Boolean Tips for Cinema 4D Modelers

In these two videos, I take a quick look at the way Boolean operations work in Cinema 4D. Specifically, I take a look at my usual approach and examine it a bit further. I’ve heard some 3D veterans and amateurs alike say things like, “Booleans always create messy geometry” or “Just don’t use Booleans… Ever!” I disagree however. As long as your approach is well thought through, using Booleans can be quite a pleasant and time-saving experience.

Here are the steps I take when doing a Boolean operation in Cinema 4D.

  1. Simplify the geometry
  2. Prep the area that will be modified
  3. Clean up the geometry that is left over

Subtracting a Sphere From a Cube

Joining Two Cylinders

Still images from the screencasts:

If you enjoyed these videos and or would like to see more, please leave a comment letting me know what you’d like to see.

Translation:

If you’re a polyglot and are interested in helping me translate the captions of these videos to another language, email me: [email protected]

Update:

Since this post is so popular, (and the YouTube videos are too) I’ve decided to test my new “related comments” plugin. You may notice some YouTube comments populating the comment area, acting as WordPress comments.

29 Comments

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  1. I very intutitive video, you certainly know how to get the best out of C4d. Love your videos so easy to follow.

  2. Nice! very good tut!

  3. very helpful, thanks!

  4. I have always struggled with getting my models to conform to 100% quads.
    These little tips and shortcuts have really helped me get that much closer.
    I am currently working on a project in which I could find no easy way to
    avoid using the boolean tool to cut in some detailed engraves into buttons
    for an electronics device. You saved me and I just wanted to say thanks. 

  5. Wow! Masterful insight and explanation Jamie! Thank you!

    If I were to do a subtraction boole using some extruded text around the
    perimeter of a disk, I can see how that would be a lot more work than what
    you’ve described here, because of the added complexity of the text… Is
    the process you described here the only way to get smooth results? 

  6. excellent, thank you very much Jamie… booleans really behave in weird
    ways most of the time

  7. Thank you the amount of hours I’ve spent cleaning Geom after a Boolean
    operation..
    Now with this prep hopefully I can halve the time
    

  8. you rule big time! thanks mate 🙂

  9. Good stuff, my man. Thanks!

  10. Great tutorial, even explained some tools I don’t use yet. Thanks.

  11. Thanks a lot bro!!! 😀 Greate tutorial!!!

  12. Thanks for the tip, solved one of my problems but now I have a tip where all the edges meet, my base model was a capsule, I have to use hypernurbs but don’t need the waves at the top what is causing, tried melting that single point where they meet but still have 3 nasty ridges left.

  13. The best tutorial on how to solve problems in the Booleans

  14. Hi I really enjoy watching your tuts… One question for this kind of boolean isn’t it easier to just create a sphere and then select a edge loop and extrude it out and form a small rectangle around it and go from there.. that way you have quads

    • Yes, if we were creating the model from scratch, your described method would be better. However, for the purposes of explaining the Boolean techniques, I thought that a cube and sphere illustrated the situation nicely.

      Thanks for the feedback, and thanks for watching!

  15. dont understand why people using boolean 😀

  16. Really useful! Thanks Dude!!

  17. Lots of great tips for a noob like myself. Thank you very much Jamie!

  18. Good tip about isolating the mess. I would have just started melting and welding, which would probably have messed up the cap.
    Your tutorials are great and you’ve definitely earned yourself a new subscriber.

  19. Great tutorial! There are lots of good tips in there. One thing I would disagree with you on is making the loop cut to turn the tris into quads at 11:10 . I know that tris aren’t ideal to subdivide, but having half of the boole’s surrounding polys half the size of the others creates more unnecessary geometry, that will be accentuated with a subdivision. That’s just my opinion, though. And the default shortcut for the Weld tool is M~Q.

    • Thanks for the feedback megamonkees, I’m glad you like the tips.

      I agree with your observation about the triangles. It’s better to preserve the spacing but I just wanted to show the viewers how to turn a pair of difficult triangles into two manageable quads. It was purely academic. Had it been a different object, I would have tried to create another split heading away from the circle instead of along it.

      • That’s very fair. It was still a good tip, and a good thing for people to have in the back of their mind when correcting topology. As I said, I wouldn’t have used it there, but I agree with the tip in an academic sense, like you said. :p

  20. really useful tips… thanks a lot, ur tuts are awesome keep it up the nice work 🙂

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