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  1. #421
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    Quote Originally Posted by diamandis View Post
    Sweet. Is there any 2D paintover on that, or it's straight from Blender?

    Speaking of, I wanted to ask you about Blender. I want to start mashing up 3D and 2D at some point. I've been learning 3D on 3ds max, because I thought I wanted to go into videogame modeling, but since that's not happening anymore, I can pick whichever 3D modeler I want. Since 3ds max is too expensive for being so old, buggy, and bloated, I figured my choices were either Blender or Modo. Since you're experienced w/ Blender, if you have a few mins, can you tell me what you like and don't like about it? I know it's hard to compare if you haven't used Modo or Max or Maya or whatever else, but maybe you still have opinions. What I hate about Max, for example, is that it crashes all the time, and over the years I've had to download/buy so many add-ons that the out-of-the-box experience would be unusable for me, and it's dumb that Max doesn't include better default tools. What I like about it (and what I've heard others say too) is its modifier stack, which is really useful for starting with simple shapes and then stacking modifiers to create complexity. (I think Blender has something similar, but not as robust afaik.)

    The impression I get of Max vs. Modo vs. Blender is: Max is Windows 98, which has survived 20 years later somehow; Modo is macOS; and Blender is Linux
    its 100 percent blender,only the background is a gradient in photoshop.
    I used an add-on called decal machine that projects normal maps or textures on to the mesh(they sit on top) so you dont have to actually uv unwarp and texture stuff.
    maybe it looks a little bit painted over because of it.

    I guess the reason I chose blender was because its free and I did'nt want to pirate stuff,also investing thousands of dollars only to find that I hated 3d was also a consideration.
    So it was a bit reluctantly that I chose it but now I glad I did.I wanted to learn modo because all the cool kids in here did hehe,I mean you could look at a user called benedikt here
    that did pretty amazing things with it.I have not used modo but I watched some tutorials with it and there wasn't like some holy grails features that I felt where missing in Blender,
    even Vaughan ling who has that popular modo tutorial series on gumroad converted(yep like a religion) to blender and is now making the same tutorials for blender.I guess because of the non-commercial nature of blender it seems that its rate of evolution of features is increasing faster than its counterparts,that and a large community that make all kinds of different addons
    and scripts make it a really feel like its something that is alive and growing,also as opposed to free programs like gimp for example it seems to have real funding and has a full time team working on it.


    what features I like in Blender:

    1-you can really customize the interface to the point that it is a different program-I use blender in full screen with almost
    no menus open so all I see is the model and the reference I am working on,everything else is either a keyboard shortcut a pie menu or a pop-up dialog.
    Everything in the blender ui is written in Python(which is easy to learn)
    so you can cannibalize scripts that exists to make really cool pie menus and operators.

    2-modifiers:I cant say how powerful they are compared to other software but many say that the procedural tools in blender
    are quite good(creating mountains or oceans form displacement modifiers) I never had issues with wanting to do something repetitive or procedual and not being able to.I know that blender has physics and cloth simulators that are not bad.

    3-add ons:you get a lot of free addons with blender:f2,looptools,miratools,booltool and the paid ones usually dont cost much-pie menu editor,smart delete,smart select,boxcutter.

    4-cycles and eeve render:Usually you would have to pay for octane plugin to have GPU rendering inside your 3d application.having cycles is almost like having instant
    preview of how your image will look(the difference between it on cpu and gpu is staggering)If you have a monstrous pc you might not find much of a difference
    but for me it makes a huge difference(even looking at the speed modo renders cycle looks much faster).
    soon 2.8 will be released and you can literally see your render in real time with eeve.

    5-its all self-contained-you can sculpt,model,retopo,set materials and texture in the same environment
    without having to learn other programs(though there is legitimicy in learning zbrush and substance painter if you work professionally in 3d)

    6-it has PBR now.

    drawbacks:It crashes too,not that often but enough to notice,like two versions ago I used it with no external addons or scripts and it
    rarely crashed so it might be the version or some compatibility with a script/addon.
    still I use it hours at a time and nothing happens,then suddenly it crashes and I loose my shit.

    It could be set up better out of the box:things like context sensitivity(having to choose from a menu when deleting a vertex or an edge for example)
    ,some of the default shortcuts that are less than idealand some controls like selecting meshes and object with the right button(which everyone changes)
    could be just programed by default but currently need to be changed in the preferences or using scripts and addons.

    customization can be a curse:I find myself tweaking a script or a button just to later scrap it and use it as default,
    you cant do it with photoshop for example.

    Ultimately I don't know if I would recommend someone who uses/maya/3d max/modo/softimage or whatever
    to switch over since time was invested in learning the software and they ultimately accomplish the same thing.
    But I would reccomend someone who is new to 3d to start with blender as its a great all rounder,fun to use,reliable enough to work with and free.

    If you do wanna try it check out vaughan ling free scripts on gumroad and that nes tutorial they will give you a good taste of blender(I am not affiliated with him hehe just like his work)
    Last edited by GrayPersona; October 4th, 2017 at 07:32 AM.


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  3. #422
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    SWEET. Thanks for taking the time

    I'm definitely throwing 3ds max away, since I've just been using educational licenses to learn, but I don't want to subscribe to the full version. So I have to switch to something. I took some notes on the Blender stuff you mentioned, and I'll look into Vaughan Ling's stuff. I downloaded a build of 2.8, and already there's some cool new stuff I'm noticing: the infinite grid, the XY, ZX, ZY transform planes, the realtime renderer!! Also, PBR materials by default? That's cool. I'm gonna play around w/ it later.

    The good things I've heard about Modo is that its modeling workflow is the best out there. Also, it's got MeshFusion, which lets you fake subD with simple boolean ops (although I hear it slows down a lot with higher-complexity objects, or w/ too many booleans). I think I'll learn the basics of Blender, then try out a demo of Modo later and learn the basics on that, and see which I like better. Thanks again.

  4. #423
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    Quote Originally Posted by diamandis View Post
    SWEET. Thanks for taking the time

    I'm definitely throwing 3ds max away, since I've just been using educational licenses to learn, but I don't want to subscribe to the full version. So I have to switch to something. I took some notes on the Blender stuff you mentioned, and I'll look into Vaughan Ling's stuff. I downloaded a build of 2.8, and already there's some cool new stuff I'm noticing: the infinite grid, the XY, ZX, ZY transform planes, the realtime renderer!! Also, PBR materials by default? That's cool. I'm gonna play around w/ it later.

    The good things I've heard about Modo is that its modeling workflow is the best out there. Also, it's got MeshFusion, which lets you fake subD with simple boolean ops (although I hear it slows down a lot with higher-complexity objects, or w/ too many booleans). I think I'll learn the basics of Blender, then try out a demo of Modo later and learn the basics on that, and see which I like better. Thanks again.
    Oh then if you have to switch then Blender is a good choice(so is modo if money is no issue)
    keep in mind that 2.8 is not stable and eevee is almost unusable now.

    mesh fusion looks really cool .
    blender also has booleans in free ad-ons like bool tool and paid ones like hard ops and box cutter-
    but you can only use them very strategically because they do produce some weird geometry that you have to clean.
    meshfusion looks more robust and like it produces better geo but I wonder if its something that you can actually work with or just a novelty feature
    because in my mind when the geometry is made with polygons and vertexes comlex booleans will always cause artifact/unclean geo.

    Maybe if you are looking for boolean oriented workflow's try fusion 360 or moi3d-they do it better than any software that uses poligons.

  5. #424
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    Tried to digitally paint again,needless to say I feel like I forgot everything, hopefully it will spur me on to do more.
    also a wip - tried using the skin modifier to sculpt in blender-its a bit like zspheres perhaps not as good but enough for my purposes.

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    Also I have picked up a little python skills from code academy and made this little menu in blender
    that I find useful.Basically it's the specials menu that you get in edit mode when you press 'W'.
    Its now the same but with all the junk features that I dont use removed.
    also it has context sensetivity on the merge and bevel operators(I stole a little bit of code from the heavy poly operators)
    that makes it bevel and merge in vertex\edge\face selection mode with the same menu button(most use keyboard shortcuts to bevel but if you use this menu its useful).
    Oh and the merge function also merges 'at last' automatically.

    Just copy both files to blender/2.79/scripts/startup press 'W' and try to merge and bevel stuff in edit mode.

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/d5ay0po6qo...rators.py?dl=0

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/h43y1r29zi...ecials.py?dl=0

  6. #425
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    Are those scripts usable even if someone's not using pie menus?

    I watched through Ling's tutorial after I learned a bunch about default Blender, and he's got some interesting and useful customizations for sure, but overall I wasn't crazy about his setup. Also, I skimmed some of the devs' plans on 2.8, and it sounds like the UI is getting a complete overhaul, including how pie menus work, so I don't want to commit a non-standard custom UI to muscle memory and then have it be unusable when 2.8 comes around and breaks compatibility. I'm just barely scratching the surface of the differences between Blender and Max, but so far it does some weird nonstandard shit, but hilariously it does a few things better. I've got a ways to go before I really start to know what stuff is useful for me and what isn't, and what I want to hide etc.

    No idea what a skin mod is, but that looks pretty good to me!

  7. #426
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    I tried the scripts on a default blender and it worked for me(its just a basic blender menu).
    Yeah I think its a good idea to use blender with default settings for a while just to know where things are.
    but there are stuff that can be automated
    for example I think tabbing into edit mode and then selecting vertex\edge\face via that ctrl tab menu are 3 button presses
    and considering how often its used that acumulated to a lot of redundant button pressing verses just having it all on a pie like vuaghan ling or a custom shorcut.
    I dont use the all the scripts that heavy poly uses but I do use the ones that automated what I did before I started customizing stuff to fewer clicks.
    The pies and operators of his that I do use are:transform pie,view pie,symmetry pie,rotate pie,selection pie,add pie,the bevel operator,the link with double click operator,view subsurf operator.
    all edited to suit what I was used to with the default blender and my keyboard shortcuts.
    If blender 2.8 comes out compeletly different there is gonna be a some python rewriting for me to be done though.
    Last edited by GrayPersona; October 10th, 2017 at 05:04 AM.

  8. #427
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    Blender 2.8 is gonna be epic! Man you're becoming a blender pro! Super jelly of your skills. For the motorcycle did you use nodes for those rendered parts? Nodes look scary and so far I've just been picking materials from the material tab. Do you think blender will be fine for more technical hard surface modelling? I rarely see people doing super detailed mechs or ships.
    Lol I really want to just drop everything and devote all my time to learning it but I've also got gaps that I can't leave alone.

  9. #428
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    Quote Originally Posted by crankshaft View Post
    Blender 2.8 is gonna be epic! Man you're becoming a blender pro! Super jelly of your skills. For the motorcycle did you use nodes for those rendered parts? Nodes look scary and so far I've just been picking materials from the material tab. Do you think blender will be fine for more technical hard surface modelling? I rarely see people doing super detailed mechs or ships.
    Lol I really want to just drop everything and devote all my time to learning it but I've also got gaps that I can't leave alone.

    Yeah I can't wait for 2.8,I hope that it lives to it's hype.
    I like blender but I Don't think I like 3d enough to do it professionally.
    if you wanna learn more about nodes cg cookie has that helmet design course(I made that square helmet with the goggles kind of watching that workflow) that shows you how set up materials ,uv, unwarp ..etc.
    For this bike I used the pbr principled shader which is a one solution for all kind of shader\node,you can just play around the dials and see what it does.
    also I popped some Hdri images into the world node(you can see how it is done in a tutorial by gleb alexandrov on gumroad that is free).
    As for mech,I am pretty sure you can model anything in blender that you can model in maya,max ,modo or any 3d software
    Here is a game engine ready ship for example That is made with blender: https://machin3.itch.io/the-starfighter
    I also saw really realistic cars and other vehicles that were made with blender(like the bike that you are working on)
    so there is no reason to believe that mechs and spaceship modeling will be any different.

    In my previous discussion with diamandis he suggested to focus on what I like most of the art disciplines(or non art)
    and pursue that.Maybe that advice is good for you too-if you like cars and mechs and 3d,why draw people or try to paint?
    to achieve some preconceived notion of being good?I dont know...just a thought.

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    Last edited by GrayPersona; 4 Weeks Ago at 02:30 AM.

  10. #429
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    If you guys are interested in mashing up 2D and 3D, check out this really interesting interview w/ Wootha, who uses mostly ZBrush and maybe some other modelers to put together comps, and then overpaints in Photoshop: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5OueYGlp-NU

    He's also got a Gumroad where he gives away a bunch of free info, but I haven't looked into it yet, can't vouch for awesomeness: https://gumroad.com/wootha

    I was gonna post this to crank's SB, but I figured this stuff was more Gray's style. Also this thread is becoming a glut of tutorial porn, but whatever.

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  12. #430
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    Hey man thanks for the info! I'm watched Andrew Price's tutorials on the principle shader and it looks super fun. Some stupid ques: In blender you can easily fill holes with ngon or quads but if your geo is bent the faces can end up bent as well. Is there an easier way to fix this before hand instead of rearranging the geo every time? In sketchup the faces simply won't fill unless the edges are flat. Also sometimes while modelling when I hit tab it goes into texture paint mode instead of object mode?

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  13. #431
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    Would love to see some more blender models! We need updates! Btw Vaughan ling switched over to blender from modo, which is pretty awesome. He also released a gumroad mech tutorial which I can't wait to do. What do you think of Fusion 360 for hard surface? It's similar to sketchup (uses nurbs over polys) but it seems like it's more for manufacturing products like watches or cameras. I don't think it can do anything organic like cars. There's so much stuff coming out it's hard to know what to focus on. I'm also worried bc kirill chepizhko said that it's becoming some of kind of standard. Should probably just keep practicing lol.

  14. #432
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    diamandis-I watched that level up and his take is really interesting,it a bit hard to understand through the thick french accent though,
    he uses some interesting layer tricks in photoshop so it might be worth checking his tutorials.
    and his Artwork is amazing,never would have guessed that some of the images are not compeletly 2d.

    crakshaft-
    Hey crankshaft,I think that a nurbs modeler like moi3d or fusion 360 is being used by a lot of high caliber artists
    to complement their workflow in certain areas.It's especially useful for bolean operations.
    I think it's still 80 percent the use of some sub-d program and the rest for is moi3d/fusion for hard surface.
    Vitaly bulgarov uses moi3d a lot for his mechs and does amazing work.
    you c

    I like moi3d interface better it's also highly customizable and has keyboard shortcuts but fusion seems to be more versatile and has a free license for
    hobbyists and students at the moment.

    Not to make this empty here is a little experiment with hardops and boxcutter plugins for blender,I thought they would be able to replace the need for moi3d or fusion for a boolean workflow - they can in only very specific cases(simple planer shapes),something semi smooth like a car body or a gun handle is a no go.




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    Last edited by GrayPersona; 2 Weeks Ago at 09:54 AM.

  15. #433
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    Hey I am probably not gonna post on CA for a long while,I need to sort my life out before I make any progress with my art and
    ca is a distraction I dont need at the moment,I really appreciate everyone who replied to my posts regularly(diamandis,kimonas,arkhamalien,crankshaft ,uriarmu to name a few)
    I might start posting stuff on art station:
    https://www.artstation.com/talos_dreams

    I will be back one day!

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