Thursday, 9 May 2013

From Frustration to Inspiration

AutoDesk "beginners" tutorial...I got lost!
In 1998 I decided I wanted to learn Computer Aided Design.  As this was not common for jewellery students I appeared to be ahead of my time, but only just.  I was, however, persistent and so was given the option to study AutoCAD in the Furniture Faculty, which I did for 2 years.  That time is an absolute blur, literally!  I found it difficult to comprehend.  Recently, I  have been tackling a newer, more user-friendly version yet all my T-Spline nightmares just came flooding back to haunt me. Having said that, with some unexpected time on my hands what better use to put it to...conquering my CAD phobia!

One inspiration for my new project came from the experience of teaching a group of middle years students who were very attentive to any tuition that involved manipulating their own images.  Luckily, as a Photoshop user, I was able to introduce a few tools then let them explore the workspace on their own.

The other motivation for this project is that my daughter is away with her school for 8 weeks and I am probably missing her more than the reverse.  So while I sit and wait for Skype to light up each night, I have had a play with her image in CAD.

Notice the word, play!  This is due to the fact that I have found software with that: I think I can, I think I can, quality.  I  am having fun using it and I never thought I'd say that about CAD software.

I am using/learning a software package called MOI or Moment Of Inspiration.  It's price is in the $100s not the $1,000s or $10,000s plus it has a 30 day try before you buy trial.  So, for the baby beginner I am, I can see it's potential, not only as a jewellery designer but also as a teacher.  I like that it is compatible with my Adobe software and that it exports in all major 3d file formats.

Don't get me wrong, I have no affiliation with the product except that, to me, it represents a light at the end of a previously inaccessible tunnel! I may even dare myself to cast this pendant in silver?  I am having a prototype printed on an UP 3d printer, the problem being if it's too good I may have to make room on my desk for one!

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