3D Modeling Sculpture

ART 3101

Art & Technology
Department of Art
The Ohio State University

Course Information

Instructor:  TradeMark Gunderson (senior lecturer)
Days and Time: Tue/Thu 3:55pm – 6:40pm
Mode of Course Delivery: Distance Learning
Office Hours: Tue/Thu 2pm – 3pm (in Zoom; subject to change)
…or by appointment

*1 Semester sequence; 2- 3 hr. labs per week; 3 credit hrs;
Repeatable to a max of 6 cr hrs.

Course Description

Students in this course learn and practice 3D modeling as a tool for visualization and critical making. 3D printing, laser cutting, CNC milling, and other rapid prototyping may be used.  3D modeling is the main focus of this course to sketch, invent and produce both virtual 3D renders and physical projects.  Study of concepts, aesthetics, procedures, and practice of sculpting on the computer with 3D modeling tools for the generation of form, environment, and character as related to your conceptual inspirations.

Digital Image Manipulation (ART 2500) is a prerequisite.
This course is a prerequisite to 3D Animation (ART 4401).


To capture what is in our imagination and make it real in the world
Produce conceptually interesting and formally compelling artwork
Understand the principles of 3D computer modeling and sculpture
Have fun and accept learning and creativity as your primary asset on his competitive planet
Relate traditional sculpture principles of form, material, and site and utilize 3D modeling to virtually give rise to installation or sculpture
Develop original ideas and concepts in the spirit of a research one university
Apply methods of rapid prototyping output from your 3D models utilizing automated processes such as laser cutting, rapid prototyping and or CNC.
Use this knowledge to advance your 3D Animation and physical computing and game art studies

Learning Outcomes

Conceptualize, research and design a project and work plan
Demonstrate the ability to work with numerous 3D software packages
Practice an understanding of output methods and file formats for various approaches and goals
Critically analyze and discuss approaches to 3D modeling and artists working to advance the field
Develop a creative voice in using 3D software in an expressive way
Create original artworks and display at the end of the semester Art & Technology Exhibition
Blog and write about yours and others work
Learn to develop low poly models for animation and gaming
learn to speak about and present your work publicly
Learn how to document your project and produce  a 1-minute video documenting the process

Course Format

This course is a distance learning course.  Our scheduled class sessions will be comprised of activities including:

  • Online lectures
  • Zoom / video conference discussions
  • Group critiques
  • Participatory activities and exercises
  • Assignment-related discussions and worktime
  • Practice of technology and techniques
  • and more.

There will be no in-person class sessions.  There may be some in-person activities at flexible times, in the form of 3D printing or other fabrication, and/or 2D printing, pending the availability of our Hopkins Hall-based 3D labs, print labs, and other facilities.  More when their availability is finalized.

Carmen will be our main point of communication.  In it you will find the course’s schedule of modules, assignments, and deadlines.  Assignment submissions will be made through Carmen AND posted to your artist website (see below) unless otherwise noted.


This course will focus on conceptualization and research within the arts, sciences, and technology as it inspires the realization of original 3D modeled environments, installations, objects, sculptures, and characters in the completion of your projects.

All projects will start with research and then pencil sketches will serve as guides for translating designs into 3D models and all will be used for visualization, reification and further research for final output. The focus will be on appropriate techniques for using and thinking about 3D software in preparation for constructing objects and for animation studies and this course explores the output of your 3D models and physicalizing your virtual forms.

Various file formats will permit access to the CNC mill and other rapid prototyping systems including the laser cutter in the Arts and Design Research Laboratory. Class content will include software demos, discussions of artists working in the field, development of concept, aesthetics, and the techniques and processes used in creating virtual 3D installation and physical sculptural objects.

Instruction will include class lectures, demos, art-science videos as well as in and out of class reading assignments.

We will be using Cinema 4D for 3D modeling and Adobe Illustrator for creating splines as well as Adobe Photoshop for compositing when necessary. We will also use additional software where necessary and available such as Meshmixer.

The primary goal of this course will be for you to understand the concepts and practice of utilizing 3D software as a tool of ideation, workflow production and for testing, visualizing and making conceptually driven works of art and invention.

A secondary goal will be to learn techniques of rapid prototyping of your 3D forms and to learn about artists who are creating and pushing the boundaries of how to utilize 3D software in a fine arts context.

Final 3D designs may be printed out on inkjet printers and at least one of your 3D models will be output utilizing the Arts and Design labs.

For all work completed students will be documenting and uploading to their custom blog and we will be critiquing all from your blog.


We will briefly use the 3D Additivist Cookbook (free online) for selected readings and inspiration.  However, most of our techniques and technology will be learned through a variety of video tutorials by your instructor and others.

Attendance / Requirements

Because this is an online course, your attendance is based on your participation in asynchronous (unscheduled) activities as well as direct synchronous (scheduled) sessions listed on the syllabus course schedule and/or in Carmen announcements or other communication. The following is a summary of everyone’s expected participation:


Asynchronous activities are unscheduled, and can be accomplished at a time you choose.  At least twice per week you are expected participate in course activities by logging in to the course via Carmen and Buckeye Box. (During most weeks you will probably log in many times.) Carmen discussions are mandatory. Readings, viewing of artist interviews, videos and films online, quizzes, writing assignments, and completion of projects are asynchronous, but please note due dates. Attendance, productive class activity, and meeting in-progress deadlines are factors in the assessment of your assignments. Tardiness, missing class, lack of participation and poor preparation can, therefore, impact your project/course grades in a detrimental manner.


Synchronous activities are scheduled, such as live Zoom sessions or office hours. Live sessions are highly recommended and help us all connect and function as a class. If you cannot make the lectures, they will be recorded and transcribed via Zoom. Office hours are optional.

The Department of Art recognizes that students may on occasion miss class due to extenuating circumstances such as illness, emergency or other important matters. When this occurs, it is your responsibility to request updates and notes from a peer and to review any course material on Carmen that is associated with the class you missed. Please communicate attendance concerns judiciously with your instructor when appropriate.

The Department of Art acknowledges that illness, family obligations, and other conflicts with your classes do occur from time to time and up to three absences are allowed for any reason during the semester without penalty. All absences from class will be counted, however, and in the instance that you miss three class meetings, you are required to meet with your instructor to discuss strategies for avoiding additional absences. Missing class more than 20% of the semester (six class meetings for a course that meets twice a week or three class meetings for courses that meet once per week) may result in an E grade for the course.


There are 100 (one hundred) possible points this term, primarily earned for projects details in Carmen and on the Projects page. You will be assessed on assignment objectives (proficiencies and initiative), class activities, meeting all deadlines (in-progress and final), creativity, exploration and research initiative/vigor, participation in reviews and discussions, and adaptive learning.

Late assignments

Students who miss deadlines due to valid, extenuating circumstances may submit the required work at a date agreed upon with the instructor. Students should contact the instructor to arrange a discussion within one week of the missed classes and/or work.

Grading Scale

A (93–100) Work, initiative, and participation of exceptional quality
A-(90–92.9) Work, initiative and participation of very high quality
B+ (87–89.9) Work, initiative and participation of high quality which reflects higher than average abilities
B (83–86.9) Very good work, initiative and participation that satisfies the goals of the course
B-(80–82.9) Slightly above average work, initiative and participation that satisfies the goals of the course
C+ (77–79.9) Average work, initiative and participation which reflects an understanding of course material
C (73–76.9) Adequate work; student has a less than average level of initiative and participation
C-(70–72.9) Passing but below good academic standing; student has a less than average level of work, initiative and participation
D+ (67–69.9) Below average work, initiative and participation
D (60–66.9) Well below average work, initiative and participation
E (59.9–0) Failure; no credit. Unsuccessful completion of work. Limited or no participation. Objectives of the assignment are not met or are met in a significantly limited way.

Course Materials and Tools

Sketching will begin many of our assignments and projects.  Sketches may be done digitally or on paper (unlined).  If you will use paper but do not already have a sketchbook, this would be a great time to get one.  Choose one that’s large enough (probably 8 1/2″ x 11″ minimum) with acid-free “archival” paper.  Get some sketching pencils too (in a variety of hardnesses), an eraser, and smudge sticks.  Color is welcome too:  consider colored markers, crayons, colored pencils, and more.

Additional materials will be explored or needed on a per project basis as you explore your ideas. Some helpful items will be basic art supplies:  scissors, glue, masking or drafting tape, and so on.  Be creative and responsible (recycle etc.). We will discuss and demonstrate many of these materials in class and by request.

Other useful and necessary supplies will be custom to your projects and your concepts.  Many students find needed items at craft stores (such as Michael’s, Joann Fabrics, Hobby Lobby, etc.), hardware stores (Ace, Lowes, Menards, Home Depot, etc.), home supply stores (Staples, Walmart, etc.), and other local and online (Amazon, etc.) sources. Plan ahead when ordering online, especially since the pandemic has disrupted many supply chains and delayed delivery times. All project deadlines must be met, and late delivery of materials or last-minute shopping is not valid as an excuse for late work.

Technology Requirements

Technology access and ability is crucial to this software-heavy distance learning course.

Much of our 3D creation will use Cinema 4D software (available free for students).  Additionally an artist website, web page, or blog is required.  It must be fully publicly viewable without logins or signups.  You will use it to post assignment artwork and occasional blog / process posts.

General technology skills needed for this course

Required software/technologies for this course

  • Cinema 4D software (available free for students)
  • CarmenZoom virtrual meetings (free)
  • Computer: current Mac (OS X) or PC (Windows) with internet connection that can support CarmenZoom calls
  • Webcam: built-in or external webcam, fully installed and tested
  • Microphone: built-in laptop/tablet mic, external webcam’s built-in mic, or external stand-alone microphone
  • Other: a mobile device (smartphone or tablet) or landline to use for BuckeyePass authentication (see below)

Carmen access

 You will need to use BuckeyePass multi-factor authentication to access your courses in Carmen. To ensure that you are able to connect to Carmen at all times, it is recommended that you take the following steps:

  • Register multiple devices in case something happens to your primary device. Visit the BuckeyePass – Adding a Device help article for step-by-step
  • Request passcodes to keep as a backup authentication option. When you see the Duo login screen on your computer, click Enter a Passcode and then click the Text me new codes button that appears. This will text you ten passcodes good for 365 days that can each be used once.
  • Download the Duo Mobile application to all of your registered devices for the ability to generate one-time codes in the event that you lose cell, data, or Wi-Fi

For help with your password, university email, Carmen, or any other technology issues, questions, or requests, contact the Ohio State IT Service Desk. Standard support hours are available at, and support for urgent issues is available 24/7.

Accessibility of course technologies

This online course requires use of Carmen (Ohio State’s learning management system) and other online communication and multimedia tools. If you need additional services to use these technologies, please request accommodations with your instructor.


Feedback and Response Time

Project grading and feedback can generally be expected within 2 weeks.

You can expect a reply to emails within 24-36 hours Monday–Friday, but there is no guaranteed response between 5pm and 8am.


Carmen ( is used for general communication through announcements. Carmen is where assignment information, sharing ideas and work, collaborative engagement and assignment development, grades and feedback, readings, and general course content components are posted.


Email through Carmen’s inbox function or through your BuckeyeMail will be the only source of private and secure digital conversations I will use with you. Secure Information on general concerns, assignments, class inquiries, or other similar topics should be addressed using these sources.

All university correspondence is sent to your BuckeyeMail email address, and all email sent to faculty and staff should be sent from your BuckeyeMail email address.

Ohio State will never ask for your Ohio State username or password. Do not reply to any email asking for your Ohio State username, password, or other personal information. Report such messagesto

End of Semester Show / Final Exhibition

There is an end of the semester exhibition at the Hopkins Hall Gallery and/or the hallway for all students in Art and Tech classes.  Due to the Distance Learning mode of this class and uncertainty about the circumstances of the next show, details of your expected obligation will be announced later.

See the Art & Tech Exhibitions page for more details.

College Policies

Academic Misconduct

It is the responsibility of the Committee on Academic Misconduct to investigate or establish procedures for the investigation of all reported cases of student academic misconduct. The term “academic misconduct” includes all forms of student academic misconduct wherever committed; illustrated by, but not limited to, cases of plagiarism and dishonest practices in connection with examinations and artwork created in studio courses. Instructors shall report all instances of alleged academic misconduct to the committee (Faculty Rule 3335-5-487). For additional information, see the Code of Student Conduct at conduct-process/

The Department of Art adheres to all aspects of this Code of Conduct especially in matters relating to the following: Academic Misconduct, Endangering Health or Safety, Sexual Misconduct, Destruction of Property, and Theft/Unauthorized Use of Property.

If I suspect that a student has committed academic misconduct in this course, I am obligated by university rules to report my suspicions to the Committee on Academic Misconduct. If COAM determines that you have violated the university’s Code of Student Conduct (i.e., committed academic misconduct), the sanctions for the misconduct could include a failing grade in this course and suspension or dismissal from the university.

If you have any questions about the above policy or what constitutes academic misconduct in this course, please contact me.

Disability Services

The University strives to make all learning experiences as accessible as possible. If you anticipate or experience academic barriers based on your disability (including mental health, chronic or temporary medical conditions), please let me know immediately so that we can privately discuss options. To establish reasonable accommodations, I may request that you register with Student Life Disability Services. After registration, make arrangements with me as soon as possible to discuss your accommodations so that they may be implemented in a timely fashion.

SLDS contact information:
098 Baker Hall
113 W. 12th Avenue

Accessibility of course technology

This online course requires use of CarmenCanvas (Ohio State’s learning management system) and other online communication and multimedia tools. If you need additional services to use these technologies, please request accommodations with your instructor.

Grade Forgiveness

The Grade Forgiveness Rule allows undergraduate students to petition to repeat up to three courses. The grade in the repeated course will permanently replace the original grade for the course in the calculation of the student’s cumulative GPA.

Only a first repeat can be used this way; all other repeats of the same course will be included under the general course repeatability rule.

The original grade will remain on the student’s transcript and some graduate/professional school admission processes will re-calculate the student’s GPA to include the original grade. See: for more information.


The Ohio State University affirms the importance and value of diversity in the student body. Our programs and curricula reflect our multicultural society and global economy and seek to provide opportunities for students to learn more about persons who are different from them. We are committed to maintaining a community that recognizes and values the inherent worth and dignity of every person; fosters sensitivity, understanding, and mutual respect among each member of our community; and encourages each individual to strive to reach his or her their own potential.

Discrimination against any individual based upon protected status, which is defined as age, color, disability, gender identity or expression, national origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, or veteran status, is prohibited.

Title IX makes it clear that violence and harassment based on sex and gender are Civil Rights offenses subject to the same kinds of accountability and the same kinds of support applied to offenses against other protected categories (e.g., race). If you or someone you know has been sexually harassed or assaulted, you may find the appropriate resources at or by contacting the Ohio State Title IX Coordinator, Kellie Brennan, at

Mental Health Services

As a student you may experience a range of issues that can cause barriers to learning, such as strained relationships, increased anxiety, alcohol/drug problems, feeling down, difficulty concentrating and/or lack of motivation. These mental health concerns or stressful events may lead to diminished academic performance or reduce a student’s ability to participate in daily activities. The Ohio State University offers services to assist you with addressing these and other concerns you may be experiencing. If you or someone you know are suffering from any of the aforementioned conditions, you can learn more about the broad range of confidential mental health services available on campus via the Office of Student Life’s Counseling and Consultation Service (CCS) by visiting or calling 614-292-5766. CCS is located on the 4th Floor of the Younkin Success Center and 10th Floor of Lincoln Tower. You can reach an on call counselor when CCS is closed at 614-292-5766 and 24 hour emergency help is also available through the 24/7 National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800- 273-TALK or at

Safe University Escort Service Phone: 614-292-3322

Trigger Language Warning

Some content of this course may involve media that may be triggering to some students due to descriptions of and/or scenes depicting acts of violence, acts of war, or sexual violence and its aftermath. If needed, please take care of yourself while watching/reading this material (leaving classroom to take a water/bathroom break, debriefing with a friend, contacting a Sexual Violence Support Coordinator at 614-292-1111, or Counseling and Consultation Services at 614-292-5766, and contacting the instructor if needed). Expectations are that we all will be respectful of our classmates while consuming this media and that we will create a safe space for each other. Failure to show respect to each other may result in dismissal from the class.

General Class and Studio Policies

Professional courtesy and sensitivity are especially important with respect to individuals andtopics dealing with differences of race, culture, religion, politics, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, and nationalities. Class rosters are provided to the instructor and may include the student’s legal name unless changed via the University Name Change policy. I will gladly honor your request to address you by another name or gender pronoun. Please advise me of this early in the semester so that I may make appropriate changes to my records.

Required and elective art courses contain content that can include some language, imagery, or dialogue that may be challenging or offend some students. While no student is required to participate in a presentation or discussion of art or design that offends them, it is important to remain open-minded and participate in a cooperative and respectful manner. Art can often challenge our ideas and experiences, and can lead us into some lively discussion, concepts and imagery. Differences (in ideas, perspectives, experiences, etc.) can be positive, productive and educational, challenging and provocative, so please, engage in the exchange of ideas respectfully. Please see me with your concerns as soon as possible.

Please contact me in advance (during the first week of class or as soon as circumstances develop during the term) if you have circumstances that may affect your performance and ability to fulfill your responsibilities in this course.

Final Tip:  Back up your work

Inevitably, computers crash. Sometimes they get stolen. There are measures that you can take to prevent significant loss of data. These include cloud back-ups, external devices, or disc/drive storage.  You will NEVER regret having a backup.