Max/Maya users opinion of Bforartists?

(Tad) #1

I just found out about Bforartists. It seems like it might be exactly the software that I feel blender SHOULD be.
Basically I think blender is the best thing since sliced bread.
It’s free, easy to use, reliable, visually appealing, and has all the features of a AAA professional studio animation software.

BUT it has the “weird” style of being reliant upon hotkeys.
well my memory is crap, and i loath memorizing hotkeys.

I’ve been a 3dsmax user since 1995, and maya since 2000 and I was wondering if there are any artists out there similar to me who can vouch for bforartists. Does it provide what I hope it does?
Does it basically just take blender and make it more userfriendly?


(xrg) #2

I haven’t tried it, yet. So I’m not sure what all he has done with it. Some artists on CGTalk and Polycount seem to like it, though.

(Youssef Charles (يوسف تشرلز)) #3

… i feel like such an asshole for how i treated the creator a while back

(Ko.) #4

Why don’t you try it yourself? I want to say, why should we download it and tell you our feelings?

(ambi) #5

Not a Maya user but I actually took a closer look this time and the changes in Bforartists look very good and make a lot of sense. Definitely going to use some of their code if I ever make my own branches.

(Toka) #6

I have to admit to not really trying it. Although I followed the initial thread for a while near the beginning.

But you were asking about veteran Maya Max users and their experience of Blender as well.

I realize these things are so subjective. The main reason I decided to just get down and learn the default was because of an experience some years back where I needed to pick up Softimage very quickly for a job. So I went with the Maya mode which is what felt most ( normal ) and although it saved me some bother early on. I think it caused far more problems down the line than was worth it.

The default Blender navigation has become 2nd nature to me now though and I find it really fast and fluid to work with. I’ve grown to love it. This is after very many years of working with the other main stays obviously. I had a commercial Max license on subs for about ten years and it was my core app for a long time for any freelancing solo work. Now I currently work in house with Blender and Maya side by side and jump between them all the time with no problems at all.
I’ve encouraged anyone I know personally who wants to learn Blender just to try and spend some days to really get used to the default first before trying to change anything. In in my experience it works out alright when you are used to it. It also makes following books and tutorials much, much easier.

I also used to hate learning hot keys and I still do. But I found I only actually needed to pick up a few to get going with Blender. The rest I just could use the drop down menus. They reminded me a lot of Softimage. Also I find in Maya I use drop downs far more than icons. Unless it’s something I’ve put on the custom bar that I reach for a lot.

One other thing I have found about the default key map though that I find quite interesting. It seems very easy on my arms wrists and fingers. I feel much less fatigued working with it for a long time than I do with more traditional set ups where my right wrist shoulder and index finger can feel quite a bit of strain. It feels both my hands and arms are moving around in a more balanced way. But I realize this could be a very subjective and personal user experience. I guess also I really like the fact that something out there has actually been trying something different.
This is an area which has interested me much more in recent years. Office chairs are slowly killing us but about 99 percent of CG artists are probably still sitting in them. Get a move stool and get into active sitting. Break with convention.

I also have only been seriously working with Blender just over three years. So although I’m not really having problems with the current key map right now. If any improvements can be found, and going for something more towards the mainstream is generally considered the better approach then so be it. But I do think its probably better as an open community wide discussion and effort.

(Chris Offner) #7

I’m glad you say that because researching Bforartists and the bullying and drama it sparked gave me a really dark impression of the Blender community.

No matter how passionate the debates - personal attacks and character assassination like this is utterly unacceptable and reprehensible.

I talked to Rainer and he’s truly traumatised from this experience, has withdrawn from all social media and won’t even go near anything that has the word “Blender” on it, for fear of being treated the way he has been. :frowning:

Nobody deserves this sort of harassment, but especially not somebody who tried and tries their hardest to help and make Blender more accessible and popular to a wider audience.

We can always disagree on specifics of technical or design implementations but if we lose respect and decency towards one another as human beings, we’ve truly lost our way!

(Safetyman) #8

I agree 100%. I’ve used Max, Maya, Lightwave, TrueSpace etc., etc., etc., and I find Blender to be as easy to use as any of those, or more so. I find if funny when folks try to convince everyone that Blender is hard to use. Suck it up and quit whining. It isn’t harder to use, or un-intuitive or any of that other crap… it’s just different.

As for Bforartists, I’m reluctant to try it because I’m so used to the default and I don’t need to re-learn Blender. If it attracts new users to the program, then that’s great, but it’s not for me at this moment.

(rbx775) #9

I really like the condensed toolshelf ! Gonna try it. Thx for the tip tad.

Though the sentence “Away from the hotkey and speed centered useage”
deters me a little.

@Tad: A link to the homepage or introductional videos would be convenient to have in the original post.

(kevin3d) #10

Will Blender101 make Bforartist obsolete?

(BeerBaron) #11

What harassment? I dare you to read through the actual thread that contains all this supposed “drama” that is giving you a “dark impression” of this “community”.

Tiles has voiced his complaints of the UI quite vocally on these forums, so the splashscreen with the crybaby (not getting what it wants) was pretty funny, intentionally or not. That’s what Sebastian’s tweet is referring to.

The fact that there was a bunch of cartoon penises on the wallpaper in the background wasn’t even obvious at first glance. Obviously, some people will find that inappropriate. Some people pointed that out. There is no evidence to support his extreme version of what happened.

There’s also no evidence to support his idea that anybody wants to “assassinate” Bforartists. That’s a persecutory delusion, if anything.

Having said that, he gets my respect for actually following through with the project.

Well… then you should use it. Blender won’t become like Bforartists. That’s why Bforartists exists.

(SaintHaven) #12

I haven’t use it (long switched over to Modo with the official Maya navigation option) but it is worth noting that the 2.8 targets include a keymap revamp and some UI changes (to some varying extent). Since that’s a ways off, and if you have to use some version of blender, then trying the BForArtist is not a bad idea.

For Max users I would recommend looking at Bmax here on the forums:

You can try out the Dark Blender .blend file as well:

(SterlingRoth) #13

Quoted for agreement. BforArtists probably got more crap than it deserved, but Tiles was a very problematic spokesperson for it. He was very aggressive and would immediately play victim as soon as he got any resistance. The BforArtists thread is not the first time he popped up in this community, he was a blight on almost every thread he came into. The guy has opinions, and that is fine, but the way that he delivered them was very disrespectful and rude.

I am pleased to see him communicating in a more effective way: with results. I hope the experience has humbled him and I hope that he will at some point return to the community. I fully endorse the idea of diversity of interaction schemes as needed by different user groups, especially if it isn’t taking developer time from the core code. But more of a team player attitude would be deeply beneficial.

(theApe) #14

I´ll just in my comments from an earlier cgsociety thread

Icons to change views are nice from a beginner perspective, but after learning the shortcuts I´d like them to go away.

The buttons for different layouts I do like, and I do believe Blender 2.8 is going to feature something similar, I might be wrong.

Why is there a dedicated button for every different import/export format? This seems like overkill and even as a beginner I know how to use open/save, or import/export and chose my preferred format. Unless you save once every 10 seconds I don´t see why this needs to be.

Icons for geometry/light/whatever creation is nice, but I was a bit disappointed that the icon layout wasn´t responsive to changing the size of the toolbar. It´s locked at 4 icon rows, and I could easily see narrowing that toolbar down even more to get 2 or 3 icons in row, instead the icons are squashed together, or there´s a big empty space on the right.

This is just opening up the application and playing around for 5 minutes.

It´s an interesting effort, and as long as Tiles keeps this updated to latest Blender master, I don´t see why some people couldn´t prefer to use it. I doubt there will be a substantial number, but hey, it´s a free internet.

Aside from a few interesting design choices, there is not a whole not of interest for anyone having spent 2 weeks or more learning blender shortcuts. And for those who want a scaled down Blender, there is always the upcoming “Blender 101” project.

Like BeerBaron says, he actually moved forward with this and seems to be dedicated to realizing his vision of what Blender should be - so power to him. There seems to be some actual interest from people to use his version, so why not?

(Shylon) #15

I wish Bforartis maker(s) invest their time on Blender instead something else. I saw same scenario multiple times during years around Game engines, some of them if invested their time on main open source engine, the big amount of time could be not wasted.

(Chris Offner) #16

I’ll certainly agree that I saw very poor communication skills on both sides of the aisle - regrettably enough. It’s a pity when great enthusiasm, potential and energy gets wasted because of miscommunication and unnecessary conflicts.
Goes to show how important producers, communicators and project managers really are. Their work and the skills they bring to the table are often sorely underestimated.

(Youssef Charles (يوسف تشرلز)) #17

There was another thread in OT where two people accused him of having child porn
I think when you factor the fact that he was accused of such a thing is explanation enough for his fallout

I can’t find the thread
but I do know it existed.

Never mind, I found it

(apoclypse) #18

I think because of the whole thing that happened and because obviously the creator felt like he wasn’t being heard in-terms of Blender’s usability. I don’t see this happening.

I agreed with Tiles, I disagreed with Tiles, but after his announcement of bforartists the snark was on the highest of levels in this forum with people questioning his technical prowess to even do the project in the first place. Cut to maybe a year later and he is making progress and is getting good feedback from non Blender users (Maya, Max users) by catering to what they want to see in the software rather than some ideology about Blender’s UX which is what discussion about Blender almost always devolve to.

So I give him props for doing something about it. Isn’t that what users here get told when something doesn’t work well, “the code is there, code it yourself”. Well he did and he did it with a lot of derision from this community.

Tiles was very vocal about what he though was wrong with Blender not just the software but the leadership behind the project and he felt/feels that any contribution to Blender for things he thinks are important are not important to Ton, etc. In a way I agree. A lot of the changes in Bforartist would never make it to Blender trunk. Blender101 is supposed to address the same things that Tiles is already addressing, but that’s no guarantee that the politics behind Blender won’t rear it’s head when 2.8 comes out.

Either way there is room for more than one opensource project in this space. So I welcome the fork and wish Tiles and team good luck. Hopefully they will get to a point one day when they can make a clean break from Blender and go their own way with their own tools and ideas.

(Ace Dragon) #19

It already reared its head when Mpan3 was sadly trashed by those who were quite vocal against the Blender 101 project (they were believing the myths concocted by their own nature even after they were debunked).

It also reared its head from time to time when members of the old guard took a look at Blender post 2.5 and thought it was a disaster (no horizontal UI with different panel lengths, Ngons, focus on Cycles and modern pathtracing rather than BI).

Okay, so I give props to Tiles for actually doing the project he said he would do, but the flack was truly something that went both ways. Tiles unfortunately gave a bad first impression with the splash-screen decision (though to his credit he did change it), but then were certain people on this forum who just refused to let it go (the splash thing) and would continue prattling about it until the thread was either locked or people lost interest. Even the name ‘BforArtists’ was not something he explained right away so people thought it was meant to be a snide comment against the Blender developers.

If anything, both sides need to make reparations, the community needs to become a more welcoming place for Blender’s critics and Tiles needs to learn the concept of forgiving others if the first part comes to fruition. That said, the branch does look like a more beginner-friendly version of Blender (but the changes like the mass addition of icons would mean it’s probably not for Blender power users). I also know that Severin at least thinks not all of the UI changes are for the better (why is it that the search menu is to now be accessible through another menu for instance)?

(juang3d) #20

I’m a Max/Maya hardcore user and I personally did not try BforArtists.

It could be great, I don’t know, but I think that if a piece of software has been designed in an specific way, why should you fight it?
Blender as is is a really cool piece of software, it can be improved and will be improved for sure, but the foundations are pretty cool, including the 3d cursor, it is sooooo useful when you learn how to use it.

So IMHO it’s not worth trying to modify Blender so it’s similar to Max or Maya, just learn Blender as it is, it’s my opinion of course.