A good reason for original meshes?

Hi folks. I’ve just secured a project to animate a product for a company. They already have CAD drawings of it, but I want to re-draw the whole thing in Blender and only use the CAD for orthos and reference. Can anyone come up with a good way to explain this to the company?
I ask because I want the work to be my own, plus I don’t want ti to be seen that I’m taking the easy route by using someone else’s work. Can you think of any really convincing reasons I can tell the company I NEED to re-model it myself?
My thanks in advance. :o

Does their Cad system support animation?
Would there be a long learning curve to use their system if it does?
In a side by side comparison, which is more appealing, time saving and flexible?
Will the animation have to be modified by others on a different system somewhere down the line?
Just thoughts…

You can always settle for one of my favorite lines:

“Its just the way i work most competently, i always get the best results doing it my way.”

I don’t think it is cheating to import a CAD file
you are hired to produce a product
does a chef have to grow the food he cooks?

having said that - it can be a lot of work tiding up an imported file anyway (maybe even more than modeling it from scratch)

But I suppose it comes down to what the customer wants and what is easiest for you
(why make your job harder)
If the model needs to be millimeter perfect - use the CAD and tidy it up for the animation
It’s much easier than trying to model it exactly in blender

To be totally honest i don’t understand how animating something they modelled as detracting from what you are doing.

I import models from Solidworks to animate all the time. They are the kind of products that would just take a heck load longer to remodel.

The biggest questions are “is the model good” and “is the model going to be hard to recreate”

P.S. There is no bonus scheme in this world for taking the hard way. The easy way is a very good way to make money.

Somehow I have seen this issue pop up quite many times (people want to do everything by themselves or they think it’s cheating or somehow despicable). Some people don’t even want to retouch (changing color balance, adding signature etc.) the rendered pictures afterwards as they think that doing so in photoshop/gimp is wrong somehow.

Using multiple applications and working in team (for example: someone makes the models, someone textures them and someone does the animation) when doing projects is no way cheating or wrong in any way. It’s called work pipeline and there could not be animations like Ratatouille without teamwork and many different applications.

I would even dare to say that you should use any method necessary to alleviate your workload (without compromising the quality of the work). Using copyrighted material without permission is different thing, but if you can use something with permission you should. Everyone should learn to optimize work and rendertimes if they wish to do 3D as a profession.

So I think that if there is fundamentally nothing wrong with the CAD models that you can get, you should use them.

I have been working on scene with finnish rail locomotives and trainstations. The also cave me cad version of their stuff but it was way overdetailed for what They needed. So i just tossed their version to dumpster (without even asking) and remodelled stuff using referenses ofcourse.

In most cases of my works (that i have done for commercial or “commercial” entities) its been just about what the finished project looks like. They dont really care how you did it.

Though i have slight problem doing “shopping” (using Photoshop / Paintshop) to improve the image of my renders. I know its silly. But one can do pretty much anything in them and to me it lessens the value of “original” Blender work somehow. This is why many of my pics use quite complex (and propably quite stupid in the end) composition nodes to get similar effects that people do in postpro generally.

No offense, but… You want US to tell you your reason for not doing something, for a professional job? Get real! The company has already spent time and money on the CAD.

If there’s no good reason not to use it, then use it, damnit! If you’re afraid you can’t, learn. If you don’t have the time to learn, then that’s fine – be a pro, say that’s not your area of expertise, but that you’ll get the project done within agreed time and budget your own way.

This cuts both ways though. As a professional, you don’t need to feel bad about using someone else’s templates, borrowing ideas from others, etc. If that’s what it takes, then that’s what it takes. Professionals know that, and do what it takes to get things done. Barring immorality, of course, but there’s nothing immoral in using works a company owns for the company’s own projects. Neither is there anything immoral in not wasting their time.

Just be mature. Don’t give the company crap, and don’t take crap from the company either. Even though it’s just you working with the company, think of yourself as one company’s director dealing with another company’s director. That’s usually closer to how it is in legal terms anyway.

In the commercial world there is a set of golden rules

  1. Get ‘it’ done on yesterday
  2. Product meets spec
    Framework: process should be done in a legal manner and the project shouldn’t break your finance or health in the process.

So, if you have to tender to your ego, do it by all means. But if doing that means you can’t comply to those rules, then fold your ego neatly and put it in your pocket, get the job done, and last but not least: GET PAID.

If something is done for yourself already, by all means us it if it’s up to standard and ethical. This gives you time to concentrate on other aspects too.

Import it and then decide if it would take a shorter amount of time to either clean it up for animation or re-make the thing. Whatever is the fastest way is the best. If you plan to re-model it you should aim to get the highest possible quality model you can. If you can’t re-create the detail of the original (or make it better) then don’t do it.

To paraphrase Richard Williams: Everything about animation is a cheat. If you can find some way to do less work and get the same or better results, then by all means cheat your pants off.

I know, it is very tempting to do everything yourself. But unless it’s a demo reel (and maybe not even then), resist. As was said, everything is a “cheat”, it’s all just an illusion.

As stated, about the ONLY reasons for not use the CAD file is it doesn’t import cleanly and doesn’t look good or it’s too complicated and you can’t animate it easily. And even then, you could probably use retopo to simplify the mesh.

And toontje was dead on:

  1. Get ‘it’ done on yesterday
  2. Product meets spec

Minimum cost = minimum time. cost/time = your earnings per hour. Take less time to do it, you get more time to learn, sell or make money building something else.

Look at it this way… if you were a car dealer, would you pay extra for a car commercial where, say, three guys are talking while eating hamburgers carefully and slowly made from scratch, hand ground, pressed into perfectly round patties, warm, fresh buns made of stone-ground flour and grilled over an open fire by a world famous chef right there on the set… at $250 each, versus $5 if they grabbed a couple of burgers from McD?

Not very likely. And neither should your clients. Only if it was a luxury car and you were showing extreme closeups would it make the slightest difference… and you would only need one: for the closeup shot.
Use McD’s for the rest because the good ones will be wilted the rest of the time anyway - which is why PLASTIC food is used for many many product commerical pictures! Cut the cost.