How did you learn Blender?

I am an experienced 3D modeler (coming up on ten years now). I have been using Blender for almost a year and I would like to know what everyone used to become comfortable with Blender. Was it a specific tutorial website? Or a book? Or something else? Even though I have been fiddling with Blender for a year, I still prefer other programs for doing basic tasks. Although, I will say I much prefer Blender when it comes to texturing and using nodes. I want to become fully versed in Blender and use Blender strictly for my work, because using this particular program allows me full control over my artwork. And please: do not tell me to Google something unless it is a means to an end. Thank you in advance! Cheers! (citizen membership and some of their training series),, and asking questions/reading threads on BlenderArtists.

all those and any and every tutorial I could.

(I feel really weird telling someone with your much experience how to learn blender :stuck_out_tongue: )

Thank you muchly, InfantryRocks and ctdabomb.

I started when I was eighteen and I am nearly twenty-eight now. I have been using various versions of Maya since Alias Wavefront owned the program. I used trial and student versions mostly until I entered college. Once in college, I gained experience with 3D Studio Max and then I quickly went back to Maya. I have been out of college since 2009. Autodesk released all of their programs for free with no restrictions (with the one condition: you can not use the program commercially) about a year-and-a-half ago. Then I discovered the wonders of Blender. I am currently working in both Blender and Autodesk Maya, but if I want to sell my work commercially, I have to go all-Blender or go home, because I can not afford Autodesk Maya. But that is not the only reason why I use Blender. I love Blender’s new 2.5x user interface and how easy it makes certain functions (like the aforementioned texturing). I hope to become as experienced with Blender as I am with Autodesk Maya one day. Cheers!

3 years of working with it every day and watching every tutorial I could. And of course, asking questions here…

I started by watching a few hours of vscorpian on youtube. And then actual practice and of course lurking here.

Other cool people: (haven’t updated this in a few months but I am keeping track)
Oliver Villar
Andrew Price

and these:

I just made my 11th blender firefox folder. Each folder holds around 50+ links (:
Plan to learn blender for years to come, started May 2012. Knew of blender since 2009-ish.

I’m 82, over the past three or four years I have been fiddling with Maya, Poser, DAZ3d and now Blender At my age its important to learn faster than you forget and for this reason I have leaned heavily on help files and indexes especially those with search options. There are functions in other software that one would expect to be universal in some guise or other and to exist in Blender but without index and search it gets hard.
How am I learning Blender? With all of the devices described above and a lot of perseverance.

well from greybeard of course…at least, he got the ball rolling for me…this was several years ago though…not sure you could find his tutorials now…

When i first started fiddling with it, the “2.5 rewrite project” was just beginning, so i followed development progress very closely. Configurable keymaps are very important for me, so i spent plenty of time figuring which commands do what and which parts of 3dsmax they correspond to. After this, i started modelling a car from start to finish in order to test the newly learned tools. Tutorials are great, and the BlenderCookie ones are the best, but the best way to learn is to start a project from scratch and seek out answers to every problem you face during the process.

And my personal Blender Bible. Recently I was able to condense about 10 pages of info onto 1 new page.
Made the stack much smaller (:

Try to do all with the mouse and menus. If you try to do all with hotkeys your brain will explode while you are a newbie.
When someone uses a hotkey in a tutorial look in the menus and you will find it there or in the N panel or in the T panel.

Greybeard’s tutorials initially. I wasn’t until Blender Underground’s set of tutorials that everything really clicked though.

I usually suggest the Blender Fundamentals at 3Dbuzz as a starting point these days, since it goes through the basic controls/UI to a textured character model. Plus he isn’t a Blender native so often tosses in Maya/Max comparisons for people who are coming from there.

That sounds like it could turn into a bad habit to me.

I fall in love with the old printed Blender Manual - somebody few years ago even mailed to me (Thank you again).
As a graphic designer I liked the layout a lot and connected to the rather strange interface.

And then came the internet and online tutorials.

But most of my experience simply came from applying Blender to my work starting graduate school for jewelry and animation.
A lot of failures and trial and error for modeling lots of frustration but with each finished model more understanding was generated.
Having learned nurbs modeling as well helped to translate this to polygon modeling.
Being able to teach, enables you to study a lot as well and so I drifted into product design with Blender as an additional surfacing tool.

YEAH love seeing other seniors getting into 3d! 56 here, and I was 53 before I started blender. And as for forgetting, all I can say about that is

by my self i watch some videos… like tips and tricks… but mostly by pressing and riding what this tool is… however… i use photoshop 5-6 years and other programs to… so i mostly have some expirience in learning and interaface’s acctualy mostly all programs have the same way to use.

Blendercookie tuts, and by doing; not so much following tuts but by experimenting; follow tuts to learn a process.

Also make notes of the short cuts; they make it much easier to learn; more doing and less finding how to do.

Amen to that. I use the tuts the same way. Not to create what ever the tute creats, but rather to learn a process then apply it to something I make. Far too often I see people posting their version of the tut’s finished image. Rather than posting your version of Blender Guru’s Spaceship corridor, better is your own corridor based on the processes learned from the BG tut…

The noob to pro wikibook. Followed by this forum and various tutorial sites.

for me its been youtube tutorials… also I just picked up Blender after another artist (who I would call a friend (SickleYield on Daz3d and Renderosity and Deviant Art told me she uses it) - Used Hexagon before that but it kept crashing for simple stuff so I stopped and switched.

Then I came here…