Intro to the NURBS Tools in Cinema 4D

February 10, 2010

In this episode, I go though how to use the NURBS tools including, Hyper Nurbs, Extrude Nurbs, Lathe Nurbs, Loft Nurbs, Sweep Nurbs, and the Bezier Nurbs tools. I use nurbs tools to help me model basic objects and to help with animation.

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  • What screen capture software are you using?

  • Hey Nick, thanks for that – very, very funny.
    You have, unbelievably, made me despise the Bezier NURBS object even more than I did already πŸ˜‰

  • NURBS tools are the ones that really help you make those scenes with a bunch of random weird shapes and objects and when you put it online and call it abstract art everybody respects you πŸ˜€

  • The Nurbs (sounds like a kids cartoon from the 80’s) are great and i use them on a daily basis.

    Great advice on the ribbon and use this method plus then use a beizer on a plane and make yourself some ticker tape.

    Stick them both in an emitter and instant party.

    You could even use Nick’s balloon tutorial for extra effect.

  • I’m getting more and more addicted to GG Nick, I’ve convinced the boss at work to let me spend 1 -2 hours doing Cinema 4D tuts on your site every morning I come to work. Not a bad thing now is it, getting paid to learn? πŸ™‚

  • nice job again nick.

    but, is it just me or are the others annoyed by the “key-pressed-notification” aswell?

  • Gorilla you rock !

  • Thanks! Just the things I wanted to learn today.

  • Awesome – I guess we can expect a bunch of these this week!

  • Nick, I really like how you did this tutorial. It was quick and sweet. I am learning a lot from you website. Keep up the good work!!!! When is the lighting plugin coming out? We need IT!!! Again, nice job.

  • maybe the Bezier NURBS is used for animating a page turn or a piece of paper falling. Ok what I really asking is how to make a page turn in C4D.
    thanks nick for clarify what the loft nurb does,
    Keep it up I visit your site daily.

    • I did it recently in a magazine animation with a few bend deformers on each plane.
      One giant bend towards the middle of the magazine starting from the spine, another to straighten the pages out so they lie flat and a few smaller ones for corner detail as it turns.

    • Great idea chris, I tried to keyframe the bezier nurbs but had no luck. I was also thinking of setting up a plane with bones and try to animate it that way. I like the idea of bend deformers though.

  • Thanks for the tut fella! I love starting the day with a good bit of C4D learnin’!

    GSG helps me pay the rent!

  • Great stuff once again.

    GSG is slowly becoming the new VCP.

  • Thank you for sharing your knowledge, And I am kinda skinny maybe I can fit in a bag for the ski trip, I so miss Vermont and snoboarding.

  • The way you explain things …. just perfect!

  • Hey Nick,

    Great tutorial as usual. Can you show us something on how to texture these crazy shapes. Not just adding a nice reflection, so for example if you wanted to put the skull and cross bone on the flag, or adding a logo onto these shapes with out being stretched and distorted.
    If any tutorial already exists, could you send me a link??


  • great thats what i need!

  • Nice one. Could you do something similar with all of the mograph modules? and how different effectors interact?

  • Its been a while but if I remember correctly Bezier NURBS is one of main tools used in vehicle design for things like the hood, doors, etc.

    • never heard of that, but sure could be a way.

      usually u do poly by poly modelling when it comes to vehicles.

    • Like I said its been several years for me (NURBS was brand new at the time and all the rage) so there may be a “new” best practices for that. Although I have to admit its pretty easy to match blueprints when you can just form a Bezier NURBS sheet into the skin of a vehicle.

  • I use the Bezier Nurbs together with MoGraph to build complex planes for my Objects. Try it! πŸ˜‰

  • a little about bezier nurbs.
    plz correct me if i am wrong.

  • I prefer when you do tutorials that are more about concepts rather that something software specific.
    I do however know that you, and many users here, use c4d so I guess it’s great for them.

    Still it IS a free tutorial so I’m not complaining!

  • Hey Nick –

    Great tut as always – love the knowledge sharing. Check out this modelling tut, that uses bezier nurbs – oldie but a goodie!

    Cheers, thanks again for sharing.

    • Hey, that’s a great old school tute… thanks for posting it. Also great job nick! I like these run-through vids… if you did one about mograph I wouldn’t complain either πŸ˜‰

  • I think there are 2 reasons why I dislike the Bezier Nurbs object.
    Firstly, redundancy. It seems like a legacy feature from before the introduction of Hypernurbs (R7?). It can’t do anything that can’t be achieved much more flexibly with a low poly object in a hypernurbs.
    Secondly, it seems so clunky compared to the other nurbs objects. The fact that you can’t change the subdivision without losing all your edits seems counter to the way everything else in Cinema works.
    Anyway, if it gets the job done for you, use it πŸ™‚
    For me, if was missing from R12 I’d barely notice (mainly because I’m still using R10).

  • “I like it so much I gonna keep it!” lovely Nick.

    helpful stuff, I feel like I’ve seen some of this before in one of your tuts.

  • Heh. Heh.

    NURBs = Non Uniform Rational Bsplines… not “Non-Rational…”

    (which I know you didn’t mean…)

  • Nick,
    For the lathe tool’s scaling and offset feature…it is good for making things like a Ram’s horn, etc. where you lathe a circle set to one side of the axis and offset it while it scales down to a point.

  • Hi Gorilla

    I have a little question : Why I can’t keyframe Extrudes and other stuffs like that

    Coz i’m working on a tiny project and i need to do some extrude keyframes but it just wont work !

    thanks =]

  • I found this to be very informative, thanks Nick.

  • Great tutorial. I really enjoy the Cinema 4D ones. Put up as much Cinema 4D content as possible πŸ™‚

  • What type of Mac computer do you uses ?

  • If this was facebook, I would be all over the β€œlike” button! πŸ˜€

  • Flying ribbons, holy crap! :0
    I’ve never learned so much about modelling things in Cinema 4D before. Congratulations!

  • “Pirate ship be done.” – Ha ha ha (-:
    Arrrr, you be genius !

  • wooooooow u r amazing guy i feel that πŸ™‚
    i don’t Know why i say that but ur amazing and helper man
    plz keep post and talk to us
    thanks πŸ™‚

  • I am learning c4d so thanks so much this is awesome, how would one go about making a ribbon into a banner with V shapes on the end. Is there a resource could go to

  • Nick, any idea what happened to this video? doesn’t seem to show up anymore.

  • Great tutorial for C4D noobs like me!

    Could you please make an interface tutorial like Andrew Kramer did for After fx and explain the basic stuff of the C4d interface just to put noobs on the right track?

    Its probably the only tutorial i did for AFX and it brought me so far because i was able to create my own stuff without fighting with the interface the whole time…

    Anyway, great site and your a very helpfull guy!

  • Hey Nick how could I make a crescent moon using nurbs? I am trying to create an animation using a moon thats at half crescent wanting to get some advice on starting it up

  • with Bezier Nurbs you can draw a spline, duplicate it, child the splines into bezier, and to obtain the scene. try it.

  • the period is not working could there be a reason for it?

  • Hey Nick, I’m super new to C4D (only been using it for a few days) and I’ve just got to say that you are the man!!! Your tuts are the best I’ve found so far, and this intro to nurbs is exactly what I needed. Keep up the great work and I can’t wait to get into the more advanced tutorials as my skills develop!

  • Grettings from Peru Nick!
    So glad to learn about your tutorials
    God bless you!


  • I modeled a chessboard and I used loft nurbs to make some of the pieces. How do I apply a dynamics tag without them breaking apart?

  • I’m trying to wrap my head around a pretty complex ribbon animation (no pun intended) and didn’t know about the capabilities of the “details” tab. You really helped me out in the 11th hour. Thanks again Nick.

  • On the words “Leht me show you” I got funny feeling down belly))). Nice tut whatsoever.

  • great tutorial and great site you have.
    The program is new to me but I love it.
    Would you like to give some more explanation about the 2 rail option of sweep nurbs. I don’t understand it very well.


  • Here is an example of bezier nurbs used in a music video.

    Try and spot it. πŸ™‚

  • Daniel Rabinovitch August 19, 2013 at 4:38 pm

    when you extrude text, and constain the fillet cap, how to avoid the “funky stuff” ?

    i just want to have a perfect pyramidal-type bevel, and i’m wondering how to do this since forever so if some could advise me, that would be really nice

    great tut btw, i would also love to know more about mograph and those boole thing and stuff don’t know how it’s called

  • Thank you very much for making such an easy and informative tutorial. Keep it up

  • Soooo usefull! πŸ˜€

  • I have C4D R15 Studio edition but there is no extrudeNURBS option only the extrude option. Does anyone know how I can fix this/ what the problem might be?

  • Hello –
    Its great what you do for the design/creative community. Thank you for that. I was wondering how you add Volume to an imported vector. Caps get you partially there but there is still a flatness to body of object. I am looking to add 360 of roundness to imported vector. Is there a solution other than remodeling?

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