Apropos of 3D modeling

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    @demotlj @DOTTYP @smceccarelli Thanks, guys, for the replies! I'm going to look into some of these. Of course I'd rather not have to learn Zbrush because I don't intend to actually go into 3D modeling and so I'd rather put that time into drawing, but it if turns out to be the only thing, perhaps it would be worth it.

    Mostly I want to use it as a learning tool to draw children or animals, changing their angles, positions and ages. I like a spontaneous hand-drawn look, but getting it just right depends on a good model. Right now I'm building them out of my head with a little examination in the mirror and sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't! It just seems that it's very rare to find a photo reference by web search that really works, and then you have to worry about not copying it too much.

    If I find a solution that works for what I'm trying to do, I'll report back. It may take a while. In fact, Simona, your little Zbrush girl is not that far off from what I'm going for, age and style-wise (though I'm not working on a space theme). And all of the designs are very nice!

    P.S. I downloaded Magic Poser and tried to download a child model to pose. It said my choice required the Pro version. Is there a way to download a child on the free version, and if so, how? I can't even seem to figure out how to change the model to a female ๐Ÿ˜› Thanks!

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    @lauraa I bought the Pro version because it wasnโ€™t too much and I hate ads in my apps. My memory though is that the free version only allows you to use the man model.

  • @lauraa I considered learning 3D as well a while ago. I can't afford any of the expensive programs so I decided to learn Blender. But I keep putting it off because I really want to draw rather than learn 3D and all the technical starter tutorials make me fall asleep (literally). I know that's probably not helpful, but I think you are on the right track with magic poser route for what you want to do. I've also got the Pose reference pdfs from http://www.posemuse.com/.
    I've recently decided to just focus on improving my drawing skills rather than try and learn 3D as well. You can also download free models on sites like Blend Swap and look at things in 3D on sites like https://sketchfab.com/ without even having to install 3D software. If you just want a model to pose and you learn a bit of Blender there are rigged models you can use on https://www.blendswap.com as well.

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    @demotlj Well, so far I've managed to pose a fit adult man pouting as though he were a four-year-old girl! ๐Ÿ˜‚

    However, @Christine-Garner, I too am having doubts about learning a new program. Every artist needs to know anatomy and how to visualize things in 3D. If an app helps to strengthen those skills, great. But since I get impatient even with looking at too many Google image photos, I have decided that a posing app is about as far as I should venture into 3D technology. Now if I can only learn not to make the feet disappear into that grid quicksand!

    Thanks, guys!

  • @lauraa I dont think there is a child model in the paid version of magic poser there is a chibi and an anime girl .if you press the + at the bottom of the screen it should give you the free library,but they seem to have changed things around.

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    Hi! I got the paid version and downloaded a child with an enormous head (the chibi, I think). The model works quite well unless you want a top view. ๐Ÿ™‚ Iโ€™ve been having a lot of fun with it! And itโ€™s a good thing too, as my computer is in the shop but Iโ€™m good to go for the next few days with a phone and a sketch pad.

  • I don't have much experience with 3D programs, except sketchup for scene help, but I want to throw out some other options, if you don't go the 3D modeling rout.

    I don't know what you've studied, but learning basic perspective and the Loomis head construction method will help you a lot in visualizing in 3D. Another thing is to watch videos or movies, and sketch from those. You can sketch the same actor from different angles and expressions; of course this may not be helpful with a specific project, and is more of a study aid to start getting comfortable with drawing different angles.

    And another option is to hire a model, or ask friends if their kids want to model and take photos of them in different angles. If you do enough of these, you have a nice reference library built up. Here's an article about this:


    I know the illustrator James Gurney utilizes his neighbors to help with reference photos. He'll come up with composition and ask his friends/neighbors to recreate the comp.

    Anyway, just thought I'd throw that out there. They all come with their time commitments and draw backs, but might be more appealing options than learning 3d.

  • Hope you don't mind but I wanted to share a few thoughts I've been having here that go with this thread:
    I've been putting time into learning perspective drawing a lot lately because I think that's an essential skill even with knowing 3D visualization techniques. I think your advice @TessaW is really good.
    I've been reluctant to learn 3D modelling because it seems really complicated and I'm not sure if it will be useful, but I found a software called Rocket 3F and wondered if anyone has heard of it or used it?
    It's main features seem to be to make it easy to use. Its primarily described as a conceptual tool for concept artists and designers. I've been watching a few videos of the starter series the creator of the software made on YouTube and it looks a lot easier to use than Blender which looks like something NASA would use. I tried Sketchup a year ago or so and I didn't like it.
    I'm still not sure whether it's worth learning 3D modelling though for what I want to do. Basically I just want rough layouts to help a bit as an underlay guide for paint-overs to get perspective right and maybe test lighting arrangements. I managed to do some of this in blender last year by just using free models, adjusting the camera and trying lighting setups, but it required a lot of effort and I've since forgotten pretty much all I learned. Everything is hidden in the interface for Blender which I find really annoying.
    I also found a software called Room arranger which I'm trying as well. I was researching how to make floor plans because I wanted to try and learn the "revolved plan" technique to get different views from one room for a story project I'm working on. It seems pretty good although basic if you compare it to more expensive alternatives such as Home Designer (overkill for what I need). In Room Arranger you build floor plans and can see your rooms in 3D. Not much lighting info, but I can work that out in other ways I guess.
    Hope that's useful or interesting to anyone, and please let me know if you've heard of Rocket 3F and what you think.

  • Oh, something I forgot about- what about sculptris? I did use that a few years ago. It was free, and it felt very much like sculpting, except on the computer. It seems like the learning curve on that wouldn't be as steep. I remember making a decent looking skull on it on first attempt.

  • I forgot to mention a few easier to use and free 3D programs as well now we are on the subject ๐Ÿ™‚ : Magica Voxel for 3d voxel art. This is easy to use and fun. @tessaw There is also an Open source software a bit like Sculptris I found called Dilay (digital clay). Don't know why, but that doesn't seem to be well known either.

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