View Full Version : Total newbie needs help with Lightwave 7.5!!

07-16-2004, 03:30 PM
Ok folks,

I'm totally new here. I have a background in art. But have been out of the loop for a long time. I'm adept at Photoshop etc. and quite computer savy. I want to get into 3d modeling and animation for fun. So I just got Lightwave 7.5 and Maya 6 for Mac, and I'm completely lost. I have no idea how to begin. I've watched a bunch of video tutorials, and let's just say I have a whole new respect for you guys!

My questions are:

Which program should I be using?

How do I begin? Are there any must have books that are really great?

Is there any one in the LA area who would trade lessons in exchange for music? (I'm a professional music producer and composer and could score your short film in any style or give you private music lessons on guitar, piano, bass or pro audio recording)

Thanks for your tips,

Signal to Noise
07-16-2004, 04:05 PM
Okay, first I'm going to assume you have the LightWave Discovery Edition (if you managed to find it that is) and Maya PLE, right? If not, then you must have shelled out a hell of a lot of money for two apps you know nothing about! What made you decide on LightWave and/or Maya anyway?

I'm not going to go through the pros and cons of each app and whether you should choose one over the other. You need to decide that. Check out "unbiased" forums like CGTalk for an idea of what's what. I highly recommend becoming a member there so you can post questions.

The best way to start and get your feet wet is to pick one app and learn it. If you choose LightWave then go visit NewTek's Tutorial page and try to pick up Dan Ablan's Inside LW [7] book.

If you choose Maya to start with then I believe the PLE includes on-line (on the CD) tutorials. You can also pick up a book I think called Foundations which is a hardcopy version of those same tutorials. There are also other books available so do a search on Amazon to get an idea of what's available.

Whatever you do decide to use the important thing to remember is practice lots, ask questions (in the appropriate forum), and have fun doing it!

Good luck.

Tom Wood
07-16-2004, 06:09 PM
I know this is a really difficult answer, but it is true.

What do you want to do?

A lot of people here want a job, so they end up learning the programs that are most used in the area where they want to work. Perfectly legitimate motivation.

I wanted to do 3D with the same simplicity that South Park uses for 2D. I needed a set of programs that all worked together easily because I'm not really a computer person. So I chose VT3 because it came with LW7.5, Aura, and the VT3 Editor. (I've since replaced Aura with Mirage and added Particle Illusions.) I bought a BOXX system so I'd have a single point of contact for technical issues. Apple provides the same comprehensive service, but I prefer PC.

But -you- need to decide; 'What do I want to do?'


07-16-2004, 07:23 PM
You can learn the program, but also you have to learn the basic principles of 3D (what is diffuse, specular map, etc). So the video tutorials might help you learn which button to push, but that's about it.

I'd recommend you get "Essential Lightwave 7.5" by Wordware publishing, it's great for beginners to get start. Then, after you're comfortable with that, you might consider getting "Inside Lightwave " book. Both of which can be found easily, and get you started.

And since you can do music, I am sure some people will find your musical skills useful to add to their short. Do stick around and let people know you're here :D

07-16-2004, 09:35 PM
Thanks for the tips guys. It's wild, because I am so used to putting together complicated music tracks that would send most people spinning...I enter the 3d realm thinking "I'll pick it up no problem. I'm a smart guy." And the Wham..Reality strikes. There is sooo much to this stuff.

I will definitely check out those books.

In the mean time, if you need pro music I'm your guy. I'll happily trade for 3d help.