I just threw my hands up... Cannot make this dolphin tail to save my life on Rhino 5

Hi everyone,
I am not very good at organic shapes and I haven’t been able to figure out how to construct this dolphin tail (yellow outline).

I have looked at quite a few videos and I cannot figure it out for the last 3 days. Tried “curve network”, Patch, loft, sweep 2 rails, two flat surfaces and surface blend but results are a hot mess. Any tips/help appreciated.

One can make a silly manta from a sphere with a tail and blending whatever those mandible things are–added on. Most of if was just rebuilding and node editing.

After much of the work is done, the object may be tweaked a bit with Cage Editing.

A single material was applied, and decals fitted to add the dark coloring.

@design.reyesdelmar Take your curve into RhinoEmboss and see how that goes…but it will give you a mesh IIRC. I think in later versions it also has a sculpt tool. Have not used TDM tools for a long time.

You could also try sub-d (Clayoo). This is a really quick job in sub-d IMO and you have a sub-d tool.

Lots of tuturials on the TDM site (if it still exists) for this type of thing. If not try looking for videos on youtube for Clayoo.

Depending on the scale you may want to reduce the complexity of the detail on the tail edge as much of it will lost in casting at small sizes.



I think this tutorial goes over the basic techniques you will use for this sort of freeform surface modeling:

Hello - here’s one way - see the attached file.

  1. Red curves are dead simple - all copies of the same original - you can easily manipulate them via control points.
  2. Loft the red curves in a Loose loft, and then adjust the curve points if needed, or direct edit the surface points without History on.
  3. Make the wiggly back edge curve.
  4. Loft this curve to the edge of the first surface using the Rebuild option and say 32 points.
  5. MatchSrf for curvature the new loft to the original one.

WhaleTaleMaybe.3dm (201.7 KB)

1 Like

Depending on how accurate you want the end result, you might be able to simply extrude the tail, fillet the edges, cageedit the rest. When I have to deal with organic modeling, I usually draw the curves and extrude them in rhino for the basic shape and precise size/dimensions, then export the model to 3D Coat to add all the detail. I think you can also use Sculptris, it’s free (same company behind Z-Brush).

OH wow! So many ways I didn’t think of. I will fiddle around and see which helps me best. I appreciate the help. Will post results. Cheers!