Where to Begin?

Hello all,

Recently I decided it was time to extend my Blender knowledge beyond just displacement map baking (I have a Lightwave background), and the manual on the Blender site seemed like the obvious place to start. When I got to the bit where you make Gus the gingerbread man, I ended up with a crease around his midsection, and couldn’t locate the “Resize” tab that is supposed to be on the Tool Shelf when it came time to make him thinner. Then yesterday I stumbled across a discussion that recommended avoiding the gingerbread man tutorial since it’s completely out of date.

Now that my confidence in the manual has been completely shattered, can anyone suggest a current and reliable way to get myself up to speed?



and couldn’t locate the “Resize” tab that is supposed to be on the Tool Shelf when it came time to make him thinner.

  • Press S and start to move the mouse horizontally. (Click MMB to constrain scaling to just one axis or press Y to obtain the same result). If you now move the mouse toward Gus he should become thinner but remain the same height.
  • The tab Resize on the Tool Shelf shows the scaling factor. Press and hold Ctrl in order to change the scale factor in discrete steps of 0.1. Scale Gus down so that the factor is 0.2, then confirm this dimension by clicking LMB . If that last transformation went wrong, you can still change its parameters. They are displayed and editable at the already mentioned place (see Parameters of the last action in the Tool Shelf).

You press S to scale. When you have accepted the scaling with LMB you will see the resize options of the toolshelf where you can tweak your scale settings

If you don’t see this operator panel you may have it minimised (you’ll see a + symbol in its place, just press it) or use the F6 option for a floating panel with these settings

Oh right, it pops up after you scale. Thanks Richard!

The question remains though, should I continue with the manual, or is it out of date as people say?


Manual has some extensive explanations and tutorials but it’s there more like to tell what the individual bells and whistles do. A bit like a owners manual for any complicated piece of tech. Big and boring.

I would suggest (video) tutorials instead. Starting from Get started in Blender -> Learn Blender Basics from the top menu of this site. Then continue to check modeling tutorials, or other tutorials from a good tutorial source to see examples of how the tools are used. Blendercookie.com has many, maybe blenderguru.com for material/lighting/rendering tutorials. Most of these are quite advanced level but anyway http://www.cgmasters.net/category/free-tutorials/

If it has to be written tutorials, maybe these have interesting ones http://cgi.tutsplus.com/categories/blender

For something completely different, could search for “Track Match Blend” tutorial series to see how to use the camera tracker to track live footage and composite 3D elements in it.

Great, thanks JA12 I’ll check those out. Just after some solid error-free beginner level stuff for now, as even the tiniest discrepancy could send me on a wild goose chase at this early stage.

good place to start is youtube and blendercookie