I was wondering how Sketchup compares to Blender and Daz 3D and professional but costly packages such as Poser and Z Brush(if at all). I want to start 3D modelling and Rendering and have a few ideas, but I need something I can get to grips with quickly but has lots of functionality. Does anyone know the pros and cons of these programs? Also DAZ 3D seems to have ready made 3D renders you can add to your own image like uniforms, ready made male and female models, cityscapes, the lot. Doesn't that qualify as cheating a bit?
I'm really confused as I've never ventured into 3D modelling before and really want to get to grips with it as it looks like so much fun!
Could anyone who is patient enough to have me going "huh" at them for a while give me a hand?!
It will depend, to a considerable degree, what your end goals are. Are your ideas organic, characters, figures, or mechanical, architectual? For example, Sketchup can be a godsend if your attempting to model tank treads, buildings or even game levels. But, if your wanting to emphasize the wrinkles in your zombie's skin or a finely detailed monster, Z-brush or a similer digital sculpting package would be the appropriate (but costlier) choice.
I'm looking for something that is capable of doing a bit of everything (if there is such a program). I want to be able to construct and render both Architectural/Mechanical and Organic/Humanoid/Character 3D models. At the moment I need something with these capabilities which is either free or inexpensive that is simple to use (this wasn't the case at the time of my original posting). Detail is a must too, especially for characters.
Also, do professional programs come with pre-rendered models for you to use or is this something for more amateur/free programs for hobbyists to use? I'm not sure if it's a good idea or not to use them as it would feel like cheating to me.
(I did say I was going to go 'huh?' for a while and thanks for being patient with me.)
Last edited by CreatrixArts; July 5th, 2009 at 12:58 PM.
Reason: rewording to make the post more coherent.
SketchUp is free, so you might as well download it. There is also the http://sketchup.google.com/3dwarehouse/ which has tons of free sketchup models. SketchUp can do organic stuff and characters with clever use of the scale and terrain tools. However SketchUp is not geared in that direction. Also note that SketchUp doesn't have a built in realistic scene renderer but there are other dedicated renderers that fill that niche if required.
If you are looking for a generic professional modeler that can do everything then max / maya are going to be your tools but they come at a hefty price. As someone else pointed out if extreme high res character work is required then zbrush / mudbox are going to be your tools but they will also cost you. Keep in mind there are tons of other modelers such as Lightwave, Rhino, Form Z (the list goes on...) but Max, Maya, Zbrush and Mudbox are the most popular ones.
An application that will likely fit your requirements is Blender. Its a decent generic modeler and its a free open source project. Blender has a higher learning curve than Sketchup but since they are both free its not going to cost you any thing to use them. Also remember that all modeling apps have a way to export to generic formats which can be used in other programs. Its also common for people to capitalize on the benefits of using multiple modeling programs during a project. There always seems to be something another app does better.
One other thing, no matter which modeling app you decide to go with, learning one will make it easier to learn another. Modeling concepts are the same its just the execution and interface that are different.
Blender is able to do all the things you want it to ok not great like a high-end professional super-expensive application, but enough for most amateurs
This is two movies made with Blender there´s others too out there if you search
One thing you could do is to get hold of sketchup 6 cause I know there should be a script to blender, (but not later versions from what I've read) which allows you to import sketchup stuff into Blender. Sketchup is a much simpler to use, so when it comes to buildings and stuff I would do it in sketchup and then import it. (You have to check up if it's legal to use though since the pro version has the ability to export in different formats the free one doesn't. I don't know how the legal stuff works. Anyone who do please tell me cause I want to use that function myself)
Anyway my tip is to start out using Sketchup to get a hang of how to orient yourself in a 3d application and how 3d basics works. Then start using Blender which is much much MUCH harder to learn. Blender do have a big community so getting tutorials etc. is no problem. They work on getting Blender better too.