Of all the things that are possible in a virtual environment, art is by far the most compelling. Imagine a canvas that exists all around you, with the ability to quickly edit your brush strokes or clay shapes, and then understand the experience in person is even more incredible. Even if you aren't a creative type, being able to watch someone bring an image from their mind to the 3D canvas and being able to walk around that creation from every angle is a unique experience. There are so many different ways you can create and share in VR, all you really need is the right app and time to figure out what it is you want to create.
We can help you out with that first part! Here's a detailed list of all the amazing ways you can create in VR.
Google's VR art app for HTC Vive and Oculus Rift puts you in the middle of a seemingly endless virtual canvas with a massive variety of brush and material types so you can create just about anything. The app is designed to give you control of both the scale of your creation and your position within it, so you can move around inside and around your art to continue creating in any level. Tilt Brush creations can also be shared in formats that allow mobile VR headsets like Daydream and Gear VR experience your creations in VR.
This Oculus Rift exclusive is the ultimate sculpting environment. You can create at any scale, allowing you to make impossibly detailed yet massive works of art thanks to the dozens of tools available inside Medium. Oculus also allows you to record yourself creating from a perspective that isn't straight out of your headset, so you can see your virtual avatar create and share the video of yourself as though someone were actually standing in the room with you as you sculpt.
Currently only available through Viveport, this sculpting and building app is designed so your final creations can be sent to a 3D Printer as soon as you are finished creating. Make VR includes a series of tools to help you determine scale so you're not accidentally making something the wrong size, and makes it remarkably easy to create anything from simple phone cases to complex 3D puzzles that can all be ready to print as soon as you save your project.
Currently in a limited beta, Gravity Sketch is all about bringing practical 3D design to VR. This is currently the only VR art app with a mobile app component, so you can walk through your creation in the HTC Vive but still be able to share and edit that creation on a standard 2D surface if you wanted to. You can check out the iOS app now, and wander through your creations to make more detailed edits when beta keys are available for you to try this app out yourself.
Creating in virtual clay or artificial paper is amazing, but Quill is all about ink as the name might suggest. You have the same amazing virtual canvas all around you, but the tools focus on creating effects as close to real ink effects as possible. The end results from these creations are amazing, and like many other VR art apps the ability to walk around your creations creates new perspectives and makes every creation so much more dynamic. Quill is currently only available on the Oculus Rift.
This SteamVR app gives you a little bit of everything, and gives it to you for free. You can paint, sculpt, spraypaint, and warp your creations with some of the spatial tools once you're finished. You can adjust the scale, prepare something for printing, or just load up a Volkswagen bus and paint all over it to express your creativity in new ways. The sheer volume of options available make this app well worth exploring.
Instead of developing for a specific piece of hardware, Mozilla made a VR art app for the web. By using a VR headset and WebVR tools, you can create right from the browser. More technical users will be able to do things like build their own brushes if something unique is desired, and those brushes can be easily shared with the rest of the world. For those who would rather not be tied to a specific platform, A-Painter is more than a little compelling.
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