You Always Remember Your First

A New-to-3D User's Impressions of Clara.io

- Kiefer Uuksulainen

First experiences come with a whirlwind of emotions. We feel inundated, exhilarated, and are left with memories that instantly take us back. I recently had a ‘first’ of my own, a hands-on experience of Clara.io. I was overwhelmed at first, rest assured I left the 45-minute session with a successful scene I can proudly call my own:

Voilà, my first Clara.io creation in interactive 3D!



Let me begin by introducing myself, I'm Kiefer Uuksulainen! As the newest member of the Exocortex/Clara.io team, I am exploring the 3D modeling space — with Clara.io — for the first time (unless you count the countless hours of video games I played as a child). Clara.io is the online 3D modeling and rendering software that runs in your browser. From seasoned users migrating from desktop alternatives to brand new users venturing into 3D modeling, Clara.io works for everyone; I represent the latter.



So, what is Clara.io like for a users new to 3D modeling?

Getting started is simple, all you need is a username, email, and password to get started!

In seconds, I was transported to a blank canvas surrounded by menus and sidebars that may as well have been written in ancient Egyptian. If you unfamiliar with 3D modeling software, you will find the interface to be overwhelming, and you’re not alone. The top panel alone contained 39 icons, only 6 of which I could describe accurately. However, by the end of the session I committed 14 icons to memory and explored some of the marvelous tools Clara.io offers.



Hieroglyphics or helpful icons?



My goal was to create a “square, sphere, and a single light source” that way I could explore the interface at a comfortable pace. After 45 minutes of tinkering around with the software, I achieved my goal! Starting super simple gave me something to work towards while exploring the program, rather than aimlessly clicking the screen. This was the first of the takeaways I’d like to share with you:



What Did I Learn?

Start Super Simple, staring at blank canvas is disheartening. Setting a simple task for yourself (such as “square, sphere, and a single light source”) will give you a realistic end-goal to strive for.

Tutorials are Your Friend, and will guide your basic questions (keyword, guide). The videos provide you a push in the right direction, but it is important to suffer problem-solve on your own. Once you set your goal, use tutorials to help deliver it.

Clear Screen = Clear Mind. Clara.io auto-splits your window into four separate screens, each showing a unique angle of the scene. Make it easy on yourself and use a single-view. Perspective-Realistic view is a new user friendly way to visualize real objects.



Challenge Yourself once you have created a scene, then you can explore the features of Clara.io at a controlled pace. I challenged myself to put the sphere inside the cube, which required me to search for and experiment with new features.



Share Your Experience

Creating a 3D scene seems daunting, especially for new Clara.io members. It took a combination of trial-and-error, exploration, and continuing positivity to ultimately be rewarded. Clara.io provided the tools and resources that led me to achieve success, and I’m glad to have shared that success with you. Now it’s your turn to share your first experience with the Clara.io community!



We’ll share your best tips and quips on a future post, get in touch via Facebook or Email!

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