How to model a spherical snowflake?

Hello everyone, I've been trying to model this shape in blender, I tried bending planes, projecting curves on the surfaces but still couldn't get the perfect result.

Is it possible to project this snow flakes texture on a sphere & convert it into curves or mesh ?

Thanks !

• What do you mean by "project this snowflake texture on a sphere" ? Do you have an image texture of that snowflake ? How did you get this model ? Mar 1 at 21:23

The following workflow is non-destructive, meaning you can tweak basically anything anytime. It may not be optimal but that's how I would do it. There are multiple ways of achieving that. Especially the mapping part, other mapping could be better than mine.

You can model the smallest possible part of the snowflake, then array it and map it to a sphere. Anything else is purely that same part (almost like a fractal). In your case the only thing to model is this green part :

Modeling of the pattern

Let's build half of a branch of the snowflake. Then add mirror modifier, and a bunch of array to have a pattern large enough.

• Array #1 with Object Offset, create an empty and rotate it 60°
• Array #2 with Relative or Constant Offset (doesn't matter much) to create on diagonal of flakes
• Array #3 with Relative or Constant Offset to repeat that diagonal horizontally

Feel free to extend as much as needed (see next step).

Map geometry from plane to sphere (Geometry Nodes)

I won't go into much detail here. It's basically math, how you map the initial x and z coordinates to a spherical set of coordinates. Long story short :

• Rotate it along y-axis (based on initial z-axis)
• Rotate it along z-axis (based on initial x-axis).

Here are the geometry nodes I created :

And the result here :

Then it's only a matter of tweaking the multiple Map Range so that everything align correctly (I didn't tweak anything so don't follow my steps too closely).

Here is a classical approach, first create the pattern (standing on Z, as it is very symmetrical you can use some Mirror modifiers en X and Z):

Array it on X:

Give it a Simple Deform modifier, Bend mode, 180° on X:

And a Simple Deform modifier, Bend mode, 360° on Z:

• Thank you this method is really helpful Mar 3 at 9:37