prototyping is relatively easy, is a matter of few days or even weeks, but deploying the full idea in a finished enviroment is the hard part, developers have the 80-20 principle that says:
-you will make the first 80% of your code in the 20% of the time and will spend the remaining 80% of the time in the last 20% of your code 😛
Though still there’s a lot of road to be walk to finish the unlimit clay implementation, i’m progressing slow but steady 🙂 and the good news today is that I’m gonna explain you what is the true power of Unlimited Clay
The most visible feature is that it allows you to sculpt with dynamic detail, so you will lose the fear to run out of polygons while sculpting and that’s what my previous prototypes have shown but Unlimited Clay is really the coombination of Edit mode with Sculpt mode, what does it mean? well, when you apply an unlimited clay modifier to an object then you have virtually access to every editmesh tool in sculpt mode , I mean , you could “sculpt” editmesh tools, what you have seeing so far is sculpting “subdivisions” but more tools could be easily added in the future if aviable in edit mode, like reduce, smoothing-relaxation, etc. there’s no limit on what could be born from the combination of both modes in unlimited clay 😉
I’m focusing rigth now only on subdivissions to keep complexity in a managed way, rigth now I’m just kill an elusive memory bugs (the worst) and I’m starting to get sculpting directly in editMesh structure, the cornerstone of the whole algorithm 🙂 and the most difficult step of the new design of Unlimited Clay
This is a video test showing Unlimited Clay as a modifier, this is not the final implementation, just replicating the previous behavior as a guidance of what I should obtain as a full integrated modifier plus taking advantage of the new sculpt goodies, and as a side effect, although currently it use a similar engine than before, is still faster, so I got high hopes that when I finish it will be fast enough 🙂
Unlimited Clay will never replace other workflow like multires, it’s just a complement, multires modifier will always perform faster because it takes advantage of preallocation of static elements, while unlimited clay is by nature dynamic, but in geometry with very detailed zones concentrated in small areas Unlimited Clay does takes the advantage, so my advice is:
Unlimited clay good for:
– Fast base shape sketching for refining in multires later.
– Models with high detail concentration in relative small areas.
– Extending geometry on the fly.
Multires is good for:
– very evenly detailed models.
– refining small details in final models.
Yesterday nigth I have finally make some progress getting the EditMeshDerivedMesh in the Unlimited Clay modifier, it will be the key to sculpt over the EditMesh to get the dynamic subdivission and also have automatically access to every mesh editing tool current and that may appear in the future, this approach is much more flexible than write a custom structure just for unlimited clay because that way feature scaling is achieved. A custom structure may provide a bit more speed but at the cost of flexibility and that is a tradeoff I will never like to do.
Is all must a law, when you face a problem , you will need only time and let your brain get used to the issue, read, re-read, think of it, no matter if you don’t have a single clue, it will make new connections between your neurons and suddenly, a day, you sit down in front of your PC and the solution will start to flow, no mater if the problem is easy or complex, just don’t get panic if you don’t see the solution at first, trust that it will eventually get to you.