Need your advice

Hello, the more I spend time learning Rhino, feel the less I know. I’ve been learning about ID and product design for some time since my office was shut down because of the pandemic. I’m holding a bachelor in business administration and have no academic (university) background when it comes to ID. I’ve been learning from several available online sources as much as I’ve been able to. I’ve tried a bunch of software like ZBrush, Fusion360, 3DCoat, Mol and I haven’t found any of them as interesting as Rhino. not to give headache. Please advice me what I need to do and where I’m standing right now when it comes to Rhino. Is there any opportunity for me to show-off my skills or there is nothing? I’m posting some of my previous works with Rhino. @theoutside theoutside Really appreciate your comment.


HairDryer.3dm (3.7 MB)
Rhino Format.3dm (6.9 MB)
Model.3dm (8.1 MB)
Model.3dm (10.1 MB)
Recovered model - RhinoAutosave.3dm (2.1 MB)
HairDryer.3dm (3.7 MB)
Untitled.3dm (6.9 MB)

Pen Draft.3dm (1.1 MB)

Model.3dm (15.2 MB)
Model.3dm (3.4 MB)
Model.3dm (3.9 MB)
Wrench model - RhinoAutosave.3dm (668.4 KB)

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you are doing great work-

Learning rhino is in some respect, simply academic. You learn how the tools work.

Then the real fun begins as you apply your creativity in the ways you use them.

Learning design is slightly different since it’s subjective. What is beautiful to you may not be to others and vice versa. There are many brilliant self taught designers that have little to no “formal” design training so don’t get hung up on that.

You seem to have a good eye for what is attractive and appear to have the passion for the work you do. This is the thing that cannot be taught and you either “have it” or you do not.

In your case, I’d say you have it.

If you were looking for more formal training, there is a fantastic school in California called Gnomon which does classes online that you could take from your location. They are turning out very talented folks who are getting work very consistently. It’s not cheap, but no design school is. The key difference there, is most if not all the gnomon grads are getting work once they finish their studies.

On a personal note, doing art for a living is a very hard job…it’s filled with obstacles, differences of opinion, rejection and compromise.

It also has genuine moments of pure joy, which is why I continue to choose to do it myself.

I also get to meet and work with amazing people l like yourself who make incredible things.

The best advice I can give you is, if you want to be an artist, be an artist… just be ready for all of the magic and chaos that comes with that choice.

very best regards


A million thanks Kyle for your kind words and opening my eyes. This is when Google search really failed me and a simple message here saved me so much time and effort. I’ve gone through the school website and there are a bunch of fantastic online courses. You’re right, I’m stuck where I am right now wondering what comes next. I’ll keep searching and learning from people like you. btw, I’m thinking of adding your name to the whitelist of my awesome influencers. hope you don’t mind!

A very happy new year!

Wishing you all the best,

I’d be honored.

Can’t wait to see what you create in this coming new year!

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My advice for 2022 is buy a Rhino 7 license.


this is true, but true artists do prefer the freedom to express themselves rather than financial security.
How long does the joy of a single consumption (if there is something like a consumption unit) lasts compared to the moment where the damn thing is finally exactly like you wanted it and learned a ton of things getting there?

you are someone curious, that’s the most important thing.
in my case it’s still like that. bought a book about computional geometry lately, which is the depth of rhino I actually TRY to understand. I feel exactly like you after using rhino for over 15 years now and see it in a completely different way… again! I think there’s always something more amazing to discover.

it depends which direction you’re aiming…if you could design whatever you wanted, would it be hair dryers and radios?


Sounds really interesting , but maybe once I’m ready to lock my seat in a design company. Hope it’s soon.

Hello Ben, your comment is so valuable for someone like me.

  1. I’m still shifting from one side to another in the gray zone when it comes art. I even don’t know if I’m an artist. What I know is that I love spending time for it.
  2. thanks for your kind words. I wish to learn more.
  3. I love doing product design, especially since the last year I’ve been spending couple of hours a day to learn from almost any available source. I had no coach or reference to start with, but then I started knowing talented and experienced people on the web to learn from. I’m still exploring and looking for the right spot.
    btw, your comment means a lot. Appreciate it!

IMO there is a difference between being an “artist” and being a “designer”, and it merits some discussion.

There is some common ground to both, as for example it will be difficult to have a career doing design without having some of what are commonly considered “artistic” skills such as drawing and sketching as well as a sense of aesthetics and composition.

However, the most important difference is that as a designer, you are (generally) working for a client, whereas as an artist you are (generally) not. Also, as a designer, you are (generally) going to be designing objects that will be manufactured by someone else other than yourself and (generally) destined to be sold to the public in some quantity. There will be aesthetic, practical, budgetary, legal and other constraints on what you design, and of course the client will weigh heavily on choices made in those areas.

As an artist, you are (generally) working for yourself, answerable to nobody, producing whatever it is that motivates you to create with whatever tools and media you choose and in whatever time frame you desire. Certainly, if you are going to make a living doing “art”, you will need to be able to sell your work, which will probably make some amount of concessions and limitations necessary, but you are still far freer (and for the most part poorer) than someone who is designing products for clients.

There are of course designers who have craft skills and can thus produce their own limited-series or one-off products from A to Z, as well as a few who create their own products to be manufactured by others. There are also artists who work on commission or who have other people produce their ideas. So there is no hard-and-fast rule here, anything is possible. However (generally) the impetus for a design is most often outward-looking (client+market driven), whereas the impetus for an artwork is most often inward looking (coming from within yourself).

All that being said, there is also no necessity to decide to do only one or the or other, you can do both and much, much more. :smiley:


these times are not very stable. many things have changed, many will change. there’s no such thing like security or stuff you can rely on, except your capability of adaption. (not talking about people though)
before COVID i made 15’000.-/month all by myself, and now I’m poor as fuck and struggle to pay my apartment and health insurance. Got working offers from big and well known enterprises in the meantime, but refused. I’m still happy to do what I do, strongly adapted the concept of my enterprise and slowly very slowly this starts work pretty ok. You seem to know what I’m talking about.

I guess that so many things are changing proofs there’s only adaption you can rely on and see this as an opportunity to change, get richer with experience and finally, you learn the most by having real everyday challenges. I try to say that if you accept a job where more is asked than what you already can do, you’ll grow quicker. don’t try to “prepare” anything if you don’t know where it goes. what do you want to prepare? just go. you can’t hold on the old things anyway.

do a website, post images on it. (which makes already a drawing service) if you get a drawing you like very very much, why not make a sculpture and learn how to get it produced? why not make jewelry and make publicity on social media? why not produce a gadget yourself, let it produce in countries that are specialised in good price-quality balances and then contact your local stores and further to sell them for you?

the question if you are an artist is silly. with every drawing you made, you had to take decisions. how should these lines blind out? I guess you spent some time looking at it when it was finshed. maybe you asked yourself what you would do different or “better” from your new experience and point of view next time. this is called a design process and artists and designers do things like these. you did some design work here and got probs for it in a forum where rhino legends hang around (like kyle). so may I ask you, sir: are you an artist?

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there are a loooot of “true artists” here. Many of us prefer to express ourselves AND get paid.

wasn’t meant at all to be a “artist OR paid” condition. rather tried to say that it can happen that one goes through rough times, like you said.

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enjoyed reading your comment, thanks! they both have a common ground like you said. I’m looking for the trusted sources to learn from and I think experienced people like you can guide the best. Would be very happy to learn more.

glad to know more about what’s happening! I’m inspired, I mean it. a simple tip can change my path. My view (experience) might be too narrow compare with the legends helping me here but I’m excited to know more, why not?! I learned a lot from Kyle, I’m honest. There are a Lot of free videos on YouTube, whether they are recorded for the sake of Rhino as business or not. I watched the videos over and over to learn. Every single hour of the videos are made of days or even years of experience. Not to name, but other 3d software forums are officially useless(garbage) and they smell money more than anything else. I’m glad I’m a small part of this community! btw, what I know is that I love spending my time learning ID and product design. appreciate your honesty!

What area of the world do you live in? There are several amazing art schools in asia and europe if you wanted to jump in and formalize your learning. for us based schools, I’d look at gnomon, art center in california, CCS in detroit and Clevland institute of art in and university of cincinnati department of art architecture and planning,. (daap).

A talented modeler can get freelance gigs and build a business that way, but if you want to do design full time for a company, you’ll need to have a mind blowing portfolio or a degree (and a great portfolio).

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I find this insight very useful to make career decisions:

I hope it can help others too.

Edit: I’d take the ‘comes easily’ lightly. If I really think about it, our work is rarely easy, it’s a shit ton of effort, learning and paying attention to every detail, but yeah, it’s not like working in a mine, or a law firm.



I live and work in Malaysia and ID isn’t given much credit since China is laying all it’s eggs on copying and pasting everything in the region but I really don’t think about it. In that case being a freelancer seems more flexible and comes with less stress, I feel. but I need to learn about the challenges. Live once and I rather know as much as I can from what others have done first. is that right?. btw, I should go for online courses for the moment I guess. Thanks for sharing Kyle! appreciate it.

Just saw that Art center in California has a large (non degree) online class offering- that would be a great place to start. ArtCenter Online - ArtCenter College of Design

Fwiw, Mattel toys has a design center in Malaysia- (at least they used to)

Remember when everyone around you is copying, there is space and opportunity for a true innovator.

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I’ve already signed up for ArtCenter Online courses and it looks pretty cool. yes, Mattel Toys design center is still open in Malaysia. Will search more about them. A million thanks Kyle. really really helpful. Thanks for the tip.

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very best of luck on your journey-

please keep us updated on how it’s going.

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