Appeal Academy

Learn how to create appealing characters At your own pace with personal feedback on your progress

Personal Mentorship

The Appeal Academy is not your traditional online course. It’s also a Mentorship, providing personal feedback crafted specifically for you and no one else. With each assignment that you complete, you will receive a personalized 30+ minute feedback video to help you push your character even further. By the time you go through the entire course you will have received close to, if not over, 6 hours of personal feedback. Content that is crafted specifically for you and your progress.

How Does It Work?

  • After signing up for the Appeal Academy you will immediately receive access to all Appeal Academy lectures taking you through creating an entire character of your choice.
  • At the end of each lecture you will be provided an assignment to progress you through the steps of creating a character from beginning to end.
  • After submitting your assignment you will receive a hand crafted feedback video on your progress, giving you actionable steps to take your work to the next level.
  • At each stage of the course you will learn and practice new foundational design principles and the fundamentals of appealing form.
  • By the end of this course you will confidently flow through the steps of blockout, refinement, and polish.

What Is Included?

  • Self paced lectures taking you through creating a character from start to finish. Go through the lectures at your own pace and submit your character for review when you are ready.
  • Improvement focused assignments that will result in a polished 3D character.
  • Receive close to, if not over, 6 hours of personal feedback footage that is crafted specifically for you and your progress.
  • Lifetime access to all lectures and mentorship sessions.
  • Lifetime access to all bonus lectures from an ever growing library of content.
  • Lifetime access to the Appeal Academy’s private Discord group.

FAQ

What does a typical mentorship session look like?

Mentorship sessions are feedback videos recorded specifically for you. Each one is at least 30 minutes long, covering actionable ways you can improve your character as you progress through the Appeal Academy. By the time you complete the course, you will receive 8 of these sessions. See below for an example of a real feedback session for a student.

“It just felt like a privilege to have so much time dedicated to me, when most online instructors average around 5-20 minutes max. Usually just 5. Ben speaks down to earth, and doesn't have a holier than thou mentality. I greatly appreciated every feedback, where Ben answered questions specific to my concerns. Thanks for everything, this course set a new standard for online instructors.”

Rico Buehlerhttps://www.instagram.com/left4c3p2d1

What do the lectures and bonus lectures include?

The lectures will take you through learning the strong fundamentals of creating appealing shapes. Then you will learn the process for blocking out, refining, and polishing form. Additionally, we will have lectures focusing on sculpting the face, hair, clothing, posing, and more.

The bonus lectures are a collection of ever growing additional resources provided for you at no extra cost. These lectures go in depth on topics such as observation, efficiently using tools in ZBrush, rendering and lighting, and much more.

How long does it take to go through the content?

Because the course is self paced, everyone will take a different length of time to go through the lectures, assignments, and feedback. If you were to go through a lecture and assignment each week, the course would take roughly two months to finish, not including the bonus lectures.

The current total runtime of lecture content is 11.5 hours and close to, if not over, 6 hours of one on one Mentorship.

Note that these numbers do not factor in time spent on the course, but represent the length of video content provided.

Do I need to know ZBrush for this course?

Lucky for you the Appeal Academy includes a free download of How To ZBrush – An Absolute Beginner’s Guide – A course with the intent to get you up and running as quickly as possible.

If you have never used ZBrush, you will want to start there before going through the Appeal Academy’s lectures.

Can I use my own character design for this class?

Yes, but it is strongly advised against. You will see the most growth working from a highly polished 2D character design from another artist that exceeds your own abilites, giving you an opportunity to critically think about the original artist’s intent and learn from their work.

What all will I need for the class?

ZBrush. Seriously, that’s all you need. And because the Appeal Academy focuses on sculpting from an aesthetic standpoint, the version of ZBrush that you are using does not matter.

Can I use other software for this course?

Yes, use what tool you are most comfortable with. However, do keep in mind that this course is taught using ZBrush. Tools and tips may not translate to other software, but aesthetic and fundamentals will be applicable no matter what tools you are using.

Still have a question?

Testimonials

“I've done 5 years of Visual Art for games, but looking back I found there was incredibly little on how to make proper art. Mostly software and teamwork, but little to no art fundamentals. I never really knew why things looked right sometimes and why it didn't. Ben made me learn more about art in a few months than school did in 5 years!”

Bram Smuldershttps://www.artstation.com/bramofzo

“It just felt like a privilege to have so much time dedicated to me, when most online instructors average around 5-20 minutes max. Usually just 5. Ben speaks down to earth, and doesn't have a holier than thou mentality. I greatly appreciated every feedback, where Ben answered questions specific to my concerns. Thanks for everything, this course set a new standard for online instructors.”

Rico Buehlerhttps://www.instagram.com/left4c3p2d1

“Having an expert look at the specific mistakes I'm making, not only in the forms of the character, but from a workflow perspective, was invaluable. It's always frustrating when a tutorial or lesson you find online will take you through a very specific set of actions to get a result; having someone with a deep knowledge of this process look at MY project and MY issues was incredibly helpful.”

Chris Jenningshttps://www.artstation.com/chrisjngs

“It was amazing to be blocked or unsure how to proceed and then have Ben jump in and show me options on how he would go about next steps. I learned so much this way.”

Andrew Johnstonhttps://www.artstation.com/artdrew

“Even though the lectures are great, for me, the course was even better for the mentorship aspect it had. Personal contact and feedback were more important for me. I believe that having a project is great because you can apply what is learned and improve upon it. Also, you finish the course with a new portfolio piece.”

Luiza Dinizhttps://www.artstation.com/luediniz

“I learned a ton from Ben and enjoyed the course a lot. He is a great teacher, keep up the good work!”

Chris Tellohttps://www.artstation.com/iase

“Before this course I was looking at a few different ones which mainly focused on creating a specific character. I liked the fact that in this course it was about picking a character that you wanted to make as well as it being a mentorship from the man himself. This just adds to the learning process as you get specific feedback on what you are doing right and wrong. I enjoyed this very much I will say out of all online resources this is up there as one of the courses I learned the most from, keep up the good work.”

Joshua Cartyhttps://www.artstation.com/carty_001

“Its useful to get a professional's opinion on what you are doing since there are things that you do wrong or seem wrong but you don't spot them or know you did them. And as someone who's never done a character before, it comes in handy to see what you did well and what needs fixing.”

Caleb Moorehttps://www.artstation.com/ceramicram

Your Guide

Ben De Angelis “Follygon” has a background in sculpting appealing characters for toys and life size figures for production in a variety of styles. Ben has worked on such IP as Pokemon, Barbie, Ghostbusters, Shrek, Hotel Transylvania, Madagascar, Flintstones, Clash of Clans and many more. He’s done heavily stylized characters such as the Looney Tunes, and as realistic as life-like pilots for the Museum of Flight in Seattle. Now Ben works as a freelancer and enjoys spending his free time creating content for others that enjoy digital sculpting. You can see more of Ben’s work at artstation.com/Follygon or YouTube.com/Follygon

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