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Listen up any and all students! If you are a US student in Kindergarten through 12th grade, and are either into Minecraft, 3D modeling or both, iD Tech, Shapeways, and Dremel are teaming up to host a 3D modeling contest to encourage more students to get involved in the exciting world of 3D modeling and printing. You can do all of this using free downloadable 3D modeling software like Autodesk Tinkercad or Autodesk 123 Design. You don’t even need modeling experience to submit a design. After all, you have to get started sometime, right? And there’s no better time than the present for jumping into the wonderful world of 3D modeling (while possibly scoring some great prizes along the way, too)!

The modeling contest is organized according to three age groups: K-5th grade; 6th-8th grade; and 9th-12th grade. The Minecraft game has had such a far-reaching influence on so many ages that we are likely to see incredible submissions from each of these three age groups, as they compete for some amazing prizes. Winners from eachdrem1 group will receive one Dremel 3D Idea Builder Printer, one free week of iD Tech Campus, and a $500 Shapeways credit with a printed model of your own Minecraft-themed design (up to $500). (Each prize package is valued at around $2,700-$3,200.)

Now that you know you could possibly win your own 3D printer and other awesome prizes, you’re a bit more curious about submitting your own design, right? I thought so. Well, the good news is that they have made it very easy to participate in the contest. You simply decide which modeling software you want to use, build your design and save it in the (preferred) STL format, and get a guardian or parent to help you create an account on Shapeways. Next, upload your STL file while selecting “Display to the Public” under the “Selling” tab. Then click “Save Changes.” In the product description field, under the Details tab, you should creatively describe your 3D model and why others would want to print it.

drem4Also, remember your submission should be tagged with the following tags to be considered for the contest: #iDTech3DContest AND your appropriate group level: #3DElementary, #3DMiddle, or #3DHighSchool.

Winners will be chosen based on four criteria. The first is creativity and the originality of the idea. The second criterion is that your design must adhere to Minecraft’s visual style. The design will also be judged based on how well it will look when it’s 3D printed. Finally, a narrative description about your 3D model, and why others will want to print it, will have an impact on the judges’ decisions, too.

Remember, each participant can only submit one model, so you’ll want to make that one submission your absolute best. The contest began on March 7, 2016 and it ends on 11:59 PST on Friday, April 15, 2016. Complete contest submission guidelines are here.

Good luck to all participants! Are you interested in entering? Tell us in the Minecraft-Themed 3D Modeling Contest forum over at 3DPB.com.

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