learn 3d modeling from home “7 simple steps”

learning 3d modeling from home could be an obligation. Sometimes we don’t have time or money to go and have courses. So learning online could be our only and best option to have skills in this domain. Together we will discover 7 effective steps to learn 3d modeling from home.

best 7 steps to learn 3d modeling from home

I will list the most important 7 steps to learning 3d modeling from home without having any degree or attending classes.

1 – Pick the software

Autocad remains the most popular software used by professional modelers. Also, there are other programs like MAYA, 3DS MAX,4d cinema. But all of them are paid versions. So I would recommend using SketchUp or Blender. In the free version, SketchUp is only in the browser. But blender is free and offline software that you could install without a problem.

You will find the all steps of how to install your program blender. just have to follow.

2 – learn the basics of 3d modeling

After choosing a program you will need to know how to use it by understanding:

  • how to navigate
  • knowing which button to use
  • how to create simple models
  • how to blend or find your images

As a recommendation starts with simple objects and don’t rush. The process takes time. Rushing and going to complex models may frustrate you. So I don’t want you to give up. Start slowly and gain some confidence. JUST STEP BY STEP.

I will let you a free small course teaching you as a beginner to start from scratch in a blender. So you could learn basics about this topic.

3 – practice

Now is the time to practice and learn the basics. Start making projects and follow tutorials. Learn how to create objects, draw furniture, and design covers, and all that will be helpful. You will need the basics to allow you to go further in the learning process.

I will recommend taking your time and having at least 3 months just with the beginning. Learning some simple technics could be tricky and makes you go fast where you could finally stuck.

The timeline that I will offer is 2 hours per day for 3 months you could do the calculation. If you could do more per day it would be awesome. But respecting the routine is foundational to your success.

4 – learn 3d modeling mathematics

Even if you have a sense of an artist and you hate math. The math could still follow you. You will be differentiated and more efficient in work when you understand the vectors and 3d dimensional coordinates. It will be extremely useful.

don’t worry if you are afraid of math, you will use just a few simple topics that will note below :

  • using trigonometry

Learning trigonometry for 3d modeling will teach you how to deal with objects like circles, angles, and triangles effectively. It allows you to prevent doing some false draws or non-feasible models. Having good basics in trigonometry will give you a wide and concrete vision of 3d design modeling.

  • using vectors

Using vectors is frequently high in 3d modeling and animation. With vectors, you could determine the size, magnitude, and direction of your model. Having a basic understanding of vectors will help you to make a fast analysis. As a result, speed up your construction model.

I have put a short description of what is vectors and how to use them.

  • using matrices

Matrices allow 3d modelers to make translations, rotations, and scaling. When you want to expand or double the size of an object. You intensely use the matrices operation. it is an important tool for transformation. Moreover, they also used to have such a realistic view of your design by color and rendering transformation.

if you don’t know anything about matrics you could find this simple explaining video

  • using Euler angles

The Euler angles are used to determine the rotation of an object in space. When you want to rotate your object in space. Consequently, you have 3 possibilities to rotate your object in three forms of angles ψ, θ, and φ. which determine exactly the orientation of an object and help its operation of it.

you could find a simple description in this video about Euler angles in 3d modeling.

  • calculus

3d modeler animators use calculus for concept and motion. With calculus, animators could predict how objects will react under movement and outside circumstances. Which is considered so useful in the animation industry. So having some basics in calculus will be much helpful. Also, this video will make it so easy to understand.

5 – Build your own 3d models

After learning the mathematical basics that we mentioned above, You need to know how to start applying the rules. Instead of mimicking ideas, you have to build them by yourself. Start working on personal projects from scratch by following these steps that I will list below:

– begin with a small project you can afford

Working on simple projects is essential for a beginner student. Consequently, it will allow you to stay motivated and continue this journey.

As a recommendation, tables, cups, chairs, or small houses could be the best option to start with. They don’t need a lot and advanced complex tools and not even a big experience to build. The most important thing in the learning process is also choosing a piece that you will like to work on it.

We have to put into consideration diversifying the program tools. So we can learn them all.

For instance, you pick a chair and you want to design it. You have to design a chair two times with two different tools. That is to say, your first chair must be designed differently from the second one. That is allowing you to have more skills and flexibility as a 3d modeler.

– go to the more complex objects

Now you are in the time for diversity. At this moment you should try to diversify and go for more objects like buildings, characters, and creatures. But the last thing you should pick is designing creatures. It is more complex. You shouldn’t do them unless you are feeling very well and qualified in other forms.

In the process of design. You have to experiment and test if the idea or approach you’re using is good or not. Also, make the right and fast decision to prevent accidents in the long run.

For instance, you won’t like to rebuild the character from scratch. Especially, when you find that your design approach is wrong. Above all, in the beginning, stages, it will be normal. Mistakes are going to teach you.

– work on new projects

Working on new projects from your imagination could hold challenges and priceless values. At this level, you are at the first door to professionalism. You have to dive into:

topology of objects: understanding topology will be crucial. You have to train yourself to put the right edges and vertices. This will hugely influence and simplify the sculpting process at the end of the work. Using polygons is frequent in 3d modeling which requires good knowledge.

-the simplicity of the process: in an advanced level, your goal is making proper work. The simplicity of the process is the first element to get attention. So, keep your design simple and don’t put a lot of divisions. Your goal is to try to make minimum subdivisions that make the process easier for sculpting and rendering.

Getting proportions wrong: proportions are the tiny fill between a good job and a horrible one. there is no in middle. Putting the wrong proportion could throw your work in the air. So, at this level is recommendable to put basic shapes. So, you can adjust them easily and use some other technics that you will learn from failure.

6 – have an online mentorship

This part is for serious people who want to build their career in the 3d modeling field. Maybe applying for job opportunities. So, as a student who wants to stay and learn 3d modeling from home. Having mentorship could hugely make a big difference in your career.

Learning through books or videos will be awesome. But at some level, you need someone to give you tricks and orient you. The only way to do that is by having an internship outside the home or inside as online mentorship does.

I will not say to go directly into mentorship. Take your first year and consolidate your baggage. You would not lose your money asking basic beginners questions. Absorb the 3d modeling knowledge and your mentor will scale you to the highest level of performance.

7 – conclusion

What makes these types of arts special, is you could possibly learn 3d modeling from home and reach high levels. This is not the case for stem classes. The majority of them require a physical presence and outreach materials to learn.

3d modelers need one only thing to have a good computer with a reasonable graphic capacity. That it. No excuse you have. All you have to do is to start.


Yassin ajanif is a physics graduate and electromechanical engineer width more than 5 years in the field. My goal and my team are to share our experience to help you succeed in your career as a stem major. we talk about all tips, problems, and struggle STEM students face in their career and how to overcome them.