Top 7 Shoe Design Video Tutorials

3D printed midsoles have been a hot topic in shoe design for a few years now, however, with nTopology’s capabilities designers can add further functionality and aesthetics to their footwear. Here are our top shoe design tutorial videos.

headshot of Lara Tang
Lara Tang
February 3, 2021

Below are some helpful videos on sneaker design, as well as some bonus topics that Industrial Designers may find interesting. If you are new to nTopology’s 3D design and engineering software, here is a quick summary:

Speed – Iterate faster in nTopology. Whether it’s complex lattice designs that may take hours in other software or quick changes to traction patterns, you’ll notice that you can play around and see real-time updates to your creations in seconds. 

Customization – Using data can inform shoe design in a variety of ways. Custom-fit shoes can alleviate pain for individuals with disabilities or other medical issues, much the same way as custom-made shoes provide benefits to top athletes. Customization can also take the form of unique aesthetics for each customer, such as embossing.

Interoperability – nTopology can import a variety of files like the midsole files your company already has. Take existing prototypes and designs and add to the aesthetics or performance within nTopology. When you’ve created something awesome, export it as a familiar file type that can be incorporated back into your manufacturing process. Plus, we also have capabilities for print prep and mold making. 

Textured 3D Printed Midsoles

This is a great video to watch if you are just getting started in shoe design using nTopology- Sam Kratky, Application Engineer here at nTopology, goes into the basics of creating midsole textures and how to use data to drive your designs.

nTop Live: Custom Lattices & Textured Midsoles for Multi-functional Shoe Design

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Watch and learn how to: 

  • Use a pressure map to customize the density or thickness of a lattice or 3D printed foam
  • Design and apply custom textures and traction patterns to the sole of the shoe
  • Create a library of custom and reusable workflows and quickly explore design variations


Custom Sneaker Cushioning

While cushioning and comfort is a very important aspect of sneaker soles, performance and durability can also be affected by midsole design. In this video, one of our Customer Success Engineers, Annika Norden, teaches how to configure the shape and density of a custom shock absorption pattern based on pressure data.

nTop Live: Configurable Cushioning Design for Sneaker Midsoles

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Watch and learn how to:

  • Configure and control custom geometric patterns in nTopology
  • Use field-driven design and data to optimize their size and orientation
  • Refine and optimize your designs using simulations and experimental results


A Fully 3D Printed Shoe

As part of our Design for Additive Manufacturing series, Industrial Design edition, Izzy de la Guardia from Fast Radius joined us to show how she created a sneaker designed to be printed as one part on an HP Multi-Jet Fusion printer.

Industrial Design DfAM Series: Designing a 3D Printed Shoe

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In this video Izzy shoes how:

  • Non-uniform, field-driven lattice structures can be used to create more visually appealing and functional designs
  • Model-based data can be used to inform design decisions 


Procedural 3D Textures

Andrew Reitz, Product Engineer at nTopology , goes into detail in this three-part video on creating parametric traction textures. This can improve not only aesthetics but also design performance. And he will also show how to incorporate simulation results.

nTop Live: Data-Driven Computational Design of Footwear Traction Textures Pt.1

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Another great aspect of this video is how Andrew demonstrates how to make a file easily readable and shareable with a team. This video shows how to:

  • Design parametric traction elements in nTopology with Field-Driven Design 
  • Control your textures with user-defined parameters or simulation data as inputs
  • Convert your workflow into an easy-to-use and shareable custom block 

This video also has a Part 2 and Part 3.

Additional Resources for Industrial Designers

If you found these videos helpful, here are a few more bonus videos that may inform your design workflows as well.

nTop Live: Design 3D Printed Animal Prosthetics from 3D Scan Data

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nTop Live: Parametric Modeling of Hyper-Realistic 3D Textures for Industrial Design

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nTop Live: Reverse Engineering 3D Scanned Industrial Parts in nTop Platform

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Case Study: Mass Customization

Lastly, we have a great case study on the mass customization of consumer footwear. Impact footwear brought to market in under 12 months a customizable flip flop. To achieve this, they took advantage of nTopology’s architected materials and design automation capabilities.




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headshot of Lara Tang
Written by
Lara is a designer at nTopology.