Hi-Res Hard Surface Using Booleans
Modeling hard surface covers many techniques and one of the earliest is using all quad subdivision surface type geometry. But this requires some degree of skill regarding topology e.g. the use of support loops.
However, there is another avenue you can explore. One which is very straightforward and requires minimal topology work.
That’s right. Years ago this was considered a big no-no to approach any serious modeling but it has made a big comeback.
This sci-fi crate was modeled using the Cuber addon and as you can see it is primarily a quad/ngon surface. It has a bevel modifier set to 30 deg angle.
The only problem is adding a subdivision modifier results to the ngons being subdivided into a mess of distorted faces particularly on the outer edges.
The solution is very easy.
tip: be sure to provide ample resolution to your model early on for this to really work its magic.
Just enter edit mode and activate search and type “face type” this will automatically limit the selection to the operator “select by face type” which selects quad or ngons.
This selects ngons by default. You have to deselect everything first for this to work.
Next, activate triangulation by pressing Ctrl+T. This will triangulate the selected ngon faces.
With this simple solution all the distortion will have vanished.
The optimal subdivision level would be 2. This will provide enough resolution to really work along with the bevel modifier to give you a quick and easy hi-resolution hard surface model.
This technique works very well as far as semi-organic models. On curved surfaces however like a sphere you have to provide a higher starting resolution to avoid distortion even with triangulation.
That’s it. I’m pretty sure you could make use of this technique to create some awesome hard surface stuffs. If you got questions or suggestions be sure to give us a comment.