Cool,,, don't forget photogrammetry. (a la: 123dCatch)
I think photogammetry could easily become a good starting point for design beginners(me).
Whitney Potter, aka: "Shapespeare" on thingiverse,, and co-host of the podcast "3dprintingtoday", uses it to reproduce objects from: hand-size, to building-size. There will still be some post-editing required,, but he shares all of the free programs and techniques he uses.
Of course,, taking 60 photos @6*degree increments,,, OR 120photos @3*,, may not sound like fun,, and then having to crop-out everything around it,,, but after that, just letting the software do all the hard-work (hats-off to the real mesh designers),, can reproduce some pretty impressive results.
(^^^facto: that is what scanning software, and equipment, does for you automatically)