Modeling the Tongue and Teeth
Load the file from the previous section or click on the link below:
Almost every character needs to have teeth and a tongue. We will first model the teeth and then add the tongue. For a more realistic look you should ideally model the gums as part of the mouth cavity. However, in this tutorial we will model them separately. This can be done as long as the mouth is not opened too wide, i.e., as long as the inside of the mouth cannot be viewed in detail.
Begin by creating a
Call up the
The advantage of using a Deformer is that the original object can still be modified (this makes moving individual points easier). In this case we will use the deformation to help us model the teeth. Before you proceed, convert the Cube object to a polygon object (make it editable).
Now that we have created the basic shape of the gums we can begin modeling and positioning the teeth. To begin with, create a Cube, make it editable and start modeling an incisor tooth. You can delete the top polygon since this part of the tooth will be inserted into the gum.
Add a vertical and a horizontal cut line as shown below to round the tooth a little more.
Create a copy of the tooth. We will use this copy as a starting shape for the other teeth. Enable Smooth Subdivision for your original object to
Make the tooth a Child object of a Symmetry object and position and scale it accordingly. Use the subdivisions in the top view to help you position the tooth.
Next, make a copy of the finished tooth to create the second incisor. Scale and position it accordingly.
Create another copy of the original tooth. We will use this copy to model the corner tooth (cuspid). Modify the points to shape the tooth and position the tooth accordingly.
Repeat this process for the remaining molars. Always use a copy of the original tooth as a base. The image below shows the steps that can be used to model a molar:
This is what the top row of teeth should look like when finished:
Now that the teeth have been brought into position we can fill the gaps between the teeth with the gum. Select the edges shown below and apply a
Select the polygons at the bottom of the gum and apply the
We will use the new points to close the gaps at the roots of the teeth and to create bulges along the gum.
We will use the
The gum is usually a little more flat above the front and corner teeth. Therefore we will need to add another cut line over the center of each of these teeth so we can push the gum back slightly.
All we need to do now is arrange the points to make the gum look more realistic:
Duplicate and mirror the upper teeth and gum to create the lower teeth and gum. You can duplicate the upper teeth and gum by either using a Symmetry object, simply rotating a copy or by using the
Finally, shorten the lower incisors and corner teeth slightly.
Now we can position the teeth and gums within the character’s mouth.
Now that the teeth and gums have been brought into position we can modify the gums of the mouth cavity accordingly and also model the tongue. First, use the
In this case it is easier to work with one half of the model and mirror it when it’s finished. Therefore, delete one half of the visible polygons. Make sure you work in
You can now use the
Select all visible polygons and select
Next we will model the tongue. Select the four polygons at the rear of the mouth and apply the Extrude Inner command. Then select the polygons of the upper half and hide them so we can better work inside the object (see image below):
Extrude the polygons you just created to begin modeling the tongue. In the Coordinates Manager, set the extruded region’s Z Scale to 0 to align these polygons along the Z axis.
You can now arrange the points to shape the tongue’s profile before extruding the polygons again and completing the tongue.
Arrange the points until you are satisfied with how your tongue looks.
Finally, apply the