|A 3D model consists of polygons.|
A polygon is a geometric shape consisting of at least 3 points defined in virtual space, which
are positioned on the x (width) y (height) and z (depth) axis of the modeler.
Any 3D object is composed of several polys, complex objects consist even of several
hunderdthousands of these basic shapes.
The edgepoints of the polys are connected to each other thus giving the 3D model its shape referred to
as wireframe model.
I will demonstrate this on hand of a simple sphere.
In this case, 720 polys define a spherical shape.
In a modeling program the edgepoints of the
polys can be altered as to deform the model
into the preferred shape and size using
diverse modeling tools like bending,
resizing extruding and more.
Thus having the shape and size of an object
it will now need to have a surface.
This is one of the toughest tasks to tackle
when doing 3D (apart from modeling lol)|
When observing realworld objects you will
notice that their surfaces have attributes like:
and many more.
These attributes have to be attached to the
surface of the 3D model.
Usually the 3D artist uses a seamless picture map
to be projected onto the surface of the model.
Then he adjusts those attributes in a texture
editor, which is telling the renderer (renderer = the
program making the object visible) how to display
the surface of the model.
A complex 3D model is made up of
several such basic shapes (meshes) and
usually owns more then one texture.
With loads of practice and expierience
the 3D artist will be able to create anything
in his mind and make it appear realistic.
The models can then be used in a
scenery editor where they are "virtually
photographed" delivering the final image,
or even be animated to give a film sequence.
Youll get an idea here, what may be achieved
nowadays using a normal PC and affordable
software (some freeware even).