In this short tutorial we will model a classical teapot.
When it comes to 3d modeling, there are often many different ways of achieving a goal. Some are better than others, but usually it's just a matter of personal choice, and it mostly depends on how comfortable we feel using different tools or procedures. In this tutorial we will see how to shape topology using edge and face extrusions, work with edge loops, and use tweak mode in combination with symmetry.
The steps we will go through will be:
- model the body
- extrude the spout
- add the handle
Step 1 of 3: model the body
We will see two different methods of building the teapot body.
Method #1: build by edge extrusion (shown for didactic purpose)
Let's start with the base. We need a planar face with 18 sides. Create a cylinder with 18 slices and 1 section. Switch to Paint selection mode (Selection > Mode > Paint) or simply press 8. You might also want to turn off Local Pivot (L) to avoid selections affecting the way your camera rotates. Select each face of the cylinder base, invert the selection (Selection > Invert) or (I), and delete (Selection > Delete Selected) or (DEL):
Now we're left with the base triangles, let's turn them into a single face. Switch to Multi selection type (Selection > Type > Multi) or (G), select the central vertex and delete it:
Now let's build the body, it's just a matter of building the sides up from the base border. Select the base, convert selection to edges (Selection > Convert To > Edges) or (Shift+S) and from the popup menu, select "Extrude > Border Edges" or just press Shift+X. Extrude the edges and right-click at the desired length to exit tool mode, then adjust the vertical position of the newly created edges using the "Up" translation handle, and change the scale dragging the handles center with the middle mouse button:
The new edges will remain selected, so you'll just have to press Shift+X again to add a new section. Your target shape should be something similar to this:
Method #2: build by tweaking edge loops
This is by far a much easier way to build the teapot body. Create a cylinder with 18 slices and 6 sections. Switch Perspective off (P) and lock the camera on a side, which one is not important (press Shift while rotating the camera). Switch selection type to either Edges (S) or Multi (G) and simply double click on a horizontal side to select the whole edge loop. Adjust the vertical position of the loop using the "Up" translation handle, and change its scale dragging the handles center with the middle mouse button (make sure you're scaling using the handle center):
Using this method you will obviously skip edge extrusions. Now just select and delete the top faces.
Step 2 of 3: extrude the spout
Before going any further, you might want to change the color of your mesh: open a new dialog (Shift+Alt+4) switch its content to "Scene Manager" and resize as needed. Click on the mesh color swatch and set any color you like:
Let's enable symmetry, so we're sure that any change we will make from now on will be automatically applied on both sides of the teapot (Edit > Symmetry > Compute From > Z Axis), or just press Ctrl+Alt+Z.
Now we must choose the face where the spout attaches to the body. Lock the camera to the “Left” side (again, press Shift while rotating the camera and check the current side on the top-left corner of the modeling canvas) and select the face:
After 4 or 5 extrusions and rotations you will have the topology of the spout. Now it's just a matter of tweaking. Switch to Multi selection type (G) and drag the mouse while pressing Ctrl+Shift to intuitively tweak any highlighted component without selections (it's called tweak mode):
Step 3 of 3: add the handle
Proceed exactly as you did for the spout, but this time start from two faces on the opposite side of the spout. When you need to close the handle, select the two front-facing faces and, from the popup menu, select “Bridge”:
As for the spout, now that the handle topology is well defined, we can tweak it to achieve the final shape we want:
Creating a cover is straightforward and it's left as an exercise.
Well that's it. If you experience any issue following this tutorial, check the documentation or drop a comment.