Renault Example


Deconstructing the Renault Trezor Hex Surface


I have always been a huge fan of Renault. They are one of the companies that inspired me to learn how to write algorithms. I would like to start this article by saying I have not had the pleasure of working at Renault so take this as my own interpretation. We will be working with Alias, Rhino, Grasshopper and Lunchbox. Lunchbox is a plug in for Grasshopper written by Nathan Miller.

Modeling in Alias

I am much faster and fluent in Alias than I am in Rhino so I do all my modeling inside Alias. I quickly modeled a surface that has the general shape and feel of the Trezor front end.

Importing into Rhino/Grasshopper 

Here all I did was add the surface into my algorithm, apply Hexagonal Cells and Patch the cells with a surface. As you can see, the result wasn't exactly what we are looking for. What is happening is the surface is curved and the control points/CV's are not equally distributed.

The logic behind this is extracting ISO curves that are equally space length and height wise. Then making a surface based on that curve network. Even though I have made a much "heavier" surface, it is based on equally spaced curves. So once we add that new surface back to our hex pattern tool set. We get this

Here we have the basic surface treatment found in the Renault Trezor. Once I finished this I decided to keep pushing this design and adding more complex design elements

I wanted to add a secondary design element so I used a curve as a way to control that. The logic behind this is I am measuring the distance between the center of the cell and the curve I just placed. Then I remap their distance in a scale of 0 to 1. This way I can tell my algorithm to separate the closest 25 percent

Once I isolate the cells I can add further component just to those. The logic behind this step is I tell rhino to get those cells and measure the distance to that curve. Then I remap those numbers into other parts of the algorithm. So now I can tell grasshopper to scale my openings relative to the distance to the curve. Using that same logic, I am telling it to move the cells back. This gives us a nice gradual change in the design.

The Power of Algorithms

Now that the algorithm is complete I wanted to further illustrate the potential of Grasshopper. The following were all done only changing numbers around, they are almost instant and are great for design changes. I'll start with the one we did.

Same Algorithm with different surfaces and curves

That's the true beauty of approaching design and modeling with algorithms. Once you have written it, you can use it in many other projects. All I have to do is add the new surface and curves.