What is after blender?

What if you want a career as a 3D animator. What program do i need to “Grow up” Into?


There’s no reason you can’t do your career with Blender. Blender is just a tool, as is all other software. So long as it allows you to get the work done as needed then go for it. The most important thing you can do is focus on your work its self.

You can always switch software if needed, you can’t “switch” your quality of work on a whim.

Blender is at the point that it is in par with other 3D software. Does some things worse and some things better, so now it’s just a matter of taste.
However, the commercial apps such as Maya, 3ds Max, Softimage and etc are used far more often for huge studio works (Movies, games etc.), some more powerful plugins are created for them, and, unlike blender, they work with most rendering engines.

Well, I kinda disagree, as especially animators need to be tightly integrated in a larger workflow. Rigs made in maya for example, can’t be exported to blender since they rely on geometry and are most all the times muscle based. Similar thing goes for max, although I rarely see ppl using max for animations.
Either way, checking out maya and motionbuilder won’t hurt :D.

I suggest it’s all up to yourself, use blender and start your own small studio and become awesome. but then again, it’s all up too yourself what you can do and show for.

What if you want a career as a 3D animator. What program do i need to “Grow up” Into?

A polygon is a polygon. But for a career in the industry you may need to use the tools that are used and common in the industry. Have a look at the places where the professionals meets. And have a look what software they use. CGTalk for example.

Straightforward answer, maya will get you more jobs than any other 3d software out there.

I think most studios use Maya as their primary animation tool so it would probably be good to include it in your knowledge base.

Modeling and animation are 2 aspects of the process that are nearly app agnostic. Unlike shading, lighting, and rigging which are inherently tied to the software, modeling and animation depend on a skill set that does not depend what software you use.

Sure, some software allows you to manage data easier, or deal with large data sets easier, but no software can make you sense of timing better, or worse. Once a rig is built and linked to the model, animation is all about time, strong poses, and the old “12 Principles of Animation” laid out by the Disney animators in the 1930’s!


Do research into the area that you want to work in.

There is no point in becoming a master in 3ds Max modelling if you want to do rigging in the visual effects industry.

Look at some of the studios you want to target. A lot of places will have some indication as to what software they use; Luma studios even has a big list of exactly what they use.

The real answer here is to research the studio you’d really like to work for and see what commercial app they primarily use. If it’s Maya, then you choose Maya. If their artists are allowed to use any app as long as the final models can be exported into something else, then stick with Blender.

I worked for an architectural firm that said it was 3DMax and Vray and nothing else. I also did work on a children’s animated series for DVD and I could only use Maya. So, not all studios let you use the app you want. I’m not sure how many people here giving you advice actually worked in production, but every place is different. Some let you choose what you want to use, others don’t. Do what Daniel8488 says. It’s the right answer you’re looking for.

Thank you for all your help! Is it legal to make movies and gain money off of them with blender? Or do i have to credit blender? Or can i not make movies and gain $$?

You can do whatever you wish with the content you create in Blender. It is solely your content. The licensing of Blender has no affect on the work you create with Blender.

Like others have said, if you can master Maya you can pretty much open up opportunities for the high end animation jobs. Maya is the king of animation software. While some say blender is up to other professional apps, it really isnt. It is good, it has its options, and can even do a few things better…but as a whole its still not up to the level of the top of the line software packages.

I would also look into Modo. Luxology was recently acquired by The Foundry. The Foundry make’s Nuke, which is the film industries #1 compositing software. By bringing Modo into the fold and bridging the two, more opportunities will open up for Modo artist, and it could possibly even give Autodesk some real competition in the coming future.

If you want a career as a professional character animator: learn to become a great character animator. This is independent of any particular piece of software learned. At Pixar and Dreamworks proprietary animation software is used, for example, and Maya is not used.

However, learning Maya (at least how to animate a character in it, basic controls) can’t hurt either. But this is the easy part, and quickly taught to anyone: a matter of a couple of weeks at most.

No, really learn to animate a character. Get someone to mentor you, or sign up for iAnimate or AnimationMentor. Jason Ryan’s starter tutorials are a good place to start: http://www.jasonryananimation.com/tutorials.html

So, in short: software not that important, knowing how to animate is. Studios are always on the lookout for excellent character animators, and generally could not care less about the particular software you are trained in.

Quoted for agreement.

Pixar and other big studios are exceptions. Regular small or medium production sites don´t have any programmers just to support the TD.

That “just learn to animate and then you´ll be trained in what they use” is not realistic these days. Most production sites want you to to hit the ground running, just like you have to in every other profession out there.

So the poster should look at what´s the most common software installed out there, and from my observations that´s MAYA, and then MAX. I´ve lost several jobs because of that, even though my knowledge and creativity fit the job description to a T.

It´s a simple reality we have to deal with.

Maya has had the best diffusion in the academic fields (Max being a close second), so naturally all students who go to form a studio adopt Maya without thinking twice.

It´s one thing to target fx studios in L.A., and another to get a job in the rest of the world.

That´s totally understandable. If I were to build a production I´d try to build a pipeline with the least on site training possible, too. Training means time and trainers, and those cost money.

That alone may be reason enough to avoid a career in VFX/CG Animation. There are others though… but this whole hit the ground running thing disturbs me. It sounds like they don’t want to make any investment in you. Like you’re not very important. Then your job is finished when the job is finished, time to find another. Pixar is different. And in games… I see a lot of “Pixar” in Valve. At least from what I hear. I like being valued. I like it enough to stick with where I’m at and stay out of CG if I have to.

If you are looking for work in VFX in the current (production) climate, you’re either obsessed & very passionate about it, or a masochist … likely both :wink: Not that that is a bad thing!

And the competition is killing out there - the bar’s been set sky high. Point in case: Tears - completely adequate for TV, but not on par as far as A/AA feature film quality.

Truly excellent character animators are still very much in season, though, and, in my opinion, will always be. And, come on: as a character animator you’re having to deal with a tiny subset of Maya and Max. No need to know about rigging (btw technical rigging specialists in Maya are also quite secure of a job), rendering, texturing, modeling, etc. If they want you to hit the ground running, at least make sure your put the right shoes on for the terrain your running in. :slight_smile:

Myself, I am not too much in character modeling, but again: I’ve heard from colleagues (and read) that again you must be a top-of-the-line modeler to get even a near-to decent job in production. Quality texture specialists with good painting skills are also much harder to find, as are technical directors (Houdini anyone?).

Basically what I am saying here: most studios are looking for excellent specialists, especially with skill(s) (sets) that are more demanding and/or less popular . Not generalists. But hey, you can always go freelance.

…and finding work in architecture, medical viz, etc, outside film and tv production may be easier.