Are Blender artists too isolated / isolationist?

So… I went ahead and did something crazy.

In an effort to ‘test’ how okay BA folk are with reaching out to other creative communities, I have created a rather weird challenge in the challenge forum. I have zero idea what I am doing, but I hope that the weirdness of it can motivate some people, nonetheless…

well the answer is in the middle from my pov blender itself has isolated parts example the sculpting part of blender gets very few attention from the addon community and dont even get me started on texturing and the blender community from my pov must think outside of the box instead relying on ideas from the inside .

also blender artist are quite stubborn in some cases seriously the community should push for better nurbs in blender and for the addition of t splines and breps in blender and parametric solid cad modeling instead of focusing on useless features like 2d and video editing though blender 2d is good companies will still use moho or toon boom its better for blender to concentrate on cad instead of 2d blender mesh modeling is great if cad like features are added like parametric modeling and other modeling formats like splines and breps then we will see engineers switch to blender due to variety of options and tools also ease of use which will lead to a drop in autodesk income(autodesks main income is cad not maya or max) .

as a blender artist who has tried zbrush i can say blender is catching close to zbrush but it still needs basic tools like primitive brushs, sculpt layers and vdms ( also i didnt mention the 3d stamp tool because thats a zbrush only feature not a basic feature . adding a 3d stamp tool to sculpting in blender may lead to legal disputes) to be honest the blender bubble needs holes in it so people can see blenders problems and demand fixes so this great software could stay on the right path to be industry standard or higher

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I disagree that “Blender bubble” ever was a big problem. It is very bold to assume every Blender user never tried anything else. Many (me included) switched from 3ds Max or Zbrush because of objective reasons (not limited to price). Both of these programs have the problem with usesless feature bloat for bigger degree than Blender, while being regarded as paragons of quality. “Industry standards” in the end are just the standars of the current biggest monopoly, and doesnt nessessary equal “good”. Zbrush being considered one is funny, since it was repurposed from painting program to 3d mid development and is still riddled with some insane design decisions as a consequence

Two things:
1: Not everybody, just a lot of people, enough to make a noticeable impact on how everyone (yes, everyone) socializes. One drunk guy at a party does not mean everybody is drinking, but one drunk guy will likely change what many others are doing (like, making them avoid him).
2: It’s not a “what tool do you use” issue, it’s more a “what kind of creative people do you socialize with on a regular basis”. Do you socialize with ZBrush users who did not make the shift to Blender? Do you socialize with traditional painters, musicians, writers, on a regular basis, regarding everybody’s or anything else?

Forums arent a good indicator of anything. Active forum posters are often do not have better things to do or mostly talk, while creatives queitly work on their own things.
Personally, I wont socialize much with anyone, including Blender users, without pragmatic reasons. Other 3d programs’ users? If it involves working on some common project, then I do. In other cases, they wont be helpful in solving questions involving Blender, and of course I am not wasting my life proving anything to kids who torrented Maya and scream at every corner how their program is “more professional”. 2d artists? on occassion, though I often get the feeling of aloofness and hostility from them. 3d is still commonly regarded as cheat, fake, etc, even if you need the same principles that apply to any art to succeed in it. Big question, is “real” art community even worth looking up to? If I need help on composition or color theory, I better read a book

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I think this is an interesting conversation even if I tend to see things quite differently…

First, I think if you consider yourself as a blender artist you may be in the wrong, I don’t think such a thing exist except for this forums name. Blender isn’t an art form, it’s a 3D tool to do CG.
Would you consider a pencil artist, or a oil paint artist, or rather a drawer / painter ?
A guitarist is a musician playing guitar, and chances are that he is also interested in listening to other instrument and probably doesn’t hang out only with guitarist. But it’s understandable that , in order to learn more the guitar he studies especially guitar and learn from other guitarist too.

Your main tool may be blender, but if it’s the only tool you work with you may limiting too much.
Same with the guitarist, he probably know other tools in order to record himself, or get general knowledge about sound and music and eventually being able to play in a band.

Being a CG artist, you can’t stay in your own bubble in order to learn your craft.
Most of modelers takes inspirations from concept artists that works in 2D.
As someone working in archviz you may have interest/grow a culture of architecture in general, photography too, in order to improve.
If you’re interested in movie making, you need to learn and study other talented artists in very different fields, such as writing, filming, photography, design, comedy, sound,music nearly every art form can find it’s place in the making of a movie.

Chances are that while doing CG you grow other passion not related to CG but imaging in general, like drawing, photography, filming…
I think no-one, see a pixar movie as a presto/renderman movie, that is completely different from a blender movie. It’s CG animation, and the tools aren’t relevant. Or watch a stop motion movie and find it completely irrelevant to your field, it’s the same thing.

Growing interest in these art forms may open the doors to encounter people that have a link to what you do… You try to write a story on your own , what a chance to meet someone who do writing and talk about that field. Meeting an stop motion animator can be so much interesting too…

Eventually you may come to the conclusion that movie and art in general tends to talk about life, things we can all relate to, and in that way everything/everyone in life is interesting and inspiring.
CG and art in general ask for a lot of curiosity and you should feed it with the external world. How to find inspiration otherwise ?

Now, I find quite funny that the solution provided here takes the form of a forum.
While forums are great way to connect with people you wouldn’t otherwise, they still are quite limited.
And I find hanging too much on forums lead to isolation as well. Talking on forum have it’s use, but I find it quite limited compared to meeting people in real life. That’s the thing we should encourage people to do : to go in the outside world, but they probably manage it very well on their own.
Obviously making things together is interesting, say a musician and a videographer doing an experiment together.
But it will be probably much harder to happen over a forum or social media, rather than in real life.
Staying in the “blender bubble” does such experiment append often in a forum ?
But , you may encounter people doing blender next to your place, being friend with and that eventually lead you to do something together.
Same thing can append with other field, you meet someone who has interesting story to tell, you work with him/her in order to make a film. Or you do a music video for a band you like…

So may I ask, don’t you don’t find preferring forums, chat, or other social media, over real life interactions a sign of isolation on it’s own ?


Yes to all of this. Aside from your excellent points about “not being a Blender artist” (which I agree with), I want to comment on the second half of your post.

Real-life interactions are 1000 times better than forum interactions. Forums are for quickly finding solutions to problems and sharing your finished work- everything else doesn’t work well in a non-physical setting. You can gain so much more from sitting down and talking with a creative- regardless of their field- than you can with any digital interaction.

The biggest difficulty is finding these people in reasonable physical proximity to you. For example, I currently live in a poor, non-technical, low population density area in the United States. Getting good internet here is challenging enough- finding someone within a 100-mile radius of me that has ever heard the words “Blender” or “ZBrush” is improbable if not impossible.

This is an agricultural and chemical industry state, there are no game development or animation studios within a full day’s drive of me. The closest “art cafe” (I’m a huge fan of those, I should mention!) is 45 minutes away, and it’s not really an “art cafe”, it’s just an outdoor pub with live music that sometimes has painting classes. I’ve lived in places that have a strong culture of supporting the arts- this is not one of them.

Low tech literacy combined with an overall lack of free time (poorer people have less free time) means that for now, since no one here has the time or interest to be creative, forum interaction is my only option. I wish that wasn’t the case, but I really don’t have any say in that.

Another contributing factor is that I don’t work in any type of creative industry- I work in marketing, doing development, so:

is not an option for me. I don’t know or work with any videographers, for example, nor are there any organizations, groups, or gathering places for creatives within at least 100 miles of me.

I don’t mean to sound like I’m disagreeing with you- I do agree with you completely, I wish I could do exactly what you describe in your post! I just don’t have any possible way to do that, currently.

To summarize- I want nothing more than to have physical interactions with diverse creatives, I just can’t see any way to do it with the physical circumstances I’m in

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Nuh uh. I’m cool, and I have lots of friends.

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I said “often”, didnt mean to dismiss all of local community. Sorry, I was needlessly harsh. Bad personal experience with such forums, general discussions often degrade into cesspools of negativity. For example, Unity is still the most popular game engine for indies. Unity discussion forums? dominated by same half a dozen people who whine incessantly and shill for UE5. Blenderartists also feel like that at times, with users constantly blaming their tools and bringing up “basic” functions of other programs, which in reality often means “ultra specialized high level gimmicks”

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Thanks a lot for bringing your point of view upon what I said !
That was indeed something I had in mind while writing, but hard to talk about because I don’t have that experience of being isolated by default.

Of course forums are a great way to get a daily dose of artwork and CG related interaction.
And web in general works similar to access to a lot of knowledge, as artist we always need to broaden our curiosity and learn about our craft and the world in general in order to represent it.

What I was implying is that collaboration between artists is hard to achieve even when you meet them IRL on a regular basis. Forum doesn’t make that any simpler. But sharing experience is already something good.

Interacting with artists on forums is great, even if limited. Real life interaction are different, that doesn’t mean it have to be on a regular basis to be effective.
Sometime you met someone and talk for a few hours and that inspiring conversation remains in your brain and change your perspective.

I think at first , you may do blender on your own, and can be delighted to find and interact with other people passionate about blender. Then you can discover that interacting with people interested in imaging is as much as interesting. Eventually you may find similar interest by talking to other kind of artists. And find similar interesting interaction with passionate people in general. We all have something in common that we can learn from or share.
At some point you may realize that it can go even broader than that.
That’s to me how you get outside of your own bubble.

These interactions, you can have them online or if you’re lucky from time to time IRL.
As said, you may not need them on a regular basis but it’s important to look for them even if you have limited possibilities.
If you have the chance to travel a bit, or go to some event to meet people it’s always rewarding.

Could be super interesting to see how people deal with that, how while being artists “isolated by default” they manage to interact with other artists in different fields. Is online interaction the only way in that case ?


Yeah, my reaction was similar – I don’t live where that might be possible. IRL interactions are better IF and only if you have around you people with compatible personalities and interests. If you’re looking for collaboration, they have to have the interest and the matching abilities you would need for it as well. I’d guess that this ideal circumstance only actually occurs with some reliability in large cities, especially those that have a reputation for attracting creatives. And even there it doesn’t happen without some effort. One benefit the net has over RL is that even unknown artists can show their work far and wide.

I don’t live nor do I want to live again in a large city (ok, Amsterdam maybe; that was marvelous, but it’s an exception). I’m introverted and don’t thrive on lots of IRL socializing. And so I much prefer online venues for establishing connections with people. I’ve met countless amazing people online, people who have enriched my life, people I would have never encountered IRL and even if I had we likely wouldn’t have struck up a conversation, we’d have been ships passing in the night. All of that is much easier electronically, in digital spaces where people with similar interests connect, and regarding art, especially places where people can share theirs. It’s a lot more fractured now compared to what the internet was like when I started (most of my long-term friendships began on Usenet), so I appreciate that maybe it’s harder now – on the other hand a lot more people are online now, search is much better, and there are large creative communities that function as aggregators and social spaces.

For the sort of connection with somebody that would lead to collaboration, at some point the forum in which you meet isn’t personal enough anymore; then you simply take it to another form of communication. I just encountered something like that right here – the developer of Graswald has a long thread starting from his first model of a plant back in 2016 when he was a student. He now has a company with several employees, and he met the programmer who wrote the code for his addon (and who still works with him) right here.


You got a link to that thread??


Beware, it’s an 800+ thread. I don’t remember where exactly the collaboration happened, but it was a ways in. It’s a fascinating thread overall (for me) because there’s the success story that slowly sneaks up on you, for one, but also the start of all the hard work was in part motivated by his mother being on his back about getting a real job instead of playing with 3D, snicker.


For a long time, I have been absolutely captivated by the whole SCP Foundation concept. The entries are very hit and miss (I dislike the shallow grandeur of many of the newer ones, to be honest), but the wide collaboration in creating a shared fictional concept is just amazing. Originally, The Embassy of Time was meant to go in a similar direction, only with time travel stories instead of modern horror. But I slowly realized that it is impossible to deliberately create a shared fiction on that scale; SCP was a fluke, and I am not the lucky type. So now, I simply like the idea of larger collab efforts. I am still trying to figure out if I am completely nuts in that regard, too.

Sorry if I seem a bit depressing or incoherent. My cat died of cancer less than 24 hours ago, my brain is not in tip-top shape…


so, TLDR: learn more things like Maya?

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These bubbles people hang on talking about common interests is usual part of human society. I don’t think it’s nessessary to “breakthrough” these bubbles. Instead breaking things you are free to join as many such groups for interests as you wish to communicate to people with different interests. Invite other people to your bubbles join their bubbles and everybody are happy! :grinning:

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I started to paint outside to overcome the isolation and talk to poeple and its fantastic what happen …try it and see how great and different poeple are.

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Hahaha :smiley:
TBH I’m as stubborn as you !

I didn’t make studies in CG and learned on my own, and at that time (~20 years ago) I was passionate with opensource and wanted to work only with blender. Many people told me to learn other 3D software, I tried that a tiny bit , that was kind of inspiring and help me to understand tiny things in blender better. But I never get to a point where I can work with them.

Still I know a bit of nuke, I can manage in after effect even if I try to avoid this software in general. That also helped me to get some jobs at some point but it’s a minority. So yeah I managed what I wanted in the end.

Should I recommend you to do the same ? hum, not sure…
It was a tough ride, it took me like ~5 years to learn on my own and the first job I got after that wasn’t what we could call a dream job. I had to work a lot to compensate my lack of experience (lots of night sleeping on the company’s couch) and what I’ve done there wasn’t super interesting. It was corporate videos, you can see here a project that was one of my best at that time.

It took me another 5 years working at that company to start reaching different jobs and from there it slowly got better with time.

If I have some advice to give , it’s that’s important to do what you feels right, but it’s also ok to go out of your comfort zone especially if that can make your life easier in the end.

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Very interesting, it looks like you are a performance artist without even knowing it.

Fully understand this background history:

When i got into 3D/CGI i first used PovRay (yes it’s still there) and a modeller for it and also tried Radiance. Then i had the luck to work a bit with 3D Studio MAX (or one of their names inbetween, the stack system drove me mad at first because i just wanted to model in 3D but is was quite nice then ), a little bit of Lightwave (ahh a modeller with which you can make points in 3D :wink: ) and even Cinema4D (there was a simple version of it for just something like 100-200$ or so but i never really got into it)… Then i experience Modo (?)… i think… as pure modeler…?? Then came Wings3D (written in the beautyfull Erlang language) and of course Blender.
(Never had the change to use Maya or Houdini).

At the time the big ones all get availabe for personal use… i wasn’t using Window anymore… now as they sometimes are available for Linux… i first don’t mind… but i maybe some day…

Long story short: I struggled with different approaches and learnt a lot in the end or at the moment i’m fine with blender. So my bubble is somkind of big or multiple or even more like foam :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

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