I think my question relates to a fundamental of 3D modeling that I haven't picked up on yet. It's very simple:
Let's say I have a flat quad. A plane on the XY plane inserted into am empty blender file is a great example. Now let's say I start moving each of the 4 vertices around on in any direction, especially the Z axis.
At this point, there would still be one face, but its extremely unlikely that the face would be planar (I just learned this word). So blender does its best to make sense of what this should look like.
The problem I'm having is that it seems like my quads are always like this, but they never look the way I want. There are edges and seams that look like they are dangling in space, and what tends to happen is that my mesh looks great when viewed from most angles, but if you look at it from just the right angle, you notice the dangling edges or sometimes even some kind of impossible geometry. And so I might try to nudge the problematic vertices around, but this often seems to either make it worse, or just hide the bad geometry until you see it from a different angle.
For me, this always seems to happen whenever I'm trying to move vertices to add roundness to something that is originally square.
There is another question on here about how to actually flatten the quads. That's great, and I might use some of the techniques mentioned there. My question is:
- Why does this happen? (Can someone explain this better?)
- What are some tips and tricks to avoid this situation?
- What are some tips and tricks to mitigate this situation?
EDIT Here is an illustration:
The overall mesh as viewed from a distance looks decent (for my skill level)
But if you get closer and look from a certain angle...
Super close up:
The "edge" that is pointed to by the arrow is not actually an edge, but some kind of artifact created when blender tries to show the quad. The way the vertices are positioned, it shouldn't actually be possible to see the sliver of the face that I marked in red, since this face is supposed to be around the corner from the edges. The edges should form the silhouette on the right side of my figure.
Here is the side view. Maybe it is the angled topology that skews the face in a funny way?
But I'm not looking for help with this one particular issue, but rather a better understanding of why this happens, and ideas to prevent this in future models.