Poly modeling / edge extrusion

While it’s not the easiest to get started with, poly modeling is perhaps the most effective and precise technique. In poly modeling, one creates a 3D mesh point-by-point, face-by-face. Often one will start out with a single quad (a 3D object consisting of 4 points) and extrude an edge of the quad, creating a second quad attached to the first. The 3D model is created gradually in this way. While poly modeling is not as fast as box modeling, it requires less tweaking of the mesh to get it “just right,” and you can plan out the topology for animation ahead of time.

Poly modelers use the technique to create either organic or hard objects, though poly modeling is best suited for organic models.