Creating a mesh that nicely envelopes a collection of curves, points, and other meshes


I’ve been working on developing a tool or at least a new approach to concept modeling for designers, but I’m getting a bit stuck, due to the current limits of my understanding of grasshopper.

Create a definition that takes a collection of geometry (curves, and meshes in particular) and wraps them an orderly and aesthetic mesh, similar to a cocoon or what a silk work might do. (Curves do not have to meet at all.)

Example use case:
A car designer creates key construction curves as a gesture and the definition is able to extrapolate a preliminary car body volume. later additions to the definition would allow for minimal surface and physics-based mesh actions (kangaroo, millipede etc.) on selected regions to create relaxation or convex or concave surfaces.

Ideally, the solution would be flexible enough to work for concepting anything from a car, to a shoe, to a building or a boat.

3D convex hull reliably creates a volume, but misses the concave details. Ball pivot and Alphashapes can create something that begins to look like what I’m trying to achieve, but only if the sphere radius is carefully controlled in relation to the gaps between curves, so doesn’t make for a very flexible solution, and still misses some of the nuance, because of the larger sphere radius required to span larger gaps.

(FYI, I’ve been using quad re-meshing as a way to get a more inform output after the initial shape is made)

Can anyone help me with the following?

-Improve the approach in the attached file to be more flexible and creating a more smooth, yet orderly mesh output.
-recommend a better approach.
-point me to relevant topics or papers that might give me a deeper understanding of relevant topics?
-let me know if I need to learn python to make real headway with this.

many thanks for any help you can offer!

car skinning for (9.3 MB)

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I’ve been working on developing a tool or at least a new approach to concept modeling for designers

The idea is not new actually, among the things you said already check out shrink wrapping, voxels, soap films, etc. If you want to stay in Grasshopper than check out Kangaroo.

Thanks Michael

Didn’t mean to imply that I had made a novel breakthrough of any kind. Any newness would be more related to aligning these approaches to a process that I can interface with easier, in real-time, with an even more refined output. I’m somewhat comfortable in kangaroo and studied some of @DanielPiker 's files about shrinkwrapping, and have played with a number of other relevant plugins like cocoon, each of which has been super enlightening and each with it’s own strengths. I’ll look deeper into soap films and the various voxels approaches as well.

Sorry what I meant was there are some other things to look at. Another thing I noticed is it seems you have a nice series of sections. Would it make sense to construct the shape by a series of lofts / sweeps / network surfaces that update with the guide sections? I think the geometry will be more clean.

Using established methods of lofts sweeps and netwok surfaces would definitely create a cleaner end result. This kind of surfacing is my day to day as an industrial designer. the intent here is more from an artistic form finding approach were the designer doesn’t really know what they want to do yet, and needs to be able to iterate in real time (maybe in VR), to quickly evaluate a lot of ideas. the idea is make a tool that get’s you 80% of the way to a solution in 1/10th the time, before investing in class A surfacing.

I think simple mesh sweeps and lofts would get you there pretty quickly, certainly more quick than complex methods like hulls and wrappings in computation time.