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Exporting from Marvelous Designer using Blender

Fundamentals, Practical

Description

During this class we present a simplified and easy-to-use pipeline to export a garment out of Marvelous Designer 12. We use MD12’s retopology tools to quickly generate a quadded low-res and throw it to Blender where we use custom geometry nodes (Outgang Cloth Nodes) to easily subdivide and transfer details from the high poly to the low poly and add thickness. The result is a subdivided quadded low-res that keeps all the details from the original simulation, has clean UVs on the thickness and can be reconstructed for sculpting purposes in Blender or Zbrush, textured directly or simply rendered out. We talk in detail of:

  • Marvelous Designer 12’s retopology tools.
  • Exporting a high-poly and low-poly from Marvelous Designer.
  • Installing and using the Outgang Cloth Nodes for Blender 3.5 or over.
  • Importing our data in Blender and cleaning it up.
  • How to use Multires in Blender or Reconstruct Subdivs in Zbrush to generate a sculptable mesh.

As an Outgang member, you will find the Outgang Cloth Nodes available from the handouts tab of your account page. Please note this workflow requires Blender 3.5 or over to work.

This content is reserved for members.

Discussion

48 comments

  1. Barry says:

    Come to think of it, the fit all uv to 0-1 function, should be something like fit different fabrics to different udims, like what rizomuv does with groups, or fit each fabric to u1v1 without caring about the overlapping.

  2. sylvia miller says:

    Hello Laura,

    I’ve been following along with your tutorial (thank you btw!) – Everything connected nicely – the high poly details transfered over, but for some reason I’m not seeing any thickness or extrusion. Do you have any advice?

    Thanks in advance!

    1. Hey Silvia!
      It could be the name of your UV map. Check the UV map name after applying the Transfer node. If it’s not “UVMap”, rename it to that. Let me know if that fixes your issue.

  3. Stanislaw Grafov says:

    Hi Laura, can you answer me about this problem: I dont know when i can/need merge all pattern’s border verticles on my retopo:
    Export from MD highpoly
    Export my retopo lowpoly from MD
    Import in blender
    Mesh data transfer lowpoly on highpoly with subdiv from your Cloth Nodes
    Add tickness from second outgang node
    GoB in Zbrush
    Sculpting details

    And where and how can I merge lowpoly patterns? Without losing details on subdiv levels

    1. Hi Stan,
      you’d merge border vertices after the “Import in Blender” stage and before the Mesh Data Transfer. Merging vertices is an optional step. The next class in this series deals with that.

      1. Stanislaw Grafov says:

        But after mesh data transfer i cant use Outgang Cloth Thickness on seams. Maybe i think something wrong. I made real seams in MD with overlaying

        1. Stanislaw Grafov says:

          And shall I support internal lines on my retop? Maybe do edges on it?

          1. Stanislaw Grafov says:

            Sorry for many questions. But can you tell me what addon do you use for selecting zero map area faces? In native Blender i dont have it. Thanks for all future answers!

            1. The addon is UV Textools, you can find it freely online. Your other questions would require a detailed analysis to arrive at a proper answer, it’s not the kind of question I can answer through these comments.

  4. Ott Vaha says:

    Wow! I took a look inside the nodes out of curiosity and the amount of work there is insane.
    Thank you so much for these!

  5. Jordan Samel says:

    Hey Laura,
    I’m having a issue were the transfer node isn’t working, the subdivisions and thickness are working though.

    I watched the video multiple times and made sure I applied the transforms, the UV’s are overlapped (high and low), the nodes are linked and hooked up, and I exported as FBX. I exported as thin so I didn’t need to delete the inner faces. I tried it on both 3.5.1 and 3.5.0 (Wasn’t sure if there was an issue with 3.5.1).

    I’m not familiar with Blender so I might be missing something obvious, any help would be great!
    Thanks for the great tutorials as always!

    1. Hey Jordan, check/rename your UV attributes on both the high and low poly meshes to “UVMap”, complete with capital letters. If the transfer node doesn’t work after that, you can send me your file and I’ll investigate it: laura@outgang.studio. Cheers!

      1. Jordan Samel says:

        OMG, thank you so much I didn’t check the UV maps… That worked thanks so much!

  6. Sacha Gaffney says:

    Hi Laura,

    Great Tutorial!
    I am having an issue when in Blender, in the tutorial around 58:12
    β€œSelect > Flipped ” during the UV editing section my blender keeps crashing. any idea why?

    1. There might be some geometry that Blender doesn’t like. Try splitting your mesh in two and check if selecting Flipped works on either pieces. If it works on one piece but not the other, you’ll know there’s a localized problem on the piece that still crashes. Keep dividing and conquering until you’ve found the culprit polygons.

      1. Sacha Gaffney says:

        Thank you, I will try this

  7. David Akopyan says:

    Hi Laura! Thank you for this piece of amazingly high quality content. I found all Outgang classes and handouts extremely useful so far and I’m happy to have a membership as it super helps me in learning 3d.

  8. Jose Mario Morales Andrade says:

    Something interesting that happened to me the other day, when I imported to Maya the simulation and retopo from MD, was that every single kind of modification, inserting edgeloops or smoothing it for example, done to the retopo will erase the UVs, maybe just a bug, but what I had to do was duplicate the retopo, erase manually UVs, then transefer UVs from the original, delete history, and then I was able to smooth it and transfer the simulation Vertex Position, my guess is that the nodes created in Maya, when I imported the mesh, have some kind of issue with the history inside Maya.

  9. Stephan zu MΓΌnster says:

    Wow, this is great, thank you. πŸ™‚
    I have been looking to improve my Marvelous workflow for a while, and it’s so cool to see it done with geometry nodes. To just have to plug it in and skip a handful of steps is awesome.

    Regarding the UV-shape transfer, I think I will stay with the Mesh Data Transfer addon by Maurizio Memoli for now, though. It is destructive, but it produces fewer seam/border artifacts and I couldn’t find a satisfying balance of the bias values for the two garments I tried the node on (either the seams or the open edges suffer). But will do some further tests, since this is much handier than the normal attributes transfer in Maya and Blender.
    And the thickness node works perfectly out of the box and is a big timesaver! Great work and great class as well. Looking forward to future classes.

  10. Ulises Jimenez says:

    Hey Laura thanks for the course extremely helpful! one question I had is – could I just export the high from MD but retopologize the lowpoly via maya and then export that into blender – the reason I ask is due to the lack of a relax brush like you mentioned, would that work or would that get rid of the thickness option?

    1. Hey Ulises! Thanks for the question. There’s basically two nodes here, the Transfer node and the Thickness node. For the transfer node to work, the UVs between the lowpoly and highpoly have to match exactly. Assuming you can get those to match exactly with a retopo that has been generated with Maya, you’re good to go. Maya does have tools to enable the projection of UVs from one mesh to another, but it comes with all issues that are normal issues with projections, such as overlaps/undercuts that don’t project properly. If you explore this route, try with a relatively simple garment first to see where the problems show up but assuming those problems are adressed, then the Cloth Transfer node will work. The Thickness node on the other hand doesn’t require anything special UV wise or otherwise and it should work with any retopo made anywhere. Cheers!

      1. Ulises Jimenez says:

        Thanks! Laura for the speedy response I’ll have to try it, since for some reason Blender keeps crashing when I “Select > Flipped ” during the UV editing section. Any tips on that would be helpful too! ( tried updating my gpu driver but that didn’t help unfortunately )

  11. Jerrie Rui says:

    Hey Laura,

    Sorry if this is a stupid question but I was just wondering if it is also viable to use Marvelous 12’s retopology tools as a substitute for Zremesher wiith your legacy workflow. My main issue with that workflow was ZRemesher giving me horrible geometry for garments with any level of complexity. Basically exporting a high/low from MD12 into Maya to use transfer Attributes vertex position.

    And if so, are there any advantages/cases that your blender workflow addresses better. Sorry if this has all been stated in the video. I’m still making my way through the tutorial but since I’ve never used Blender before its proving a bit daunting in case I need to do any troubleshooting.

    Also just wanted to say I’m a big fan of yours and I really appreciate all the high quality content! As a self taught artist it’s the best I’ve found by far!

    1. Hey Jerrie! Thanks for the compliments πŸ™‚ You can totally frankenstein both approaches like you’re describing (MD12 retopo directly to Maya). The transfer attributes in Maya should work great but where you’ll get stuck is with adding the thickness to the cloth. If you follow the legacy pipeline, the thickness is added in Zbrush using Panel Loops and this approach does not properly extend the UVs on the thickness. If you don’t care about those, you’ll be fine. If you do care, you have to use Blender.

  12. Jacob Mandt says:

    Also, are there any gotcha’s with reconstructing SubD I might be missing? It’s failing in Zbrush and crashing in Blender

    1. Hey Jacob,
      I haven’t had any issues so far but I haven’t tested every possible garment. I’m curious to see what kind of issues people are encountering with the workflow. If it’s possible for you, can you send me your blender file before collapsing the geo nodes? help@outgang.studio I’ll get back to you with my thoughts.

  13. Jacob Mandt says:

    Feels like we’re missing an addon/setting or something here as I too don’t have these options in blender 3.5 for selecting zero faces

    1. Jacob Mandt says:

      Heya Laura,

      Disregard this, you answered below, and for some reason I completely missed your response πŸ™‚

      1. No worries Jacob, I’ll update the video soon with that extra info embedded in, I should have been more clear from the start. Cheers!

  14. Maryam Wasilah Winartomo says:

    Hello Laura,
    first of all thank you so much for this amazing tutorial and putting your effort on creating an accessible and easier MD workflow. I mainly do cloth-sims for my portfolio and finding a good and efficient workflow for bringing clothes out of MD to another 3d program but still retain a good look was always my main struggle. So far I usually use a more “quick and dirty” workflow on the highpoly which has its limits; especially when gathering and pleating was involved, so many details got lost once I smoothed out the mesh so I really appreciate the work you do in making this workflow easier πŸ™‚
    Since I’m slowly making the switch from 3DSMax to Blender – and thus very new to Blender – I tried to follow the tut really closely but I still encountered some issues and if you have any idea/suggestions/ key words I could look up on how to solve them I’d rlly appreciate it:

    Used Blender: 3.5.0; The following issues may be related to each other:
    1:24:16
    2) Checker mtl doesn’t show up on generated thickness mesh in Viewport when Geonode uses Outgang_Cloth_Thickness, even though I’m on viewport shading and Mtl is assigned to the mesh; I’m working with cms as my units and already tried to change the tiling values but seems like it doesn’t tile properly and just remains dark grey; the checker mtl is visible with geonode thickness on when the vector math is on the default setting add but as soon as I change it to Multiply it doesn’t tile

    20:24
    3) Generated Thickness Mesh from Geonodes doesn’t appear in the UV Editor window at all, only the thin subdivided mesh unwrap is visible; so no extended thickness of UVs
    I think these two problems are related, because when I go to edit mode on the mesh only the thin mesh part can be selected and edited (gets orange highlight); the generated geonode Thickness mesh remains grey and not selectable;
    if I apply the thickness geonode in the modifier panel however the extended thickness is visible if I select all faces in edit mode and unwrap, but this isn’t MDs Unwrap so I wondered how you get the MD unwrap to show after added thickness

    1. Hi Maryam! Thank you for all the kind words, it makes all the work I do worth it to know how much it helps others. So for the checker material not showing up, here’s the reason for that. Marvelous Designer outputs a UV channel named “UV_Map”, while Blender’s default naming convention for UVs is “UVMap”. The underscore is the difference. You can see the name of the UV channel by going to the Object Data Properties tab and checking under the UV Maps menu. Because “UVMap” is the default for Blender, I’ve made it so that the geo nodes auto-rename the UV channel on the subdivided mesh from UV_Map to UVMap, but if the checker was created before the geo nodes were applied, the material on the subdivided mesh needs to be updated to read the renamed UV channel. Basically, just go to the material tab on the subdivided mesh and there should be a slot in there that is red with the word “UV_Map” in there. Click on it and select “UVMap”. It’s really confusing and I can make a better demonstration of that in the class and I’ll think if there’s a better way to handle the name discrepancy as well. I might just stop renaming the UV channel entirely.
      For the second point, the geo nodes do indeed have to be collapsed for the border UVs to be visible/selectable, however there should not be a need to re-unwrap in any way the UVs. If the issue persists, please send me your blender scene at help@outgang.studio and I’ll take a look at it, there might be a bug of some kind that needs to be ironed out. Hope all that helps!

      Laura.

      1. Maryam Wasilah Winartomo says:

        Thank you so much for your quick reply! I checked my Object Properties of my mesh and under UV Maps it had “UVChannel_1”, clicking on the + icon added “UVMap” on my mesh and now the checker map works πŸ˜€ also as suspected the problems were related; now when I apply the geonode thickness and check the UVs it finally shows the proper MD UVs with the extended thickness ^^ thanks a lot for your help!

  15. Castle says:

    Hey Laura, I was wondering why don’t I have the extra face selecting options like you have around the 54 minute mark? I have UV Sync turned off and I’m also on Blender 3.5. Great instructions on everything else!

    1. Ah now that I think about it, it’s an option that comes with Textools. I wish I thought about that at the time of recording. Basically you need to install this addon: https://github.com/SavMartin/TexTools-Blender
      Click on the green “Code” button and choose to download the .zip file, then in Blender install the .zip file just like any other addon. Then the options to select zero faces and overlapping faces will appear in your UV editor. Sorry for the confusion!

  16. Mylanda Truong says:

    Hello Laura first of all thank you so much for the tool and clear explanation,

    Around the 45 min timestamp you talk about MD sometimes selecting all the panels and sometimes one by one. If you want to select all you can click with your RMB outside the panel in the 2d viewer this will give you the option to remesh(replace) all your panels in one go. Real timesaver.

    I also have a question, when exporting the lowres model the zipper wont get exported because I can not select and retopo it as if it is a panel. The problem now is that instead of a zipper there’s is a gap now. What do you think would be a good solution to this?

    1. Thanks for the remeshing all tip Mylanda! I’ll update the class video at some point in the near future to include that remark. It’s a good question for the zipper and I’ve been waiting to answer that question myself, I don’t have a clever answer as of yet beyond just manually extruding a few edges on the low-res in Blender over where the zippers are.

  17. Alvin drakes says:

    Hi Laura, beginner here. May I know why do we need to convert the MD mesh from high poly to low res in Blender for sculpting?

    Can’t we just sculpt the high poly export from MD directly?

    Hope my question is not too confusing hahaha.

    1. Hey Alvin, you can definitely sculpt directly on the exported high poly from MD in Blender/Zbrush without any kind of retopology. The problem is that you won’t be sculpting over a clean topology which will make things like smoothing very painful. Also, even if you export as thick from MD you won’t have any usable border UVs on the high poly. Give it a try and see how you feel about it.

  18. Jasper Hesseling says:

    Wow! Looking forward to using it!

  19. natpakhan temrung says:

    why i don’t have uv select zero fucntion

    1. Hey Nat, can you explain your issue in more detail so I can help you?

      1. natpakhan temrung says:

        well , i want to delete overlap face on uv editor by select zero face fucntion like u at 54 min

        1. It could be the UV Sync Selection button. I talk about it around that timestamp. AFAIK you can only select zero faces when UV sync selection is turned off and you’re in face mode. Does that help?

          1. natpakhan temrung says:

            thank you Laura, It work on blender 3.4

  20. Patrick van Rooijen says:

    Hey Laura,

    Really awsome nodes, thank you so much for this!
    Will make the process a lot smoother!

    Probably a way to straight forward question, but what export settings do you use in both MD and Blender to get proper scale in Blender (complete Blender noob here)?

    Using CM in MD to get it proper scale in Zbrush, but comes in huge in Blender making me go for quite extreme numbers with the nodes as well, so probably doing something wrong there πŸ™‚

    Thanks!

    1. Always good to hear from you Patrick! I use CM in MD. Do you use .obj to send files back and forth between Blender and other softwares? I’ve only had scale issues importing .objs in Blender, like Blender doesn’t do any kind of scale conversion so a 180cm character comes in at 180 meters. Try .fbx and see if it works.

      1. Patrick van Rooijen says:

        Easy as that, thanks! FBX fixed it πŸ™‚

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