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Just like the issue with shoulders, building hip joints causes a lot of trouble for me. Rotating the leg forward distorts the character's bottom, while rotating it back or to the side causes pinching in other areas. What's the correct approach to topology for hips?

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Personally I would recommend something like this: Topology

(Granted, this is a low poly character that contains triangles. You don't want triangles in a mesh that will be using subsurface. However, it forms the general shape.)

(FYI Here's a page linking to a bunch of examples of body topology: Polycount wiki: Body Topology), and of course, there's always Blender Cookie (archive).

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