digital creation


This two-week intensive program covers all the basics of 3D design and 3D printing for sneakers. This is a very hands-on course where you will create a sneaker from scratch in Rhino 3D, will make realistic renderings of it, and finally you will print it. There are many different 3D design software packages on the market and we will add more to our course schedule in the future, but in our opinion Rhino remains the most detailed and versatile. Even though it is not the easiest program to learn, it is still the one that is used most in the industry and is also the base for many footwear-specialized CAD packages.


This course is ideal for any (aspiring) sneaker designer that wants to work for one of the major sports brands - who now start requiring that designers have this kind of knowledge - as well as for experienced designers that need to brush up on their knowledge. Furthermore, this is an ideal course for bespoke sneaker makers who want to be able to print their own outsoles and hardware. It is also very useful for sneaker developers who want to be able to make quick prototypes in house before these are sampled from a manufacturer.


course schedule:


Week 1 - Digital Design:

In this first week you will create a shoe from scratch in Rhino 3D. You will start with learning the basics about the interface and about working with nurbs. After that you will learn how to create a last - from scratch or by importing a 3D scanned last - and make an upper and outsole with that. By the end of the week you will have a full shoe in 3D. We can either provide you with a digital last, or you can bring your own. In that case we need to bring it as a digital 3D file (STL or OBJ), since we will not have the time to scan during class.


Week 2 - Rendering & Printing:

In the second week Lorenzo will first work on rendering: colouring and shading your design in Rhino so it looks realistic. After that we focus on 3D printing your designs. Nicoline will teach you the basics of 3D printing - which method is best for which purpose - of printing materials and of slicing: preparing your file to be printed. Slicing greatly determines the properties of your print and it is essential to understand it well. After this you will start printing (parts of) your 3D designs.

During this week you will also get a demonstation of Shoemaster, a professional CAD/CAM package for footwear, which is installed on the computers in the lab.

Lorenzo will be there the whole week to assist students in making extra designs, besides the one you make the first week.


The aim is for each student to have a printed prototype of their design. If you want a wearable print, you will have to do it in flexible material, but this will take longer and there is higher risk of failure. For those that want to experiment more with printing, we offer the option to continue during the weekend after the course. This will cost €200 euros per day, but then you will still have access to all the machines and Nicoline will still be there to assist.


course details:


Level: this is an intermediate course meant for people who already have some footwear experience and understand the basics of how shoes are made, otherwise you have no idea of what you are actually drawing in 3D. If you have no footwear experience at all we recommend that you follow our Sneakerology course first.

If you have never done any designing with Photoshop or Illustrator, this course might also be challenging. In that case you will have to be prepared for a very steep learning curve!

Location: Shoe Style Lab, Castello di Vigevano, Piazza Ducale in Vigevano, Italy (about one hour from Milan, but we recommend that students stay in Vigevano)

Duration: 10 days

Maximum number of participants: 10

Teachers: Lorenzo Masini and Nicoline van Enter


Dates in 2018:

April 2 - 6 (week 1) + April 9 - 13 (week 2)

Optional extra printing time: weekend of April 14/15


Price: 10 class days at an intermediate level price, so this amounts to €2000 (excluding VAT, if applicable). This amount is to be paid in advance.

If you want to also join the extra weekend for printing, the total amount will be €2400.

Technically it is possible to follow only the first week of the course, should you only want to learn how to design a shoe in Rhino. Of course we prefer that people follow both weeks, so if you decide to enroll for only the first week, we will have to apply a 25% surcharge. In that case you will pay €1250 (excluding VAT, if applicable) for this one week.


Included in the course price: you can use the 3D printing filaments available at the lab; we have both rigid and flexible filaments in basic colours, like black, white and transparent. If you have specific wishes for special filament, please discuss these before you join the course. If we can indeed use the filament you need, then you will have to bring it to class.

Not included in the course price: flight tickets, hotel accomodation, breakfast, lunch and diner, Rhino software


Required hardware & software: we require that students bring their own laptop (PC or Mac, NOT a tablet!) with a fully functional version of Rhino 5 installed. We recommend that you buy the software. If you have a trial version, it will need to be valid for the duration of the course. Please install the software before coming to class, we can not delay the class to wait for people to install. You will also need to have a mouse, not just a trackpad or a pen tablet, otherwise Rhino can not function properly.


How to apply: please send an email with your CV (LinkedIn profile) and short motivation to join this course to [email protected]