One of the advantages of writing these posts every week is that I have an instantly searchable record of all the dumb things that I thought over the past few years. Maybe that’s a disadvantage. I’m not sure really. Well, what’s done is done.
A quick search through the past archive for “Blender” returned a dozen articles. The oldest mention was from 2011. That’s sort of a while ago. In 2013 I was pondering moving to using Blender as my main 3D modelling tool. In 2014 I was fighting with the interface and some of the more obscure tools. By 2015 I seemed to be rounding the corner, and I no longer had my finger hovering over the “buy Maya” button. I was still having some trouble fully committing to using Blender, but I wasn’t really looking back either.
Finally, after all that time, and a lot of models built, animated, and rendered, last month I realized I was thinking in Blender. I wasn’t looking for Blender equivalents of tools from other programs. I was looking for keyboard shortcuts to make the tools available faster and more convenient. I have added a few shortcuts of my own to personalize Blender to the way I want to work.
It only took five years, but I got there. Or maybe I’m getting there. It’s hard to say. Whatever the case I finally feel comfortable using Blender for all my 3D modelling needs.
Last week I tried Clara.io and had a quick look at Onshape. They are web based 3D tools that let you work on models using a web browser. While they might be limited now, it’s really only a matter of time before a web based art creation tool becomes a kids first, and maybe only tool. Professional workflows will be based around a tool that never actually resides on the user's computer. For a lot of writers, this is already the case.
In five years, I’ll be able to do a search for this post and pinpoint the time when I started learning whatever comes next.