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Elinah Iredell

Blender is insanely confusing

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Okay I downloaded blender wanted to start the begining simple stages of working with mesh. I found a pretty free mesh object from a site and downloaded it. So far so good but then couldnt get the brushes to work to paint it . Tried to do it in photoshop but it was turned the wrong way and I couldnt move it ...Tried to download other free mesh models and now they do not even show up in blender at all! All I see is a stupid cube! Not the object I downloaded. Tried to reaserch why, someone wrote something about working with origins. I tried those buttons nothing worked. I cannot work with a model I cannot even see. This is insane

This has got to be the stupidest most confusing software I have ever seen. I thought photoshop was bad until I tried to learn this. I say throw it out and start over ... the most user unfriendly thing I have ever tried to learn. I give up !!!

 

Rant over

 

 

 

 

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Good rant.

It's virtually impossible to create simple, "click and shoot" software for doing tasks as complicated as 3D modeling.  There are simply too many options that you have to choose from.  As a result, any decent modelling program (or graphic design program, like Photoshop) has a steep learning curve.  Everyone who picks them up has to go through the same period of a few months of intensive practice.  Fortunately, there are loads of excellent tutorial videos on the Internet these days.  Start with some like http://cgcookie.com/blender/cgc-courses/blender-basics-introduction-for-beginners/ or http://gryllus.net/Blender/3D.html , or do your own on-line search.

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Thank you for your kind reply. I guess it is silly of me to just open 3d software like that and try to use it without even looking at a tutorial first .I will view the tutorials but I would also  like to try any free alternative to blender if there are any.Is there free software as good as blender that is easier to use?  What about google sketch up for instance? I read linden prefers blender over anything else out there but I would be interested in tryng a good  alternative as a backup plan just in case my relationship with blender continues to be so frustrating. ,

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Sketchup is easier but I would avoid it if I were you.  It is notoriously inefficient, creating models that have way too many vertices.  As a result, models uploaded to SL can have higher land impact values.  Sketchup is really meant as a quick tool for architectural work, not the sort of stuff that creators do in SL.  If you were interested in clothing design, you would truly learn the meaning of the word "frustrating".

Blender is the only practical free alternative to Maya and the other rather expensive professional modelling tools. There has been a good working relationship between Blender developers and SL creators over the years, too, so there are an increasing number of features built into Blender specifically for us.  Finally, not only is there a wealth of online tutorial material for Blender, but the vast majority of modelers in SL use it.  As a result, the Mesh forum here is a lively de facto Blender forum.  Some very gifted modelers are regular contributors, and they usually offer detailed, helpful answers to even the most arcane questions.

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Probably the smartest thing you can do, other than starting a new thread with an inviting title like "Free Alternatives to Blender?", is to spend an hour this afternoon searching the forum archives for comments that SL creators have made about each of those alternative programs.  I have not used any of them myself, but I know from watching those comments that some of those programs are more flexible than others, and some make it easier to upload to SL than others.  If you intend to be more than a casual creator in SL -- especially if you plan to be doing this stuff for a long time -- it seems logical to invest time now in learning to fly the program that offers the most options, even if that means climbing a steep hill at first.

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Sounds like a  good idea. I wonder if  many others in sl have made an effort to try to find an alternative to Blender ? I hope they have tried at least of few of those listed ..

I also wanted to ask about this cool looking software developed a couple of years ago at a University in Israel. It apparently can effortlessly change a 2d image in any photo into a 3d model. I saw many articles from 2013 with people waiting and hoping for it to be made open source and offered to the public. I cannot find out what happened to it since then I cant find any recent info on it but it looks like a dream come true for a newbie like me. I wanted to know if you think it could have exciting implications for 3d mesh creators in sl ?

 

 

http://3dprintingsystems.com/introducing-3-sweep/

 

 

 

 

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Elinah Iredell wrote:

It definately sounds like blender has worked hard to be the best choice for second life mesh creators but I still do feel curious about all these others I just found on this website. None of them can compare to blender ?

 


In short: Nope!

All of these apps are more or less specialized to a certain subject. None of them is as capable as Blender is.

People aren't using Blender because they have a tendency to masochism. They use it because of it's pretty much the only free application there is, which has pretty much all the aspects needed for 3D modeling. Be it movie related, or game related stuff.

Indeed, pretty much none of the professional game studios are working with Blender. And there is good reason why they prefer commercial tools in their production pipeline. These people aren't stupid as well. If Blender could do a better job, there would be no reason to throw money out of the window.

But if you want a free application, it's Blender. It has it's quirks, and it's weakspots in some areas, but has strength in another. Like pretty much every of the modeling tools out there. Be it Maya, Max, Modo or, ... you name it.

Download a trail version of Maya, Max, or Modo, and you won't be able to do anything with those also, without taking the time to learn them step by step.

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I remember seeing a forum post about that software a couple of years ago but I'd never find it now.  As I recall, the response from people at the time was one of muted enthusiasm.  I haven't seen anything since.

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 I guess that's it then.You both think It's either Blender or the expensive stuff. Unless any new free software comes out this year to compete with Blender I have to give it another try, I did a quick check of opinions on other software on ths forum and it sounds like other software can work in combination with Blender but not in place of Blender.  Thanks for your response.

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Rolig Loon wrote:

I remember seeing a forum post about that software a couple of years ago but I'd never find it now.  As I recall, the response from people at the time was one of muted enthusiasm.  I haven't seen anything since.

I hope when it is finally released it is open source and free ,

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Well, I'll give my Blender fanboy view.

I started out a 3DS Max user. I was fairly proficient in it. Blender had always confused me, but I kept watching Blender tutorials, even tho I wasn't using it, because I wanted to watch the development, and compare it to 3DS Max. Over 2 years ago, I made the switch and learned Blender. Because of my experience with Max, I caught on to the basics fairly quickly. Now, after using it fulltime for over 2 years, I would never think about switching to anything else.

Blender is down right amazing. As Arton said, not alot of AAA game companies are using it, but I'd say that is because all their workflows and software they create, in house, are made for Maya. That said, Indy developers are where it's at today, not AAA. Today, a good 5 man team can create the quality of a AAA game, and pretty much all those indy teams use Blender, not Maya.

I'll state here that Blender will eventually make Maya and Max dinosaurs in the industry. There are just far too many bonuses to using Blender. When I work on a decent size team, the Blender users can easily trade files and all of us are using the latest version. Everybody that is using anything besides Blender, can't trade files at all, even when they are using the same program. None of them are ever using the same version either. Ok, maybe I'm exaggerating with not being able to trade at all, but it's a common problem. The bigger the teams, the more problems you will have, or you could have the company pay for 8 seats, for everyone to use Maya. ROFL!

IMHO, the biggest reason that Blender will take over the industry, is because it is just all around better. Other than some minor annoyances with not being able to name layers, and not having full compatibility with all FBX imports, Blender is miles ahead of Maya, again IMHO. Maya needs 3rd party plugins just to do things that Blender does inherently. You could create a whole professional movie in Blender with crazy affects. You could do camera tracking on videos and add in 3D elements into the video. You could track someone's arm and put a robot arm on them, and then composite the movie to look ultra realistic. You can do realist water, fire, and smoke simulations in Blender, with literally a few clicks. Imagine filming a 3D scene with volumetric fog that moves as avatars walk passed.

Of course, these are just my thoughts.

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Blender does pretty much anything you need it to do.

It is free.

There are TOOOOOOOOONS (that is "Tons" with lots of enthusiasm) of tutorials from basics to complex things so you can learn by watching.

 

If you have tons of money to spend or feel comfortable using illegal software as some folks do, then the others might be worth checking out. But for many folks Blender is the choice -- and you will get plenty of help here from the Blender crowd.

 

 

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Thanks for your review of Blender. The fact that it can be free and better then the extremely expensive competition is impressive to me, but do they really need to make it so confusing? Even you an expert in your field found the interface difficult at first. Is there anything about Blender that can be improved in the future ?  Are there things you would like to see added or changed about it to make it even better?

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Thanks for the tutorial  link. I should probably start making a file of them all. I just still feel very overwhelmed. I read  a comment a person wrote on a message board that the stress of working with blender had destroyed their desire to be artistic. I hope that doesnt happen to me.

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I'll say that I do do a fair bit of initial construction in Sketchup (and the access to Warehouse models is nice too), but then I clean up the models in Blender before I import them. The Sketchup UI is a lot more intuitive for making shapes with and such, but before actually using the models, I need to take it into Blender to remove doubles, join surfaces into single objects, select and delete random floating edges, etc. I can also use Blender to do UV unwrapping for texturing, decimate to simplify the model, and such.

 

Some things just need to be done entirely in blender though, like rigged mesh or certain shape manipulations. I'll agree that Blender is probably the most complicated software I've ever used, but it pretty much has to be. There's not a lot of getting around that it'll take...probably months...of practice to get good at.

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Aww...  I'll admit, I made a first try at learning to use Blender while it still had the old really confusing interface, and I gave up after a couple of weeks.  That's the version that Medhue was referring to.  It was truly hard to figure out.  I came back to Blender a year later when it was clear that I had to learn, and I was pleasantly surprised to see how much easier the new interface was to use.  I think a lot of people were scared off by the earlier version -- and may still be scared off by old video tutorials that show that interface -- but this one is fun.  Like any complex learning challenge, it just takes patience and a love for puzzles.

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Autodesk has a free app/program that will convert a series of photo's into a 3d object. I haven't really looked into it for years, so I don't know about its current state. Might be worth looking into.

You'll still need Blender, 3ds Max, Maya or whatever polygonal program to make the models SL ready of course.

It's called 123D Catch.

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Then Sketch Up does have some value for second life mesh as long as you run it through blender afterwards? That is what some others have written on this forum they do with various different programs . They use them first and then blender afterwards. I think that would be good for me to try. Get started with an easier to use program  to learn the basics , then try to finish with blender. And hopefuly that way won't have to use blender any more then I have to lol.

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I wanna say my words too, for Blender.

According to my opinion Blender has the most logical 3d tool UI that I have ever seen. The way how Blender is organized is just superior compared to even Maya. Blender is also very usable with only one display. To use Maya efficiently, you need to have another display connected to your computer. The various pop-up and set-up windows all around the workspace just do not work with only one monitor.

And, Blender has fastest possible polygonal modelling interface.

Well, Maya is more sophisticated regarding teamwork, rendering, complex production pipelines and integration into other software.

Go with Blender, there is no need to confuse one's head with several tools. Blender does it all.

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Jake Koronikov wrote:

I wanna say my words too, for Blender.

According to my opinion Blender has the most logical 3d tool UI that I have ever seen. The way how Blender is organized is just superior compared to even Maya. Blender is also very usable with only one display. To use Maya efficiently, you need to have another display connected to your computer. The various pop-up and set-up windows all around the workspace just do not work with only one monitor.

And, Blender has fastest possible polygonal modelling interface.

Well, Maya is more sophisticated regarding teamwork, rendering, complex production pipelines and integration into other software.

Go with Blender, there is no need to confuse one's head with several tools. Blender does it all.

So, just my two cents, as someone who's used half a dozen different 3d apps, in studios and for my own work:

The app with the best UI and most logical workflow will almost always be the first one that you learn properly. I first learnt Maya, but never got to use it professionally. Despite that, every app I pick up gets customized as much as possible to be like Maya. I grabbed the trial of Maya LT recently, and my muscle memory for all its shortcuts was still intact, over a decade since learning it. To me, Maya's UI is the most logical, whereas Blender is....different. :)

I do agree that one shouldn't try to learn too many tools, especially early on. You also can't beat Blender's price tag. But if it does confuse and frustrate you (it frustrates me!) it would be worth one's time to find some trial versions of other apps and see if they are a better fit for your brain.

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