Free 3D!

posted in: The Tools | 1

So, this month, the theme has been free graphic software, more or less.

Well, as much as I love taking as realistic photos as possible and capturing the actual moment, I have to admit, graphic artists who start with photos and make them into more always impress me.  I’m especially impressed by those who create whole realities from nothing.  That’s one reason I backed the Kickstarter project The Tube Open Movie.  When they’re done developing this, now late, movie, the things they created for it, like sets and lighting setups and even, hopefully, some of the characters, will be available to the open source community to use in their own work, or even as the base for their own 3D models and creations.  And, though the project has been slow and kind of quiet, Backers recently got an update, so we know everything is still proceeding.  In fact, it’s been going at such a break-neck pace that the people running the project just haven’t had time to give us updates!
So, while I’ve been talking about still images most of this month, this week, it’s moving images.  Though, obviously, a thin enough slice of a motion picture is, in fact, a still frame.

And, really, what I’m highlighting today is not the end product, but the tool to make it.  Namely, Blender, the free, open source 3D modeler.  Because,  you see, The Tube Open Movie, is being created with Blender!  Now, I will grant you that 3D creation programs can be pretty intimidating, but Blender has a pretty huge community and support, and plenty of books  you can buy to help you get started.  In fact, while there are quite a few free resources available, I recommend that you buy a book to help you get started from the website, because the profits from that will help sustain the software.  Also, The Tube movie is not the first movie to be created with Blender by any means.  Several of those movies are available for sale, including their source characters and some of the tools created to realize them, at the site, too.  All well worth checking out!

So, if you’ve ever wanted to get into 3D artistry, Blender is a great, low-cost way to start!
Besides, hey, it’s Friday and you can’t have anything better to do if you’re reading this blog, so why not go grab a copy and install it and see how far you get this weekend?