The 3D Art Direct Podcast: 3D Digital Art | Artist Interviews | Digital Art Conferences | Sci-fi and Fantasy Genres
We welcome our interview with Larry Nemecek who is an author, editor, archivist and producer and wears these hats much of the time as a renowned Star Trek authority. He has helped provide valuable insights into the production side of the franchise, and this includes him making a great effort at recording many many interviews with the staff behind the scenes as well as the actors and actresses from the Star Trek universe.
In this session of the podcast we are interviewing Larry in particular with his newest publication “Star Trek Stellar Cartography: The Starfleet Reference Library”. 
The Starfleet Stellar Cartography maps/book set (poster map set and guide book) is a team effort captained by Larry with artists Geoffrey Mandel, Ian Fullwood and Ali Ries (Reece) for an officially licensed updated set of stellar cartography maps and guide book published  by 47North and Becker & Mayer. This is out now and you can order the book at Amazon (UK website) here:-
In this session we learn:-
-How Larry's love of history has helped him map the Star Trek galaxy.
-What Larry believes will impact the reader the most when they open up the map set and guide. 
-How some awkward canon elements were properly fitted in, including squeezing in the Delphic Expanse.
-About the maps from different races of Star Trek.
-What did each of the artists Larr worked with bring to the table for this project. 
-How the Dominion War (Deep Space Nine) was placed onto the maps in a way that makes sense.
Direct download: Session22.mp3
Category:Podcast -- posted at: 5:20pm EST

3DAD 021 : The Complete Guide to DAZ Studio 4 - Book Review with the Author Paolo Ciccone

In this session we interview  Paolo Ciccone with his new book "The Complete Guide to DAZ Studio 4".

You can find out more about the book here:-

And the book is also available on Amazon here:-

Suprisingly, despite the wide reach and community of the DAZ Studio software (it's a free application), there are not many publications to choose from when it comes to learning the software. Of course, there are the DAZ 3D forums where you can get answers to specific queries, but a complete map and guide to using the sofware in the form of a book will be greatly useful.

The book is aimed at those starting out with DAZ Studio up to the level of mostly intermediate users, but more advanced level users will find gems in here also.

The author, Paolo Ciccone is a software engineer and photographer who now lives in Santa Cruz, California. 

He is an experienced software developer with 20 years of experience. His field of expertise is developing applications  for both Mac OS and Windows  that assist computer graphics artists achieve photorealistic results. He founded Prêt-à-3D ( in 2010 , a company dedicated to bringing high-end computer graphics tools to the masses. 

His Reality software for Poser and DAZ Studio has been used for video game illustration and for the preproduction of Hollywood large budget movies such as Jurassic Park IV and Hunger Games: Catching Fire. 

In this session we ask Paolo about:-

- His first contact with DAZ Studio the strengths he noted from it during his early use of the software.

- Whether he immediately saw a gap in the market for the book? Or did it take some time for you to identify some needs of the DAZ Studio community that could be fulfilled?

- We talk about the by-line of the book “Community Experience Distilled”. 

- The book cover artwork.

- Paolo is an educator and writer in the 3D Arts world, but this Was Paolo's first book project. What were some of his early barriers he had to overcome in starting up and getting a writing regime going?

- Who the the book is aimed for?

- The mind-set barrier of being able to pose figures naturally when first starting and how this book overcomes that barrier.

- How the book covers creating new characters with morphs - the ability to start adapting existing characters to create new ones.

- The practical content of the book - customising DAZ studio, finding and installing new content and navigating the studio environment.

- The aspects of lighting covered in two major chapters : lighting a scene and achieving photo realism with the Reality Plugin.

- How the new Dawn figure is covered in the book- what readers can learn about using this figure.

- Paolo's favourite topic or chapter.

Direct download: Session21.mp3
Category:Podcast -- posted at: 4:56pm EST

Welcome to session 20 and I hope you are having creative success at the moment, whichever 3D application you are using.  We’d love to see your artwork, especially if its in the sci-fi or fantasy genres, which you can share on the page.

Dawn is the newest in a line of significant figures developed by Chris Creek, who created the original Poser figures, Dork and Posette, and the original Michael and Victoria figures.

Dawn is for both Poser and DAZ Studio users in mind, with two versions available, one with native Poser files compatible with Poser 9 and above, and another with native DAZ Studio files compatible with DAZ Studio 4.5 and above.

I've really pleased to interview not only Chris Creek, but Eric Merritt , Steve Kondris and Paul Lesard from HiveWire 3D, who are freshening up the market with this new significant figure.

I’m also pleased to announce a new live and on-line conference for the Poser community: Poser Expo 2 : Creative Professionals Live. Chris Creek and his crew from HiveWire 3D will be the keynote speakers at the beginning of the conference, and then we’ll go into nine more webinar sessions of Poser training content on the weekend of the 18th-20th of October, with some of the brightest and creative minds in the community presenting.

At the moment there is a reduced price for the event tickets that will get you into ALL the webinars. Up until around the end of September, you can take advantage of a 23% discount on the ticket price.

Direct download: Session20.mp3
Category:Podcast -- posted at: 6:24pm EST

We're pleased to interview Oshayn Greene, business manager at Planetside Software on the new release of Terragen 3 Professional.

For those of you who don’t know much about Terragen, I can tell you that If you like the idea of applying 3D graphics to create photo-realistic natural environments, then Terragen is definitely for you. Another upside of this software is if you go to and go to the products section, there is a free pre-release edition of Terragen 3.

In this session we tallk with Oshyan on:-

- The build-up for the release of Terragen 3 and som of the early feedback of T3 as features of it became public. 

- How Terragen 3 started. Was it based on the platform of Terragen 2, or is it a completely new product written from the ground up?

- The story of how T3 was utilised for the sc-fi film Oblivion.

- The T3 Global Illumination Surface Details option. 

- Fast and noise free depth of field in T3. 

- The new spherical camera option.

- When T3 becomes available and what will the variants of the software be?

3D Art Live is planning to create a new TERRALIVE webinar based conference for the Terragen community, this time with a focus on the new Terragen 3.

If you would like to sign up to let us know what you would like to see featured or emphasised at the conference, you can have your say at

Paul Bussey

Podcast host and editor of 3D Art Direct magazine

Direct download: Session19.mp3
Category:Podcast -- posted at: 5:37pm EST

In this session, we get behind the scenes of D&D Creations and learn how this powerful partnership of Drea Horvath and Michel Rondberg was created. Many people in the Vue community will have heard of least one of these names, so you can discover more about this partnership in this session, what they did in their early years to get to the level of success they have acheived now.

Even they are suprised how fast they have got involved in commercial and non-commercial productions of bigger studios in a relatively short time. It's been only since the start of the year since they officially launched their services, but during their first few months they has already worked on a cinematic trailer, a historical animation, and building scenes for a big commercial 3D projection mapping project.

If you have considered animation in Vue or are trying to improve or optimise your animation work in Vue, Make a note of this live webinar event in your diaries which will be on the 3rd and 4th of August; the first weekend in August. It's entitled "Animating Nature" and the URL to book a webinar seat is, so we hope to see you there or take advantage of the recording. 

Michel and Drea's services for Vue are found at

Direct download: Session18.mp3
Category:Podcast -- posted at: 6:33pm EST

In this session we learn how a hobby for computer games and graphics led to a notable visual effects business headed by Tobias Richter based in Cologn, Germany called "The Light Works". His company is now used by main industry clients such as Atari, CBS Digital and Lucas Arts as well as indie film producers for quality visual effects.

Discover in this episode:-

- Tobias has an amazing working environment, filled with sci-fi physical models that act as a great reference to creating virtual ones.

- How physical model building is a useful discipline for virtual modeling. 

- How The Light Works company started.

- The secrets of how high quality visual effects are created on a relatively small budget.

- Tobias's main tools and workflow.

- The Light Works involvement in Star Trek Phase II.

- Tobias and Fedcon - a major annual Star Trek convention in Germany.

- Tobias's visit to George Lucas's Skywalker Ranch.

- The more recent projects of "Nobility" and the "5th Passenger"

Check out a reel of completed projects at and look out for stuff in production at their facebook page.

If you've enjoyed this session, let us know some of your feedback at iTunes.

Don't forget to check for our latest live 3D digtal art conferences and webinars over at

I started off asking Tobias about his working environment at the Light Works Studio.

Direct download: Session17.mp3
Category:Podcast -- posted at: 6:51pm EST

3DAD 016 : Poser Pro Custom Clothing Creation with Sergio Martinez from Xurge3D

Sergio Martinez from Xurge3D creates custom outfits for Poser. As a content creator for Poser, Sergio has invested many years in this application, starting out with Poser 4 back in 1999. His specialisation is in fantasy and sci-fi outfits which fits right in with 3D Art Direct’s coverage of the sci-fi and fantasy genres in the 3D Digital Arts world.

Ever wondered how to create Poser accessories and clothing? Sergio will reveal step by step how he creates his custom clothing with his three part live webinar conference on Saturday 8th and 9th June 2013. Go to to register.

In this episode we learn:

- What got Sergio hooked into Poser clothing content creation. 

- What were some of the most difficult challenges you had to overcome when bringing his content to market.

- Find out which Poser character continues to attract the most sales for Xurge3D.

- What is “conforming clothing.” for Poser. 

– What’s the difference between “dynamic clothing” and “conforming clothing.”

- What’s been the most satisfying product for Sergio to create and why?

Remember you can sign up to our free 3D Digital Arts magazine at

- Where have some of Sergio's influences come for clothing design.

Direct download: Session16.mp3
Category:Podcast -- posted at: 6:08pm EST

3DAD 015 : Directing the Sci-Fi Series Nobility : Interview with Neil Johnson Pioneering Digital Film Maker

Welcome to session 15 of the 3D Art Direct podcast. In this session we continue to follow the progress of the sci-fi series project CAS Nobility which is actively pitching for crowd sourced funding on the website. Go to and just search for nobility and take a look at the videos describing the project, which feature E.J. Del La Pena, the creator of the Nobility project and also the director Neil Johnson. They are offering all kinds of goodies to those who donate to the project. I’d like to welcome E.J. and Neil to this session.

E.J. De la Pena is an Actor/Film Maker with more than 20-years experience in the entertainment industry. He’s been a child actor who has earned dozens of credits – including projects like Jingle All The Way and Boy Meets World. He is now the president and founder of the film production company Cowboy Errant!

Neil Brook Johnson (July 26, 1967) is a British film and music video producer, director, and editor best known for his long association with heavy metal band Manowar, and for directing and writing Science Fiction Films. Neil is regarded as a pioneer in digital film-making. He has to his credit over 20 years experience in the industry including 6 feature films and 500 music videos.

Highlights of Neil’s career:-

- The youngest paid director in Australia

- Demons In My Head (1997) is reputed to be the world's first digital film

- His second film, To Become One (2000) was produced for exactly $2,196 [5] as proof that you do not need money to make a successful film

- In 2008, he made Humanity's End, a film about the last man in the universe being hunted down to extinction by a race of beings known as the Nephilim. In fact, all his films take place in the same universe and all contain Nephilim as characters dominating mankind


- 20 years experience

- 6 feature films

- 500 music videos

- 5000 productions

- Specialising in music/sci-fi/drama

In this podcast we learn:-
- The latest news on the creation of the Nobility series
- What attracted Neil to working on Nobility
- Neil's commitment and work ethic as a director
- The George Lucas connection!
Direct download: Session15.mp3
Category:Podcast -- posted at: 5:33pm EST

Welcome to session 14. This digital arts interview is a little different, since I’m interviewing the husband and wife team that run the GeekAtPlay studio website which is totally focussed on education for 3D digital artists. What delighted me most about Vladmir and Amy Chopin’s efforts for teaching 3D Digital Art applications is the sheer amount of content they provide. Today is May 2nd 2013, and I’m looking at their YouTube channel – GeekAtplay  studio and I can see 7 new videos uploaded one day ago.

Now admittedly, this is probably to do with the fact that Vue 11.5 has been released and Vladmir is showing what’s new for this version, so this is probably a few more than he would normally upload, but during our interview  he mentioned he had created around  1500 training videos.  In fact GeekAtPLay specialise in Vue, so if you want to start digital art with creating 3D environments with a great sense of realism, you could download a trial or free version of Vue from and start looking at Vladmir’s training videos on YouTube.

Now Amy Chopin is equally busy, she’s the author of 3D Art Essentials, which is a great start for 3D digital artist in getting to know the basics on the history, the terms of 3D art. But it covers modelling, posing, texturing, creating scenery, animation and rendering.

Vladmir is originally from Moscow, Russia and now lives with Amy in Utah, in the United States. I started asking Vladmir about his early experiences with film and classic animation whilst in his teens.

Find out more about our free 3D Digital Arts magazine, Podcasts and Digital Arts Conferences at

Direct download: Session14.mp3
Category:Podcast -- posted at: 5:20pm EST

3DAD 013 : How to Create a Science Fiction Series - The Making of Nobility

This session is a little different from what 3D Art Direct podcast normally presents, since this time we are exploring the making of a science fiction series –which will be a drama/comedy produced with the aid of crowdfunding.

The series is called C.A.S. Nobility – that has the tagline of “These are not the heroes you’re looking for.”. Nobility is the name of the starship in this series with a curious crew of characters on board.

The project is notable because of it’s story, and because of the amount of passion and power behind the project which is generated in gigawats by E.J. De la Pena, the producer AND because he has managed to cast the actress Claudia Christian (from Babylon V) .

This project was brought to my attention through Danny Gordon, who is the new conference and community manager for 3D Art Direct. He is one of the 3D artists on the project and invited me to follow the production of this series. I’ve always had a great interest in the production and what goes on behind the scenes of sci-fi television series and films.

I mentioned that this series was going to be funded by crowdfunding. What is crowdfunding? It’s a financing method that involves funding a project with relatively modest contributions from a large group of individuals, rather than seeking bigger sums of money from a small number of investors.  In this case E.J. De la Pena (E.J. for short), the head of production for this series is using for the crowdfunding campaign.

Now if you’ve never been to, it’s definitely worth a visit, firstly to check out E.J.’s campaign for Nobility and to contribute to his project. Secondly to see some of the other projects going on. Forinstance a few months ago, we noticed that a new version of the classic 3D vector game Elite was going to be remade through, so there are some projects definitely related to 3D graphics that are being funded through this clever means.

So I’d urge you to look at E.J.’s project at, view the fun campaign video he has created for Nobility.

In this first interview with E.J., we find out how the whole project started, how Claudia Christian came onboard. We learn how the story and characters were crafted, we talk about the Nobility ship design and discover some of E.J’s production team.

Direct download: Session13.mp3
Category:Podcast -- posted at: 5:07pm EST

This session’s podcast has a wonderful interview with Paolo Ciccone, author of the reality software for Poser and Daz studio which helps these applications take advantage of the incredible LuxRender engine, allowing photo realism for Poser renders. Version 3 of this popular software is about to be released as I record this session on the 7th April 3013.

Paolo originates from the city of Trieste in Italy and originally worked as a software engineer for Borland before entering into the digital arts world with Reality. He has over 30 years’ experience as a software developer.

Paulo also presented at the Poser Expo : Runtime Live conference, held between the 22nd and 24th of March 2013, which was the first ever conference Poser users, presented through our 3D Art Live webinar service in partnership with Runtime DNA. I give a special thanks to all the presenters that did an  incredible service to the Poser communities in the professionalism of their content. Many attendees found the content of the eleven webinars rich and rewarding, especially as they go over the recordings of the conference.

Now if you couldn’t make the conference, we covered such topics as:-

The materials room, two rigging masterclasses, behind the scenes of reality 3, dynamic clothing, realityPaint, the GoZ plugin & preparing models in zBrush for Poser, composition and story telling with Poser, lighting, rendering, a UV mapping masterclass as well as history of Poser the software and it’s communities through the years.

These were all recorded and you can gain copies of these as individual sessions. But it works out at the best value if you purchase the entire set of recordings and as listeners to the 3D Art Direct podcast, you can use this code “reception10” to get $10 off the price.

Just visit

Direct download: Session12.mp3
Category:Software Reviews -- posted at: 5:02pm EST

This session we have a fantastic interview with Clint Hawkins, who is the CEO of YUR Digital, a content marketplace website that also offers a forum and art gallery for digital artists. YUR hosts regular competitions and there is one running now at with the theme “twisted” with first prize of “Filter Forge Professional 3”.

As we go into March, we have the world’s first Poser on-line conference. If you catch this podcast before March 2nd 2013, you can sign up for a free introductory webinar at We will have a number of highly skilled presenters offering nine different tips for Poser and Poser Pro users. The introductory webinar includes details of the main Poser conference which will be on the 22nd-24th of March with at least 10 webinars on topics such as Morphing, Rigging, Reality3, Z Brush, UV Mapping, lighting and mastering the materials room.

Who will be presenting?

Included is Traveler from Runtime DNA, Les Garner from Sixus 1, Nightsong, Arki, Lady Littlefox, Phil C, Sergio from Xurge 3D, Chuck Taylor (Nerd 3D) and Ray Phelps.


You can get tickets while they are still available at the website in the “Event Registration” area. So if you are a Poser  or Poser Pro user, don’t miss out on this unique opportunity to connect with other users and meet some leading artists and content creators for Poser.


So I’d like to get into the main feature with my interview with Clint. If you’ve enjoyed this podcast and found it a valuable or enjoyable interview, please leave a review in iTunes to help other digital artists find this podcast and let me know some of your suggestions of who you would like to be interviewed in a future session.

Direct download: Session11.mp3
Category:Podcast -- posted at: 6:48pm EST

This month's interview is with Syyd Raven who in her own right is an award winning 3D artist but has built the massive Poser centred community at Runtime DNA this community which started in 2001, with Colm Jackson and Eric Van Dycke.

RuntimeDNA is a large digital community in the 3D Poser industry. It provides a wide selection of digital content and provides a great learning environment for its members with a very active forum who are from all over the world. A large user art gallery also reflects the vibrant community.  The store boasts over 2500 products with more than 100 content creators.

In this interview we learn from Syyd:-

- How Syyd started in digital art.

- What has improved in the current Poser 9 and Poser Pro 2012 versions for texture artists.

- What were some of the early challenges when Syyd co-created Runtime DNA.

- The strengths of the international staff at Runtime. 

- All about the Runtime DNA community and how it was formed.

- The story of how her top two products were brought to market.

In association with Runtime DNA, we are creating a live conference for the Poser community, called "Poser Expo: Runtime Live". This will be a set of webinars held over the weekend of 22nd to the 24th of March. Sign up to our mailing list at 3D Art Live to learn more about this conference:-

Direct download: Session10.mp3
Category:Podcast -- posted at: 5:27pm EST