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Quick Tip: Retopology: creating stones pt.2


Gleb Alexandrov (Spelle) continues his stone creation tutorial, focusing on retopology today. The first part was on the use of the bisect tool.

Gleb writes:

In this video, we'll go through the 5 ways of semi-automatic retopology, exemplified by our stone.

  1. Triangulate and convert tris to quads
  2. Remesh modifier
  3. Shrinkwrap modifier
  4. Contour add-on by CG Cookie

Thanks for watching! In pt.3, we're going to sculpt this stone using dynamic topology.

About the Author

Avatar image for Bart Veldhuizen
Bart Veldhuizen

I have a LONG history with Blender - I wrote some of the earliest Blender tutorials, worked for Not a Number and helped run the crowdfunding campaign that open sourced Blender (the first one on the internet!). I founded BlenderNation in 2006 and have been editing it every single day since then ;-) I also run the Blender Artists forum and I'm Head of Community at Sketchfab.


  1. Heh, it's always a viable option too :) There is a lot of cases, where thinking about great topology actually slows down the creative process.

  2. Kirill Trideshny on

    Hmmm... The tut. looks very professional! Maybe, on the next update of Contours we'll have more features and it will be also quickly and efficiently retopologizing such stones. Shrink/Wrap looks the best here. But actually no one from these variants is going to perfectly retopo the stone. If you'll try to create bevels - it fails.
    BTW Triangulate-Quadify works good. BUT then you need to check for triangles and make 'em dissapear (using Knife and J - Join path(?)). After that Bevel modifier works..
    So I guess that Part 5 will be about creating a normal map (to use with a simplest retopo variant) and adding small details via textures to this stone :)

    • Interesting idea! It may well be :)
      The non-optimal but fast way to create a bevel is to use shrinkwrap in conjunction with a high subdivision level.

      • Kirill Trideshny on

        I think it will be hard to unwrap it properly after this. Many edges (of a base mesh) will be "wrapped" by faces in a wrong way. So I guess then the UV unwrap algorithm will not define areas properly. Manual selecting is possible. But here is the real problem - the edges (of the "wrapping" mesh) should not be formed by diagonals of faces. I guess again - a normal map for a simplest (lowest poly count and well defined edges) remeshed object will be the better way here. Of course then beveling can be done in the sculpting stage only.

  3. I think the goal here is to create a stone
    But wouldnt you like to go for low poly ?.
    And use a bump texture map (or noise texture) to add some realism over simple shapes.
    BTW there are some nice OSL shaders for different noise types.. so maybe its an idea for you
    OSL is a bit overlooked i think by blender artists.

    • Thanks, Peter! It's definitely one of more optimal ways to make a stone - use lowpoly and bump/normal map. We may return to this stage a bit later. But low-poly often comes from retopologized hi-poly - that's another reason to know how to retopo.

  4. Marc Clint Dion on

    Well, this is a bit off topic but I've tried a couple different music recognitions tools and cannot identify the song playing in this video. I really like it and would like to know who the artist is, thanks.

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