Lions, Tigers, and Bears —
Oh My!

Scene created in Adobe Dimension CC by Jeremih Black.
Lions, Tigers, and Bears —
Oh My!
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As a designer working in Adobe Dimension CC, the possibilities are endless. Whether creating product packaging like John Godfrey or riveting artwork like Erin Kim, the assets, tools, and features available open up a whole new world of creativity. One of the most exciting benefits of 3D can be leveraging some of the stylized or low-poly assets available on Adobe Stock to liven up a scene. Although high-fidelity assets capture that real-world look and feel, there are benefits to incorporating these quirky elements into a design.

A 3D model’s appearance is defined by a variety of factors, starting with how it is built. It is important to note that all 3D models on Adobe Stock are comprised of mostly polygons, but not all of them are built the same. Artists can approach the construction of polygons and geometry in a variety of ways to give each model a different look and feel. For example, realistic models often require a higher number of polygons to better display detailed or complex features such as fur, tree bark, clouds, and more. These types of models are categorized as high poly. To put it simply, the more polygons that are at play, the more realistic the model may appear. Contrarily, 3D models that have a low number of polygons are usually called low poly.

Render from Dimension showing a set of popsicles with different material applications (such as cardboard paper, grass, and red anodized metal).

Aesthetically speaking, low-poly models are characterized by their geometric shape — sharp edges, blocky corners, angular features. Stylized models, in a similar vein, can often have an artificial sheen and are characterized by their otherworldly appearance. These types of assets can add a distinctiveness to an artist’s composition that is truly unique to working with 3D. By blending together photorealistic elements with a sprinkle of artificiality, a designer can create artwork that interprets reality in fresh and unexpected ways.

Additionally, low-poly models typically use a simple, mostly flat, shaded material. In some cases, the way that the material can be applied is less about photorealism and more about emphasizing the bold, abstract features. A simple and striking material application allows the stylistic intent of the model’s geometry to shine through without distracting the viewer from the overall composition. This methodology can transform the model into a completely different and unusual design element each time it is used. For this reason, low-poly and stylized art can be a fun and unconventional way to make a 3D render stand out from the crowd.

Render from Dimension showing a lioness with a gold material and a lion with an aluminum material.

With the emergence of new 3D design software like Dimension and trends like Creative Reality, this type of designer-friendly content can help differentiate a 3D render from visual techniques often employed in traditional photography. As an artist, there is a visual force that comes from incorporating a set of low-poly popsicles into a photorealistic advertisement about food or developing a product packaging scene for a rebranding campaign that includes unusual animals and trees. By taking these low-poly and stylized elements into Dimension and blending in unconventional materials, colors, and backgrounds, a designer can create a breathtaking scene that captures the best of both worlds — the unreal and the real, all in one.

For more inspiration, please visit the Adobe Stock 3D gallery of stylized assets and the Dimension Behance gallery.

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