If you want to play with 3D, head to http://www.daz3d.com/ where you can download DAZ Studio 4 Pro, hexagon 2.5 and Bryce 4 Pro for free this month. A great way to start.
Back at DAZ, they have been running something they call Mars Madness, which is fun. New items are released at a 75% discount and all stores are having huge sales. Among the coolest items so far was the V4 Archer outfit by Bobbie25, and there was a thread in the forum for us noobs making texture mods to that, so I could not resist.