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3D Jewelry Design Competition


I am wondering, Is there any 3D Jewelry Design competition, where
any one from any country could participate using any type of 3D
software. It should not be that, just produce Matrix, or Ideas or…
Because I think the idea should be to see the designer abilties and

If any have any type of news, kindly share…

Regards, Tusif

Is there a newsgroup or listserv, etc dedicated solely to jewelry
design software/usage?


Hi all,

The MJSA Vision Awards includes a distinction category for CAD/CAM
sponsored by Gemvision. The deadline has already passed for the 2007
awards, which will be presented on March 17 during Designer Day at
the Javits Center in New York City. All winning pieces will be on
display at the MJSA booth during MJSA Expo New York, March 18-20 -
also at the Javits Center. The deadline for the 2008 awards will be
11/30/2007. Please visit for more


Johnna Beckmann
Marketing and Public Relations Manager
Manufacturing Jewelers & Suppliers of America


We know there are Jewelry Design Contests, I was wondering is there
any 3D Jewelry Designing contest, where just a STL can be sent (Not
even the orignal Metal pcs).

And what so ever package is used to make that STL file…

Tusif Ahmad

We know there are Jewelry Design Contests, I was wondering is there
any 3D Jewelry Designing contest, where just a STL can be sent (Not
even the orignal Metal pcs).

These should be considered Animation Awards. This might ruffle some
feathers, but I can’t help but protest when I see designers using
3-D images produced by menu-based software to promote their
jewellery work…but not actual photos of the finished work. There
are exceptions to this, and when those individuals shine, they
really shine. If the finished work looks like the rendering, with
the same detail, my hat is officially off to those producers.

There is one of my local competitors who has used renderings in
their advertising, but no actual photos. If it really doesn’t exist
beyond someone’s screen, it ain’t jewellery. The real challenge is
in the accuracy of the realization, not the design.

David Keeling

Well, if the person can output the rendered design to a mill or
something, cut a wax, and cast it then it counts.

This is like saying if a person doesn’t build houses then their
architecture should just be ‘art’.


Bench Magazine has one, deadline is March 2007:

Mr. Keeling,

These should be considered Animation Awards. This might ruffle
some feathers, but I can't help but protest when I see designers
using 3-D images produced by menu-based software... 

…and you’re absolutely correct about ruffling some feathers. If
you haven’t gotten up the will, the courage, and/or the cash to
experiment in using a 3D designing program you really shouldn’t be
chastising those of us who have.

There is bad representation both in the "CAD/CAM to reality world"
and the “I carved the wax (I fabricated this piece) from drawings I
did myself (that a professional designer drew)”. There is also good
representation, which I am glad to see, you at least allow there to
be exceptions for. Using your logic one could also say that most
hand made jewelry seen falls into a similar class of cartooned
imagery; but I won’t allow myself to get into that discussion.
Amateur is amateur, whether it be by hand or by computer.

The design of jewelry is first and foremost an element of the a
designer’s thinking process. How she/he chooses to communicate those
thoughts first onto paper and then into reality should be and truly
is irrelevant. As with any form of artistic communication, the way a
designer, writer, painter, or whatever chooses to put forth their
ideas so that the public can share them, is and should be a personal
choice; the pen, brush, hammer and saw, or computer and keyboard are
merely tools. The more you learn to use all the tools put out there
for you to help implement your creative thoughts, the wider are your
possibilities of creating the one “killer piece” that you’ve always
wanted to achieve. All of us are or should be constantly trying to
top our last best creation. And we should be looking at all the ways
in which that could be achieved.

Computer aided design is more than just using a “menu-based program”.
Sure, there are design programs which only allow you to use their
pre-defined libraries to create and render, but that is by far not
the majority of the programs out there. Most leave the creation on
the page (screen) totally up to your abilities to correctly define
the parameters of the tools available, and to know how light ( think
photography set ups) works. It takes the same as learning to
correctly use a rendering program as it does to use oils or acrylics
in that you need to know and understand color and composition, and
with rendering in a CAD light tracing program that includes the
composition objects not seen on the page to create a photo realistic

It all boils down to the ability of the user as to what kind of
results are achieved.

Paul D. Reilly

John Donivan,

I am sorry, but this is going to be a long winded response. I fell
there is too much to say for a single paragraph. First, let me
explain what I’m about: In addition to wholesale custom work for
others (finished jewelry objects which mostly sell in the thousands
of dollars price range), I create my own one of a kind jewelry and
have been since I started out as a college jewelry/art student back
in 1975. I enjoy design evolution either on paper, as I work with
metal or wax, and now (since 2001) in 3D on the computer.

There's jewelry drawings, and then there's jewelry.... 
If someone wants to do a Jewelry Rendering Competition.... that's
fine, but it won't be a jewelry design competition.

The key word here is “Design” I have seen a number of "design"
competitions for jewelry over the years where the deign rendering
itself was the object which was being judged. Most of those
competitions stipulate that the design must be capable of being built
into a “real” object. Some also stipulate the winners must actually
finish the design in metal usually within a specified period of time
to display the finished object in a show. I agree with you that,
while M.C. Escher is a wonderfully fanciful designer, most of his
designs would have failed to place in this kind of competition; lest
he were to do them as 2-1/2D “paintings” on metal. [though his mobius
strip can be created in real life (I’ve had to do a couple of
projects based on the mobius concept for different jewelers over the

Keep in mind, these competitions are design
(drawing/rendering/creativity/skill at imagining a producable
object) competition, not a jewelry making competition

(aside: competition for what?) 

First see my above response. Secondly, there should be a place for
jewelry design competition (with fanciful or finishable jewelry as
the subject) in the jeweler’s community (both hand drawn and
computer rendered) to demonstrate and challenge the artistic skill of
the competitors, just as there are for other forms of still life
painting/drawing. As for “CNC” (which is more properly
"CAD"-Computer Aided Design); there can be as much “art” involved in
using CAD-Rendering as there is in using colored pencils and paper.
To create a good rendering of a virtual object the user needs to have
knowledge of light’s multiple characteristcs (light pathing,
reflection, refraction, intensity, color, shadowing, etc.)
controlling surface juxtaposition and composition as in any method
of painting or drawing. If you could give a number of people the same
computer created jewelry file (with no rendering attributes in the
file) and have them render it with their favorite rendering
programs, you would get as many different results as you had
competitors, not only because the programs differ, but more
importantly because the users’ knowledge of what attributes of the
"drawing" it takes to make a flat 2D picture appear as if it jumps
off the page in 3D “realism”.

From the post you responded to:

If it really doesn't exist beyond someone's screen, it ain't
jewellery. The real challenge is in the accuracy of the
realization, not the design.

These are two totally different “real challenges”: jewelry design
and jewelry making skills. The argument could be used with respect to
jewelry drawings/paintings on paper or canvas vs a realized jewelry
object; if you were prone to that viewpoint. The argument is about
apples and oranges, in my opinion, though. Bad and good jewelry
design/realization can happen in all techniques used to create the
design; bad and good finished pieces can happen wheter started on a
computer or on paper.

With practice, the 3D computer programs can drastically reduce or
eliminate the amount of design errors in a piece compared to the
traditional methods of design. This is true because you are able to
observe a design in any direction by rotating it on screen as if it
were in your fingers, you can zoom in even further than you could
with a standard bench microscope, you can look inside at an unexposed
area (where in real life it would be blocked from view by other
components laying in the line of sight). You can measure every
portion of your design with as much accuracy as ever necessary ( in
Rhino that is out to the 7th decimal of a millimeter). And then, if
problems or visual dislikes are found, you are able to make changes
before you actually build a model. As with any design process, the
real challenge of computer-aided-designing is in creating a virtual
model which CAN be turned into reality, with no flaws or weak areas,
impossible stone settings, and, most of all, an object which is
visually pleasing and/or artistcally compelling in some way to most
people. I’m not saying that bad design doesn’t occur using CAD, but
that VERY good design is VERY possible. That is The First Challenge.

From there, The Second Challenge: the designer, if she/he is also
the jewelry maker, (and both John and I know that isn’t always the
case) must perform well with her/his metal/setting skills in order to
bring the jewelry object to full fruition with finese (to bring it to
life, as it were); just as it happens going from paper and pencil
design to finished jewelry. Once the virtual object checks out to be
valid in all realms, on the computer screen (as it would need to on
paper, if you choose to hand draw the design) and by way of the
designers’ knowledge of what comprises good design, it can then be
machined or printed on any number of the available stereolithograhy
machines, merely by-passing the hand carving steps. If the machine
work was done in wax the maker will then cast/ fabricate/texturing in
some cases, finish and perform all other “normal” jewelry procedures
required to complete a computer designed model; just like as if it
had been a hand carved wax. If the file were machined in metal, there
is still finishing work, fabrication and the like to complete. To do
all of these steps at the quality level that discerning clients
demand is totally dependant on the skills of the craftsman
completeing the work done on the computer. This is The Second

To produce quality jewelry that is both well crafted and visually
pleasing is a never ending series of challenges and is (should be)
the ultimate goal of all jewelry makers, no matter the techniques
that the designers/makers choose to use; no matter if the goal is
"art" or wearable jewelry; no matter if we make for our own sake or
for others; as has been put forth on this forum many times past.

Paul D. Reilly, in finally sunny (albeit still quite chilly)
Colorado Springs.

PS, John:

How many renderings have I returned for redraw because they just
could not be done in metal 

As do you, I build the jewelry designs which other jewelers create
on paper or on the computer; and I have to agree with you that there
are times I need to discuss with my client artists why their
creations don’t hold up in 3D or as a viable piece of jewelry because
of some weak areas, risky or impossible setting design, you name it.
I don’t think I would say I’ve had to return an inordinate number of
renderings to be corrected, but I’ve had my share of discussions with
the artsists I have worked for as to what changes would need to be
made to make their ideas happen in reality. That’s a big part of this
area we’ve chosen to make our living in; as frustrating as it can
sometimes be.

These are two totally different "real challenges": jewelry design
and jewelry making skills. The argument could be used with respect
to jewelry drawings/paintings on paper or canvas vs a realized
jewelry object; if you were prone to that viewpoint. 

Yes, Paul, all you say is very informative - and all I was trying to
do was to back up the original post, sorry, I forget the name. That
is that it’s important to know the difference. If people want to have
a design (on paper) competition, that’s fine with me, but jewelry
itself is made into “hardcopy”.