Project 1: Basic Modeling

Goal To introduce you to tools and methods for creating basic polygon meshes as well as build experience using Maya's interface.
Prerequisite Exercises

In this project we will create a boat using a polygon mesh. Shown below is our reference image as well as the final output. Create a new Maya file to begin.

yacht reference the yacht you will create

Before you start, make sure you are using the "Polygons" menu set, as you will frequently be using commands from this menu set. Also verify that Edit Mesh → Keep Faces Together is checked. This will affect how faces are extruded.

  1. Create a cube (Create → Polygon Primitives → Cube). Move and scale the cube so that it resembles the cube below. The size of the cube is not as important as its proportions.
  2. cube
  3. Add edge loops in the shown locations (Edit Mesh → Insert Edge Loop Tool).
  4. edge loops
  5. Go to the top camera to view the boat from above. Select each row of vertices in the front of the boat and scale them inward to create a tapered point.
  6. inward scale of boat
  7. Go to the side camera. Select the bottom vertices and move them up to create the slope of the hull in the profile.
  8. move the boat vertices up
  9. Right now the hull will only appear curved from the top and side views. However, the perspective view reveals that there are very sharp creases going down the sides of the boat. Using the a combination of the perspective and front views select the edges along the bottom of the boat and move the them up to create a curved hull.
  10. front of the new hull perspective view of the full
  11. Select all of the top faces of the hull and extrude them upward (Edit Mesh → Extrude). Immediately after extruding, use the Scale Tool to shrink them inward and then move them up slightly to create the deck of the boat.
  12. In the top view, move the edge loops outward so they create a border of uniform width around the deck. Add an edge loop to the front and back of the deck to complete the border.
  13. new edge border around the boat
  14. Select all the faces in the border and extrude them straight up slightly to create a rim around the deck.
  15. boat lip
  16. Select the faces toward the back of the deck and extrude them, then scale them inward.
  17. back of the boat
  18. With the same faces selected, extrude them upward three times to create the cabin.
  19. cabin is a basic cube
  20. Using a combination of the scale and move tool adjust the vertices to give the cabin a sleeker look. The front faces of the cabin should slant and curve backwards. Add the edge loops shown in the picture once you are done.
  21. new sleek cabin
  22. Select the top faces of the cabin, extrude them out and then move them down as necessary to create the lip of the roof.
  23. cabin root lip
  24. Use the Split Polygon Tool (Edit Mesh → Split Polygon Tool) to create the lines shown in the picture on each side of the cabin roof.
  25. edge tool
  26. Extrude the newly created quads up twice and slant them slightly backwards.
  27. roof fins
  28. Scale and move the vertices as shown and then delete the inside faces of the fins.
  29. roof fins deleted
  30. Using the Append to Polygon Tool (Edit Mesh → Append to Polygon Tool), select one of the edges on the border of the deleted face, then select the corresponding edge on the other fin. This should create a face that bridges the gap. Do this this for the other 3 edges.
  31. roof fins attached
  32. Create a cylinder (Create → Polygon Primitives → Cylinder). Move, scale, and rotate the cylinder until it is in the shown position. In the Channel Box, click polyCylinder1 in the Inputs section and make sure "Subdivisions Axis" is equal to 12.
  33. propeller cylinder
  34. Using the Insert Edge Loop Tool, add an edge loop toward the end of the propeller shaft. In groups of two, select every other group of faces and extrude them outward to create the basic propeller shape.
  35. propeller blades
  36. Scale and rotate the vertices on the edge of the propeller blades to give them a more turbine-like shape.
  37. new propeller blades
  38. Select the newly created propeller and duplicate it (Edit → Duplicate). Move the new propeller over. Do this one more time so you have 3 propellers.
  39. duplicated propeller
  40. In object mode select all three propellers and the ship. Combine all four objects into one mesh to create the final boat model (Mesh → Combine).
  41. combined boat
  42. Now for a bit of clean up. With the boat selected, delete its History (Edit → Delete By Type → History). In the Outliner or Channel Box, rename the boat to "poly_boat". You can change its name by double clicking on its current name, which should be something like "polySurface1".
  43. final renamed boat

With that, you should be finished.

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