So, I’m back to 3D modeling.
Being house-bound and working from home, I was perusing my recommended videos on YouTube during a lunch break and found one from a series on Blender I had watched in the past, but updated for the latest 2.82 version. As I had opened Blender recently to work with my purchase from Kitbash 3D I was aware that the 2.8 build was a significant update of the software from the last time I’d tried to learn 3D modeling, so I fired up the videos and got so interested in 3D modeling again that I reactivated my long-dormant subscription to CGCookie.com.
Here we go again. CGC has a whole learning track dedicated to modeling with 2.8, starting at the absolute beginner level which, I freely admit, is always me, considering how often I leave the fold and forget everything I’d learned about the process and the field whenever I get the urge to return. I rationalized this alongside the UI overhaul in 2.8, figuring that anything that I did remember would be null and void anyway.
I spent this weekend going through the first set of tutorials which covered the most basic information (“what is 3D modeling?”, “what is a mesh?”, etc) and segued into the first practical application: making a low-poly spaceship animation.
Lo! Gaze upon my progress, and be amazed (that I actually completed something):
This is my rocket, built from scratch, and animated. I admit that animation is not something I’d gone in for, and I don’t think it’s going to be my focus any time soon, but it’s nice to have something actually completed that I’m not at all horrified by.
I lay this credit at the feet of CGCookie and the instructional talents of Grant Wilk who despite being about half by goddamn age, I think, explains things in a way that’s easy to understand. I’ve often found that most people who try and explain dense subjects like 3D modeling tend to forget how to explain the basics, and easily fall into muscle memory of shortcuts and one-off rabbit-holes that lead to a spaghetti mess of a lesson. Grant kept on track more than most other instructors, didn’t show one thing and promise to explain it later in the interest of expediency, and while he did ramp up the speed as the lesson wore on, he didn’t overload the experience with sidetracks or promises of more info much later on.
The next set of lessons in this lesson track focus on the “fundamentals of 3D mesh modeling”, so we’ll see how that goes. I have been trying to keep a notebook of Blender essentials — especially the how-tos or then when-tos which are the two aspects of 3D modeling that always seem to trip me up when I try this — but I missed several and might have to re-watch these videos and parse all of that out.