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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Forest City, PA, USA

    Changes in modeling and animating techniques and practices

    It's been what seems like forever since I posted anything - or for that matter did anything - related to 3D or 3DBuzz. Life happened. But, happier times arrived once more, and I am ready, able and very eager to jump back on the ship.

    I did the first 2 projects in 3ds Max Fundamentals back when the course was released (well, actually more like 1.5 projects), but I would like to revisit the course. The question is - what is the current state of modeling and animating techniques? I understand that the interface of the 3ds Max has changed since 2009 (which is the version I have), but what about the actual techniques and pipeline?

    I can't upgrade my software, but at the same time, I'd like to follow the best current practices, whenever possible. So is the Fundamentals course still current when it comes to general techniques used in today's modeling and animation, or does the new 3ds Max software provides features that make some of the older techniques obsolete?

    In just two days, tomorrow will become yesterday.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    I find the Fundamentals course fantastic still and well worth studying, the basics they teach will always hold true.

    The one thing I have noticed (but used very little of) is the vast improvement of the CAT system over the years. In fact I'm fairly sure people don't use the old school bone creation tools taught in Fundamentals at all anymore. I wouldn't spend too much time with Havok/Reactor either because that has been removed since 2011 I believe. Apart from that though it's all gravy, a lot of the changes have been UI or engine improvements that increase your workflow speed, or the quality of your renders, but virtually all of the functionality has changed very little. In fact nearly all of the menus are identical to the Max version they used in the vtms (2008?).

    Don't forget to follow the official youtube channel of 3DS Max Learning Channel for up to date how-tos, including indepth stuff on CAT (which is not covered in Fundamentals). A neat new feature I like is Substance Maps

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Had to think about this one a bit.

    The simple answer is no there is nothing that is fundamentally different when talking about the basics like modeling, or anything else 3D in general, and is still all about moving dots and editing data to create interesting shapes and forms. Granted there have bee the addition of more productive tools but the concepts are still the same and it's only the ways of doing it that has changed.

    What has and is changing is how the individual can be more productive in a shorter period of time through convergence of technology that is yet fully realized.

    Take for example you have a cell phone, great, you have a camera, great, combine the two seemingly incompatible technologies you have a useful product than can extend far beyond what is possible by either as a stand alone solution based on a single need.

    By far this is the biggest change I've seen in the past few years in application design from a single locked in solution to an application tool that is transparent in it's use that avoids the stand alone solution problem.

    You can use 3ds Max to model, you can use Zbrush to model, but I believe he future in 3D is the end user will not know, or taken for granted, that such tools are actually singular in their use.

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