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Human proportions (again)

Vania Chaplin

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Hello all.

For some time already, I have a project to help users to fit human proportions. It is just a posing stand and picture of a regular woman.

It will be released Full Perms and free at Marketplace, with a note with instructions.

I published the instructions in Multiply, if you can have a look at it, criticize or make suggestions, correct my English, or simply say that it is lost of time, please, do. 

Thanks ahead to all that help me with this.:matte-motes-kiss:

(please forgive me if I published as a new thread, instead of put it in the “proportion guide…” thread) 

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Most excellent Vania. This is great! :matte-motes-smile:

This is exactly what I did finally as couldn't get my proportions satisfactory. I put a frontal photo of nice female on a prim. Then I adjusted its height to the height I wanted my avie to be. I wore the prim, adjusted location and started to tweak my shape. Now I'm very pleased with my avie shape.

To have a proportion picture as a reference is really the only way to get the proportions right. Unless one is an artist specialized in drawing or sculpting human shape. And very few of us are, I guess. :smileywink:

I can heartily recommend Vania's proportion aid to anybody who has difficulties in making the shape natural looking. There are too many avies with way out proportions walking around.:matte-motes-agape:

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This seems like a useful visualization for many. I've always wanted LL to add a silhouette like this to the appearance editor itself. Unfortunately, Linden Lab never quite understood that understanding of human proportion is not common, as a result the tools they provide for appearance editing are horribly inadequate for the average SL user. The starter shapes they provide are just as bad. Seven feet tall, short "t-rex" arms, 9+ heads high...to get a good shape in SL you basically need to remake everything from scratch.


A few points that might be useful. Eight heads tall is considered "idealistic" Generally an 8 head tall individual will also be tall (around 5'8" for women, 6'2" for men). The average person is between 7 and 7.5 heads tall.

Because of how the appearance editor works, it also helps to check proportions in a certain order.You'd want to get your hand size and body width worked out before checking arm length, for example.


Another resident, Pussycat Catnap, took a post I'd made about proportions in another thread and added some screenshots to illustrate how to thoroughly check proportions in SL. People can read the blog post here for additional information on achieving good body proportiuons in SL.

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In addition, if you're including the prim as a wearable item, you might want to create two versions. One for men, one for women and scale the figure so that it is average height for that gender. 5'5"/1.65m  for women, 5'10"1.78m for men. Or maybe idealize it to 5'8" and 6' tall.

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(I’m reading Pussycat’s blog now, thanks for that Penny, will take into consideration it too)

Thanks for the suggestions, Penny, I will take them in consideration.

This afternoon I was playing with it as wearable, is much easier than my first version (that in Marketplace), but I have to rewrite the instructions and take new pics for it.

And yes, the slider not ever gives you what is necessary. When I was working in arm length, I had to slide it to 100 and was still too short in comparison to the model, as can be seen in the pic above (ok, in that shape the torso is yet too long, in comparison of the size of the drawing).

On the order, I think that is something like:

1. Torso length;

2. Head height;

3. Legs length;

4. Hands size (something around 10-20)

5. Arms length;

6. Than turn to width in the many parts;

7. details in general – depending on the Torso length, you have to adjust breasts, butt, etc, accordingly, and so on

On face, the general rule is eyes in the middle of the face vertically, than the lower space is divided by 3 – mouth at 1/3 (upwards), and the base of nose at 2/3.

(I’m reading Pussycat’s blog now, thanks for that Penny, will take into consideration it too:matte-motes-wink:)

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Vania Chaplin wrote:

And yes, the slider not ever gives you what is necessary. When I was working in arm length, I had to slide it to 100 and was still too short in comparison to the model, as can be seen in the pic above (ok, in that shape the torso is yet


You're welcome!

The arm length slider is problematic. It is only possible to get proper arm length with the female mesh if you shrink down to around a believable woman's height. About the tallest you can be and still achieve proper arm length is around 6' tall. Most avatars are closer to 7' tall, which makes it impossible to have proportional arms.

 My avatar is 5'7" tall and I have my arm slider set at 90.

Oddly enough, men do not have this problem. They can have proportional arms at around 60 when standing 6' tall. Mens' legs are actually shorter than womens' in the appearance editor, but it is not so extreme as the discrepency in arm length.



Regarding the order you'd check proportions, I'd put torso width before arm length. The reason being that your "wingspan" (which includes arm length, torso width and hand size) should be equal to your height.

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I see my blog got linked already. :)


In spirit I'm with those who'd love to see the abilityto scale without breaking proportion - but the mesh we have for females is so badly it almost takes hitting it with a mallet to get it proportional at -any- height.


If you can't get arms right at 100, make your torso thicker and your shoulders wider. Most female shapes lack enough body fat and thickness anyway - the word 'fat' freaks us out and we dial it down to zero, but its not really that. It ought to be named 'cardboard vs 3D slider', because if you go down to zero, you might as well have been steam pressed under an iron. :)


The flaws of the arm slider alone are enough to both:

1. Justify the need for a new female mesh.

2. Prove beyond any reasonable doubt that the person who made SL's female mesh had no concept of art and didn't care.

You can join Renderosity and see utter noobs at 3D modelling who absolutely suck at what they're doing and flame anyone who tries to help them - but still manage a better job of a human model. And if you spend all of 11.3 seconds looking for a second modeller there, you can find a good 27 or more of them, even better, who would have jumped at the chance to give their work -for free- to LL's back in 2003 just for the name recognition... Spend another few minutes, and you'll be drowing in sheer pros who could have set LL's up for a small fee with something amazing...

ie: there is no excuse for the horrid mesh we've got. And sadly it prevents us from having good looking female avatars in a wide variety of scales...


Oh, and my Possette mesh in good old Poser 4, which I bought in 1999 (or was it 98)... her morh dials keep on working and letting me stay proportional wether or not I make her 1-inch tall or 50-feet tall. And considering an early project I did was an 'attack of the 50-foot tall woman' image... I've tested this. :) She kept bending at the right spots too... (Well... I think I made the image in Poser, and scaled up or down elsewhere... but still - its just weird that this issue exists at all in SL).

- Another smack across the face to us, that our 2003 mesh here can't beat a 1999 freebie almost universally itself considered a bad mesh. ;) By 2003 in the Poser/Blender/low-budget-3D world, people were making low-poly versions of male and female meshes for animations and games - and any one of them could have been the inspiration for us if only SL hadn't been put together by a pack of likely-art-hating-number-geeks... (which isn't fair to my geek friends, I know some of you love art, but you also know which guys in the computer lab I'm pointing at, don't you?) :D




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Mayalily wrote:

I don't think that is true.  I was at a club on Tuesday of this week and a lot of avi's had scripted hair; no one crashed nor had lag; just long rez times due to all the vendor stalls.

I think you need to spend enough time in SL and looking at scripts and what they do...

Vendor stalls have low script memory. Resize hair has high memory, and you're really starting to sound silly repeating info that flies in the face of what anyone can see from just examining the objects and the info in both estate tools and about land.

 The problem is fairly recent too - somewhere in 2009 the scripted hair came into play from low-informed builders thinking no-mod would protect them from copy-theft.

 It would take from 5-10 or 20 vendors to equal the impact of one person with NON-linkset resize scripted hair, jewelry -OR- shoes. To see this you need only set a vendor up on some land and then look at the numbers for its memory useage, and the script time before and after rezzing it in estate tools, and then do the same with some hair.


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i think it is a fun idea for sure =)

i think lots will like it as well..i love playing with shapes..this kind of gives you a stand next to type of gague  that lets you go with the purportions or get really wild  as well in an organized kinda way hehehe

thanks for the new link..

I'munna try it out and have some fun wiff it  hehehe =)

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