(adyus) #1

Warning! This topic will likely influence my future, so please take it seriously.

I received 3D Studio Max 5 say, for my birthday. It’s cool, but I am facing a crossroads here. I plan to stick to 3D Computer Graphics till University time, when I want to follow a good course. What would help me more right now, and what would be more fun? Staying with Blender and Lightflow and trying at least to reach a mediocre level compared to the rest of you, or switching to 3D Max and starting learning its interface, etc so I can be competitive at least by knowing how to use Max if not spitting out some fine artwork(s?). If I choose Max, I’ll almost surely choose a 'versity course using Max, so no switching to Lightwave or Cinema4D or Maya later. If I choose Blender+Lightflow, I can continue to get better in the general art of 3d modelling and texturing, and learn interface and stuff like that directly in college. Either way, I feel Blender has given me a new purpose in life and I’ll at least come to it for reference from time to time. (I just found an old dusty wrecked wares CD and realised I must thank the people who made it for including Blender 1.8 when burning it, two years ago or so). Note that I’ll be in High School next year and my time is limited due to the nature of the high I’ll be going to (it’s Japanese). I don’t think I’ll have enough time to use both at the same time. I need your advice. Sorry for making you read all this.

(BgDM) #2

It depends on what you want to do in CG. From what I have seen in the past, Max is typically used for game models and making environments, etc., for the gaming industry. That is not to say that it is no good at regular CG images, that is far from it. But Max seems to be industry standard for game makers. If you are looking to get into just good CG graphics later on, then I would suggest you try Lightwave, Maya or XSI. These packages are used more for regular CG work and in movies, etc.

For now, I would suggest you stick with your art courses in school and get good at drawing, painting, etc. This will be your best bet at getting into a good CG course. If you can’t do good art to start with, you probably won’t do very good CG. Most good CG schools want you to have at least 2-3 years of practical art either in college or university before you can even get into the CG course, (here in Canada anyway).

So I would maybe suggest you stick with Blender top get the basics down and stick with the standadr forms of artwork and improve your skills before you go head on into MAX.

But that is just my opinion. You don’t have to listen to it. :wink:


(PowerMacG4) #3

I ran into some new thoughts for my career. I started my own DVD Authoring Business. Well business got slow (mostly my fault) but I’m digging 3D artwork. I have no time for college. So weighed my options, skills and likes.
I notice that 3D artwork world is large, very large. From gamers, movies, artwork and commercial work. I guess what I’m saying is if you dig modelling then stick with Blender, it gives one a nice foundation. But for me a Blender / BMRT combo is what I like. with BMRT or 3Delight you get the shader experiance. Shader experiance is growing, games like Doom 3 which uses shaders will be starting a new trend. Also the newer video cards have serious shader support, ATI went so far to use Pixar Renderman style shaders. Blender is perfect for learning Modelling, and working with other apps like LightFlow or BMRT/ 3Delight gives you that multi-app experiance which is important, but if you got 3D studio Max use it also.
Also stick with traditional art. and if you decide to go the hardcore shader (3Delight or BMRT) route with Blender or 3D studio Max look into some c programming classes.
One thing to know, no matter if its photorealism, non-photorealism, gaming, concept art, 3d artwork or just for fun “modelling” is the main thing. so long as you can model you good, even kick butt plain Ol’ matte models look wonderful. I’m planning on buying Lightwave 3D but I will never abandon Blender.
Sorry for being all over the place with my reply.

(CurtisS) #4

I agree with BgDM. The important thing is to study art. It doesn’t matter what software package you choose. A great painter can use any brush.

(JanneVee) #5

I can continue to get better in the general art of 3d modelling and texturing, and learn interface and stuff like that directly in college.

IMHO The general art is more important than the tool you use to produce it. Changing tool has a negative impact on your productivity. Being productive is an important factor to get better at the art. After you learned the art the tool changing becomes easier and less impact on productivity.

(kevin3d) #6

I’m curious why you say you would never abandon Blender…do you feel its modeling is that good…compared to Lightwave?

(digitalSlav) #7


lightwave has very powerful mesh editing tools

although for the nitty gritty blender always seems to model faster :slight_smile:

(kevin3d) #8

Thanks, tmtechie!

I’m teaching now so I can get educational discount on software. I’m thinking of Cinema4D or Lightwave and right now leaning towards lightwave.

(PowerMacG4) #9

I won’t abandon Blender for one good reason. I get the feeling of freedom when I use it. Not to sound whack or anything like that. Also it runs on my IRIX box and cost me no money, beside what I choose to drop into blender3d.com.

(Rob) #10

I think that whilst you can be as un-commercial as possible. Which generally is while you are young and free. Put effort into the more classical arts, that is the only real investment, the root of everything you will do on a computer.

At some stage you will want a job, I don’t think this means learn the commercial tool to get the job. If you are good at using a software tool/program then you are a programmer, if you are good at art you are an artist! If you can do both your a clever sod.

This is the impression I get from reading around. I use Blender as a hobby, I am too old, and short of talent, to get good enough for anything else. When I work hard at Bender I get better in the programming sense, the art side of it is beyond my reach. Reach for the art!


(imatthew) #11

Although it is kind of frusterating having to flip around different interfaces. There is a posative. When I started working with lightwave I found that it re-enforced the basic underlying methods of 3d. You discover how to do the same thing with buttons that are named differently. At first this sounds like crap and a waste of time but then you become more confident that the idea is more important than the tool and that you even learn to work better with blender too.

Because you understand the idea behind the tool then you can make the right choices to make your projects.

Try not to abandon blender and also embrace max. And just make sure that you organize your time around projects. That way you always at the end of a project (whether you like the final result or not) have something tangible to evaluate your growth.

(hannibar) #12

I would learn max ! Then when you’ve done learning, you can still choose what to do in which app. E.g : you can find modelling easier in blender, rigging better in max, and then rendering in brazil or something like that.
Anyway it doesn’t hurt to learn 2 3d apps.

(adyus) #13

Thanks for the opinions everyone! It helped me decide. I decided that I’d finish my current projects in Blender(that could take more than a year :wink: )then I’ll finish teh 3D max tutorials and make a quick project to show I understood them, then it’s back 2 blender until I need Max for a serious job or for college. How’s that?

(Adrian) #14

max Is typically use in the gaming industry and not in films however maya\softimage\ElectricImage are use in films almost exclusively.
the best advice i can give is to learn to create; develop the skills needed that can translate over to other software. yes, you will eventually have to learn new software, but most companies in the CG industry (gaming AND films) hire for creative skills not for skills in a certain software package.
incidentally, alot of the upper echelon of CG pros have a fine arts/traditional arts background (i.e. they have studied drawing, painting, etc first to develop an understanding of how light works and how to translate your ideas to another media like print or CG) good books to buy are digital lighting techniches (i think that is the title) and other books on general character animation and also any of bill fleming’s books are also well worth the money.