Donchya Wish..

General discussion about the development of the open source Blender

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bfvietnam
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Donchya Wish..

Post by bfvietnam » Sun May 23, 2004 3:44 pm

I've been learning Maya, its got a nice client based search engine,
in the Learning Edition that is.. But it doesn't answer the questions that are most relevant. Like where is there a feature like _____ in blender in maya?

The only reason I'm learning it is for
prospect of future work with companies that use it (for what reason I haven't figured out other than things like, it has splines for parametric surface lofting, the IK is a bit nicer maybe, but really why do people use Maya outside of the object oriented node hiearchices and things of that sort).. Anyhow, I find myself searching the Maya interface for blender features.. I wonder if anyone has a list of mel scripts that implement blender features, or a kind of meta-manual that links to features of one package to another. It could be at least nice if going between Maya and blender.. But then it begs the question, why would I want a feature in Maya if I can do it in blender, good point (self pats self on back).

Ah, one day the world of 3D will realize the ease of use of blender and it will be the default interface design and Maya will be a plugin..

Anyhoo, the feature that I had in mind, if anyone knows where it is in Maya is the "Smooth" feature in edit buttons.. I also found out that in Maya there is no way to rotate a "curve on surface".. I guess unless a mel script is written to do it.. Blender doesn't even implement that (might be nice but people hardly use NURBS anymore). I found myself have to move around individual CV's to get the effect..
Last edited by bfvietnam on Sun May 23, 2004 3:55 pm, edited 2 times in total.

JoOngle
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Post by JoOngle » Sun May 23, 2004 3:50 pm

From what I can gather, most studios don't really
want someone that is an "expert" in one package.

Most studios want someone who are proficient with
traditional arts such as Drawing & Painting.

I've spoken to a few from Pixar, and they all
say the same thing: It's your previous work
that counts. If you show us fantastic works of
art, we won't ask you about your package -
you will be trained in-house for our proprietary
software and that usually takes about 1-2 weeks
if you're already proficient in ANY 3D package.

So my friend - to me, it seems like you can safely
use Blender, and go do some GREAT art...and you'll
probably get your chance.

LethalSideParting
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Location: Bucks, England

Post by LethalSideParting » Tue May 25, 2004 2:37 pm

Right, you'll have to forgive the lack of structure in this reply, there's all sorts of issues that I'm interested in here, and I'm not really sure where to start!... :D
really why do people use Maya outside of the object oriented node hiearchices and things of that sort)..
I've often asked myself that question, I'm on a BA Animation course in the UK, and we learn Maya for the first year, and I have to say it's interface isnt a patch on Blender. I eventually asked one of our lecturers one day what made Maya so great to big studios, and the answer was simply "MEL". The ability to be able to script your own tools quickly and easily, to be able to export your data to any format you know the specs for, to be able to tailor the interface to your personal workflow and to be able to fit it in to any pipeline you have with (relative) ease are apparently its main selling points for the larger studios. Although who knows, with Blender-Python integration coming along the way it is, maybe it wont be long before Blender can begin to compete with Maya here too...
Anyhoo, the feature that I had in mind, if anyone knows where it is in Maya is the "Smooth" feature in edit buttons..
It took me ages to find this one, create a polygon, go to the modelling menuset (press F3), and go "Polygons"->"Smooth Proxy".
From what I can gather, most studios don't really
want someone that is an "expert" in one package.
That's very true, especially of the big studios, though I cant help but wonder whether this is just because they tend to have their own internally-written applications for several major tasks anyway?... For example we had a visit from ILM recently, and they were showing us their facial animation package (very cool). If you've got applications like that, then no, I suppose you probably wouldnt care what package someone used, but if you're a smaller studio that doesnt have the resources to make its own tools like that then I wonder if you'd be more interested in someone who can use what you have got to its full potential? It'd be interesting to ask at some point...
Most studios want someone who are proficient with
traditional arts such as Drawing & Painting.
Definitely, as part of the ILM visit we got to see some showreels of people who'd been recently hired by them, and for each showreel about half of the time was dedicated to showing life drawings or sketches... The impression I got is that they want to see whether you've "got the eye for it", if you've got the basic artistic skills that you need for animation, rather than technical competance. And if learning Blender gives you the skills they're looking for, then so be it :)

LethalSideParting

JoOngle
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Post by JoOngle » Tue May 25, 2004 5:58 pm


what made Maya so great to big studios, and the answer was simply "MEL". The ability to be able to script your own tools quickly and easily, to be able to export your data to any format you know the specs for, to be able to tailor the interface to your personal workflow and to be able to fit it in to any pipeline you have with (relative) ease are apparently its main selling points for the larger studios. Although who knows, with Blender-Python integration coming along the way it is, maybe it wont be long before Blender can begin to compete with Maya here too..
Yeah, MEL in Maya and Maxscript in 3dstudio Max are teriffic scripting languages. I learned MaxScript in just a few hours and wrote my own "make-city-generator" just for fun back in the days when I used 3dstudio max. Of course not ALL of Max-script...but my point is - it was so EASY to learn that it didn't really require anything other than knowing what you want AND reading the commands...learning what they can do..and utillize them. Easy! However...with Python it's not QUITE that simple. Python is a VERY powerful programming language, ligthing fast too if you compare it with Mel and Maxscript. You wouldn't be able to make an "internal-3d-game" with eg. maxscript simply because it ain't fast enough...Pyton however is! But lot's more complex, and the communication between Blender and Python needs too much "initiation-code" do-this-first-and-to-clean-code etc...before you do anything..that's exhausting to the level that most artist won't bother to use it....You need to "WANT" to use a lot of time to program if you want to use Python even though it IS a LOT easier than eg. C++.
I cant help but wonder whether this is just because they tend to have their own internally-written applications for several major tasks anyway?.
I don't know the perfect answer to that, but I suspect that it is because of the "Nerd-factor".

When you make a movie, it's important to:

- Follow the manuscript & storyboard.
- Make your scene TELL the story in the most convincing way.
- Don't take focus OFF the main subject, one thing at a time.
- Make every point in the scene PERFECTLY obvious and clear to anyone.
- LIVE the character as if you where him/her!

People who concentrate too much on the technical aspects of things (no offence intended to ANYONE!) tend to concentrate way too much on the technics & hardware & software rather than the scene-content & story itself. This is perfectly fine if you're one of the programmers & software/hardware engineers....but REALLY BAD if you're one of the animators. It's nice to know your stuff (wich you automatically WILL after a couple of months in the studio anyway) but it's more important to stay focused on the content!

After all...we want to show you a good time with a GREAT STORY...
Not how COOL the latest feature of this-and-that is...

/Tommy

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