Start designing is within everyone’s reach with software called tinkercad, which allows you to easily discover the logic of 3D design.


3D design is defined by adding and removing material. For example, if I want to design a round pearl, I start by adding the material for a sphere, then I remove material with a cylinder-shaped in the middle of the sphere. To finalize the creation of my pearl, I group the elements together so that they are one and the same piece.

The design requires new mental learning before fully mastering the principle. Among other things, the notion of material suppression is complex to consider when our brain is not used to doing this task. Indeed, it is more obvious to project the result when we add material, because our brain knows the action to add but not the action to remove. In our imagination, the withdrawal of material is more uncertain, however, it is necessary to work with exactitude to obtain a convincing result.


As its name suggests 3D design has three dimensions. In front of a 3D part, these dimensions are commonly called width, length and height. When carrying out the design, the part is placed in a plane, the width, the length and the height are defined according to 3 axes: X, Y and Z. Z will always be the axis of the height but X and Y are rather interchangeable.

The axes will have two main roles. The first will be to locate the part relative to the plane, which can allow to place the elements relative to each other before grouping them in the same part. The second will be to give the part these dimensions. For example, if I create a cube and place it at the value 10 on the X axis, then I decide that its side goes up to X = 15, then the side of my cube will be 5.

On tinkercad, the use of dimensions is made easier because you can position a rule that will give a 0 for the three axes. When you click on a part, you can see its position in X, Y and Z and these dimensions, and edit them directly.

Mental manipulation

To make a piece in 3D, you have to think about it and manipulate it mentally in order to know all the elements to take into account. It is an exercise that may seem complex but here are some tips to start simply.

  • Making simple and known objects: for the example used above, I chose a pearl. The pearl is an object that I use very regularly and that presents no difficulty. It is a regular object (a sphere), which, from a design point of view, consists only of two elements. These two elements are also easy to associate since they are centered (on tinkercad, there is a function to align objects with each other).
  • Making objects with the model under the eyes: to start designing more complex objects, you can take an already existing object and reproduce it with the model under the eyes, you will have the possibility to make measurements, to look at the object from all sides and position it as you need it.

Do not hesitate to make drawings of your projects, to make regular backups in order to set up a technique “trial-error”, etc … You will find the technique that suits you best, and even if your achievements are not perfect in the beginning, they will improve as you learn from your previous achievements. Now it’s your turn !