Blender 3D: Noob to Pro/Detailing Your Simple Person 2

In this module, you'll edit a subsurfed mesh using the scale and grab tools, all the while improving your character.

You'll need the simple person model from the previous module. If you haven't done it, either go back and do it now or else download the pre-made model from Yosun Chang's website at

Widening the Torso edit

To be realistic, the simple person's torso needs to be three times wider. In order to keep the torso symmetrical, you'll expand it by scaling both sides from a central point.


Select the sides of the torso:

  1. Enter edit mode on the simple person.
  2. In the 3D View header, set Face select mode.
  3. From the 3D View header, choose Pivot → Median Point.
  4. In the 3D View header, make sure Proportional Edit button is off.
  5. Select the two faces on both the left and right sides of the torso, between the armpits and the waist.
The cube icon toggles the visibility of certain components.

When editing in solid mode, the vertices, edges and faces on the back side of the model are, by default, invisible. This feature can be toggled by clicking  LMB  on the Limit selection to visible (called in older versions, "Occlude Background Geometry") button in the 3D View header. Toggle it on and off a few times and observe how the back faces appear and disappear.

We will now scale the torso with the scaling tool:

  1. Activate the 3D View window and press  S ,  X .
  2. Adjust the amount of scaling. Either:
    • Move the mouse pointer until the torso is the width you want.
    • Press  3 
  3. Confirm and exit by pressing  Enter or clicking  LMB .

Scaling faces causes adjacent edges and faces to move, due to their shared vertices. You cannot separate a face or edge from its vertices.

Continue selecting different parts of the torso and scaling them to get more practice using the above scaling methods.

Bending the Arms edit

Removing the forearm

When you've got the basic shape of the torso, make the person hold up his hands. You'll do this by deleting the forearms and then extruding upward from the elbows.

Select both forearms:

  1. Enter edit mode on the simple person.
  2. In the 3D View header, set Face select mode.
  3. With the 3D View window active, press  A  until all vertices are deselected.
  4. Select the five faces at the end of the forearm.

Now erase them:

  1. Press  X  to open the Delete menu.
  2. Choose Faces.

The forearm will disappear, leaving a hole. Don't panic; we'll fix it later. Now to make the arm point upwards:

  1. Select the top face of the last remaining "arm cube".
  2. Extrude the region upward by two Blender units  E ,  2  and confirm with  LMB  or  Enter .

In versions of blender before 2.7, the combination should be  E ,  Z ,  2 .

The hole in the elbow is caused by a missing face. To fill in the missing face:

  1. Deselect all vertices.
  2. Select the four vertices surrounding the missing face.
  3. With the 3D View window active, create the face using either
    • Mesh → Faces → Make Edge/Face
    •  F 

If a Make Faces menu appears when you try to fill the hole, it may be that you have some doubled vertices. You can remove doubles by selecting the whole mesh in edit mode, then pressing  W  and in the appearing menu "Remove Doubles" and try again.

The new face should be smooth. If it isn't, make it so, using Mesh → Faces → Shade Smooth.

Repeat on the other side

Go through the same steps (erase, extrude, and fill) on the other arm. Be sure to deselect all vertices in the first arm before selecting any in the other arm. If you have difficulty making the arms symmetrical, undo your work and go through the steps simultaneously on both arms.

Making Feet edit

To make feet for your simple person, you subdivide the ends of the legs and pull the front edges forward.

  1. Edit the simple person in Face select mode.
  2. Select the two bottom faces of the legs (front of the feet) by clicking  RMB  on the first and then  Shift + RMB  on the other.
  3. Subdivide both faces, either with:
    •  W  Subdivide
    • Mesh → Edges → Subdivide

Each face gets subdivided into four smaller faces.

Now select the front edges and pull them forward:

  1. Switch to Edge select mode.
  2. Press  A  until no edges are selected.
  3. Select the four bottom front edges of the soles (two for each feet) (where the toes should be).
  4. Press  G  and limit movement to the Y axis.
  5. Move the mouse pointer until the feet are the length you want.
  6. Confirm and exit by pressing  Enter  or  Space  or clicking  LMB .
Congratulations! You now have feet.

Reshaping the Head edit

When you're satisfied with the torso and limbs, you should do something about that head. A bit too spherical, isn't it? You can elongate it by scaling along the Z axis.

When scaling the head, you want to make sure that it stays connected to the neck.

First, place the 3D Cursor at the base of the head, where it meets the neck. An easy way to do this is as follows:

  1. Go into Vertex select mode.
  2. Make sure the Limit selection to visible option is "off".
  3. Select the vertex at the base of the head using  RMB .
  4. Snap the cursor to this vertex using  Shift + S  Cursor to Selected

Now select the entire head:

  1. Hover the mouse over a vertex/edge/face of the head
  2. Press  L  to select all parts linked to that part.

This works even when the head and body meshes overlap, so long as they aren't linked together anywhere.

Tell Blender that you want to pivot around the 3D Cursor by changing the pivot point to 3D Cursor on the Pivot menu (the small button located to the left of the 3D Manipulator button).

Now scale the head along the Z-axis, using the scale tool ( S , scaling by 1.5 should be about right).


You'll need this simple person later, so remember to save your work!