Ruling on using 3-D images in design
Therefore I hope that you will explain the ruling and advise him as to what he should do in such situations.
Praise be to Allah
It is prohibited to draw or depict animate beings, because of the prohibition and stern warning concerning that, as in the words of the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him): “Those who make images will be punished on the Day of Resurrection, and it will be said to them: ‘Bring to life that which you have created.’” Narrated by al-Bukhaari (5607) and Muslim (2108).
In that regard there is no differentiation between two-dimensional and three-dimensional images, so long as the drawing is complete and shows all features, although a three-dimensional image is more emphatically prohibited then a mere drawing, because it is closer to the real thing. See the answer to question no. 13633.
But there are some cases in which an exception may be made to this prohibition. They are as follows:
Where the head of the image is obliterated or is free of facial features such as the eyes, mouth and nose. In that case it becomes an unrealistic image, and therefore is permissible. Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen said: If the image is not clear – that is, it does not have eyes, a nose, a mouth or fingers – then this is not a complete image and is not competing with the creation of Allah, may He be glorified and exalted.
End quote from Majmoo‘ Fataawa ash-Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (2/278-279)
Stylized pictures, such as those used in chat programs, in which there are no real facial features such as eyes, mouth and nose, and are devoid of heads and ears. See the answer to question no. 110504
Drawings of the body without the head. Ibn Qudaamah said in al-Mughni (8/111):
If the head of the image is cut off, then it is no longer makrooh. Ibn ‘Abbaas said: The image is the head. So if the head is cut off, it is no longer an image. This was also narrated from ‘Ikrimah. End quote.
Based on that, what is prohibited with regard to drawing is that on which facial features appear in such a way that the viewer knows that it is the image of an animate being.
But if the drawing is without showing the facial features – such as the eye or nose for example – and it only shows its general shape, then there is nothing wrong with it, in sha Allah.