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I have been having a huge amount of trouble finding the best way to go around retopologizing a model I made.

It has many curves, as well as many flat surfaces. There are also "seams" that are supposed to indicated paneling.

I have tried my usual methods that I use during my character creations (mirror+sub-surf+shrink wrap (if needed)), and have been unsuccessful all 5 times I have done this.

The closest I have gotten was modeling the panels separately, and joining them together afterwards. The problem with this is that the spacing between the panels was not an equal amount- and equated to a uneven and stylized version of the paneling.

Any pointers anyone has for this issue/technique used for this situation? The original sculpt

First Retopology enter image description here

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  • $\begingroup$ You might be interested in this method $\endgroup$ – Robin Betts Jun 27 '20 at 13:55
  • $\begingroup$ This looks perfect! I will give this a shot, thank you! $\endgroup$ – Ilian Jun 27 '20 at 21:19
  • $\begingroup$ Okay so I tried that method- which is super handy for making plating and bulkheads on flat surfaces, but I think my mesh has way too many different angles or rotations associated for the modifiers to handle. I am going to try and make a base mesh underneath, and figure out eye-balling the paneling again. Thank you for this tip, it will come in handy for making scenes! $\endgroup$ – Ilian Jun 28 '20 at 9:42
  • $\begingroup$ Hmm.. yeah.. it's tricky, the panel boundaries bear no relation to the underlying geometry.. do the panels need to be in the geometry? Would your case allow a shader-only solution? $\endgroup$ – Robin Betts Jun 28 '20 at 16:43
  • $\begingroup$ @RobinBetts I was thinking about that. Making a good topology and then baking the normals onto the new mesh. I have been somewhat intimidated by that method- as the geometry has been so destroyed from dyna-topo that I worry about correctly calculating edges and direction of faces $\endgroup$ – Ilian Jun 30 '20 at 6:23

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