TeapottersSocial networks are sprouting across the internet faster than you can shake a stick at, however a social network for 3D artists is quite the rare find. Teapotters is that rare discovery. It’s your standard run of the mill community, however just knowing that it revolves around 3D work is unique in itself.

Right off the bat, you’ll have to go through a small installation of the 3D Life Player plug-in. This will allow you to view the models that other members have uploaded and give you the freedom to zoom, pan, and twist and turn the models at your leisure. Each user is able to upload their 3D work from Blender, 3D Studio Max, Maya, Poser, and Lightwave, just to name a few. Also, on the upload page there are many choices of customization for your model(s) including: privacy preference, tagging, license selection, and whether or not you wish for your model to be available for download.

Teapotters' 3D Models Gallery

On the main page there is a little summary of your activity and other various information coupled together with a gallery of thumbnails of any models that you personally uploaded. You’ll find small statistics such as a percentage of account usage, profile views, and number of times your profile has been saved by others on the sidebar. Links to your Contact List and profile editing are also openly available from your homepage. In the Edit Profile section you can change your password if needed, select your preferred 3D player (3dxml player, or virtools player), upload a picture of yourself, and decide whether you want your email address visible on your profile page for the public eyes to see. Note: using the 3dxml player requires ActiveX support. Below the main information are places to fill out more in-depth details: company name, address, website, current skills, and a brief description of yourself.

Teapotters' Interface

In the actual 3D interface you can pan (moving left, right, up and down), rotate the camera, zoom in and out, and re-frame the model back to its original position. You are also given the option to see the actual wireframe of each model along with the ability to smoothen the hard edges of any objects by anti-aliasing them. They also have a full screen option if you desire. You’re also able to comment on any of the models.

Teapotters' Side Bar InformationWhen viewing a model, the side bar will indicate file name, file size, object count, polygon count, surface count, vertices count, texture count, and which authoring software it was created in. If the creator has allowed it, the model and textures can freely be downloaded and experimented with by users. A counter of the amount of times a model has been download is also present. You are also enabled to add tags to models in addition to what the author had originally put for tags. Furthermore, in each model’s page there is a HTML widget giving you the code to implement it into a blog, a MySpace, or simply a normal forum. Additionally, there’s a directory listing all the currently signed up members to Teapotters. There is, of course, a listing of all the uploaded 3D models with thumbnails as well. You can sort models by favorites, and users by contributors. Models are organized by tags and the program in which they were created in is also indicated. Another nice feature is that you are able to add any member’s RSS feed to your personal feed reader to continually be up to date with any new models from that specific author.

Members have a Contact List in which they can add and sort people into a Friends List or Business List. You can manage your contacts, invite new contacts, and view your contact history in the “Manage Connections” portion of the site. They have a small “How It Works” section, describing briefly how to use Teapotters and you’ll find a demo video in this section as well, if you’re slightly confused on procedures. They also have a small blog to keep you informed on any updates done to the website. Also, some of the models that have been uploaded to Teapotters are actual models from popular games on the market currently. Who wouldn’t be at least curious to examine in detail how exactly these figures were constructed? I wish they gave members more than a single invite to give away to anyone interested in the community. However, this small downfall is easily trumped by how functional and organized the network is.

Teapotters was a nice fork in the road on the endless avenue of mundane social networks that are blanketing the internet like the plague. There aren’t many 3D networks are out there that can adequately present your work as well as Teapotters does. I’m anxious to see how well they do once they’re out of private beta.


16 Comments on “Teapotters: The 3rd Dimension of Social Networks”

  1. aligrator - A Social Networking Site that is Different from the Rest…? says:

    [...] Social Networks are a breed unto themselves and yet without having it be for everyone or super specialized, it’s hard to survive. Solution Watch reports this : “A social network for 3D artists is quite the rare find.  Teapotters is that rare discovery. It’s your standard run of the mill community, however just knowing that it revolves around 3D work is unique in itself. Right off the bat, you’ll have to go through a small installation of the 3D Life Player plug-in. This will allow you to view the models that other members have uploaded and give you the freedom to zoom, pan, and twist and turn the models at your leisure. “ [...]

  2. Teapotters Blog » Blog Archive » Word of mouth says:

    [...] Solutionwatch “Teapotters is that rare discovery. It’s your standard run of the mill community, however just knowing that it revolves around 3D work is unique in itself.” (…) “Teapotters was a nice fork in the road on the endless avenue of mundane social networks that are blanketing the internet like the plague” [...]

  3. Mobil Avenue » Blog Archive » Meetings of Great Minds says:

    [...] While initially unimpressed with a SL Voice offering I am now extremely excited having learned more about the project, its features and roadmap. The involvement of DiamondWare in partnership with Vivox has alot to do with this. For those interested in learning more about the SL Voice offering Johnny Ming has a special SecondCast podcast from yesterday moonwalk. With SL Voice going open beta in April and lots of Linden Research Inc patents in the pipeline the immediate future looks bright. It looks like the new 3D social network Teapotters is arriving just in time. :These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages. [...]

  4. Kirsten says:

    Is there any site like this that deals with Maya?
    please post a link if yes
    :=) Kirsten

  5. SEO says:

    Great find, it appears they have re-branded and are now 3dvia.com instead of Teapotters.com

    Your write up convinced me to install the 3D Life Player plug-in and give it a test run. It’s a great niche network with some truely killed 3D work.

    This social network is a must if your in to 3D, and a very novel idea. I guess with soo many social networks the attention with now turn to niche based site like 3dvia.com

  6. Fábio says:

    Nice concept the only drawback is the requirement for ActiveX support, which nowadays brings many insecurity problems.

  7. JS says:

    Hello Kirsten, I think you won’t find anything like this made with maya. But if you have time, here is a great forum for maya developers: forum.simplymaya.com.
    Best regards,
    JS

  8. FJ says:

    Hi Kirsten, looks interesting. Thanks.

  9. DUI says:

    A very niche based social network is the new wave. I believe we will be seeing thousands of them in this next year. neat ducky pic 2! lol

  10. KissingKate says:

    Hi kirsten. i love you blog. valuable info on social net…

    thx.

  11. Twins Design says:

    what a great web 2.0 design and logo. really inspiring…

  12. Philadelphia Asbestos Attorney says:

    Teapotters looks like a great program for artist and graphic designers. Artist are always looking for models now they will be available to have 3D images at their disposal.

  13. Philadelphia Asbestos Attorney says:

    Teapotters looks like a great program for artist and graphic designers. Artist are always looking for models now they will be available to have 3D images at their disposal.

  14. Fort Myers Real Estate Lawyer says:

    I like teapotters logo and the name its pretty original. Its pretty cool to have all these 3D images at your disposal. I think I’m going to make another cup of tea right now.

  15. St Louis Missouri News says:

    Great find! that is a cool tool and worth a bookmark for sure.. thanks again for great posts

  16. Sports Artist says:

    I was just on the site before. It is a pretty helpful site if your looking for quality 3D images.