Turn die-line into 3D mock-up
If I have a 2D die-line of a product. What's the quickest way to turn it into a 3D mock-up? Preferably it should output to a popular 3D format like 3ds Max.
Here's an example of the kind of dieline I'd like to fold into a 3D image.
Sketchup looks good, but it costs several hundred dollars for commercial use. Is there a cheaper (or preferably free) package for converting the die-line into a 3D image?
Thanks for all your suggestions. I've narrowed down the software to the following -
Origami is an illustrator plugin that automatically folds the 2D shape into an 3D file for further editing.
I'll still need to import the file into 3d software for rendering it properly. I've looked at several and I'll probably end up using blender. It has the least intuitive interface of all the 3D editors I've looked at, but it seems to be the most powerful of the free and cheap options. Depending on how productive I am with it I might skip Origami altogether.
joojaa mentioned CAD software called Creo, that some people may prefer. You can get a free version of Creo that allows you to use a maximum of 60 unique parts here -
While any 3D application can do this, its by no means trivial. First polygon modellers are discretsized and you can not just bend wherever you like. With no 3d experience this is a bit hard to get at first. For a experienced 3d modeller no problem. While any content creation application works file I have a different suggestion.
3D CAD applications have a specific operating mode for this kind of things. Mainly because of the need to build things out of sheet metal. Which is the same technique on material that's slightly more tensile. Packages get designed with this method all the time. So all you need to do is show the bend lines and input the angle. This may be more intuitive than learning Blender.
So without texturing or render heres what the process would look like in Creo:
Image 1: After AI import is made into a sheet
Image 2: Bending is just as simple as drawing lines on the sheet. (CAD takes care fo bend radiuses etc.)
Image 3: Bends complete
At this point its ready to be textured and rendered. But now my times up.