We covered the use of NURBS Curves in Maya, this modelling method uses mathematical equation to calculate the relationship between multiple vertices. The program deals with the math itself and simplifies the adjustments into Bézier handles. Although the math behind the equations is not a necessity, it is still very interesting. Khan Academy have some really nice tutorials and explanations in how math is used in animation, partnered with Pixar ( https://www.khanacademy.org/partner-content/pixar ).
To utilize these newly found curve tools I will be modelling a rocket. Although I have reference, the tool is so simple to use it is pretty easy to create whatever cylindrical shape I would like using the revolve tool. These tools give a good base for the rocket but there are still some adjustments to be made afterwards to make the rocket truly a rocket.
Of course I could continue to refine the shapes in the NURBS mode, however, that would be more work than necessary, this would also give me very rounded edges without going in and adjusting each of the béziere handles. I can convert the NURBS shape into a Polygon object, this had some very strange effects initially generating a lot of triangle polys fixed by going into the settings. The quad setting generated both quads and n-gons. Further experimentation and research got me the required effect.
Once I have a polygon mesh I can revert back to my usual polygon tools that I am comfortable with to create a window. followed by creating the feet for the rocket to stand upon. To experiment with different tools, I opted to create some extrudes for the basic shape and then began using the soft selection tool to create the leg quickly and naturally. The leg is twisted, likely an issue with the anchor point and the face being slightly out of line, although could be a misplacement error, either way, I knew that once the leg was rotated around the shape it would create a nice spiral effect.
Not adequate for flying a rocket, but this isn't rocket science.
Finally, I need to rotate the leg around. I often like to do experimentation first, to see if I can find my own method to fix a solution or find adverse effects that I would not have otherwise found. I of course finally looked into how I could separate the components of an object into its own object, a method that I can see being useful in future. I also like how the new object rotation was set to (0,0,0) by default. If my rocket was not set to (0,0,0) itself I could select the vertex at the apex of the rocket to set the anchor of the leg to the same x and y co-ordinate.