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rcmac
12-01-2003, 02:38 AM
I am a FCP user big time and have decided to branch out and start doing some animations in my movies and such.

Therefore, I started my search for the tool that I needed to learn and use.

However, I am not finding alot of success in the process.

Is LightWave 3D something that someone new to animation should look at using?

I have also researched Poser 5 and Animation Master...

I guess I am somewhat confused about the direction to head.

Any assistance would be appreciated..

Thanks

RC

turbo
12-01-2003, 09:24 AM
Not that I am an uber animator or anything .. but..
... I wouldn't even put Poser and Animation Master in the same class as LW.. :p

mlinde
12-01-2003, 12:38 PM
I would suggest checking a local university to see if they offer any classes in 3D animation, and what packages they use. Expect that it will be PC based unless it is an art school, and it may be PC based there as well. Don't worry about it if the package is cross platform (ie Lightwave, Maya, Cinema).

If you are seriously looking at getting into 3D animation, I would look at one of the three packages listed above. I would look at user groups (like this one), printed and online training materials, and discussion forums, to determine how active the community is, how well supported the package is, and what the known issues are with the packages.

These packages are so extensive it takes years to master them, so expect it to take some time. If you spend a year doing nothing but tutorials and classes, you will have a strong grasp of the tools available to you, but you won't be a master. I'm not trying to scare you, just to let you know that advanced 3D animation packages are very complex pieces of software, with literally thousands of different tools and methods to learn. With the learning materials available, it is possible to get up an running quickly, but you will never stop learning something new.

That won't be true with a package like Poser, which you could master in a few months, and soon feel limited by the tools available to you (this is my opinion, based on using it).

drclare
12-03-2003, 01:41 AM
I would suggest looking into Strata 3d. It is less expensive than Lightwave, not nearly as good, but if you are looking to add some simple 3d animations to spice up your videos Strata fits well. Lightwave is a much more professional quality package that you might not really need.

archiea
12-03-2003, 01:46 AM
as always, dl the LW demo and explore yourself...

Start off with some premade models and just mess aound in layout... its more fun and approahable...

Use project based tutorials that deal with general workflow issues... simple modeling, surfacing, texturing, then lighting and rendering.... This way you can grasp the general workflow, and explore from there..

Beamtracer
12-03-2003, 03:40 AM
Originally posted by rcmac
Is LightWave 3D something that someone new to animation should look at using?
Be confident and jump into Lightwave.

It's a long term investment. If you want a jump start, there's lots of tutorials for Lightwave. Books, videos etc. There's DVDs for beginners and DVDs for advanced users. This is the way to get your head around it fast.

Nobody learns the whole thing in a couple of weeks. You learn a bit to get yourself started. As time progresses you keep learning new things... new features and new techniques that make your work look better and better.

Out of all the Mac 3D programs, Lightwave is the most evolved. Best plug-in support. Higher-end features. Lightwave's 32-bit-per-channel renderer is a great combination with Final Cut Pro.