AEDM Day 3: Light

Hands around 3d lightbulbI’ve had to put the story-telling aside today as I wanted to explore a different side of 3D art — making my own content.

Working with professionally-made models like those in the DAZ 3D store is a wonderful time-saver. Not to mention that other people’s artistry is a joy to discover, sparking new ideas and making concepts come to life.

This pleasure comes with a price tag, and is not without its own challenges. Combining 3D models from different artists and lighting them to create a believable scene needs patience and some amount of skill. As 3D artists often need to remind others: even when working with readymade content there is no magical “make art” button.

Creating your own models takes things to a whole new level. At … Continue reading

Being an Improver: That Awkward Stage

3D DAZ RenderGoing through an awkward stage… it’s all part of learning something new. From my own experience, it’s when you can make the house but not yet the windows and doors to go in it. Or you have a solid structure, but not the skills to pretty it up.

It’s when you’ve gone past the raw beginner stage when everything was new and exciting and hard, and you amazed yourself just by producing anything at all. At that stage we’re like children coming home with smeared paintings, proud to say “I did this!” Only later does the self-conscious, critical self creep in.

In short, the awkward stage grabs hold when you start to see the gulf between you and people who are much more experienced. It doesn’t pay to compare ourselves with others, we just need to improve by our … Continue reading

Learn Hexagon 2.5: Review and Tutorial Resources

Apple Model Made in HexHexagon 2.5 is a great piece of software, though not without niggles that can make it frustrating for some users. Its biggest selling point will be the compatibility (via a bridge) with DAZ Studio. If you want to make clothing or props for DS and Poser figures, it’s well worth a look.

Let’s start with the basics…

What can I do with Hexagon 2.5?

Hexagon will allow you to make 3D models. It’s most often used to make models for use in DAZ Studio and Poser, but as you can export your objects in the Wavefront .obj format you can use them in any software that accepts .obj.

What can I make?

Just about anything you can imagine! Skilled Hexagon users create everything … Continue reading

Birds and Bonnets: I’m Celebrating Spring

Dovecote and BirdsSpring arrived late this year. The bright colours, birds full of song and warm sunshine are all the more welcome for it.

I have to tell you, I was growing impatient and began celebrating the arrival of Spring a while back with my 3D creations. Blue skies and green leaves were a pleasant distraction from the bare branches and fierce winds outside my window.

The Dovecote, a gorgeous set by Predatron, was something I picked up during March. I knew it would be a pretty background for outdoor portraits. It works beautifully for historic renders, but it’s also the kind of architecture that can still be seen here and there. I know I wouldn’t have to look far for a similar real life backdrop (minus the rooftop birdhouse) near me in Scotland.

They did have dovecotes here in the past … Continue reading

A is For Apple (An Easy 3D Model)

A Green Apple in a Hand (3D)Today’s post was inspired by an A to Z blogging challenge. I’m not taking the challenge but it did prompt me to have a go at a simple modelling project beginning with A.

And that, tradition has it, has to be an apple.

That suits me fine. An apple is a useful prop. It fits into just about any place and era, from a gleaming modern kitchen to a historic scene.

3D Apple in HexagonIt also happened to be quite a straightforward project in Hexagon 2.5. Starting from a sphere primitive, I was able to scale and taper it into an apple … Continue reading

Dancing Shoes and Digital Shoemaking

3d Ballet Shoe by Indigo JansonYou just know when I go quiet for a full week that I’m caught up in some digital challenge, and a knotty one at that.

Speaking of knots, my good friend Kathy compared making 3D clothing myself to back in the day when you’d knit a sweater instead of going to the store to buy one. It’s a great analogy and she’s right in more ways than one.

If you are a knitter and can remember first learning, you’ll know it wasn’t always so easy. Before the finger movements imprinted themselves and the motions became automatic, you probably struggled with each new stitch. Did your first creation have dropped stitches, holes, and odd knots where you’d tried to repair it? I know mine did!

My digital dressmaking has … Continue reading

Snuggle Up! Making 3D Clothes Part 1

Pullovers (close-up) created in 3D by Indigo JansonWhat’s this? My trio of 3D characters must be feeling the cold — they’ve put on their pullovers!

And who, you might ask, created those pullovers for them? Yes indeed, you are looking at my first clothing creations for Daz Studio.

Oh, these garments aren’t perfect. I also had a whole lot of hand-holding in their creation, via an excellent video tutorial by John aka ‘Fugazi’. What I’m excited about is what they represent for me.

You know the saying, of course, about “give a man a fish” (the same is surely true of women and children). Sure, I could buy one of the lovely outfits from the store, and I would do so very willingly were money no object. I’d be tempted to buy them … Continue reading

Work, Play, Learn

Vase Models by Indigo JansonIf you’ve been thinking I’ve fallen down a rabbit hole into my 3D world, well, there could be some truth in that. I’ve not spent as much time as I’d have liked on it though. Other things, too, have demanded my attention this week.

Finding the balance between different tasks can be difficult when you are self-employed. As a salaried employee, you go to work certain days and have times when you know you will be home. For most people there’s a clear division between job and leisure.

As most of you know, that line vanishes when self-employed. In the early days, if you are not actively working, you are not earning.

You have more time at home, but less time to play.

On the other hand, doing creative work … Continue reading

Getting Started with 3D Art Software

Making 3D Art by Indigo JansonWhen you’ve been doing something for a year or two, it’s easy to forget how confusing you once found it. For that reason, you might think it would be better if newer users wrote ‘getting started’ guides. At least then there would be no assumed knowledge or missed steps.

The problem with that, of course, is that us raw beginners are stumbling around in the dark. Occasionally we trip over the right solution, but we don’t always understand why, or know the most efficient way of reaching it.

3 weeks from scratch and I am still at that ‘stumbling around in the dark’ stage. Fortunately, experienced artists are generous in their knowledge-sharing, so if you are willing to collect pieces of the puzzle from here, there and everywhere you can … Continue reading