1. Suppose the atrium opening shape looks like the spline in the picture. We begin with drawing a contour line follow the atrium shape. Try to have as few vertices on the spline as possible. In the picture I hve drawn 8 vertices.
2. Select all segmentw on the line and divide. The length of each divided segment is approximately the same as the length of the railing panal or each piece of glass panel.
Note: we may use the Normalize spline modifier instead to make sure the length of each segment is the same.
3. Change the vertices properties from smooth to corner for avoiding unwanted segment when we extrude in next step.
4. Extrude the line with out any cap. I make the height of extrusion about 90cm. Copy the object as a spare part and hide the copied object first.
5. Convert to editable poly.
6. Select all polygons and assign them the same ID number. (ID=2). (This is the easiest way to select polygons by ID in the following step)
7. Inset the polygons. The inset amount is suppose to be the distance between the gap in each glass panel.
8. Assign another ID number to the inset polygons.(from the picture, ID = 1)
9. Select polygons by ID. I select No2. ID (that we have assigned). You will see that this is more convenient than if we select the polygon using a window selection.
10. Delete the selected polygons. Now each glass panal stands seperately so we have the gap between each glass panal.
11. Select all polygons and extrude to give it thickness.
12. Cap all of the glass panels in border sub-object.
13. Assign a glass material and render.
14. In this step we are making glass fins. Go back to the 4th step where we have hiden a spare part. Un-hide it and convert to editable mesh or edialble poly. Select edges as shown.
15. Extrude edge in edit mesh is different from editable poly as the extruded edge in edit mesh will become 2 side with the thickness = 0.
16. Delete the polygon between each fin and now we have glass fins standing seperately.
17. I will skip how to make the railing on the glass panal as it is easy. Just use the line, outline it and extrude.
18. I have another example of drawing the railing from staircase. We just adapt from the method above.
Drawing a 3D line
19. Segments divided.
20. Extrude, convert to poly.
21. Make gaps and thickness.
23. Draw fins.
24. Draw the railing using another spare line, extrude and covert to poly.
25. Select polygon, extrude polygon using local normal type.
26. Done, Now wasn't that easy?
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