The process of molding shapes into a completed 3D mesh is known as “3D Modeling.” Typically, a 3D model can be created by taking a simple object (a primitive) and grow or extend it into a shape that can be detailed or refined. Ranging from three-dimensional objects (faces or polygons) to a curve (a spline), an edge (two-dimensional line) or a single point (known as a vertex), anything can literally make up primitives.
You can manipulate any one of these primitives to create a 3D object, however, this depends on the specific features of the selected 3D software. Usually, you will learn just one method to create a model in 3D and when you need to create new models, you will simply have to reemploy it over and over again.
Actually, there are three basic 3D modeling strategies for beginners that can be employed to create standard 3D models. Note that 3D artists can use any of these techniques to create their 3D models.
Spline or Patch Modeling
In 3D space, a spline simply refers to a curve with two control points. NURBS and Bezier curves are the most popular splines used in a 3D art. If you are looking to create a 3D object, you can use a cage of splines to firstly form the “skeleton.” While creating a 3D skin around the shape, a path of polygons can be formed to extend between two splines. The use of splines to build models is probably the oldest form of 3D modeling.
Spline modeling should be your first choice when forming a 3D scene that involves curve shapes. However, it is important to note that due to the long period of time associated with using this strategy, many 3D artists don’t see the need to apply it for their 3D modeling projects these days.
To start with, a primitive (such as a cube) is formed. Then after slicing the cube, details are added until the desired form is obtained. While bearing a lot of resemblance to traditional sculpting, box modeling is probably the most popular technique used for 3D modeling. This strategy presents a very quick and easy means to get acceptable results. Most 3D artists use it to create the basic shape of the model they want to form.
Poly Modeling / Edge Extrusion
Although poly modeling may seem to be the most précised and effective strategy for handling 3D modeling projects, it is certainly not the easiest to get started with. This technique involves the creation of 3D mesh face-by-face, point-by-point. To get it “just right” this technique requires less tweaking of the mesh even though it is not as fast as box modeling.
Usually, it requires the use of a single 3D object consisting of 4 points (i.e. quad) to start out. This way, the 3D model is gradually created as a second quad attached to the first which is formed by extruding an edge of the quad.