I am modelling the eyeglasses frame and have encountered two places where I have 5-point star in topology, which messes up my lighting even with subsurf set to 2.

First one:

First star First resulting lighting issue

And second one:

Second star Second resulting lighting issue

I can visually remove them if I set the subdivision level to 4, but I'd like to keep the polygon count in final model to lower number, so I'd really appreciate if you could give some advices on how to remove those stars/minimize their influence on the lighting, and how is it possible (if at all) to avoid those topology problems in the future.



1 Answer 1


You cannot eliminate stars (aka poles), not on any kind of reasonably interesting mesh, not on anything manifold. You will need some places where 3 faces connect, some places where 5 faces connect.

What you can do is move where those stars/poles are. The goal is to move those poles to the most planar parts of your mesh-- to places where the faces they are a part of are in the same plane. Any artifacts from poles will be smaller as the faces approach a single plane; if they ever reach a single, perfect plane, the artifacts disappear.

For a guide to moving 5-poles, I'll just provide an image by Jason Martin at https://topologyguides.com/ :

enter image description here

Since it's related, here's Martin's guide to moving a 3-pole:

enter image description here

That site is, maybe, the only site on the internet that I'd recommend to anyone that cares about topology.

Well, Google image search is okay too. Not as generalized.

  • $\begingroup$ Thank you! In some cases it helped, in others just deleting one of the rays and having N-gon instead of "perfect" topology was the way to go! $\endgroup$
    Dec 10, 2023 at 10:51
  • $\begingroup$ @YRSHKHN Yeah, basically what you did was move the pole. Create a single level of subdivision and apply it, and you'll see that the hexagon you made turned into a 6-pole next to the location of the old pole; its new location is now planar (or, much more planar, depending on if you did simple or CC subdivision.) Poles and tris/ngons are basically the same problem for subdivision: quads turn into 4-poles, which are fine everywhere; other faces turn into stars, which aren't. $\endgroup$
    – Nathan
    Dec 12, 2023 at 5:20

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