Freebird XR - VR Modeling inside Blender

Hi folks!

I’ve been experimenting with adding VR (Virtual Reality) based 3D modeling capabilities in Blender, through an add-on called Freebird XR. It’s still early in development, and could really use some usage feedback!

The intention is to add only the features that really make sense in VR, for quick concept modeling (e.g. for concept art). You can instantly switch between VR mode and regular Blender for more powerful tools. No need to use different software for VR, or export/import files.

July 9, 2022 - v1.0 - 3D Pen - The first usable feature is now ready, which is a 3D Pen. You can think of it like a fully 3D (but basic) greasepencil. You can draw freely in all 3 dimensions (in the air), and move/edit your strokes.

It’s a very basic first feature, nothing too grand. But I’ve found 3D line drawing very powerful during the concept phase of my professional projects (using Tilt Brush VR). Pretty useful to draw and visualize a 3D idea in just a few minutes, and see it floating in front of me.

So hopefully this 3D line drawing feature will be useful to others as well, since it works directly inside Blender. Your lines will be drawn live into your Blender project as editable paths, so you can create 3D models over them later if you want.

I’d really love some feedback. If you’d like to try it out, please let me know in the comments (or message me directly). It will be a commercial add-on in the future, but you can try it for free by contacting me.

Thanks!
~cmdr2
https://instagram.com/freebirdxr

PS: Special thanks to Peter Kim (@muxed-reality) from the Blender XR team, and Arpit Rajpurohit.

3 Likes

I reviewed Gravity Sketch for Architecture Modeling 1 year, 9 months, 8 days ago.

When this become available, I might give it a go, but even then I can’t review it at the moment because my video backlogs are a little overwhelming at the moment.

1 Like

Hey, this looks cool. I’ve sent you an email because I’d like to try it but haven’t gotten a reply so far. No pressure, just letting you know that I’m interested in trying and giving feedback.
Cheers!
Jan/mbbmbbmm

1 Like

Hey Jan, thanks a lot! I’m sorry I missed your mail, Gmail put it under spam for some reason :confused:

I’ve sent you a download link!

Cheers
~cmdr2

Received, downloaded and replied via email. Thanks!

1 Like

Ok, I think I am ready to give this a try, I am currently working on a scene and I want to see if I can do this in Blender and straight away pop in VR and draw and pop out again and continue in Blender as usual.

Right now my work flow is export into gravity sketch, scale is all wrong, export from gravity scale also scale is all wrong, have to do multiple ICP scale rematch to get the size to sync back again.

The ability to NOT have to do that (size issue back and forth with gravity sketch) would annihilate my need to use Gravity Sketch.

Can you private message me the link to the apk file ?
Thanks.

1 Like

Thanks Bracer! That’s exactly the thought behind making Freebird as a Blender plugin. I had the same problem with Tilt Brush (which I used to use for sketching my game levels).

I’ve sent you the link via a direct message.

Thanks

Thank you for your kind respond, I look forward to trying it out.
I don’t really need/desire fancy features which is why Gravity Sketch is way too bloated as time went on, since we have the great power that is Blender, the VR app only need to do two things well.
1: Draw
2: Erase
Everything else, I will handle in Blender.
If these two basic functions can be executed without too much drama/special button presses, then this is going to be very exciting :smiley:

1 Like

Good to see VR development for Blender I found designing in VR to be very efficient it can save a lot of time comparing trying to do a 3D on flat screen. Hope Blender official will take VR more seriously somedays.

1 Like

Hi, for sure. I too used VR for 3D sketching a lot during my game dev work, especially useful for concept work. Quite a big improvement for me, and I still routinely use VR-based sketching for all kinds of things, including for real-life DIY hobby projects I build (like a shoe cupboard for myself).

Yeah, it’s been a while coming, but the Blender XR team is ramping up, and there’s a good set of people working on it now. They were very helpful and supportive while I was figuring out how to build this plugin (especially Peter Kim).

I’ve sent you a download link incase you’d like to try, would love to hear suggestions about the usability, since it is very basic and new right now. Thanks!

I think this might be useful, Maya actually has VR tool implemented, but seem very few people acknowledge about it.

In very short it works almost like gravity sketch inside of Maya.

1 Like

Just tried it out for a while.
It
was
wonderful.

Sweet.
Simple
Not trying to be everything, allows me to draw guide strokes for me to model on top of in Blender.

Simple and to the point, not a single more feature needs to be added.

This.
is.
Wonderful.

2 Likes

Thanks! More to come. Which additional features would help you in your professional work? :slight_smile:

1 Like

Yeah, Create VR is so cool, it’s essentially got the major chunks of Gravity Sketch in it. I wonder why it hasn’t really taken off much. Maybe it is used a lot, I don’t know since I don’t use Maya.

It is in my personal opinion that less is more.
Initially I thought it was silly to have to select with one button and then move with another instead of just grab and move but I have gotten used to it, maybe that could chnage ? I don’t know, it’s not that much of a deal breaker.

Delete would delete entire strokes instead of just deleting the portion of the stroke that you want to remove like a real drawing, is it difficult to implement that ?

1 Like

Yes, both of those suggestions are being included in the coming version. Moving objects by just grabbing them (instead of having to first select them and then move), and erasing parts of the line. Some other users also asked about partial-erase of lines. Thanks!

Finally found the time to try FreebirdXR - it’s great!

I only did a small sketch so far a few minutes ago but I can already tell that it’s going to be really helpful for designing scenes, levels etc.

The UI is quite intuitive though I didn’t understand how to move the points in edit mode.

More feedback in a bit either here or via email

Thanks for going forward with VR in Blender!

Edit: ok I rtfm - totally forgot about the grab buttons on the controllers :blush:

1 Like

Thanks! :slight_smile: I’m working on making that more intuitive, the upcoming version will have a more direct grab-and-move feature, like @Bracer suggested.

1 Like

You are so gentle, nice and amazing.

I’d love to give this a go! I’ve been hoping for Grease Pencil support in VR for ages, this seems like it does the trick