Animation as a medium has spent years clawing and scratching for the barest modicum of respect from its film industry peers. This, despite the fact that its history stretches back all the way to Ancient Grecian pottery. Despite this, more and more companies are turning to 3D animation to represent clientele through avatars and render products before testing physical renders.
So, how do you choose the best 3D illustrator for your needs? Our guide will show you what to look for in 3D illustration software.
Software Model: License or Subscription
Most 3D illustration programs come in 2 major purchase models. You can either purchase a one-time license for the program, or you spend money on a monthly subscription from the software provider.
If you opt for the subscription model, you have less of an up-front cost to use the software. However, subscription programs like Maya Autodesk will eventually cost more than a one-time fee like Zbrush or Rhinoceros if used long-term.
Another thing to consider while looking at your 3D illustrator options is the overall price of the software. It’s no secret that quality 3D rendering programs can get expensive, with licensing costs exceeding $4000 for some programs.
Thankfully, there are some low-cost or even free options on the market. Blender, for example, is free and can render incredible assets with its suite of unique functions. If you’re just getting started or don’t want to devote a large budget to 3D rendering, Blender is a great choice.
Functions and Capabilities
What’s another factor to consider when choosing a 3D illustrator? Its functions and capabilities, of course.
Do you value a collaborative environment? If so, then you need software that allows for real-time adjustment and collaboration. Womp 3D is an incredible new program set to launch in the near future that offers real-time team edits.
You should also make sure that the digital illustration program you use can do everything you need it to. Some 3D illustrators can only render models, not animate. Others can animate, but require 3D models for input.
Learning Curves and Available Resources
Last, it’s important to remember that the program you use is only as good as the illustration skills you have to back it up. Different 3D illustrator options have different learning curves.
Some have intuitive interfaces that make it easy to navigate. Others require specialized coding knowledge to do simple tasks. Plus, you may or may not have ready access to learning materials for lesser-used programs.
There are robust online tutorials and guides for programs like Maya, Blender, and Zbrush. Other programs may not be so easy to master.
Here’s How to Choose the Best 3D Illustrator
So, how do you choose the best 3D illustrator? First, consider the overall cost of the software. Then, decide how much you want to budget for your 3D rendering and animation needs.
Once you’ve decided on a budget, check the functions and capabilities of the 3D illustrators on the market. Then, take a closet look at its learning curve. With all that in mind, you can now make the most informed decision for 3D illustration.
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