Symmetric Modeling with Mirroring
Maya 2012 Tutorial
How to Create a Symmetric Object Using a Mirrored Object in Maya
With mirror modeling you first create your base object. Once complete, the object is mirrored one or two times to create the final object.
In this example we will create a table by modeling on quarter of the table, then mirroring the object twice.
Add a polygon cube to the workspace by choosing Create > Polygon Primitives > Cube (include options).
In the options, set the Width to 2, Height to 0.3 and Depth to 2. Set the Width Divisions and Depth Divisions to 6 and the Height Divisions to 1. Press Create to add your new object.
In the perspective view, right-click the object and choose Face.
Click one of the cube's edge faces, then Shift click to select the other five faces from that end of the cube. Press Delete to remove the selected faces.
Click one of the faces from a second adjoining edge, then Shift click to select the other five faces from that side of the cube. Press Delete to remove the selected faces.
To add a leg to the table, click one of the faces one row in from the corner on the bottom of the object.
Choose Edit Mesh > Extrude from the Polygons menu set.
In the side view, drag the extrude arrow downward about two units to add a leg. Press the q key to exit the Extrude tool.
Right-click the object and choose Object Mode, then select the object.
Choose Mesh > Mirror Geometry (include options) from the Polygons menu set.
Set the Mirror Direction to +z and click Apply.
Set the Mirror Direction to +x and click Mirror. Depending on the faces you removed, you may need to select a different mirror direction for Step Eleven and Step Twelve.
Add textures and lights to the scene, then click the Render Current Frame icon to see your table. In our example, we also added a slight bevel to the geometry.
Don't Forget the Construction History
As you work on your model, several nodes of history are added to the object. Be sure to select your object, then choose Edit > Delete by Type > History before rendering.
Making Seam Points Coplanar
If you are modeling an object by moving vertices (i.e., a character's face), you can easily end up with seam points that are non-coplanar. To fix the problem before mirroring, right-click the object and choose vertex. Marquee select all the seam vertices and choose Window > General Editors > Component Editor. Click-drag all the values in the vertex.x column and enter a value (i.e., 0). All the vertices now have the same x value.