A newbie needs your help!

This is my first post in these forums, but i have been reading the posts here for about a week.
I started using Blender a long time ago but didn’t really handle it well.
Then i tried again and learned the basics. So now, that i got the hang of it i’d like to try out a more serious project. To learn. A lot.
I know how to extrude, rotate, scale and move objects. I know what Object and Edit modes are and i have experimented a little with the different buttons in those panels. I also experimented a bit with materials, shading and toon shading.
But my knowledges are still very basic. I don’t know why but i’m having a really hard time learning blender (don’t get me wrong i’m not stupid or thick in any way!), not because it is hard itself but because i’m having a hard time with my brain right now. I kinda overloaded it with stuff in the seventh and sixth grade and now i’m not doing well in school at all.
Anyways, my point is that maybe you guys could give me examples and ideas of a bigger project (not as big as a one hour film or such) that i could work with and maybe help me on the way to the finish line.

Thanks for taking time!

Juggler, you need to take your time and learn blender. Don’t worry if you do not pick it up right away there are many people that never pick it up, and if your in the seventh grade now you have a better chance than most of us.

I am in eight grade now. In sweden this is the first class with real grades so i am a bit stressed up about that too.
Do you have any good ideas that i could attempt at?
Doesn’t have to be that complicated either, just something that kkeps me evolving and learning.
Once again, thanks for the reply, Kerry!


Maybe to start you could try to model objets of everyday life, ones you can have… I don’t know… An MP3 player? A pencil? Your mouse? A tea mug? A box of crackers? Your desk chair?
Well this is if you are into modeling. some may prefer other CG aspects like lighting, texturing, i don’t know.
If you want to learn a little of each thing, starting with modeling is good. After that, you can texture and set your models up into a scene, with good lighting.
Kerry27 is right : take your time, be in no haste. Let knowledge flow into you like water drops fill the box under the gutter (ouch, i’m no poet ;)). If you practice a bit everyday, even 30 min after school (HA, after homework, I should say), this will help you improve.

Be well and don’t be discouraged by school. Give the best you can and never give up.

Ok, i’ll try some of that stuff.
I have a new question. I am currently following a tutorial about the fluid sim.
But where is that button that says “Fluid” in object mode, i can’t find it!!

Yay! i found it under the Physics tab.
Oh, and i was talking about version 2.42a

Well, actually I wouldn’t suggest starting out with Fluid simulation…it is a) not THAT good yet and still in development, b) it obviously involves animation which is also not that easy to start with and c) it is so damn time consuming because of the baking times. So, to sum it up, I’d suggest you move on to something else :wink:

It is very hard to tell you what you should model - modeling should be fun (at least for us hobbyists) and therefore you should model something, what you WANT to model. For me that was easy - I love mechanical things, stunning cityscapes and “darkness” (uhm, I guess you will know what I mean when you look at my stuff :smiley: ). Therefore I started with simple machines, tried myself on various techniques and especially tried to plan what I wanted to do - it is really hard to make a complex model (meaning complexity in terms of numbers of meshes) without a plan or at least an image of the object you want to model.
Other people love organic things - characters or something like that. That is pretty hard to start out with (and even for the experienced users a real challenge) so one might want to do something in the middle first. Cars would be an idea here, although they aren’t easy either.

…so, what do I really suggest? Model what you want. If it is a character, okay, then so be it. You shouldn’t be to disappointed when it doesn’t look as you expect it but if you have the basics, you’ll surely learn some general techniques and approaches when you model a character - even if the final outcome isn’t that great.
If you want some satisfaction coming out of the project, too, then it is obviously better to model something simple, as someone suggested, mp3 players or mobile phones are small models, not too complex and with a lot of useful imagery available. But still they provide a good challenge as most of them are made of more or less organic shapes combined with machinery and repetitive detail, which is very common for mechanical modelling. You will most likely dive into both worlds at once.

The next step is not only to model it, but also to make a proper lighting setup and materials as well as textures to make a realistic render (and probably do some postprocessing!). This should not be forgotten when you want to learn CG.

Wish you all the best…whew…this is way too long…:wink:

What nice post!
Thank you, Myke!
I like Machines, Mechs and “Steampunk” sort of things really much.
One of my favourite blender stuff must be the Chicken Chair shortfilm.
I think i’d like to do some kind of bolted together mechanical bird?
Now, where do i start?
Maybe do a beak?
Or the main body?
I’m thinking these different metal plates shaped and screwed together.
Where the wings attach to the body i’d like some kind of rubber thing there, like a harmonica if you know what i mean. The most of the metal should have different colours, like bronze, copper, tin and steel.
But how would i illustrate feathers? And how do i texture it?
Maybe it should be really worn and grungy?

Well, i know that i have a lot of questions and a lot to learn left but i’ll maybe try it out right now and check in later. Oh, about the fluid sim;
I made an awesome glass with water splashing inside, it has to be the coolest thing i’ve ever done!! I erally liked it and i learned some things about materials, like RayTransp. and RayMir. and what they do.
I’ll post a pic of that as soon as that render is done.

Another Misc question:
Can you do Clay renders with blender, i really enjoy clay renders.


What is CG short for?

You might find some useful video tutorials here.

Hope that helps.

Also, don’t let your grades go down because of Blender (or anything). Your grades and school subjects are far more important now. Do the schoolwork first, then reward yourself with having fun in Blender! :slight_smile:

CG = Computer Graphics

Thanks Kernond!
You propably misunderstood what i was meaning with the school thing, i meant that i myself was having a hard time, just because of me.
Thanks for the linky.
For you guys wondering what happeneed with the fluid simulator thingy i had going on, check this out!

Where can i upload the 1280x1024 version of it without having to pay money?
It was all rendered in Blender internal, three area lights and no post-production.

No progresss on that robo-bird yet, still don’t really know what to do…
Maybe i should draw some concept art for it so i have somewhere to start from?

That would be a good idea. Concept and visualisation can easily take a few days (that means, if you don’t have the time to work on it for hours a day). Take your time and don’t rush that. Also, with such a “hard” model, you shouldn’t expect progress so fast. It will take some time and you must be patient.

And don’t ask too many questions at once or we all will get confused O_o
Make sure you read the Blenderwiki, too!

(BTW, Clay renders are easy with Ambient Occlusion…see the wiki!)

Hey man, I started ou a year ago,(I was in seventh grade as well) And Ive had a lot of fun, and i think ive made a lot of progress(check out my WIP). just do wutever interest you. If you see some model you like(within reason) take a shot at modeling it. if you thought up some space ship, toon, even stickfigure try to model it. Your only limit is your creativity(and the amount of ram on your computer ;))
Peace, and happy blending

If you can’t think of something to model/texutre/light, then maybe you could try and use blender for part of a school project i.e. art? or maybe something like science, if you have to design something. Doing this might keep you going in one direction for a while. I leared a lot from doing a school project with blender, simply because I had to, and if I didn’t feel like doing it, I did anyway because it was due soon. (Also, my teacher was so amazed!)
Keep up the blending and you will improve really quickly.

Hey, one more thing. It’s very important to have some structure to your approach in learning. If you were learning to draw, you wouldn’t just go around and draw, draw, draw. That would be only one aspect of the learning process.

To be really good, you will have to focus on specific things (eyes, noses, ears, lips, hands, etc.). Learn to create various types of the same things otherwise, you’ll only be able to really create one type of something. This is often mistaken for “style”, when in fact it is simply a lack of ability to do it any other way. Don’t make that mistake of limiting yourself. Especially at the beginning.

Also, realize that 3D is not just Blender. Blender is merely the tool of choice. So, be sure to study things outside the mechanics of using Blender like lighting, color, use of space, scene composition, camera angles, etc. Now when I say study, I don’t mean just try a bunch of stuff. I mean learn the reasoning behind doing something a particular way. Otherwise, your work will suffer from a lack of depth and understanding. Also,…

…hey!, where are you going with my soapbox! I wasn’t finished!..

Have Fun! :slight_smile:

Kernond has a point. there is a difference between style and lacking ability.
But dont force yourself to learn everything in some prewutevered order, just so you know everything. Learn wut you want to first. Then, thru that, youll find out about things you have to know. Say you want to model a person. You could start witha box, and make a simple person. you want to animate it, so you learn to rig. You do, and thru you studies, develop your animation skill. but you get tired of your box character…so you learn how to model a human. learning is a different path for everyone. at one point or another youll have to learn everything, or just quit.
So at heart, i agree with kernond, but i dont think you need to go…“well this week Ill learn how to model horses” and spend all week doing that. Theres no preset learning order. learn what you want, and if your really interested, youll learn everything you can…

“Thanks for lettin me borrow your soapbox kernond… sure you can have it back.”

Cool, i will think about all these things you have told me, thanks a lot guys!
Now, back to blender… evil grin