Anyone who practises 3D art knows it can be an incredibly time-consuming process, so help in the form of free textures and ready-made, free 3D models is always welcome. In recent years, a large number of websites have appeared offering just that and, while you have to pay for the majority of them, there are many free 3D models online too. You just have to know where to look.
Here, we've scoured the web for resources and found a selection of free 3D models, which will hopefully save you time on your next project. Enjoy.
If you fancy a bit of vintage plane action, here's something a little out of the ordinary; it's a vintage Japanese fighter plane, built to real-world scale and ready to drop into any scene. It's textured with materials applied and UVs fully unwrapped and optimised; if you like what you see, be sure to check out the other 3D models by its creator, ElvinT.
This painstaking reproduction of everyone's favourite junkyard robot is the work of Corey Drake,and he's done an impressive job. It's fully rigged and ready for animation, it comes in Maya and mental ray formats, and it's UV mapped with all textures and materials included, so it's basically good to go as soon as you've downloaded it.
One for the arachnophiles, here. This detailed spider model isn't based on any actual species of spider, but it looks good enough to give anyone a fright. The Cinema 4D version comes with two light and environment setups that you can switch between in the Layer menu, while the converted OBJ file has two versions – with or without hairs.
04. Bugatti Chiron
The chances of you ever actually owning a Bugatti Chiron – or even a second-hand Veyron – may be pretty slim, but if you feel the need to validate your existence by being seen near one, here's your best bet.
Download this excellent recreation, built in Blender by Kimz Auto, render it up and paste yourself in next to it, and Bob's your midlife crisis-afflicted uncle.
05. Lego Pirate
Speaking of pirates, why put up with a boring model of a pirate when you could instead have this swanky nine-part Lego pirate? It's the work of 3dlegobricks on TurboSquid, who has a range of great Lego-based models available to buy, with a few free ones like this for good measure.
You can modify all of the colours easily, and the model comes in .obj, .dxf and .3ds formats.
To give it its full title, this is the Toilet-Lavatory-Loo, which covers most of the taxonomic bases. Created by Ieve Lickiene from Lithuania, this is a 12-part model toilet that's guaranteed to enhance your bathroom interior renders. It comes in 3ds Max and V-Ray flavours, and it's free for non-commercial use only. Thankfully, Lickiene hasn't left the seat up on all models.
It's easy enough to find any number of ropey electric guitar models online, but if your tastes don't run to Flying Vs and knock-off Strats, this glorious acoustic model, based on a Ramirez classical guitar, ought to do nicely. It comes in obj, 3ds and blend format, and even has its own stand.
Sharp-eyed Doctor Who fans will have instantly noted that this high-poly model for 3ds Max and V-Ray is a 2005 Dalek rather than one of the classic models. It's a good vintage, we reckon; much better than 2010's brightly-coloured New Paradigm models, and plenty threatening.
09. Male base mesh
Humans are one of the hardest subjects to recreate in 3D, so save yourself some time with this male base mesh, which acts as a great start for sculpting and designing your own male characters. Available as an .obj file, this download is free for personal use only.
Bring your underwater scenes to life with this free goldfish model from Turbosquid user Heidycurbelo. Available in .max and .3ds formats, this asset includes all textures and materials and should be used in accordance with Turbosquid's royalty free license.
Next page: more great free 3D models...