36 Days of Type with Adobe Dimension

Render created in Adobe Dimension by Erin Kim.
36 Days of Type with Adobe Dimension
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In 2019, the Adobe Stock 3D team, for the first time ever, participated in 36 Days of Type. This year, we are excited to partner again with the 36 Days of Type team to provide artists with even more content to make the experience truly revolutionary.  In this tips-and-tricks article, Erin Kim, Senior Experience Designer for 3D, takes you through how to use this free collection of 3D letterform assets on Adobe Stock to have an amazing and breathtaking 36 Days of Type experience with Adobe Dimension.

The free collection of 40 letterform assets from Adobe Stock 3D.

When considering your design for these 3D letterforms, it is always important to take into account the shape and aesthetic of the typeface. In Erin’s case, she focused on the clean lines and modern style of this Sans Serif type. By bringing in bright, primary colors, strong geometric patterns, and other 3D assets, Erin was able to develop a powerful pop style and sensibility. For this project, feel free to use Erin’s tips to personalize her technique or create your own original take on these amazing assets.

Before you get started, download the free 3D letterform models from the Adobe Stock 36 Days of 3D Type collection, and if you are new to Adobe Dimension, we recommend that you take the Start Tour that can be found when you open the app.

Tip 1: Leverage your graphic skills

Are you already an amazing graphic designer? If so, those skills can help you shine in 3D. Dimension allows you to easily apply your own graphic works to any 3D model.

  • Step 1: Design your graphic pattern in Adobe Photoshop or Adobe Illustrator (or use a preexisting design).
  • Step 2: With your 3D letterform model already in Dimension, drag and drop the graphic file onto the “Fill” part of the asset (which will appear when you click on the asset folder in the Scene panel of Dimension).
  • Step 3: Select fill in the Scene panel, and click on a button with the swatch called “Select Material.” This will take you to the material section of the Scene panel where you will find your graphic as a layer. Select this, and in the Properties panel change the placement mode from decal to fill so that your graphic wraps around the entire model.
    • This is a great place to play with offset to adjust the placement of your graphic or to increase “repeat” to make your pattern appear smaller.
  • Step 4: Go to environment in the Scene panel and play with the color to set up a dynamic background.

For more information about how materials and graphic layers work, visit these tutorials: Edit the Look of Objects with Materials or Edit the Look of Objects with Graphics.

Place and adjust your graphic work on a 3D asset in Dimension.

Tip 2: Customize your asset

As you become more comfortable with Dimension, you can start to push your work to the next level by adding in additional 3D models.

For these next steps, Erin recommends that you do not rotate your 3D asset before finishing the letter design. This will assure that your letterform is aligned with the scene and that the model’s orientation is optimized for the next steps.

  • Step 1: In the Scene panel, select the letterform asset folder by using the Select tool (shortcut V). Be sure “aligned to scene” is turned off in the tool options.
  • Step 2: Use the scale Z handle (the blue square) so that the type becomes deeper.
  • Step 3: Duplicate the type (use alt + drag with Move Z [the blue arrow] handle). Select the border and decrease the length by using the scale Z handle.
  • Step 4: Duplicate both folders as many times as you want. Do not worry about making them evenly spaced as of yet.
  • Step 5: Now, time to perfect the layout. Be sure that you have all groups of letterforms selected in the Scene panel. Go to the Action pane and select “Alignment and Distribution” (shortcut A). You can now align your assets using the bar handle by:
    • Single clicking to distribute the models evenly.
    • Double clicking to remove the space between the assets.

In this example, Erin eliminated any space between the models so that they are touching.  For more information on the select and transformation tool or alignment and distribution, visit these tutorials: Use the Align and Distribute Action and Arranging Objects.

Customize and duplicate your letterform asset in Dimension.

You can stop here if you would like and play with colors, materials, and more patterns or you can add some additional unique elements. In this example, Erin decided to place some cones along the sides of the letter A.

  • Step 1: Go to the Starter Asset panel and click on the sphere to place it in the scene.
  • Step 2: Make sure your pivot point is placed at the bottom (you can go to Properties panel to change the pivot location). Next, click the pivot handle (the black double dot handles) and start dragging.
    • This action allows your new model to move along the surface of the letterform asset. Place as many cones as you want along the border or face. Use the Alignment and Distribution tool again to evenly space out the cones.
Add additional 3D models to your letterform asset in Dimension.

Tip 3: Personalize your scene

You now have the opportunity to make the scene your own. Continue to combine the first and second tip to bring in additional graphics and additional 3D assets from the Dimension Starter Asset panel or from Adobe Stock 3D.

In addition, don’t hesitate to leverage additional free assets from these amazing Adobe Stock 3D collections to help populate and customize your scene.

You can preview your design while you work by using the render preview (shortcut: \ ). Once you feel that your 3D work is final, just render the scene by going to the Render tab. To learn more about export options, visit the Render & Exporting Images tutorial.

If you would like to try 36 Days of Type in AR, please visit the tips and tricks article, 36 Days of Type with Adobe Aero.

To join the festivities, simply share your letterform renders on social media using the hashtag #36daysoftype plus #36days_[LETTER/NUMBER]. For example, on the first day, the hashtag is #36days_A. Also, learn more about how to join our contest for a chance to win a one-year subscription to Creative Cloud and be sure to tag #adobedimension so we can see what you have made!

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