A 3D model of a fish

Character Modelling Essentials

The best 3D character animation starts with an appealing model.

This class will teach you the essential 3D modelling skills required to bring simple character designs to life in 3D.

Watch the trailer.
  • Class duration: 3h 12m
  • Number of lessons: 31
  • Software used: Blender
  • Prerequisites: Basic Blender Skills
  • Self paced learning

"A fantastic course for people who are looking to to upgrade their Blender skills to a more intermediate level. Highly recommended."

Stuart Humphreys

(Student Feedback - Into the Ocean: Character Modelling Essentials)

About the class.

Character Modelling for animation can be time consuming and take many years to master. By starting out with simple characters, you can quickly learn the essential modelling skills which will provide a foundation for all your future projects.

During this class I will share my approach to modelling, texturing, shading and lighting a character based on one of the designs from my Character Design Essentials class. We will also go on to place this character into a simple underwater environment.

You are free to follow along using the provided design or, if you have already followed my character design class, you may wish to use one of your own designs.

By following along with the class, you will gain valuable skills which can be applied to modelling many other simple character designs.

Selected student work.

Examples of 3D fish models

This is just a small selection of the many projects submitted by students of this class.

These examples illustrate some of the ways that students choose to put their own creative spin on the exercises from the class.

"Great teacher and course overall. Delivers exactly what you'd expect from a course on basic modelling, plus good sections about texture painting and lighting with the Eevee render engine. Even intermediate users might find useful tips and mechanics, such as the use of volumetrics and light cookies!"

Guiherme Gräf Schüler

(Student Feedback - Into the Ocean: Character Modelling Essentials)

What you will learn.

By the end of this class, you will have all the skills necessary to model simple characters of your own.

You will also be ready to move forward into the next class in the Into the Ocean series, Character Animation Essentials, where you will learn to add controls in the form of a character rig and fully animate your character.

By following along with the class, you will create a 3D character model and a final, fully rendered, image.

Behind the scenes of 3D modelling

Good to know.

Blender logo

This is a beginner level class using the free 3D software application Blender.

No prior character modelling experience is required but a familiarity of Blender’s interface would be very helpful.

If you are not already familiar with Blender then I would highly recommend that you start out with my Blender Essentials for Animators class, which will teach you everything you need to follow along.

If you would like to model a character based upon your own design, consider starting out with my Character Design Essentials class.

The Blender software application can be downloaded for free from: blender.org

Ready to get started?

  • Over 3 hours of lessons
  • Instant streaming access
  • One-time payment - Lifetime access
+ tax
Profile picture of John Knowles

Your instructor.

Hi, I'm John!

Before building Into Animation I worked as an animator and animation director in children's television for over 15 years.

I love animation and my goal is to give you the best start possible in this exciting and rewarding craft.

Meet your instructor