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  • Writer's pictureChristina Guo

How to Make 3D Models for Beginners

Updated: Oct 11, 2021

This 3-D design guide will cover the basics of modeling and provide a step by step guide on how to make a 3D model.

1. Visualize the 3D image

The first step in making a 3D model is to visualize the idea or the concept. This step involves looking at image through the screen of your mind. While visualizing, try to play around with different shapes, sizes, colors and textures.

2. Understand the concept of watertight

If you have the goal of printing your desired graphic, then possibly you'll have to make it a closed object. 3D printers are programmed to print closed 3D objects as opposed to 2D objects or flat images. In simple terms, ensure you do away with any hole and gap.

3.Get set with the right software

It's quite paramount that you should have the right software before you proceed with designing. Some softwares can be quite tedious to operate because of a complex layout or manual. The most recommended softwares for beginners are TinkerCAD and SketchUp Free. The programs contain the basic features essential for a beginner.

4. Launch the programs and choose a scale

Once you launch the software or the program, choose a suitable scale. The most basic scale is 1:1 and it allows you to avoid much technicalities involved in calculations.

5. Start by drawing a 2D shape.

On a blank template, draw a 2D image by selecting the pencil icon at the toolbar. Most programs like tinkerCAD have some premade 2D shapes and can be accessed through the toolbar. For example you may discover circles, triangles, ovals, and squares. It's okay to play around with these shapes and have a feel of their suitability. If you can't find a suitable shape, don't worry, you can create a 2D shape using the lines and curves feature at the toolbar.

6. Convert the 2D into 3D

You have created a 2D image, now it's the magical time to convert into a 3D object image. You can easily achieve this by using the 3D features located at the toolbar. If you're using SketchUp, you'll access this feature through the "perspective" icon. You'll notice that a square turns into a cube and a circle turns into a sphere.

7. Add some layers of complexity

Suppose you desire to create something more complex than a cube or a sphere, you can proceed by compiling little chunks of 3D shapes and images. For example, designing a typical house will probably take a rectangle and a rectangular prism. You can merge the objects to make them a single object.

8. Apply some beautiful colors and textures.

Once you're convinced with your new made 3D image, it's time to throw in some beautiful colors and textures. A typical CAD program like AutoCAD will give you access to colors and textures features which can be accessed at the toolbar. Try to find a texture that pleases you and suits the image.

8. Rotate and scale the model

Have some fun with the "rotate" feature—always found at the toolbar. This feature will spin your model in 360 degrees and this will depend on how far you want to spin it. Try to enlarge or shrink the model. If you feel the need of making the object hollow, you can delete one of the surfaces. That way you can make a cylinder or a hollow object.

This guide is prepared to enrich the beginners with basic know-how of 3D modelling and suitable tools. Stay connected for more great tools and information.


Geniusgadget. ( 9 March 2016). 20 amazing facts about 3D modelling. Retrieved from:

G2.(2020). Top ten general CAD software. Retrieved from:

Makerpro. (21 March 2018). How to make 3D models. Retrieved from:

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