3d drawing software

Autodesk has 3D drawing software designed to meet your needs, whether you're a beginner or professional.

3D drawing and modeling

While there are similarities between 3D drawing and 3D modeling, there are also differences. Learn more about these differences below.

Using Fusion 360 on a tablet.

What is 3D drawing?

3D drawing (or 3D sketching) is one of the most commonly used techniques by architects, civil construction professionals, and graphic designers. It allows builders to tackle the geometric elements of height, width, and depth in their 3D projects. These projections rely on visual perspective and aspect analysis to project a complex object for viewing capability on a simpler plane.

Students and teachers are working with Fusion 360.

What is a 3D modeling?

3D modeling is a technique in computer graphics for producing a 3D digital representation of any object or surface. An engineer or designer uses special software to manipulate points in virtual space (called vertices) to form a mesh: a collection of vertices that form an object.

Rendering of abstract structure with furniture, office, architectural, and mechanical elements.

What’s the difference between 3D modeling and 3D drawing?

While 3D drawing only shows length and width, 3D sketching projects also show volume and depth in a project. Modeling three-dimensional solid features often begins with creating a two-dimensional sketch that defines a portion of the shape of your part. Sketching involves the creation of lines, arcs, circles, and dimensions.

Autodesk offers numerous software platforms for 3D drawing, including AutoCAD, Fusion 360, and Inventor.

3D drawing and sketching software

Software for 2D and 3D CAD. Subscription includes AutoCAD, specialized toolsets, and apps.

Professional-grade product design and engineering tools for 3D mechanical design, simulation, visualization, and documentation.

Plan, design, construct, and manage buildings with powerful tools for Building Information Modeling.

3D modeling, animation, and rendering software for games and design visualization

Cloud-based 3D CAD/CAM/CAE software for product design

Automate and simplify the creation of complex 3D designs

See how customers are using 3D drawing software

Lightning motorcycle


Breaking the battery barrier

Electric motorcycle builders out-raced the gasoline-powered competition with a superbike developed with generative design and 3D printed prototypes.


Image courtesy of Lightning Motorcycle.

Rokion vehicle


Designing from the (under) ground up

Manufacturer of heavy-duty electric vehicles for mining streamlines design and manufacturing with Autodesk Inventor and Vault.


Image courtesy of Rokion.

Elevate, Hyundai's first Ultimate Mobility Vehicle


Driving mobility innovation with generative design

Hyundai Motor Group’s New Horizons Studio is pushing the boundaries of vehicle design with walking car concept.


Image courtesy of Hyundai.

Frequently asked questions (FAQ) on 3D drawing

Below you’ll find answers to the questions we get asked the most about 3D drawing and Autodesk’s software.

What file format is used by AutoCAD in 3D drawing?

DWG is the proprietary native file format for AutoCAD, and is a compact binary format that stores and describes the content of 2D and 3D design data and metadata.

What industries use 3D drawing software?

Autodesk makes 3D drawing software available for several industries, including architecture, interior design, landscape design, as well as mockup software for product ideas.

Does Autodesk make 3D drawing software?

Autodesk’s flagship application for 3D drawing is AutoCAD, but the company also offers Inventor, Revit, 3Ds Max, Fusion 360, and Sketchbook.

Can I create 3D drawings on my iPad or iPhone?

Autodesk’s Fusion 360 for iPad and iPhone allows you to collaborate on 3D designs with anyone inside or outside your company. With the Fusion 360 app, you have the flexibility to view and collaborate on your CAD models anytime, anywhere.

What does BIM stand for?

Building Information Modeling (BIM) is an intelligent 3D model-based process that gives architecture, engineering, and construction professionals the insight and tools to efficiently plan, design, construct, and manage buildings and infrastructure.

What are the benefits of using AutoCAD in 3D drawing?

AutoCAD has replaced the traditional method of drafting and designing (which was made by pencil, drafting boards, triangles and compass) with computer software. The benefits are myriad, and include saving time, increasing productivity, streamlining your design and documentation workflow, and much more.

Can I use 3D drawing software on Chromebooks?

Autodesk's Fusion 360 is available as a web app on Chromebooks for students with an Autodesk account and an educational subscription. With the chromebook software for 3D drawing, you can unify design, engineering, electronics, and manufacturing into a single, cloud-based software platform.

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