Did you think that a 3D animation software is only for cartoon makers all this while? If so, I’m about to open your eyes in a span of 60 seconds. The experiments of quantum physics and chemistry you see on YouTube are mostly 3D animation videos!
Surprised? How else do you think such tiny particles are even visible to you? Scientists don’t conduct experiments on camera. Even if they do, it’s impossible to capture such minute details that are not visible without a microscope.
The purpose of 3D graphics and animation is not only to give a 3rd dimension to the object created but also make it look real. This not only helps to display experiments you have conducted as a scientist but also invent a device.
Think about it, if an artist can make a fictitious character, why can’t you create a prototype of your invention? Let’s see what a 3D software can let you do.
What Can You Do Using a 3D Animation Software?
There are briefly 3 things you can do if you know how to operate any software for 3D animation:
- Create 1 or More Objects in a 3-Dimensional Space: The software provides you with a space that has length, width and depth. From an electron to a CNC machine, you can choose to create any object you like.
- Provide Colour or Texture: The object you’ll create will be of a default grey colour. You can give it another colour, a pattern or even a wrapper. You can also choose to give a glossy, matte or grainy finish.
- Create a Video with Movements and Sound: Suppose, you created a robot. You can add light and camera first. Next, you can show a view of its structure and then show how it functions. You can even add a voiceover or the sound it may make.
Benefits of 3D Graphics Over Mechanical Drawings
Drawing on a piece of paper will take twice as much time, or maybe even more as creating the same on the computer. Of course, you need to know how to use the software for that!
No matter how well you make a diagram on the paper, it cannot look the same as your prototype. This is because you’ll have a flat surface.
On the other hand, software like Autodesk Maya will give you space and tools to create an object with all its dimensions and sides. Let’s check out the benefit of your creation.
1. Can Create the Exact Dimensions of All Sides
Suppose, you were to create a drone camera. The technicality is already there with you, you just need to give it shape. If you draw it, you can determine how tall and how wide it will be. However, you won’t know the exact volume until you give it depth.
In a drawing, you can estimate the depth. However, when you create the same structure in software, you can rotate your object and see the real depth. In fact, if you know only the length and width, you use the tool on the XY axis and the default depth comes to the Z-axis.
Yes, that’s how a basic software works!
2. Figure Out Flaws in Your Experiment
Let’s take another example here. Say suppose, you’re designing an air purifier. You might have estimated its volume before you started making it.
Now, what if you see that the passage is too thin for bigger particles to pass through? That points out a flaw in your design and you get to improve it. To check for this flaw, it’s no big deal to create or import such structures and see it for yourself.
The main benefit is that you’re creating a vector graphic. You can zoom as much as you want and compare the size of the passage of your machine with that of a particle.
3. Give the Exact Look You Want
Now once you’re satisfied with what you’ve made, it’s time to finish up. After all, aesthetics is important for presentation. If you want your object to have a metallic finish and colour, you give exactly that.
You can even place a logo on your object if you own a brand or make stuff for them. Suppose, you make steering wheels for a car. You’ll be placing their brand on the horn. The technology is yours; the design is yours but the brand will be your client’s.
How Does 3D Animation Help?
Do you think the virtual prototype is enough? No! You need to see its view completely without having to touch your cursor again and again. Besides, you have a team out there who’ll observe your final work, isn’t it?
4. Can Present a 360° View of Your Creation
A basic form of animation is showing your product completely from all angles. You rotate the screen and the object for that. Once you render it, you don’t have to open a heavy software to view your creation again and again.
5. See the Unseen
Suppose, you want to show how a solar panel works; one that you created. Animation gives you the flexibility to show what the naked eye cannot see. You can show the inner layers of the panel, the particles in it and the reaction that takes place when sunlight falls there.
6. Promote the Product Effectively
When 3D animation is used for marketing, it illustrates concepts in a way a camera cannot. You have a lot more creativity in hand to simplify science and capture the attention of the world. What you’ve made could be as small as a memory card or as big as a plane.
Other Benefits of Using the Animation Software
Till now I gave you individual benefits of 3D modelling and animation. There are added benefits a software provides too.
7. Simple to Use
You need to learn it first, no doubt. However, once you get the hang of it, you’ll forget a pencil and paper. Even 2D artists prefer computers over paper today. It is so much easier and faster to create objects with tools & shapes than from scratch.
8. Save Money on Photography & Videography
Like I said, animation can show what a camera cannot. Besides, photographers and ad agencies might cost you a fortune. However, you render one video that shows how your new invention works, you get better quality from an in-house employee!
9. 3D Printing of Prototype
Prototypes are small samples of large objects. However, if you want to make it in a day, you’ll need to connect a 3D printer to your computer. It understands what it has to create by understanding the dimensions in the software.
10. Finishes Your Work Faster
Computers have enabled engineers, scientists and manufacturers to do smart work. Your part with finding the technology of the device might take the same time. However, designing the model, presenting it and promoting it- all happens in one software.
Other Uses of 3D Animation in the Field of Science & Technology
If you’re into any field of science, you’ll find yourself surrounded by animation:
- Biology & Medicine: Medical animation is commonly viewed by students, doctors, scientists as well as patients.
- Physics & Chemistry: A lot of educational animation is viewed not only by students but also by people who are curious about their surroundings.
- Architecture: It is an application of science to build structures. Architectural animation is commonly seen by viewers interested in buying or visiting places.
In fact, time will come when every company might need a man who knows how to use 3D animation software. Do you see the scope rising from cartoons now?