So where are the up and comers?

When I started using blender 3d some four or five years ago (Im a little fuzzy on the exact dates), there was a thriving artist base, creating some exceptional work, all done using versions of blender without any of the fancy new features, rendering improvements and the like. In short, the community of artists I was in inspired me to do good work, and vice versa.

Strangely enough, it’s the artsist’s that are left from that period that are the only ones still impressing me. I have seen very few artists come along in the past two years that make me raise an eyebrow and say ‘wow’, and I’m confused as to why that is…

We had Shige, @ndy, LohnC, Blengine, SKPjason and dozens of other good artists making the forums lively and a great place to be. where are the modern equivalents? Or do I have to resign myself to the fact that blender has a raytraced cube / sphere creating userbase now? Bah. :-?

i am your up and comer LOL…

actually to be honest, a lot of the people i see with promise are not heading towards 3d as a career. they are using 3d as a part of their career. i.e. i use 3d every day, but its not the sole purpose of my career.

people like Blitz have impressed me, Ecks was not at the nl forums and he is damn good…

i think its just that circles of friends remain from early days, so you grew with them and respected them, and equally respect them.

compare their early works with some works from people here and i think you would be suprised.



I have been out of the blender scene for a while, just came back. I think last time i was really active was about 2 years ago.
And even with that large time gap, i noticed exactly wat madcow is saying, it seems to be the same people who are doing the best work and giving the best contributions. All the new artists seem to be people who try out blender for a while and leave it at that. There seem to be few new artists who have gone to the uberblendhead status such as blengine and them back then.

Maybe all those who have the talent move on to other software? perhaps the blender spirit has faded a little. It feels to me like its just a few people keeping this place together and avoiding it being overun by noobs who try blender for a week and then give up.

And a great thanks goees out to those people from the original blender days, who keep blender artists and the community as a whole inspired. You all know who you are.


I tend to agree to an extent. Blengine, SKPjason and Shige were the guys that always made me go “WOW!” when I first stared out about 4-5 years ago as well.

There does seem to be a lack of really good new users. Though there are exceptions to this. Some of the guys in the WIP forums are really making me go “WOW!” again. themonkey and scw with their car modelling, foCus has done some good work, Zsolt has really impressed the hell out of me with his Yafray stuff as well. Blitz and Sago are pushing things along as well.

So there are people/users that are doing great work. Maybe you are not looking as hard as some of us for the good work? Maybe I see it more often, cause I have to moderate this stuff now too? Who knows? But there are users that are making a difference. Just keep your eyes open a little more. :wink:


perhaps you are right, because so many more people are posting artwork, its quite easy to miss some…

What also plays a part, I think, is that Blender is growing up. It’s becoming quite a professional-grade 3D tool with all the options and no longer a geek tool usable to the select few.
We set higher standards now for Blender related artwork than we did before. I have a CD that I burned in '99 with Blender video’s and stills from 6-9 years ago and can assure you that stuff that we went Oooh and Aaah over would’t rate a second glance today.

I too however remember very fondly the ‘old’ days with Iceman, Shinge, the Green metaball Logo and the old mailing list at It is still the community feel that keeps me to Blender over all these years although I do not produce any artwork worthy of the name myself. (200+ post and not a single WIP or posted work)

Sweet, somebody noticed me. I know one little BgDM who deserves a big hug. :wink:

It’s really, really busy on Elysiun these days. Someone with the same talent as the guys you all mentioned will have a much harder time being noticed now. It’s easy to get stranded in the daily flood of ‘amateuristic’ posts.

And UglyMike is also right about setting higher standards, something we just need to do.

Search, and thou shall find…


where are the modern equivalents? Or do I have to resign myself to the fact that blender has a raytraced cube / sphere creating userbase now? Bah.

Maybe they all have jobs now. @ndy and LohnC are working on Project Orange, for example. Not exactly your grandfather’s raytraced cube.

man yeah those guys from the forums were the inspiration to make me use blender. You know i actually managed to get to the .nl forums once before it all closed down, so i began really in elysiun. Blengine always worked on stuff with me here and there, we shared tips, was a great fellowship, i learnt a lot. But yeah blengine is now making games somewhere…out there hehe. With a lot of new users, just like all things, time will create legends.

i didnt really know how to use blender when i was trying out all the free 3D progs back in the day. The reason i really started learning it was because of an awesome picture i saw made with it, then i just went off. Love this community. I am finding that i almost skip ‘button tests’ as i call them except in the new feature tests thread, other then that, and i think it will catch on after time. People will get over the features (i love playing around with them as much as the next guy) and its all about working out how they work, and using them for the real story’s or ideas =)

I feel this is a natural progression and im glad Blender is growing so rapidly, but ofcourse, it will take a bit of time. I have Ton telling me as soon as something gets put into the CVS, what it is, and what its for, still, i can only hardly keep up with late nights at office with all the additions O_O

So, i feel great hope, its almost like were in Blender Puberty, some things have really made my jaw drop here lately,blender is adding more space, people are filling it =D. i wish i had more time to check all the threads in WIP and FP more often though :wink:

ps. yo [email protected]: you shoiudl see blender conference, now THERES some people who use blender, amazing to see, maybe one day they’ll find blenderartists :wink: I have a feeling soon great artists will arise, and some already have, cant wait for the artistic explotion followed by this technical explotion =D

well seemed like a thread i needed to get into for the 2c’s worth =D

Peace out!

Totally. I remember first learning off a combination of Barts tutorials and Hiroshi Saito’s website. Where did he go? (There was also wp and some austrian guy who’s name I forget, possibly xype, that used to impress me greatly but not seen in ages.) He was very much into my kind of stuff to do with non-photo realism, which to be honest is why I don’t post so much (given there seems to be an overwhelming interest in that very CG look of the moment with overdone GI etc.), combined with getting a real job and nuking my Blender time.

To be honest before raytracing was added all the early renders were procedurally textured invariably aliased cubes, with point source lighting and no shadows. Probably with some text in whatever font it is chucked in for good measure.

I think having a reliable constantly updated gallery site showing Blender work for the last 5 years up to now would be valuable in terms of seeing where the program and the community is heading. I know some galleries exist, but they don’t have the level of community support that such a thing really needs to succeed.

A problem in the wider CG community seems to be an obsession with both photorealism and the means by which an image was created, including knowing the software used. It’s irrelevant. If the end result is good, it’s good no matter how you made it or what with. In the future people will look back at this era simply as a time when the overwhelming majority of people tried to recreate adolescent fantasies in ever closer approximations to reality. I hope it grows up and gets some diversity going on because there seems to be less artistic credibility in CG now than 10 years ago when the technology was prohibitively expensive and limited, forcing people to use imagination.

I actually think that Blender land is remarkably diverse in the grand scheme, since a lot of us here have chosen to stick with it regardless of very real technical limitations, and focus on being more creative within what can be done.

That turned into one of my rants! Sorry.

i will have to agree with [email protected], but i still think there’s alot of people here that aren’t really showing the best art they have to offer. alot of the great images get put in WIP and then you never see anything more of them once finished ! i know this because differen’t blender users are on DeviantArt and i see their works posted there, but never on elysiun. also in my “show your best blender render” thread i’ve seen some great stuff. so i don’t think its a problem with the users not creating as good artwork as much as it is they just don’t post it.

personally i think that as i’ve gotten better i tend to keep everything on my computer. i really need to just put a big ole “current and past works” thread up sometime just to show that i have been working on some neat stuff.

i feel that as blender gets older we will see some more great works. i also feel that blender is in puberty. and like all pubescent things…there’s lots of wierd things that happen/growing pains. like all things that grow theirs a time period where you have to expect little to come from it.

being a programmer kind-of helps me understand concepts like these: when we first release a new version of our program, our clients really don’t change the way they use it untill the next version after that ! mainly because they are comfortable with the current stuff and it takes time to learn. we know that they are playing with the new features but we never get to see it with our own eyes untill a considerable time later.

i believe that hidden away on a lot of our blender users’ computers are some great works, but they just don’t feel like they should/are worthy to post it. given some time though, i believe we will see some more in the future :]


p.s. sorry for the long post, and im sure i repeat myself alot…oh well :]

I agree with nephets. I don’t post most of my best work (not that it compares with the other people mentioned anyway, but…oh well).

I can’t believe that none of you have mentioned dmancrosse.


I think it does have something to do with the community really opening up, it is larger now than can be confined to this one forum. Back in the old days, it was more cosy, like a small family, but now its a large community.
Plus of course the growth rate is astounding, we can barely keep up with the new features. Not that that’s a bad thing :slight_smile: They just need some time to settle down.

BgDM: thank you! Actually I’ve been using it for 5 and a half years now, though there was about a year of no blendering. Its just that I barely posted anything on the old website…

I know that when I came to Blender I did it for the game engine, but fell in love with everything else.

On this subject I think a lot of people come to Blender after going to see some new Pixar film or playing a new Square Enix game expecting to be able to do that, they lose interest and Blender begins to collect dust on their harddrive. Its a “one night stand”, one moment of passion, in the large scheme of things.

Often times I look through the WIP forums or Finished Projects and see great stuff, and the “one night stand” happens again, we never see the finished project. I know I haven’t post all my projects.

I also tend to think that maybe we are seeing more good artwork than we’ve ever seen before. I mean I look through WIP and see lots of good things for people’s skill levels. And when I see a raytraced cube that stands out in my mind as something that just isn’t up to par and I seem to perceive that 20 people posted an identical cube instead of just one person. The other nineteen people probably posted something great, I just don’t see it.

Finally, I’d like to point out that the CG art in general has start to stagnate a little in my opinion. Everybody wants to make the next Natalie Portman model or the biggest gun or game art on par with Half-Life and Halo. The problem is this all we ever see- clones of these. The real innovative art sometimes gets lost in this sea as many things are just perceived as “oh another Alien.”

So I guess to sum it up its kind of everybody’s fault. Its the viewers fault for not recognizing the new art, but its the artists fault for not making truly “new art”.

This is why we don’t see many up and coming artists who “wow!” us. We’ve just been “wowed!” so many times we don’t recognize it anymore. It takes something too innovative or abstract for a 6 month user with no artistic background to do this new “Wow!”.

Actually, there are “new” greats all the time, but as someone before was
mentioning - they all get “lost” in the old-timer-greatest-hits as they’re
the ones that “pioneered” the usage of Blender.

In the early days of Blender - people where easier to impress because
most people couldn’t believe their eyes when they saw something really
good made with a program that cheap.

Most of these artist didn’t get “born” in Blender either, but came from
other applications and used their spare time to do stuff in Blender,
eventually discovered Blenders amazing workflow and switched.

Another thing you’ll notice about those artists…is that they’re rarely
using Blender exclusively - they use virtually any 3d program that
comes their way, that’s because they’re experienced and want "more.
Even with all the new features we get - experienced artists will look for
growth and look to whatever will expand their freedom to imagine.

Today when someone makes a professional 3D-character with Blender
these “new” artist rarely get noticed - even if they do better work than
the “all-time-greatest-oldies” …simply because the “WOW” effect
isn’t there anymore. Sure - they get a lot of “wow…I wish I could do that”
but it has all been seen before - nothing new & amazing, just another
piece of well-executed work done…that’s all.

And here’s something really funky…

Could you imagine someone getting noticed just because they
used Blender to do work instead of the mainstream-applications?

Funny as it may seem …this is quite the case sometimes. I used
3dstudio max for 5 years…and did “mediocre” work (at least I think
so) because the jobs wheren’t exactly growing on threes …and the
3dstudio max users that where ahead of me…always went ahead
and grew too…naturally…so there where no chance to ever catch up
and surpass any of them…now I’m not speaking artistically…but
more of craftmanship. Even if we get better…the ones that where
ahead of us earlier…will grow too…it’s a natural undeniable fact.

So …

When I switched to Blender - People started to notice my work
because of the “WOW - did you really make that in Blender”
you must be really good, I’ve heard it’s a pain to use…

And then the jobs came pouring in…


Because when people notice you - they start jabbering about you
and that is “free” advertising. Your work may be mediocre…in other
words…nothing special aside what all the other 3dstudio max experienced
users are creating anyway…but why notice them? Your work are
excactly the same…they are as good as you and vice versa…

…in my life Blender got to be the turning point that turned everything
around. Newbies came for help and tutorials, and grew up - became
natural “fans” and “friends” - and a network was established.

Funny…all this kind of remind me of the NaN name… Not A Number…

Well…after I switched to Blender - I was Not Just another Number
anymore…I was the guy “using Blender freeware” to create 3d,
constantly the “talk” of the pros. This is a man…who invested a
million in traditional art education, purchased expensive professional
software like 3dstudio max & characterstudio…

…and all of a sudden ditched all that…for free Blender.


Made some eyebrows raise in Denmark I can tell you :slight_smile:
And BOY have I had huge “3dstudio-max fanboy/Maya fanboy”
attacks from a HUGE number of game-company employees etc…
…I don’t see the threat…but still…kind of funky, eh?

well, as for myself, the current member who impress me the most (not mentionning the old members who still impress me) are alltaken (mutal feeling, how sweet lol tx dude :D) because his design work in everything he does is simply awesome and Blitz. Blitz’s work is always like “omg wish I would have done that…”.

There are many others, alot of them are really good, but most of them, including myself are still not at the experience level of the older member…but well, we’ll catch them one day, I hope :stuck_out_tongue:

Another reason may be that, when Blender first came out the high-end professional apps were ridiculously expensive for a beginner. Now that commercial apps and the computers that can handle them are much more accessible, a lot of beginners would rather pick up what Pixar or Blue Sky is using rather than some free program that doesn’t make them look as “cool”.

I personally feel that using Blender forced me to learn the concepts of 3D better since you don’t have all these wizards and plug-ins doing the work for you. Of course that’s great for learning, but in a production environment, any shortcut that gets you to deadline is going to win out.

BTW I’m not knocking commercial apps. Learning to use all the advanced features and plug-ins of some of these apps is a skill in itself.

i would bet that a lot of 3d users you were inspired by started on another 3d application, and took what they knew and moved it into blender.

the users now are starting completely new to blender, and its taking a lot longer to grow.

But I think people like Blitz, Zsolt, Robertt, .:[email protected]:., =KH=Lupus (and many others) have to get the respect they deserve. I have seen these people do things with blender that will make your eyelids curl back, dry up, and fall off.

Take a look at the gallery. There are loads of newer Blender users on there!

If there is anything working against Blender I think it’s the fact that the learnung curve is so steep. Hopefully Blender 2.4 should change this! :wink: