View Full Version : Math Skills

05-10-2007, 10:27 AM
Hello, I have had something bothering me for the last couple of days and finally decided to ask someone about it, who better that people in the industry.

For the people who do me here I am a relative newbie learning more about animation each day. I am yet to run into math in Lightwave.

What I have been seeing on the web is that to be a truly great CG artist you need to have great math skills. This is nowhere near the case for me. I am perfectly fine with the x, y and z axis, know my 1, 2, 3's etc but am nowhere near a Math Wiz, suck at Algebra and have trouble with Trig etc though I know it.

Are there any programs that are math intensive, I know quite a few of the sites that mention this use Maya as their program.

If it is Maya what type of Math does it use and to what extent, I know a few people here will suggest againest using Maya and stick with LW, I am going to do that but I want to learn Maya and need to know if there will be problems ahead.

Thanks for your help in advance.

05-10-2007, 12:31 PM
For the people who do me here...
Pardon??? :D

Nope! No math neccessary! Programming isn't even neccessary, although very useful. The only time I've run into artists using math was for particle effects in Houdini, for things like the movie Day After Tomorrow and the Halo3 trailer. Modeling, texturing, lighting and animating require no math.

05-10-2007, 12:37 PM
I remember thinking this way when I first started with 3D. But no real math knowledge is required unless, as Toby said, you plan to get into programming, and even then, there are a lot of things you can do with programming where an extensive knowledge of math wouldn't be necessary.

Just don't think you're going to write a fluid simulator or anything without being a real Math Gilbert.

05-10-2007, 12:49 PM
Actually, the math depends on how "real" you want go get with your animation style. Such as decelerating vehicles, acceleration curves and such. But the graph editor helps with that greatly. A lot of the math you will be doing is visual while the computer handles the intense stuff.

Captain Obvious
05-10-2007, 03:34 PM
An understanding of math is definitely useful, but by no means a requirement.

05-10-2007, 03:53 PM
If Math was neccessary, I'd still be flippin' burgers! :hammer: (just pretend that's a spatula)

05-10-2007, 04:17 PM
I remember someone telling me this when I first got into 3D. A little math is necessary for everyday tasks in LW but all the input fields will do that for me :) (the will calculate basic math in case you didn't know, very usefull)

I would imagine if you want to get heavy into scripting you would have to know math.

05-10-2007, 06:03 PM
It's not a prerequisite, but it definately helps, more important for LightWave is having a logical mind to understand the concepts used in features such as global illumination, antialiasing (especially the new modes) irradiance, dynamics, nodes and surface properties.

05-10-2007, 07:21 PM
The second I saw what I said I thought I will never live that down and cringed. Simple Typo.

Thanks for all your info guys, extemely helpful.