Home Syllabus Schedule June 17 June 18 June 19 June 20 June 24 June 25 June 26 June 27

Adventures in Modeling, Sculpting and 3D Design

Instructor: Derek Dallas

June 17-27, Mon-Thurs
Room: D227


Your journey to become a 3D modeler begins now! Let your imagination take you to new places as you learn to design 3D prototypes. Learn to model everyday objects and translate them into visually inspired 3D printed objects. Master tips and techniques of digital sculpting with instructor Derek Dallas, who will guide you through every step of the process of using Mudbox, an artistic software used to design concept art.


This course will introduce students to the basic skills needed to create three dimensional models using a variety of techniques and software packages. The goal of the course is to give the students enough education to make them knowledgeable about what quality 3D models are and how to take those models and print them on a 3D printer if desired. It will be made up of brief lectures and demonstrations and lots of lab time to explore and create. Students will be modeling basic everyday objects such as hammers, chairs, bottles, and fruit but I want them to create their own designs as well such as simple characters or game art. We will discuss basic design principles such as proportion, balance, symmetry, as well as best practices for creating 3D objects.
  • Respect each other
  • Respect each others creations
  • Help each other when possible
  • No Food or Drinks in the lab


This course will be focusing on the fundamental skills, techniques, software and hardware used in making 3D objects and 3D printable objects

The first week of this course we will be working with Autodesk Maya, the industry standard for animation and modeling, to learn the basics of what a 3d model is and how to create one using the fundamental tools and techniques found in most 3D modeling software packages. We will look at things like what are the basic components of a 3D model, how to use primitive geometry, create reference images and box modeling techniques. We will use the skills to create basic objects that can be printed on a 3D printer.

The second week of this course we will take items we create using Maya and use them in Autodesk Mudbox to learn high resolution modeling and painting. This software package is one of the leading high resolution modeling packages used to create characters, game assets and prototypes used for a variety of applications. The sculpts created can also be printed on a 3d printer.

I will also discuss the basics of 3D printing technology available at Parkland and go over the core skills needed to create successful 3D models that work best on our 3D printers.

Session 1: June 17

Today we will be looking at the very basics of 3D modeling. We will get introduced to the course and begin working in Autodesk Maya, the 3D modeling software that we will be using to create 3D objects

Topics for Todays class are:

Session 2: June 18

This course will be focusing on the fundamental skills, techniques, software and hardware used in making 3D objects and 3D printable objects

Topics for Todays class are:

Session 3: June 19

Today we will look at modeling something more complex and build on our box modeling techniques.

Topics for Todays class are:

Session 4: June 20

Today we will be looking at how we take a model we created in Maya and import it into the Makerbot software to prepare it for pronting and then finally pringintg the model.

Topics for Todays class are:

  • Introduction to 3D printing
  • Introduction to the makerbot 3D printer
  • 3D printer anatomy
  • Makerbot desktop software
  • Loading a file
  • Settings, basic processes before printing
  • Filament
  • starting a print
  • Completing a print
  • Possible issues to look out for

Session 5: June 24

Today we begin to take our 3D models made with Maya and import them into Mudbox for high resolution modeling. We first need to understand the user interface and the basics of the program and how it correlates with real sculpting tools and methods.

Topics for Todays class are:

  • Mudbox user interface
  • working in 3D space
  • Importing a low poly model
  • Sculpting tools
  • Basic settings
  • working from low subdivisions to higher subdivisions
  • Starting with geometric primitive and building off of it
  • Dynamic tesselation

Session 6: June 25

Today we will continue to work with our models, we will look at Stencils and stamps to help add more details

Topics for Todays class are:

  • Stencils
  • Stamps
  • Fall off
  • Symmetry
  • spacing
  • importing alphas

Session 7: June 26

Today we are going to look at the painting features in Mudbox

Topics for Todays class are:

  • Painting tools
  • Paint layers
  • Weights
  • Diffuse
  • Bumps
  • Displacements
  • glossiness

Session 8 June 27

Today we want to prepare for the showcase. Work on sculptures and painting details.

Topics for Todays class are:

  • Sculpture turn tables
  • Lighting choices
  • Material choices

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