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I'm a 3d videogame artist who wants to start a career on 3d miniature sculpting. Where do I start?

I currently work as a 3D artist for video games who wants to find footing on working as a 3d miniature sculptor but I'm not sure yet where to start.

My first option is to enroll on an online course like Vertex School's miniature sculpting course (https://www.vertexschool.com/Sculpting-Miniatures-Bootcamp) but this one is a bit too pricey for me so I guess my questions for this are a) are online courses worth it? and b) if they are, are there any other cheaper alternative courses online?

My second option is joining collabs/offering unpaid work to build my portfolio since I already have a background on character and prop sculpting and just learn from there.

If you have any tips or other options in mind I'll be glad to hear them out.


  • Firebert
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    Firebert polycounter lvl 15

    You may gain some knowledge that would help you through these online courses, but the cost of the course is a solid chunk of change that could go into a really nice printer and several liters of resin.

    Option C) Research resin printing and all the caveats thereof, learn to sculpt models to work with resin printing, enjoy the process of failing upwards.

    You'll need to save your money for a printer, a slicer program, gloves, glasses, general PPE and ventilation equipment, desired resin for application (ranging $30-$100+ per liter), isopropyl alcohol, UV lamps for curing, FEP film replacement, brushes, spatulas, and so much more. It is NOT a cheap hobby until you learn to work with these tools for maximum efficiency and make a moderate financial and time investment.

    You can readily find all the info you need for creating minis and resin printing through youtube, but I wouldn't recommend outright sculpting something you think will print fine until you know how to work with resin printers available on the consumer market.

    As for sculpting minis, if you can sculpt well, you can create a mini. If you learn to work with gravity and print angles in the printing process, you can create efficient designs in each mini that happy paying customers with no sculpting experience will gladly pay for as the mini will A) print with little to no resin print supports and B) print exactly as expected 100% of the time and C) be a cool design. To be a good mini sculptor in today's market, I'd say you'd need to know how to design minis that print efficiently. Maybe that's a lot of what you would get out of this course, but if you don't have a printer yet, and you know how to use the tools to create assets, I'd get a printer first and learn more about that process before diving directly into a course for that much cheddar.

  • Larry
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    Larry interpolator

    Why don't you check your local libraries if they have 3d printers? Or ask around if anyone has. You could prepare for 3d printing some characters you've already done, gain some knowledge on what needs to be separate parts etc. If you buy a 3d printer for constant printing, don't really keep it in the area you live since they produce a small amount of toxic fumes. There are more eco friendly options, but still

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