3d Art, Not Expensive to Get Into

Did you know that its not expensive, or necessarily that hard learn 3d art and animation?

I have a feeling this is still not common knowledge.

www.Blender.org Check it out! Its a very, very powerful 3d package. Generally to buy a 3d package, you can expect to spend an upwards of $1000 if you plan to do anything serious. Blender 3d is open source, created by the combined efforts of programmers and 3d enthusiasts around the world. Its free to download, free to use, and free to profit from!

The catch: No fancy tuturials inside the program itself, such as the pricey packages have. But there is a large supply of knowledge on the internet, many forums dedicated to blender where you can find person/person help, and a few good books on the market.

And if I can give one little hint of advice, should you choose to check it out — Don't be intimidated! (And learn the hotkeys). It looks hard, but its not.



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Robot piloting rocket vehicle.Robot in rocket waving.Robot in rocket vehicle waving.

For all of those loyal AO-Maru customers! FREE AO-Maru pictures! These smaller versions were created for web use without a charge! This particular series is of him in his special hover rocket. I'm sure you can adapt it to all sorts of concepts: Speedy service, Friendly Technology, Overnight Delivery…World's First Rocket Taxi Service.

Here I am!

And here I am!

Well, I just moved into Vox. This is a big step for me because I've never blogged before! I'm generally not a person that likes to waste my time, or yours for that matter! :) 

However, its certainly not a waste of time if I happen to share something beneficial or useful, right?

Well, I have written an extensive tutorial on how to work with Gradient Meshes in Illustrator. To see what exactly an image composed of gradient meshes can look like in Illustrator, see the example to the right.

See the tuturial here:


My hope is to add a tutorial here now and then, which will keep this blog nice and useful for both of us! Besides that, check out my illustrations. If you have any of your own, please message me, I'd love to see them!

 - Leo


Photoreal Vectors and Gradient Meshes
Photoreal Vectors and Gradient Meshes

the Orange Factor
the Orange Factor


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This RSS Feed Icon is free for your use. Also, subscribe to the below design/illustration feed. Its really awesome and I update it regularly.

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Design Mascots! (Orange men evolved to different colors). Available on www.Cliparof.com

My biggest personal discovery as a "designer" (I try not to use this term too much) is that there life outside of orange. This has altered my entire world, considering I was born only being able to see the "orange" part of the color spectrum. Now that I'm healed and can see more of the world (admittedly I have used some blues) in all of its wonderful colors, I've now taken all of those little orange men and adapted most of them to other color horizons…like blue…green…yellow…coffee…..

Here's some examples:

Design Mascot Bright Idea_0001_YellowDesign Mascot Einstein_0008_LimeDesign Mascot Fishing_0007_BlueDesign Mascot Contractor Three_0010_Gray

For a quick preview of these, check out my flickr sets. There are about 150 of them available as previews.

www.Clipartof.com has the greatest selection of these alternate colors. See here: http://www.clipartof.com/portfolio/leoblanchette

(If you check my other sites such as Istock or Crestock you will mostly see just orange men).  My hope is that these added colors will open up new design possibilities — or at least just add convenience!

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JesterArtsIllustrations.com — Redesigned. Thank You ClipArtof.com

A special thanks to Clipartof.com (Kenny Adams, Jamie Voetsch) for helping in Redesigning JesterArtsIllustrations.com. The new layout works beautifully, and now like ClipArtOf.com, collections are available for download for the customers who require more images at a reduced bulk price. Without a doubt a lot of special programming had to be accomplished for certain functions of the website, and Kenny has been one awesome problem solver! A special thanks to ClipArtof.com!!! Screenshot below.

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Clip Art Illustration of orange man rss feed Royalty Free

Clip Art Illustration of orange man rss feed Royalty Free

Clip Art Illustration of orange man rss feed Royalty Free —Get the Royalty Free Image by Leo Blanchette

Check Out my Webcam!

Yet another 3d robotic creation! This was a lot of fun — I wanted to make a robot that was somewhat realistic and didn't take long to render. The result was this 3d webcam robot.

He is created in blender 3d, and uses material nodes (basically overlapping material effects) as well as render nodes (sort of like an in-program post-processing tool like photoshop) to create the effect of realism. He doesn't actually require raytracing to achieve the "real" so renders take less than five minutes. In the near future I'm going to get a huge line of images produced on a variety of subjects. In the meantime, his existing images are highly useful!

Feel free to check them out!

Robot Web Cam GesturingRobot Web Cam Walking Toward Viewer.Robot Web Cam in LineRobot Web Cam Holding Business Card.Robot Web Cam Holding Pencil

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http://www.orange-man.com/ A Special Home for the Orange Man

The orange man has his own website! Thanks to the unsung heros at www.ClipArtOf.Com, this cute little hub of orange man activity now exists on the internet! This site is special! It will exist specifically for the purpose of making orange men available to the internet in much broader supply!

Curious? http://www.orange-man.com/ is where its happening. Most people don't know this, but if you put your nose to your computer monitor and smell the orange man, you can actually smell the citrus-ness eminating from the little character. Stop what your doing and smell this picture below:


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Clip Art Illustration of dot man blog character giant pencil Royalty Free

Clip Art Illustration of dot man blog  character giant pencil Royalty Free

Clip Art Illustration of dot man blog character giant pencil Royalty Free —Get the Royalty Free Image by Leo Blanchette

AO-Maru the Friendly Robot

AO-Maru the Friendly Robot.

I created this robot as a sort of "friendliness assistant" to designers. AO-Maru is a technological wonder, inquisitive in nature, and does his job very well when it comes to bringing to life concepts such as (obviously) robotics, web design, programming, and more. He's also been used in medical and community design projects!

Like all of my 3d work, he is created and rendered in Blender 3d. This particular model uses Yafray to render, since yafray does a wonderful job at accomplishing realism without having to wait five days for the render to complete.

In the near future I intend to render many more poses, hopefully involving unique objects besides the robot himself, and  involved in as many conceptual and useable situations as possible.

If you would like to see the entire series, feel free to visit my website or my flickr photostream.

If you would like any special poses, please send me your requests. I may be able to get a few done.

Glossy Robot Standing Holding SignGlossy Red Robot ReclinedBlue Ninja Robot Posed Defensively3d Robot Father and Son3d Robot Looking Up at Stars3d Robo Sitting Sign Green

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AO-Maru Used in Popular Science Magazine!

AO-Maru was used in Popular Science Magazine!


It was an article about medical robots! I never figured AO-Maru to be much of a doctor, but I guess he is just full of surprises! Screenshot below.

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Clip Art Illustration of dot man blog character holding large pencil Royalty Free

Clip Art Illustration of dot man blog  character holding large pencil Royalty Free

Clip Art Illustration of dot man blog character holding large pencil Royalty Free —Get the Royalty Free Image by Leo Blanchette

Announcing a New Line of Microstock Bots!

Announcing a New Line of Microstock Bots!

A lot went into the preperation of this highly optimal workflow. But now I can announce a new series of robots to make their entrance into the world of Microstock! Pictures below:


Toon Robot SEO TwoToon Robo PresentingToon Robot Heavenward


Toon Robot Sitting and SignToon Robot Holding SignToon Robot SEO


There will be more on the way! These were simply my test subjects to see if my ideas would work properly between Illustrator and Blender 3d. I also intend to do animations with this robot, which will be available on any microstock sites supporting video.

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Shiro Maru — New Robot to be Added to AO-Maru Series

I've just completed a new robot for the AO-Maru series! Since a hard drive crash some time ago, I had lost the original model for a webcam robot that had gained some popularity, so this new robot will be replacing it! I was going for "Clean" and also wanted to create a few variations simulating sketches and technical drawings. He will be a good friend for AO-Maru!


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Clip Art Illustration of dot man blog character pointing Royalty Free

Clip Art Illustration of dot man blog  character pointing Royalty Free

Clip Art Illustration of dot man blog character pointing Royalty Free —Get the Royalty Free Image by Leo Blanchette

Reel Mess Advergame in Beta Testing

I enjoyed this project greatly!

Its an advergame called "Reel Mess" where the object of the game is to untangle the fishing line. They had me do most of the art for it, so I went all out in Adobe Illustrator and did some serious gradient mesh/vector images that were cartoony enough not to be too realistic.

Heres some screenshots:



If you want to check it out before it is live, you can register a free account on www.greatdaygames.com. If you go to the "My Profile" page and edit your profile, you'll see a checkbox in the lower right of the screen that says "I want to play beta games." If you check that, then click on the "Games" button in the main nav, you should see it at the top of the list (with a red "BETA" next to it). Play away! There is also a link to the forum for this game if you want to leave any comments.

(Please let me know if the link no longer works) 

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NEW: Orange Man Super Batch.

TONS of new orange men now available! See www.JesterArtsIllustrations.com

Its been quite a while since I've revisited the world of the orange man for creating new illustrations. The orange man series is indeed the most popular of all of my illustrations. I feel kind of like the musician that creates a hit album and after he is known for his style, goes off and explores with new inspiration, only to find "the old stuff" is what everyone is into, and asking for more of. So here I am, back with a new hit album: The Orange Man Super Batch! 

Preview Below — click photo to see larger versions:

As you can see, they cover a wide variety of subjects, from business to play, essential and non-essential, not to mention separate props which are also sold as stand-alone illustrations. A LOT of work went into this batch. Each one is also available in nine color versions! 

Are you among those who have been faithfully keeping up with the series? Contact me or www.Clipartof.com to see about getting the entire batch update for a reduced, bulk price.

And of course they are also available on all of the standard sites I use, such as Istockphoto, Shutterstock, Stockxpert, etc. As a HUGE bonus, any one of these latest ones you download on Istockphoto has an zip file containing the other 9 color versions! Click Here. 


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Clip Art Illustration of dot man blog character standing Royalty Free

Clip Art Illustration of dot man blog  character standing Royalty Free

Clip Art Illustration of dot man blog character standing Royalty Free —Get the Royalty Free Image by Leo Blanchette

Creating Hydraulic or Pneumatic Tubes in Blender 3d Tutorial

Creating Hydraulic or Pneumatic Tubes in Blender 3d Tutorial

By "hooking" points of paths to "empty" objects in blender 3d you can create tubes that move with the objects they are connected to via parenting – in this case, a pneumatic piston used for a robot arm.

This tutorial assumes you are familiar with basic modelling in blender. So I won't go into great detail with basic functions like how to move and rotate objects, parent/child objects, etc.

So how bout some pictures to see the effect at work!

Piston level with tubes:









Piston rotated counter-clockwise:









Piston rotated clockwise:










Looking at the above examples, you can see that regardless of which way the piston is rotated, the tube sticks in place to where its connected. Its a very useful effect for many purposes, and not hard to impliment at all. For this project the piston will be used to move a robot's arm, and to make it realistic, I wanted the tubes running through the mechanical work of the robot, flexing and bowing naturally.

1: So first, in the usual manner, add a UV sphere. That is [spacebar, add, mesh, UVsphere]. See screenshot below.














2: After you've created your UVsphere and hit [tab] to get into object mode, add a path over the same spot. [space, add, curve, path]. I suppose you could use a bezier curve or something, but I use paths because they are less restrictive.  














3: Now you end up with this millipede looking thing. Thats a path. All those things comprising the millipede's legs are actually arrows showing which way the path is pointing.  












4: Move the path [g] left, so that the tip of the path is somewhere around the middle of the sphere or near its left side. It doesn't matter for this example really, we're just making a rough example to learn from.













5: To make your path into an actual tube type in the values you see here. Make sure you are in edit mode and you will see the little window here holding the values listed below. Change them to what you see in the little screenshot below. If you do it right, you will see it go from a basic path to a tube. Notice as you move points on the path that the tube conforms around it.








Please note I moved the path over a bit so you could see the example better.













6: Here is where the really cool trick comes in. Click on the path and [tab] into edit mode if you are not already there. Click [right mouse button] the last point on the path. Then push [ctrl H] which will bring up this "hooks" window. Select the "add new empty" option to add an empty object.  

An "empty object" is simply a placeholder, or an invisible object, which is handy for situations like this. They don't render, but are objects nonetheless. It'll make sence in a few steps.












7: See those arrows pointing in line with the X,Y,Z axis? That is an empty object. True to its name, its empty! Nothing but an invisible place holder. Thankfully we have this handy XYZ arrow thing so we don't lose it. Notice if you move the "empty" the path will always point to it. One more step left! 












8: If you didn't already anticipate it, we're going to make the Empty a child of the UVsphere. Do this by selecting the two of them and pushing [ctrl P] where it will ask "make parent" and you select "OK". Now the Empty is a child of the UVsphere object, and wherever you move the UVsphere the tube will go to. Now all sorts of possibilities are running through your mind — like vacuum hoses, exposed arteries on mutant beasts, cables…!

See the screenshots below to see the effect at work:
























This ends my simple tubes tutorial. Check back for more how-tos on Illustrator and Blender 3d!

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Wardenclyffe Tower — First Render, Free Image

As promised, here is the first free image hot off the render pipeline! Nikola Tesla's Magnifying Transmitter. More than likely I will be producing many more images on this subject.

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JesterArts — Mindsystems Project Overview

PROJECT: Mindsystems Robot Mascot.

This is a brief project summary for customers who would like to know the process of completing an illustration project for their business through JesterArts.

I worked with Mindsystems on the creative development of a new mascot logo, for their new product 'Mindsystems Amode'. Mindsystems runs a fun, dynamic and experienced work place…they wanted to reflect their corporate culture in their new mascot. So I came up with Mindbot! Asides from being a fun bunch to work with, it looks like their new product is awesome! (http://www.mindsystems.com)"

Here is the initial render with the bare shapes, based closely on the concept sketch:

 The details on the body of the robot were loosely represented in the initial sketch, but a lot was open to creative flow. Alex had already created a professional and attractive pattern for the website involving semi-transparent squares, so it was a no-brainer to make sure the robot himself included these. I did a vector derivative of his initial pattern, and then adapted it to the robot in the UV mapping. Squares pattern example below:

It was a great example of an ideal project in the creative flow, the fun shared, and basically what one can experience when coming to JesterArts for such projects.

Related Links:





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