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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2012

    I want to learn both of these. Best order for building a foundation?

    Disclaimer (because I didn't see a policy on this): THIS IS NOT A WHICH IS BETTER WAR.

    So I've begun learning Maya (the very fundamental parts of the basics [basic UI, basic modeling tools, nodes, outliner, hypershade, etc.]) and after much research and debate I ALSO want to learn Houdini (not at the same time though, that'd be freaking insane).

    Now I have weighed the pros and cons of each after reading through like 20 app/flame wars and that is not what I'm getting at. I'm doing this as a hobby because I'm a film production major who has an interest in this and 3 months that I want dedicated solely to this (and then continue learning while balancing school during the semester).

    I have however seen people who learned Maya find it difficult to learn Houdini so my question is not a which is better. But if it's easier (none are "easy" I understand) to learn Maya first then Houdini, or H first and then Maya? Or if it's better to learn one first so that my understanding of the other is better. Now eventually I plan on attempting to learn both after I get an immediate understanding of one, which I know will take an extremely long time.

    (Also because I want to generalize and am not seeking to do something specifically for animation or for live action or for VFX please no "learn whichever is best suited for your needs". I have no true needs I'm just simply trying to find out if it is at all easier to learn one before the other and why.)

    *Side-note*: This is sorta also a programming question because I know very little coding but am willing to put the time and effort to learn H-script, python or MEL (which I learned is fairly necessary for these programs because they don't do so well out of the box [or in my case starving artist edition]) but maybe learning one before the other might be a lot better because it builds a foundation, I don't know.

    Sorry for the long rant I just didn't want to start another stupid app war. If this gets taken down I'd understand but after a lot of searching I really can't find anything on this question. Maybe it exists and I'm just a terrible Google-er. Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Brooklyn, NY
    I started with Bryce then had to decide between Maya and Max, I chose Maya and never looked back. It would be nice to say you know two programs.
    The unexamined life is not worth living.

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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    This forum people around the 3dbuzz land are mainly interested in learning. There is no beef to have with any of your mentioned products.

    People will generally tell you their opinion rather then telling you a neutral opinion. (even my first sentence seems so )

    Programming/Scripting question:
    Look into python because it is supported by both Maya and Houdini (at least that's what Wikipedia says).

    As for the which package look at the below answer.

    If you are undecided, look at videos for both (just a glance -nothing more) and see which one resonates to you (aspect, workflow). Another method would be to get a coin ... . In the end it is like that post I linked to says.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Well I have to say that having done a fair bit of maya training thus far and then trying to do Houdini. I would have to say it is very different. Houdini is all about procedural this is a fairly large work flow gap with looking at both maya and houdini. You approach solving the same fundamental thing in a completely different way.

    For example in early versions of Houdini there were no primitives from which to start. you had to make them yourself using the procedures and functions. Much like building and equation in a math class. Fortunately this is not the case in current iterations of the program.

    Maya has always had a set of primitives that you can draw from to build your creation as you desire. It has also had the various tools that allow you to directly manipulate those primitives in a very linear fashion. If you want to have half of a sphere there are a number of ways that you can make that happen in Maya.

    So really what it boils down to is how to you like to work? What kind of work flow do you feel would work for you?

    Personally I don't like procedural. It doesn't come easily to me. Maybe it will for you. But I think you might find that the difference in workflow will be a large obstacle to overcome. I could be wrong :P

    Best of luck to you though. If you do manage to become familiar with both drop me a PM I would love to hear how you made the transition from one to the other and what was hard or easy about the whole thing.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Lincoln, NE
    Learn Houdini first if you want to use it. What you learn in Maya (aside the basics of working in 3d space) will not translate over. If you get stuck working in Houdini, then give Maya a shot and see if that works better for you.

    Both packages will do the same things, so it is really just personal preference. If i recall correctly, Houdini will use Python scripting which will be usable across platforms (web coding and other such projects) where MEL is only going to work with Maya. Hope this helps.
    I'd rather hate myself for failing, than hate my life for never having tried.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Kemptville, Ontario
    If i recall correctly, Houdini will use Python scripting
    So will Maya.

    Steve Twist, one of the guest instructors here on 3DBuzz started learning here using Maya then went on to Houdini and learned both so well that he developed and taught VTMs for 3DBuzz. You see his products in the store and I own all of them. He has gone through University, can't remember his exact area of study, and now has a good paying career in the industry.
    I have figured out what the internet is. You know what they say about an infinite number of monkeys hitting keys at random on an infinite number of typewriters for an infinite amount of time? Well the internet is like that. There is some big cosmic alien running that experiment here in order to find the answer to some big question or to create the greatest piece of literature known to the universe. From what I have seen so far I am sorry to say they are going to be greatly disappointed.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    I was a Max user , I moved into film industry where Maya is industry standard ... so i had to learn Maya , I hated it, i found it hard, I was already set in my ways ...I kept comparing it to Max always looking for something to blame ... and after a year I got used to it and, now I love Maya ... but it is true it can be hard to move to another package once you are set in anotherone ....because you start thinking in a way that package work ... but I will suggest you learn Maya first ... you will not regret it

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