In the past two or three years, Poser by MetaCreations has become a common tool in the arsenal of those designers who choose to use computers. We have found that it is also very beneficial to those who prefer more traditional methods.
The basic idea behind Poser is that the user is presented with a 3D human body model that can be moved into most any pose. ( Be careful, the form is not limited to realistic body movements) All by itself teh program has little value to the typical designer. However, a rendered picture of Poser figures, nude or clothed in basic costume styles, can then be exported into a favorite paint program. The 3D model itself can be imported into a computer scenic model, saving hours of time in creating life-like figures. Poser exports to several formats including DXF, 3DS, and 3DMF. The drama masks on our home page were created in Poser then exported to RayDream Designer where they were outfitted with head-mounted displays!
For those that prefer to render by hand, poser drawings can be printed in outline or wireframe. Put your favorite paper into a printer and print any pose you desire with great anatomical accuracy. You can then paint over the initial drawing and hide any trace of the computer asssitance.
The interface is unique. Remodeled after the interface first made popular in BRYCE, most functionshave high-tech looking, virtual controllers, buttons, joysticks, pop-up, slide-down and slide-over consoles. Some of our gang like these controls and others find them a distraction, lacking in sensitivity. Poser does offer alternative controls for many functions and it is often easier and more presise to use the sliding scale controls instead of the more obvious on screen joysticks. Later versions of the program also allow the user the easily zoom in an head, hands, etc and choose from pre-posed hand gestures and facial expressions.
DesignWorkshop sells for around $250. Educational users
can find it discounted at education resellers such as journyed.com
You can also save some money by buying ina a bundel with other MetaCreations
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