Friday, March 25, 2011

Ah! what's a work flow?

What's a workflow? Say you are looking at Blender 3D. You've seen the web sites, the videos, the mesmerizing array of features, the confusing menus and advanced finished animations that all say one thing to you, the learning curve is too steep for me. Panic attack! Go back to MSPaint!

First realization is that I do not need to learn all of what Blender can do to do what I need it to do. If I don't do animation why stress over it. Animation would not be in my workflow. My workflow is what I do. So, in looking at Blender I see what I want to accomplish, say model objects, position objects to build a scene, add lights,  render that scene, and print it.

To do this I need to learn the basics of 3d modeling (similar in most 3d applications), the Blender interface in general, then the specific operations for the things I want to do (my workflow). We had to approach AutoCad the same way, else we'd never get any work done. Once you know, you know, you know!?

Now that you know, you can improve your workflow by hitting the forums to interrogate ones who do the same as you, to learn a new trick or two. The user videos on line are great show and tell. And if you can get in a Blender focus group (buds that blend, margarita maker society, the spinners.....), especially a local group, meet at the library or something. It is face to face bragging, tagging, whining, tipping and tripping. Nothing improves your workflow like friendly fire and encouragement. Then down the road, "Gee, animation looks like fun."

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