Transition to Blender?

Forum for users who have migrated or are migrating to Blender
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Hirazi Blue
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Re: Transition to Blender?

Post by Hirazi Blue » 10 Sep 2014, 11:51

kiwimation wrote:Out of intrest if this is a hobby for you, what was your reason for looking at Maya or even Soft. They are pretty expensive apps at the end of the day. I had always thought if i ever turned this back into just a hobby i would go back to lightwave and or blender.
I originally got lured into the wonderful world of Softimage with the 4.2 Foundation version which was extremely affordable at the time, but even when it became more expensive, I always figured that, while I had the money I might as well go for the best possible software I could afford. Hobbyism obviously doesn't necessarily mean having to settle for second-best. It often does, but it doesn't have to per se (cash permitting).
;)
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Bullit
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Re: Transition to Blender?

Post by Bullit » 10 Sep 2014, 12:00

luceric wrote:can I question the premiss of starting to learning blender rather than just using the Softimage you've spend thousands of dollars and hours with?
People who are working for/with other people need to eventually learn something new, but if you're working for yourself, there is no reason to. Only some graphic hardware armageddon or Microsoft killing backward compatibility in Windows could potentially prevent Softimage from running in the future.
Blender has two or more significant upgrades per year. So if that continues in 2015 another good round of improvements will come.

I was very surprised by this Advanced Molecular & Particle Physics Simulations in Blender


kiwimation
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Re: Transition to Blender?

Post by kiwimation » 10 Sep 2014, 12:32

The other think i like about blender is that they give you a roadmap. Means you can make an informed choice.

luceric
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Re: Transition to Blender?

Post by luceric » 10 Sep 2014, 13:21

Being a hobbyist of many things myself, I don't see what Softimage not getting new features or bug fixes has anything to do with it.

Softimage already has 20 years of features and bug fixes in it, hundreds of contributors and millions of dollar development.. What feature is Softimage missing that's blocking your project? You already have features that are lightyears ahead of what people were using to make Jurassic Park. Look at all the CG shorts that were made in the last 10 years, on vimeo and other places, by a single guy or two. You have in the box everything you need to do that. You're the bottleneck, not the software. Softimage isn't some kind of broken box of toys that still needs fixing and refining, it's all there already.

It's like these guys we all know who bought a Canon HV20, red GL1, XL1, Panasonic can't remember what, Red 1, Canon 5D with Redrock, and how kind of Epic or Scarlet, and still haven't really made a film other than some test shots. But they sure know all of the specs of those cameras and lens and can talk your ears off about the theory.

And listen, actually there's nothing wrong with being a great camera technician and not a director, or a great synthesizer/MIDI sequencer programmer/audio engineer but not actually a composer, a shader programmer, etc. As long as you're good at one of these things. But delaying dealing with getting to results with distraction is just self-torture.

kiwimation
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Re: Transition to Blender?

Post by kiwimation » 10 Sep 2014, 13:41

Well im not looking from a hobbiest point of view. Im starting my freelance career and will need to have an app i can transition to. While I plan on taking my time to move to another app i feel now is the best time when there is no pressure. I would hate to be in the position that SI wouldnt work for some reason and had to panic into a new app. and besides its kind of fun playing around with other software.

Figure I will start with Blender, if that dosnt work for me Ill look at Modo and or c4d

MikeM
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Re: Transition to Blender?

Post by MikeM » 11 Sep 2014, 13:29

I mostly do lowpoly(and highpoly for baking) models for videogames and I looked into moving to Blender a few months ago, maybe this isn't the case anymore, at the time it seemed that Blender had limitations when it comes to importing/exporting mesh normals.

Maybe I didn't look enough into it, I tried to find different OBJ exporters/importers, options and modifiers, that supposedly can manage vertex normals but couldn't find anything that did it properly.
It seems to be very tricky to export/import normals data from Blender to other 3D softwares, because Blender normals simply do not work like in other 3D softwares.

Though if you are going to export directly to engine, you can simply use the "split edge" modifier which basically is like "hard edge" in softimage and that's not really vertex normals for Blender, it simply disconnects the edges on export, which increases the polycount in engine too.


Hopefully I am wrong and missed something or Blender got an update that handles normals properly now, but if not, then for someone who is going to be freelancing and needs to export/import models to send to clients or co-workers using another 3D software and wants to try Blender, make sure you can get the normals import/export working.
Last edited by MikeM on 11 Sep 2014, 13:40, edited 1 time in total.

julius
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Re: Transition to Blender?

Post by julius » 11 Sep 2014, 13:36

I heard that Alembic si going to be supported in a couple of months.

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Mathaeus
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Re: Transition to Blender?

Post by Mathaeus » 11 Sep 2014, 14:17

MikeM wrote:I mostly do lowpoly(and highpoly for baking) models for videogames and I looked into moving to Blender a few months ago, maybe this isn't the case anymore, at the time it seemed that Blender had limitations when it comes to importing/exporting mesh normals.

Hopefully I am wrong and missed something or Blender got an update that handles normals properly now, but if not, then for someone who is going to be freelancing and needs to export/import models to send to clients or co-workers using another 3D software and wants to try Blender, make sure you can get the normals import/export working.
Unfortunately, you're correct :) (If I'm correct...). It seems to be something related to way, how Blender handles the normals, internally. I've been interested in reverse, wanted to import the custom normals from meshed NurbS. Found only some partial custom solutions, along line of working only as long as "edit" mode is not activated, or like. Well that's one of my reasons to still keep Modo on the desktop...
The renderer "turtle" used by this scene, is not currently available. The "turtle" renderer will be used instead.

iamVFX
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Re: Transition to Blender?

Post by iamVFX » 11 Sep 2014, 14:38

luceric wrote:Softimage already has 20 years of features and bug fixes in it, hundreds of contributors and millions of dollar development.. What feature is Softimage missing that's blocking your project?
Like sculpting, painting, NPR/PB renderer, sane python API?

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MauricioPC
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Re: Transition to Blender?

Post by MauricioPC » 11 Sep 2014, 16:17

I do agree that Softimage is still the best all around software, perfect for the freelancer. And Blender being free, it costs nothing to add to the workflow when you want to get features that SI won't have anymore.

But not all here already own the software. I bet many (like me), were using the student version to learn and when more prepared, buy the software for commercial use. The AD pulling the plug, at least for me, got me without money to make a last minute purchase. That was good actually, because if I could buy it today, would I? Knowing that development stopped?


Anyway ... It doesn't hurt to play with Blender since it's free, but I'm enjoying C4D a lot more lately.

luceric
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Re: Transition to Blender?

Post by luceric » 11 Sep 2014, 17:15

iamVFX wrote:
luceric wrote:Softimage already has 20 years of features and bug fixes in it, hundreds of contributors and millions of dollar development.. What feature is Softimage missing that's blocking your project?
Like sculpting, painting, NPR/PB renderer, sane python API?
Yeah right, I'm sure "your project" is on hold because there is no sculpting in XSI, Captain Procrastinate! Meanwhile the rest of the world is getting job done painting in ZBrush or 3DCoat. We were never going to put sculpting and painting in XSI, even if we would have continued at Avid.

iamVFX
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Re: Transition to Blender?

Post by iamVFX » 12 Sep 2014, 05:07

luceric wrote:We were never going to put sculpting and painting in XSI, even if we would have continued at Avid.
That speaks for itself.

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Hirazi Blue
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Re: Transition to Blender?

Post by Hirazi Blue » 12 Sep 2014, 10:38

luceric wrote:Captain Procrastinate!
Personally I consider "Captain Procrastinate" a honorific that shouldn't be bestowed on anyone lightly... :p
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luceric
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Re: Transition to Blender?

Post by luceric » 12 Sep 2014, 11:36

MauricioPC wrote:I do agree that Softimage is still the best all around software, perfect for the freelancer. And Blender being free, it costs nothing to add to the workflow when you want to get features that SI won't have anymore.

But not all here already own the software. I bet many (like me), were using the student version to learn and when more prepared, buy the software for commercial use.
I doubt there are "many"? who else is that situation here? I was not having that conversation anyway, this was about transitioning after years of investment in Softimage as a hobbyist and not about software shopping to get started. The point is that Softimage is mature. It's a character animation app and it all all the classic tools you need to model, animate, render; the rest is up to you. You didn't even need ICE, XSI 5.11 was already top notch. You'd need a newer build to make use of the newer renderers, however. (Not that obsolete versions of Mental Ray didn't get amazing work rendered)

If it were about software shopping for individuals.. *Thousands* of individuals have been producing cg shorts for two decades. Look at this short, one out of thousands, made by one guy in Max and http://vimeo.com/78514936. Every year there are tons of shorts presented at siggraph. Getting on the Blender bandwagon, or waiting for some other app to catch up to X, when you already have a mature app in your hands in my opinion can be an excuse for setting the clock back and having some more reasons to not get work done.

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MauricioPC
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Re: Transition to Blender?

Post by MauricioPC » 12 Sep 2014, 12:36

luceric wrote:The point is that Softimage is mature. It's a character animation app and it all all the classic tools you need to model, animate, render; the rest is up to you.
I do agree with you from the start, that's why I said Soft is the best out of the box tool there is.

I was just expressing some other opinion because I figured there should be other users learning it anyway. Since here it's so expensive to buy software, people tend to use the most of free, ple versions before committing to a purchase. And in that case, even after 3 years (standard student license), they would have to change.

But yeah, I do agree with you on so many levels. Softimage is able to create outstanding work for years in the future and procrastination is a major problem. That's why I even posted that link about William Vaughan talking about it, even though I don't completely agree with him.

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Hirazi Blue
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Re: Transition to Blender?

Post by Hirazi Blue » 12 Sep 2014, 12:42

luceric wrote:Getting on the Blender bandwagon, or waiting for some other app to catch up to X, when you already have a mature app in your hands in my opinion can be an excuse for setting the clock back and having some more reasons to not get work done.
I do think you have a somewhat limited view of hobbyism. I for one do not necessarily recognize myself in picture you paint.
What you say isn't untrue, BTW, I could have happily used XSI 6.5 perpetually, if someone hadn't shut down the Avid license system...
;)
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