I have found 2 amazing programs: 3D-Coat and Substance
Link: www.neuro-systems.net --- substance_features
Here is what I have created in my limited time with 3D-Coat + C4D + Mograph:
Head was created by someone else, I just used Mograph to instantiate a ton of cubes over each vertex, then brought it into 3D-Coat where I converted it to voxels and then applied some smoothing to round off certain areas making it more globular/fluid like.
Before import into 3D-Coat:
I modeled a Torus(Donut) and made a disc for it to stand on, then importing it into 3D-Coat results in the two objects blending as if one surface, giving the joins a nice rounded edge.
Then using the topology tools you can create a nice low res counterpart:
And it can create a displacement map/normal map to the low res model to make it look identical to the high res model.. important as the high res model is in the millions of polygons.
3D-Coat handles millions of polygons fine in the viewport, however C4D just bursts into tears at the very sight of it. Possibly because MAXON CANNOT CODE opengl at all.
And my first play tests below ;-P
All shown in the 3D-Coat viewport
It's a bit like Zbrush or Mudbox or something... but It's quite different when you understand how it works... honestly It's very different internally, in a very useful and important way!
Zbrush tends to be restricted to modeling organic forms, pushing and pulling an existing surface. At best you can create the base form out of zspheres or bring in a basic shape you made elsewhere to work as a foundation which you then push and pull... but if you try and make new areas or push and pull it too much it just distorts and rips apart the existing model.
What happens in a typical surface sculptor like Zbrush if you keep pulling the same area (it goes all low polygon and rubbish)
3D-Coat is vastly different in that you shape and cut thru a volume like a real piece of clay, you can create and destroy areas of clay at will with no repercussions as the polygons are created after the fact at whatever resolution you want.
All things combined it makes 3D-Coat vastly better suited for hard surface modeling and creating more mechanical shapes that have nice blends/welds/fillets where pieces join.
It also has some great topology tools if you want to control how the polygons are created from the sculpt, as the polygon density can easily go thru the roof.
The price you pay is It's very very CPU intensive, but it makes brilliant use of multiple cores and even uses Cuda/GPU acceleration for the modeling operations if you have a really beefy GPU.
The following are not by me:
It can take a while to fully grasp and understand what is going on and what makes it different and good... but trust me It's reeeealy worth checking out.
I imagine Zbrush and Mudbox will get the same functionality eeeeventually, but right now this is the only thing that's anything like it, and the app is really surprisingly full featured considering I had never heard of it.
And theres no reason you can't use it in conduction with other modeling programs, as Zbrush is still very much the king of billion polygon super high detailing. The two programs can compliment each other very nicely in there unique strengths.
Secondly I found an amazing specialized procedural math art modeling doodad called Substance:
Link: www.neuro-systems.net --- substance_features
Some examples of Substance from:
Link: substance3d.deviantart.com --- gallery
Link: helios.mine.nu --- Inspiration
Link: helios.mine.nu --- Reality 2.0
Finally!! found a program for creating math type art, this is awesome!
I've been looking for a program like this for years now, and it runs on Mac... woo! and is free!!! double woo!
TopMod3d is a free, open source, portable, platform independent topological mesh modeling system that allows users to create high genus 2-manifold meshes.
And some other cool apps I found along with it:
Link: paraclouding.com --- home
Just did the following with it playing about:
Not bad for 5 minutes of playing
i keep getting stuck and thinking of new things, but they end up not being possible either
best solution so far involves throwing aroun $10000 at it and capturing a team of programming monkeys to make specialized tools
well right now I\'m trying to explore the arena of Math Art, Particle/Fluid/Smoke/Firey lorenz attractors/4D fractals/Paramtetric Math Knots
but uhm, applications are not being helpfull
Cinema has a bug, well It's just bad by design, in that it can't handle lots of seperate objects
i can have a 180,000 polygon object on screen easily, but I can only get around 2000 1 polygon objects before it dies
CInema also does'nt render alpha masks properly, they are not pre-multiplied/straight alpha'd properly
its subtle but problematic
zbrush cannot paint in the luminance channel making it really boring
and useless for creating objects like a piece of glowing burnt wood ambers
after effects plugins like lux and others get 3D input in the form of lights, but after effects can only handle a few thousands before looking sad
and realflow (which I\'m stuck to version 3 as I can't get 4 without paying huge sums of money) is horrible to use
and I think only 4 does what I need anywhooo
so I thought instead of trying to do something interesting id just copy everyone else and make vector style art from tracing photos and make it loook all retro
thats popular still right? or... isometric pixel art?
oh oh I know!!! make a bunch of squiggles with Trapcode 3D Stroke, and like.. make em move around and glow and stuff!
on with the creationisms, fun to be had! (within serious program limitations of course)