In this Instructable I will give a detailed overview of how I created a jewelry box in 3DS Max and Zbrush before having it printed by Shapeways. I designed the jewelry box with the intention of proposing to my girlfriend with the ring inside. The box was designed in the Art Nouveau style with flourishes reminiscent of the Elven scenery of Middle Earth. I wanted this to be very personal, so her face was sculpted onto the lid with the help of a friend from a series of candid profile images.
Step 1: 3DS Max 1: Rough Shape
Work began in 3DS Max 2012 where I started by drawing a simple subdivided Plane. I applied a FFD 4x4x4 modifier and began to pull back the corners to give the front a rounded appearance. The Shell modifier was applied next to give the box some height with some subdivision segments. Lastly, I selected the front row of polys on the top of the box and performed a Hinge From Edge operation that created the rough rounded shape at the top of the box.
Step 2: 3DS Max 2: Shape Refinements
I needed to cleanup up some of the extraneous faces that were made from the Hinging operation and weld the vertices where they connected at the back of the box. I also needed to straighten out the rear edges so they would be flush with the back of the box. I selected the problem edges and used the Straight command under Loop Tools/Curvature. This straightened out the edges but also created a disruptive shape between the front and back of the box. I was able to smooth this out by selecting the problem edges and applied the Relax command (also under Loop Tools/Curvature) until the top had smooth contours.
Lastly, I applied the FFD 3x3x3 modifier to raise the top center of the box and create the space where the face would later be sculpted.