Elephants Dream Tutorial Series?

I was recently pondering Elephants Dream. That film is such an inspiration to aspiring Blenderists, but I think for many it is still a mystery as to how it was created. I know I was overwhealmed when I opened many of the .blend files. It’s great that they made the film open source, but I think the anatomy of it is still above the heads of most users.

So what to do?
I was thinking of how cool it would be if there was a DVD that walked through the structure of the film and the workflow used to produce it. I know there is a “making of” documentary about the people who created the film, and it touches on the creative process and evolution of the story, but as far as I know nobody has really broken down the technical workings of the film. I think if a massive tutorial explaining how Elephants Dream was made, we would see more studios releasing Blender-made films, which would be an exciting thing for the Blender community.

What do you all think?

i sort of understand the files now, but i admit the furst time i looked at them thay were quite intimidating.
i don’t understand how 90% of it was done, even after locking at the files for ages:(

I like the idea… Since you mentioned it was going to be a DVD seems you’re talking about a commercial project, but wanted to ask anyway… is it thought to be commercial or public?

Either commercial or public would be good. I mentioned the DVD format because I thought (A) it would be quite long, and (B) I wasn’t sure if people would be willing to take on such a large task without monetary incentives. My opinion is that it should be public in keeping with the open source spirit, but whatever it takes to get it made, I won’t complain.

Maybe we could start a fundraiser or pre-sale campaign to pay the creators to take the time to create the tutorial series? Hearing it from the source would after all be ideal. Plus, I’m not sure if anybody else really understands all of it, haha!

i agree this is a good idea, but i believe that the comunity just need a scene from sketch to final movie, a simple one that explains the creation process in all stages from modelling until post process, but this “simple scene” is a huge task i dont know if anyone will ever do it…

Yeah. It is a huge task. It could be broken down by section though:

  • Modelling
  • Materials
  • Lighting
  • Rigging
  • Animation

And maybe if the creators just explained the highlights, or most challenging parts of the film to make, then those principals would apply to the more basic parts as well and they wouldn’t have to explain the concepts repeatedly.

Why do you need tutorials for that? There’s already lots of it available.


I have the ED dvds and have looked at a lot of the files, particularly the Proog ones and learnt a lot. Modelling, lighting, etc tutorials are everywhere as already stated, so these tutorials would run along the lines of ‘this is specifically how I made Proog’, which might be helpful, but probably not practical. I think the Peach team is intending to do more documentation this time to help people make the most of the files on the dvd so we’ll see what comes of that. Also Bassam and Andy (I think both of them) are working on training DVD’s as we speak, so seeing as they had a large part to play in the film, some of that stuff might be in there.

Hope that is of some use