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How can i draw scientific figures for my papers?

  1. Feb 15, 2012 #1
    Hi everyone!

    I need to draw a bunch of figures for my papers but i don't know how to use professional software like photoshop, 3dmax, maya, ....of course as you know, the figures must be pretty and accurate. i need to one which is powerful but simple to use

    does anyone has any suggestion for me?
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 18, 2012 #2
    You are going to need a bit more specific...

    With the title of scientific figures on papers...because of my own background, I thought of scientific/engineering papers to be submitted to, say, IEEE or mathematics/physics conferences and that typically include plots, graphs, etc....and so, I was thinking of resouces like

    that produce publication quality graphs.

    But then, when you mentioned programs like photoshop and maya, it threw me off...

    What kind of "figures" you are talking about?
    plots on x-y cartesian planes?
    3D virtual reality scenes?
    or what...
    do you have a sample figure you can upload to show what kind you are talking about?

    Other software you may look into it are:


  4. Feb 18, 2012 #3
    Of course i can!
    I mean some kind of the scientific figures which are accurate in details like attached image.
    but about your suggestions..... i am for example familiar with Inkscape but i did not find it so effective to generate high quality figures like attached one...... furthermore I should confess that i have not required artistic talent to design them...!!!!!

    Attached Files:

  5. Feb 18, 2012 #4
    or the other example could be.....

    Attached Files:

    • qqq.jpg
      File size:
      19.5 KB
  6. Feb 18, 2012 #5
    Looks like you need some kind of 3D modeler; to start, take a look at Wikipedia and go down to where they list commercial and free software.

    The problem is always with the "powerful but simple to use" part....necessarily, as things get more capable, they get more features, etc...so the learning curve seems to keep growing.

    I wonder if the free version of SketchUp would be enough for you; take a look at the gallery.

    Then, there is Blender; I have heard good things about it, powerful, scriptable, etc...except for an awkward interface?.

    Now, if you need something more CAD-like, like in your second picture that include a 3D along a 2D sketch, you need to look into CAD programs...one I have been looking at lately is the up and coming FreeCAD...but that's just because I like free software...if you have money to pay for supported software, you can look into commercial packages, etc.
  7. Feb 18, 2012 #6
    thank you very much for your impeccable explanations.......!!!!
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