previously made.
  • Organise it as you go, not afterwards!
  • Use description names, cube, cube.001 etc is not helpful to anyone!
File Structure & Naming

  • Focus on representations of the right size and shape, but JUST Block work models.
  • This allows quick iteration of your models.
  • Remember higher detail ofter requires more processing time too!

LOD Numbers and Letters

  • LOD 0 often refers to the highest detail model sometimes called the base model.
  • To avoid confusion, we are going to use Letters!
  • A represents the lowest polygon model, with B,C,D etc increasing in detail.

Watch Your Time / LOD

  • LOD and time taken at usually directly proportional to one another.
  • When fleshing out a scene and prototyping you probably want quiet a few assets.
  • You can test models and your scene quickly.

LOD vs. Time Taken Example


A - B - C - D


200 - 2,000 - 20,000 - 200,000

Time Taken**

30mins - 2 hours - 1 day - 1 Week+

*Every polygon counts!

**Time includes other artwork too

Level Of Detail (LOD)

Simple Shapes

  • RH Triangle whose sides are 1,1,sqrt(2).
  • Square 1x1 and other Integer Rectangles.
  • Isosceles whose base is 1 and sides are 2.
  • Equilateral Triangles of side length 1.
  • These will all fit together well and consistently


  • NONE… at this stage.
  • Later it can feel restrictive.
  • That is where you want to be customising and adding detail, not in the early stages

Formulae In The Fields

  • You can type formulae into Blender’s fields.
  • We can use this to solve otherwise complicated measurements.
Building Blocks

  • Setup Up Our Repository.
  • Register SourceTree.
  • Learn how to exclude data from our repository.
  • Stage our files.
  • Make our first commit.

How Many Repositories?

  • You could use a repo per model that you create, this would give you the best level of control.
  • You could track your whole project in a repo.
  • It will depend on the complexity of your project and how much control you NEED.

Excluding Data

  • Allow faster commits at a smaller size and keeps the database simple and manageable.
  • Avoid storing derived / generated data in the repository.
  • Example here: will be our reference material.


  • You’ll need to save all the documents that constitute that commit first.
  • Just like saving your working folder and zipping it up at that moment in time.
Setting Up Our Repo & Committing

  • Learn how to manage repetitive tasks.
  • Understand good uses for appending an Blend file into your scene.
Repetitive Tasks In Blender

  • Set your commit message before working
  • Start building your building.
  • Notice a few issues and work out a way around them.
Using Our Building Blocks

  • Learn about Datablocks.
  • Understand that knowing about them is about to become much more important.
  • We have come into contact with data blocks lots but let now go and explore them directly.

Datablock’s Characteristics

  • Must have unique names per type.
  • Can link to each other.
  • Can link across blend files.
  • Unused Datablocks are eventually removed.
  • This is Where we have used Fake Users in the past to preserve that particular datablock.

Sharing Datablocks Example

  • The same texture on many materials.
  • The same material on many meshes.
  • The same particle system and so on.
  • We will often share and then make the data block unique.
Introduction To Datablocks

  • Learn more about linking to another blend file.
  • Link an object datablock.
  • Understand that there is a datablock hierarchy.
  • Keep an eye out for when you might loose data.
Linking To An External Datablock

  • Learn more about linking datablocks.
  • Understand what is happening when you link.
  • Realising when you need to use a Proxy
Make Proxy
  • Creates a New object, that is a parent of the linked data.
  • Allows transformation of an object.
  • Can now Scale, Move, Rotate etc.
  • Otherwise exactly the same as the linked file.
  • The object datablock is linked to original and any dependant datablocks.
Linking Blend Files- Making a Proxy

  • Learn why you want to make a linked datablock local.
  • Understand we are starting to sever links by doing this.
  • Learn about the various stages of making it local.
  • Decide when would be a good time to localise a datablock.

Advantages And Disadvantages

  • Advantage: You will have more local control.
  • External files moved, project can stay together.
  • Disadvantage: Potentially more work involved.
  • Any edits you make on the original affect all linked data blocks but not the ones made local.

When Do you Localise?

  • When the link is not required.
  • When you want to make the asset unique in this particular file.
  • When you want to make changes irrelevant to other potential projects.

Make Local: Option 1

  • Selected Objects: Clones the object Datablock to the new blend file.
  • All other datablocks remain linked to the original file.
  • This allows changing of anything in the object datablock.

Make Local: Option 2

  • Selected Objects and Data: Clones the object & data Datablock to the new blend file.
  • This allows editing of the mesh data, breaking that link and making it a local file.
  • The materials & other datablocks remain linked to the original object.

Make Local: Option 3

  • Selected Objects, Data and Materials: Clones the object, data and materials Datablock.
  • This allows editing of the object data & materials datablocks.
  • Breaks those links, making them local to this file.

Make Local: Option 4

  • All: As it sounds, this is pretty much the same as appending the object into the scene. It is now entirely local with no links to the original file.
Linking Blend Files: Making Local

Mid Section Quiz
5 questions

  • See how our scene looks and feels walking around it. Using the Fly / Walk Mode.
  • Show you how to see the scene in Unity.
  • Understand I am using Unity to keep the iterations quick and simple at this early stage.
Unity Is Optional
  • Anything external to Blender, you can watch to see how it works and is coming across.
  • Better understanding of external programs.
  • Join in, if you have Unity installed and are interested in learning more about this prototyping method.
Walking And Flying Around The Model

  • Use a different way of moving the camera.
  • See this gives you better control over what the camera is pointing at.
  • Combine with fly mode for good control.
  • Learn how to track a target.
Better Camera Control

  • Understand what will export
  • Realise some elements of your models will not export or will once, or not properly.
  • Depends on the target package.

What Appears on Import

  • Mesh data including UV Maps.
  • Armatures and animation data will appear too if supported in the target package.
  • Textures may appear or simple the base diffuse colour.


  • Textures often have to be reapplied.
  • Shaders work differently in other packages.
  • Materials would have to be remade.
  • Particle systems are local to Blender.
  • Test
What Can You Export?

Re-linking Blend Files

  • Make a commit!
  • Understand the order you NEED to do things in if you wish to change a linked file or it’s datablocks.
  • See what happens if you change a link.
Moving or Renaming Blend Files
  • Make a commit!
  • COPY file(s) to new location.
  • Rename the COPIED file(s) appropriately.
  • Doing it it any other order will break links.
  • Any links broken when saving will be lost forever!
Moving or Renaming Datablocks
  • Make a commit!
  • COPY file(s)
  • Open up Copy and make datablock adjustments.
  • Link new file into scene.
  • Make links to the new object, replacing the old.
  • Delete / Archive Old Blend file.
Re-linking Blend Files

  • Understand what a “profile modelling” is.
  • Potentially speed up modelling by mirroring.
  • Use a series of methods to produce a profile that we can use in our scene.
  • Future: Use the same profile in different ways

Profile Modelling

  • A profile is the outline you get when you view something from a particular angle.
  • Imagine slicing through your model.
  • Realise we have used them in the past: Lamp Base was produces with curves and the Pin was geometry based.

Methods Used

  • We’re going to bump up our extrude speed
  • We’re going to be using the bevel tool for construction and defining sharp edges.
  • A subsurface modifier for making the surface.
Profile Modelling By Extrusion

  • Create some alternative detail.
  • Convert Mesh objects into a Curve objects.
  • Use those 2 curves to create geometry, one controlling the profile, the other a path.
  • See this is great for more accurate path following.

Profile Modelling Using Curves

  • Use the Array modifier to repeat a mesh object the length of a curve.
  • Deform the array using the same curve data.
  • End up with some pretty awesome results!
Profile Modelling Using Mesh Objects

  • Learn how to use light portals.
  • Understand the limitations of their use.
  • See that they can dramatically increase quality given a fixed number of samples.
  • See they’re especially useful for indoor environments. lit by environmental lighting.

How Cycles Lighting Works

  • Light rays are fired out from the camera until they hit a light source.
  • With a Lamp Blender knows where the light source is so ONLY fires rays that will eventually hit the light source.

Emissive Materials

  • With an emissive material Blender doesn’t know where the light source is.
  • When the camera fires those rays, some of them will never reach a light source, this introduces more noise.

Environmental Lighting

  • In an Interior with only windows letting light in. The rays bounce around a lot and only a few reach the light source. HDR/Environment lighting.
  • This introduces a lot of noise in the final image.

How Portals Help

  • Portals help by telling Blender where to aim those rays.
  • This produces much less noise in the final image.


  • Portals are a cycles lighting feature.
  • They increase light calculation time, however produce much much less noisy environments.
  • Portals only work with Environmental light. Using them otherwise can reduce image quality.
  • Have little impact if you put something in the way!
Light Portals

  • Go over how to extract a previous version of your files.
  • Become aware that Blender files that are made up of linked files need to be accessed and restored a different way.
Using Source Control- Resetting

  • No longer ask what does UV stand for?!
  • Overview the mapping in upcoming lectures
  • Understand that we will be creating these maps from scratch, and then using them again to speed up further workflow.
  • X,Y and Z are used for the Co-ordinates.
  • UV are like the ‘X’ and ‘Y’ co-ordinates of an image.
  • UV mapping is the process of projecting a 2D image to a 3D model's surface.
Introduction To UV Unwrapping

  • Understand more about unwrapping.
  • Be able to unwrap more complex models
  • Realise this is a great starting point for a lot of meshes.
  • See it gives a basic unwrap that we can work with.

Why Unwrap?

  • A UV map, is a projection of a 3D mesh to 2D.
  • Whilst unwrapping is necessary to project an image
  • We can let blender ‘guess’ how to unwrap.
  • Unwrapping gives you control over how your model is mapped in 2D space.
  • Essential when using assets outside Blender.
  • Essential when using textures within Blender.
  • Necessary if you want control over how something looks.
Smart UV Project

How Is It Coming Together?

  • Do some organisation to our outliner before things get out of hand!
  • Get an “LOD_B” Mesh Object Ready to be Linked into our main scene.
Adding More Detail

  • Realise starting again is sometimes the best option.
  • See that even well prepared scenes can be broken by subtle changes.
  • Get help with problems you may have run into when making your building.
Problem Solving

  • Realise sometimes Smart UV project is 99% of the way there but something is not quiet right.
  • Use UV/Image Editor to change individual parts on your mapping.
  • (Updated 18/09/2017)

(Unique Video Reference: 31_GA_CBC)

UV Manipulation

  • Have a quick tour around my Church Vault.
  • See the challenges that we can have with more complex Models.
  • Troubleshoot some common unwrapping issues.
  • Work out ways to make an unwrap easier and quicker.
Complex Shapes & UV Mapping

  • Realise that UV unwraps will have seams in them.
  • Learn how to mark seams where you want them.
  • Understand that this gives us the most control over our models unwrap.

What Is A Seam?

  • It is a “cut” it your model, telling Blender how to unwrap your model.
  • It allows you to separate parts of your meshes.
  • Texture those parts individually.

Tips For Marking Seams

  • Seams can easily cause distortion and misalignment of textures.
  • Seams often occur on hard edges.
  • They are made where you are least likely to see them.
  • Understand that this gives us the most control over our model.
Introduction To Marking Seams

  • Create your own Image using Blender.
  • Become more familiar with the image editor.
  • Realise Blender’s limitations when it comes to image editing.
  • Understand you may have to use external packages for better control.
Painting In The Image Editor

Mid Section Quiz
5 questions

The Diffuse Map

  • Create a hand painted texture in the UV image editor and apply it to your models!
  • Be creating the diffuse map from scratch
  • Explain what the diffuse map does.

What Is A Diffuse Map?

  • Is the most common map, and the one most people think of when someone says “texture”.
  • It defines the colour and patterns on a surface.

Diffuse Maps

  • Can be challenging to imagine a surface without light source, or rather with uniform light
  • Avoid creating detail that would usually be generated by bumps on the surface.
  • We are going to avoid painting shadows too.
  • If done, this is called ‘baking’ into the image.
Diffuse Maps

  • Learn how to use images to control your materials.
  • Understand why these control images are black and white.
  • Create a simple stage for our building.

Why Black and White?

  • These Greyscale images define “values” on a per pixel basis.
  • Black represents a value of 0 and white a value of 1.
  • You map them to your model like you would any other image.
Using Images For Control

  • Use a texture to control how light interacts with a surface.
  • See how to use a texture as a bump map in Blender Render.
  • Use Generated textures rather than hand made.

Bump Maps

  • Normal and Height/Displacement maps are both types of bump maps.
  • We’re going to use a displacement map.
  • They tell a shader HOW to interact with light.
  • This gives the illusion of detail on a surface.
  • Can increase render speeds vs geometry.
Illusion of Detail- Using Bump Maps

  • Create real detail using a texture.
  • Use a displacement map to alter geometry.
  • Understand that you need geometry first to modify.
  • Use the displacement influence in Blender Render.
  • Then use the displacement modifier in a similar manner.

An Important Reality

  • They are not suited to things like generating a final brick wall. V High Poly count required.
  • They're very useful for applying detail e.g. scales on a lizard/fish or dragon.
  • Great for generating geometry and then optimising
  • For larger items, like terrain.
Using Displacement Maps

  • Understand they are a type of bump map.
  • Gain a greater understanding of how normals work.
  • They contain direction information not height information.
  • There are 4 Main Types
Normal Maps

  • Create a normal map.
  • Understand when to create a normal map.
  • Use a process called baking.
  • See the baking is the fundamental process for creating other map types too in Blender.
  • Understand about cages and why they are used.
  • (Updated 15/09/2017)

(Unique Video Reference: 40_GA_CBC)

Baking A Normal Map In Blender

Applying A Normal Map In Blender

  • Understand that resolution will control the level of detail at a particular distance.
  • Realise when a texture is too large or too small.
  • Learn about the power of two (POT) and why and when it is important.

Power Of Two

  • Computers work with 1s and 0s, or Binary.
  • A lot of external programs need POT textures.
  • They aren’t necessary in Blender but are a good standard to adhere too, especially when working with external programs.
  • Don’t have to be ‘square’, providing side length is a POT.

Which Numbers are Power of 2?

  • Mathematically they’ll be 2 to the power of n or 2^n. eg. 2^5 = 32
  • If you have been around computers for a while you’ll recognise this sequence: 2, 4, 8, 16, 32, 64, 128, 256, 512,1024, 2048, etc.

Textures Of Different Sizes.

  • Need their own UV Map.
  • Probably not exportable due to multiple UV maps.
  • Best to stick to one texture size for any given unwrap.
  • Larger textures require more memory.

What Size Textures

  • How far away is the camera from the object/texture?
  • How big is the object?
  • What’s the “Retina” Texture level?
  • rTexture = 3266 * Tan(Size/Distance)

Texture Resolution

  • Learn how to use the multi resolution modifier.
  • See it is similar to the subsurf. modifier and great for multiple resolutions of a single model.
  • Learn to control how sharp edges.
  • Understand that this is best applied to a base mesh that is close to the ‘final’ low-poly version. 
The Multi-Resolution Modifier

This quiz will test your knowledge up to this point in this section.

Mid Section Quiz
4 questions

  • Learn how bake detail from the higher multires to a lower one.
  • Very similar to before, but this time only one model.

Baking Using The Multires Modifier

  • Learn how to copy attributes of a mesh object.
  • See this is great when you have lots of components, for e.g. need the same material.
  • Understand it’s a destructive operation e.g. copying materials will overwrite a meshes current materials
Copying Mesh Properties

  • Making your UV map more uniform, minimising distortion and optimising image use.
  • Understand the use of margins
  • Learn more about seams and their placement.
Optimising A UV Map

  • Create a hand painted texture directly onto your model
  • Be creating a diffuse map from scratch
Texture Painting In The ViewPort

Realistic Lighting Or Fake It?

Creating a New Scene In Blender

End of Section Quiz
4 questions

Section 7 Wrap Up
The Human Head
31 Lectures 07:40:27

Michael Introduces The Human Head Section

Focus On 2 Main Topics

  • Mesh topology.
  • Material creation.
Section 8 Introduction

  • Drawn or photos are both OK.
  • They’re going to define your model.
  • Guide and Influence your character.
  • Just following along or without reference material will lead to frustration and a lot of wasted time.
  • Drawn or photos are both OK.
  • They’re going to define your model.
  • Guide and Influence your character.
  • Just following along or without reference material will lead to frustration and a lot of wasted time.
Section 8 Reference Material

  • 2 Objects can have the same shape, yet a different mesh construction.
  • Use quads wherever possible. nGons and Triangles will cause pinching in your model.
  • Topology can determine how easy it is to edit or animate an object.
  • Topology defines a faces key shapes.
  • Edge/Face loops will follow features.
  • Loops will help with editing.
  • Loops will help with deformation / animation.
Good Mesh Topology

  • Box Modelling: Building up the model from a primitive, adding detail as we go.
  • Poly to Poly: Building up your model one polygon at a time.
  • Sculpting and then Re-Topologising: Can be very time consuming
Possible Construction Methods

  • You have probably already done it to some degree.
  • Remaking a mesh so that the arrangement of polygons is uniform and often all quads.
  • Can significantly lower the polygon count.
  • Planning can help avoid doing much of it.
  • Start low LOD and working up can help avoid it too.
  • It is time consuming.

Do you Need to Retopologise?

  • Almost always.
  • Planning can help avoid it.
  • If sculpting the original model it will be necessary.
  • Leads to a clean and well defined mesh.
  • Others can then work with your mesh too.
  • It enables animation possibilities.
  • Allows you to refine and easily edit your mesh.
Introduction To Retopology

  • You can Add Images as planes, this allows you to see the image all the time in the viewport.
  • Adding images as background images will only show the images when looking Top/bottom, Left/Right, Front Back and in orthographic view.
  • Create a base Mesh to start with and SaveAs when you reach a point where you can branch to make different models.

Creating The Base Mesh

  • Making notes on your model.
  • Sketching and planning ideas.
  • Roughing out Shapes
  • Converted to edges
  • It can be use to create 2D Animations
The Grease Pencil

  • You'll learn how to use the knife tool.
  • See that it gives you many opportunities to craft and re-craft your model.
  • Understand that it can both ruin and fix your topology.
The Knife Tool

  • You'll learn how to use the Rip tool.
  • You’ll learn how to use the Rip Fill tool too!
  • Useful when you wish to add detail that otherwise would be difficult or time consuming to construct.
Rip and Rip Fill

  • You'll learn about edge and vertex sliding.
  • See that it is a useful way of refining your model without having to create or remove existing geometry.
Vertex Slide and Edge Slide

  • You'll learn more about where poles are really useful.
  • How to use a pole to terminate edge/face loops.
  • How they can guide and redirect edge/face loops.
  • Remember a edge/face loop doesn’t have to link back to itself.
Routing Face Loops Using Poles

  • Define the 5 main face groups that make up the face.
  • Expect to make mistakes. Go with it and remember to Save often, and be prepared to start over from the base head.
  • Create the Nose
Defining A Face's Main Face Loops

  • There aren’t any right settings
  • Skin is a complex surface.
  • It has more than one tone.
  • It’s shiny in some places, dry in others
  • Skin can be thin or thick letting some light through or blocking it all.
Getting The Right Skin Tone

  • My Scene Contains no direct lighting as of yet.
  • Lighting can change the feel and look of a scene.
  • A lot can be learnt from photo/videography.
  • When using Cycles lighting should be setup as it would be in the real world for best results.
  • 3 point lighting is a common lighting method.
  • 3 Lights:  Key Light, Fill Light and Backlight.
3 Point Lighting

  • Light penetrates the surface of an object
  • Scattered in the material
  • Some light leaves the surface at a different point.
  • The more distance the light travels before exiting, the more it will be absorbed
  • Thicker areas will absorb more than thinner ones.
  • Most shaders we have used so far are direct surface scattering
Preview 19:37

This Quiz will test you knowledge of this section so far.

Mid Section Quiz
5 questions

  • Usually used for controlling the weighting of shaders via the mix shader node.
  • The Fresnel output has a very sharp fall off.
  • The Facing output blends from one shader to the other more linearly.
  • Both depend on the angle of incidence of the surface in relation to the viewer/camera.

The Layer Weight Node

  • Render Time PBR is necessary for creating anything realistic.

  • Getting something looking like it does in the real world is critical to a lot of work.

  • Cycles is almost there, but is misses a few points

  • It doesn’t calculate Fresnel automatically and roughness can be tweaked to be more useable.

Physics Based Rendering (PBR)

  • The ColorRamp node is used for mapping values to colours with the use of a gradient.

  • It can be customised to produce interesting results.

  • We will be using it to control a single value so can stick with Grey scale.

  • Used to graphically control values.

The Color Ramp Node

  • Gain a better understanding of how light works in the real world and how that transfers into cycles.

  • Look at 6 ways that light and surfaces interact.

  • Gain some understanding about the physics behind how our materials are working.

  • We’re not going to get too deep into the math behind it!

How Light Interacts With A Surface

  • Makes things more physically accurate.

  • Everything has a fresnel effect in the real world

  • Cycles doesn’t do it by default.

  • Low Roughness > High amount of Fresnel

  • High Roughness > Low amount of Fresnel

The Fresnel Node

  • No longer will you have to keep making the same basic shaders again and again.

  • You’ll learn how to start your own library of shaders and materials.

  • Gives you the ability to continually improve your shaders and materials.

Reusing Shaders And Materials

  • We’ll use it to mix 2 colours together.

  • See that it can be used to mix more that just colours together.

  • It accepts 6 channels in through 2 colour inputs and 3 channels out- mixing together the 2 colour inputs together based up a Blend type and factor.

The MixRGB Node

  • Use this node to take control of an object's normals.

  • You’ll see the vector coordinates we will observe are represented as WORLD Space normals

  • We shall use this node to control the amount of fresnel based upon the amount of roughness.

The Geometry Node

  • We’ll get to grips with what Hue Saturation and Value mean.
  • A HSV Value is a cylindrical representation of a point in RGB colour space.
  • Hue simply means colour/shade.
  • Saturation is how much there is of that colour.
  • Value can be considered like brightness.
Hue Saturation Value (HSV)

  • We’re getting back to modelling.
  • We cannot fully texture our model until the modelling stage is complete.
  • We’ll take a look at the ear. - With all the folds it can be a challenge!
  • There are 2 main loops for the ear, the inner and outer one.
  • We’re going to make it separately in order to focus on the model.
  • Isolation can be a good and bad thing.
Making Objects Separately

  • We will join the 2 meshes together forming one mesh object
  • There is more than one way to do this.
  • It is likely to involve some re-topology.
Joining Separate Objects

  • We’ll see that detail can be added in various ways
  • Use the multiresolution modifier to create derived data.
  • Sculpt the rest of the facial detail we need.

Other Options?

  • Manually move the vertices about.
  • Add more vertices (ill advised)
  • An accomplished artist could potentially paint the detail straight away.

Adding Detail with Sculpting

  • Think about your seams.
  • Try and leave the face intact -without seams.
  • Discover any parts that need their own island
UV Unwrapping A Head

  • We’ll make sure our seams are in the right place.
  • Connect our texture to the model.
  • Test to make sure it is working as expected
Texturing The Head

  • We will take an objective look at our model and see what is missing.
  • First : Any Improvements to modelling
  • Second: Any improvements that need to be made to texturing.
  • Finally: Lighting and Environment
Reviewing Your Work Objectively

This is the final quiz in this section.

End Of Section Quiz
3 questions

Section 8 Wrap Up
BONUS: Destruction (Ref: DD_CBC)
15 Lectures 02:54:20
Section 9 Introduction

Welcome to Destruction

  • This may be all you need if you want something quick.
  • It can be used as a starting point.
  • We’ll explore what it is actually doing for us.
Quick Explode

  • Simulate the real world.
  • You can manually place every bit of destroyed or deformed geometry if you wanted to.
  • Enables you to create a complex scene easily and quickly.
  • Great for realism, shattering glass, falling towers.
  • We will start with something simple.

Rigid Body Physics

  • Simulates the physics of solid bodies.
  • Works closely with the Animation system.
  • It will move and rotate objects
  • It will not deform them.
Introduction To Blender Physics

  • Physics properties are not linked to the object or data datablock.
  • They are part of the Scene Datablock.
  • You cannot make links to the physics.
  • You can however, copy from an active mesh object.
Copying Physics Properties

  • Wherever the ORIGIN is.
  • You have control of this which isn’t always a good thing.
  • This can lead to some strange results.
  • Blender can calculate the centre of mass (assuming a uniform density)
Centre Of Mass

  • Remember: Blender allows you to animate almost anything.
  • We can use this to toggle whether we are in control of, or the physics engine is in charge of our mesh.
  • Blenders Physics Engine will remember what has just happened in the animation.
  • Quick peek at the graph editor
Animating With Physics

  • Unfortunately Blender needs to be told HOW to break something up.
  • There are a couple of ways of doing that:
  • Manually- The most time consuming, not advised.
  • Otherwise:- Generally using a particle system.
  • Physics can then be applied to the pieces OR the particle system
  • The way that particles are affected by physics is controlled in the particle system tab.
  • The Mesh itself doesn’t have to have physics.
  • Other objects that interact with the particles no need physics.
  • Look at Particle settings.
  • Look at the collision physics Data.
Breaking Up A Model Using Particles

Force Fields And Particles

Force Fields And Other Objects

Cell Fracture Add-On

Fracturing With A Child Object

Manual Destruction With Drawing

  • How to set up the grease pencil to work.
  • Using the grease pencil for fracture guides.

(Unique Video Reference: 13_DD_CBC)

Fracturing With The Grease Pencil

Swapping Out Models

  • Critical when you don’t want to see the breaks before the object actually breaks!
  • We can get away with it on some objects- like our brick work.
  • A glass object however will look awful.
  • Swapping out the model at the moment of breaking can solve this issue.

(Unique Video Reference: 14_DD_CBC)

Animating Render Layers

Destruction Quiz
4 questions

Well done for completing the Destruction Section

Destruction Wrap Up
Bonus: VFX and CGI
14 Lectures 03:00:15
Introduction to VFX & CGI

  • All about combining our Computer Generated Imagery (CGI) with real world environments.

  • This can be models, particle effects etc.

  • We will start with a still image and place a model into it.

  • After we have mastered that we will conquer video footage!

Choosing Your Subject 

  • You can follow along with me, choose your own path or both!

  • Keep it simple, this goes for both your model AND the “real” space it is going to occupy.

Video Effects (VFX)

  • Picture/photo, video or even another render
  • We’ll grab a photo and check out it’s settings.
  • This is important with both stills and videos.
  • With you own video keep a note of the settings as they’re often lost
Good Source Material

  • Bringing different renders together into one final render.
  • Compositing is done in the Node Editor.
  • View your composite changes live.
  • Learn how to scale a background image independently of the final render resolution.

Introduction to Compositing

  • We will setup the camera using the settings gathered from the picture.
  • Reiterate the importance of accurate camera data.
  • Use the Text Editor to store data for reference.
  • Start setting up a scene to match the photo.
Matching Camera Settings

  • Can be difficult to comprehend at first.
  • Initially focus on monochrome (Grayscale).
  • Reminder that Colour is generated through 3 channels, Red, Green and Blue, with values from 0-1 (Sliders show 0-255).
  • Each Pixel will have its own values.
  • Use one value for all Pixels

Basic Mathematics

  • Adding, subtracting, dividing and multiplying are just as you would expect them to be.
  • Values that are less than 0 or greater than 1 are passed through unless clamped.
  • Colour>Mix and Convertor>Math nodes function almost the same, however there are different options.

Mathematics And Images

  • Background Image - Visible
  • Our Object - Visible
  • Our Objects Shadow- Visible
  • Ground - Used for capturing the shadow -Hidden
  • How we can isolate the object by itself.
  • How we can isolate the shadow by itself.
Overlaying Images

  • We could take the background image and map it to an object that is visible in our render.
  • We have all the 3D data to make a comparison scene.
  • Create another Render Layer for comparison without the object and therefore no shadow.
  • Need to consider the order of these layers.
Extracting Image Data

Blender Camera Tracking: Footage

  • Markers track parts of the footage.
  • Uses similar controls to the 3D Editor
  • You’ll need a minimum of 8 in the scene to effectively track a camera, more the better.
  • Well have a look at Pattern Size and Search size, discovering what they do.
  • Recommend placing markers manually.
Blender Camera Tracking: Markers

  • You need the right camera details!
  • Check the accuracy of our markers
  • Average camera solve error of <1 is ideal, but not always necessary. We have to test and assess.
  • May have to refine your markers more.
Solving Camera Motion

  • Import assets you wish to use in your scene.
  • Adjust your camera's view, if it is slightly out.
  • Get the ground ready for shadows.
CGI / VFX Final Scene

Learn how to set your Background as transparent.

The options are different in both Blender Render and Cycles.

Relatively straightforward- however the options are hidden away!

Transparent Backgrounds

This Quiz will test your knowledge of the VFX CGI Section

5 questions

VFX and CGI Wrap Up
1 More Section
About the Instructor
Ben Tristem
4.6 Average rating
60,221 Reviews
284,561 Students
10 Courses
Best-selling Instructor, Game Developer, Online Entrepreneur

Hi, I'm Ben. I have a degree in computing from Imperial College London, and a physics diploma from the Open University.

I started working for myself at the age of 15, and never looked back. I explored careers as varied as being a commercial pilot, stunt-man, rock climbing instructor, and more. None of these provided a continued challenge, and stable income in the same way technology does.

After building and selling a home computer support business, I became an angel investor and business mentor here in Cambridge UK. I fell in love with teaching game development through one of my investments, and I now spend all of my time sharing my passion with people like you.

I can't wait to help you experience the fulfilment, and financial freedom, that having a deep understanding of technology brings.

So why not start learning to make games with me and my team now?

See you soon!


Michael Bridges
4.6 Average rating
11,841 Reviews
75,984 Students
4 Courses
Technology Teacher

I am a self confessed technology geek, and love teaching people new things.

I think it is a real shame that so many people carry around such wonderfully capable devices yet do nothing but the basics on them. Computers, laptops tablets and smart phones can do much more than most people know. I would like to guide, reassure and educate people in using their technology to add to their lives

I have been playing, yes playing, with technology for as long as I can remember and I still do that today! Admittedly these days with other commitments I do have to watch what I spend as technology can burn a very deep hole and quickly!

As my parents will testify, I have always been inquisitive! even if it meant taking something apart to see how it worked. Of course not knowing how to put it back together again! To this day I love learning new things and developing myself as a person.

Despite my techy background I remain firmly grounded and talk to people using every day language, unnecessary techno-babble drives me bonkers. This allows me to chat with people with limited knowledge on a subject and help them understand more.

By day (and sometimes night) I run a successful local technology support company in Nottingham (UK).

GameDev.tv by Ben Tristem
4.6 Average rating
57,902 Reviews
279,061 Students
8 Courses
Learn to Make and Sell Games

GameDev tv was created by best-selling Udemy instructor Ben Tristem to help anyone learn how to develop, design, and sell indie games.  Our team supports Ben in making and maintaining high quality courses that are engaging and entertaining for more than 240,000 students.

GameDev tv offers comprehensive courses on Unity, Blender, Unreal and coding in C#, C++ and more.  Looking to learn about a topic that we don't cover?  Visit our community page and let us know.