I learned a really neat technique today. I took some b&w-grayscale images of 3D shapes, and used those as an overlay to put a 3D structure on a 2D image. It is just so different than in all the 3D programs which spend a lot of resources mapping the textures onto the 3D shape. Anyway, it really does impart, and rightfully so, the 3D shading onto the 2D, giving it a quick burst of dimension. WOW! This opens up a whole new way to work, and not have to get into the major technicalities of learning a complex 3D program.
It may only work for some basic shapes (like sphere, torus and pyramids, etc., in regularly orientations, but that is OK for my type of symmetric work. It does not preclude any other specifics than just a gray-scale image, and that is itself a fun thing to do as well.
I wonder what happens if I am not reinforcing an existing pattern?