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Thread: Outdated tutorials

  1. #16
    also check our newly released odroot... probably wont find more tutorials anywhere.... http://www.patreon.com/odroot

  2. #17
    Hello, all. I'm a newbie, for reasons that I will get into, and I have some observations on the quality of Lightwave Learning, specifically Modelling. It aint that great. I bought the application 10-12 years ago, but because I had plenty to do, I didn't actually get down and learn it until now, when I have more time than money. The difficulty I kept running into-and which kept me from learning the app at the outset- is, basically, very few of the tutorials are actually designed for rock-bottom knuckle-dragging beginners. Like Me. Even among the tutorials praised in this thread, many of them start teaching modeling by showing a pre-done model, e.g., a chair, a human figure, or, in a YouTube video tutorial, a simple predone and subdivided globe. Where did the globe come from, and how was it made? Those facts are not in evidence, anywhere. So I have no (expletive deleted) idea how to make the globe. However, based on a comment in this thread, I looked through my collection of aftermarket Lightwave books (e.g., Ablan's Inside Lightwave 9, Albee and Warner's Essential Lightwave 8 and 9) and found some hope. Exercises. Numbered, Step-by-step exercises. So now, no thanks to Newtek proper, I have a place to start. Most of the existing official written tutorials (e.g., the Lightwave Modeler book) are catalogues of: New Features; all the wonderful tools and what they do; more details about the tools and modes and what they do, and always, in the first chapter, "How to customize the interface". Right. Rank beginner, looking at the Viewports for the first time, of course, first thing I want to do is customize it and get it just the way I like it. In Inside Lightwave v. 9, on page 310, are the words "Click the create tab and select the Box tool." Sounds to me, a knuckle-dragging beginner, like a better place to start.
    Last edited by Birck Cox; 11-23-2018 at 08:14 AM. Reason: makes the point better
    BC

  3. #18
    Male Modeler ccclarke's Avatar
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    I feel your pain. The days of self-taught artists who can pick up a major 3D app and become proficient at a professional level are for the most part, over. Even for a dedicated hobbyist, without help, it's easy to flail, get discouraged, and eventually give up. It takes a tremendous amount of motivation, drive, and passion to succeed, and the learning never, ever ends. The time to master an app like LW isn’t measured in weeks or months, but years. The absolute best way to learn is butt-in-seat training with an experienced LightWave teacher, giving constant feedback. Unfortunately, that doesn't exist, with the exception of FMC's two-part, six-day course, (which I've attended) but the main lesson that experience taught me was how much I needed to learn.

    Currently, I'm in the process of trying to identify candidates within our organization to take over my position before I retire in five years. If I can't, and we want to retain the capability, the best option is to hire me as a consultant, and I've promised management that will be very expensive, if I even want to take it on. I estimate it will take that long to get a trainee up to speed where they have the ability and confidence to tackle whatever assignment comes their way using standard industry apps. Modeling, (Hard Surface, and Organic) texturing, rigging, lighting, and rendering techniques take several years to really master with constant practice to learn the most efficient way to spend one's time, because DEADLINE always rules. Constant mentoring in the beginning is essential to prevent bad habits from becoming ingrained in someone's workflow. I modeled for six months using tutorials before attending the DAVE school, (on the company's dime) and spent the first month, unlearning all of the bad habits I had acquired on my own, learning in a vacuum. Constant critiques with a classroom full of eyes were a tremendous help. Fragile egos are a definite impediment to making the best use of constructive criticism.

    If I were able to find four potential students, I know the odds lean heavily toward (maybe) one making the cut, within a month of forty-hour a week training. That's where the all-important qualities of drive and passion comes into play. We lost half of our 30 student class in three weeks at DAVE and they all were excited to be there on the first day. The realization that 3DCG requires hard work kicked in and they bailed. I asked the director if a 50% attrition rate was normal after so short a period, and he nodded. A few more students dropped out later. -Good intentions will never replace hard work.

    Books and tutorials are often lacking because they don't emphasize one of the most important aspects of LW: workflow and techniques. They might explain the "How" something works, but rarely the "Why" behind the modeling techniques being presented. You can know the operation of every tool in Modeler, but that's not enough to build a photo-realistic car model. Technique is the important missing ingredient to creating a great render in a reasonable timeframe. The first question a new artist asks when taking on a project is often, “Where do I start?” It can seem overwhelming.

    Though dated, William Vaughan's short video tutorials are still some of the best available. I'm partially biased because he was my modeling instructor, but with many years of teaching experience under his belt, he was able to present the material in a layered approach that built upon previous lessons. In my notes, I recorded not just what he taught, but how he taught it. As I mentioned, though dated, Modeler hasn't changed appreciably in the last decade, with the exception of the new texturing methodology, which is still backwards-compatible. The future is PBR, and I'd like to see a lot more in-depth tutorials made available because I suspect it's keeping a lot of LWavers from making the leap to 2018. Retaining the existing user base and bringing in new artists is one of several paths to keeping LW viable.

    It would be to Newtek’s ultimate benefit to invest the resources required to create a comprehensive training series, with real-world goals. The current method of sporadically highlighting new features is appreciated, but only scratches the surface of LW's true power.

    The quality of most third-party video training currently available is consistently inconsistent. Knowing a subject and effectively being able to teach it are not the same.

    The popularity of LW has been declining for years. Once, it was THE de-facto 3D app, but there was less competition then. LW’s standout feature remains however: A single, experienced artist can create absolutely amazing work in a relatively short period of time with LW. Achieving that level of performance has become harder, not easier. Newtek created LW to bring affordable, professional-level 3DCG to the masses, and they succeeded brilliantly. There were magazines and evangelists to propel its popularity. Maybe it's time to self-assess and return to the basics of those early days with a modern training approach to match in an effort to "re-light the fire". Everyone loves a successful come-back.

    LW docs have come a long way and are so much better now, but professional level, high-fidelity training (which requires a tremendous effort to produce) continues to lag considerably, and hinders LW's growth to the detriment of all. A comprehensive, immersive training effort on Newtek’s part would bring more users to the community and boost the chances of LW being accepted deeper within the CG industry. It’s a win-win for everyone involved. Newtek can create the best 3D app in the world, but without a robust user community to sing its praises, and studios to add it to their pipeline, the effort would be wasted. LW’s evolution requires equally evolutionary training to promote it.

    A two-week, (beginner and advanced) Lightwave Academy course at Newtek would be awesome.

    "Training the Trainers" with a company-supported user-group rep to spread the word couldn't hurt.

    Regular communication with their base supporters (the LW Newtek 3D Group Announcement sub-forum hasn't had a company post for over seven months) is another area that could use some attention.

    Suggestions solicited!

    CCC
    Last edited by ccclarke; 11-24-2018 at 11:07 AM.

  4. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by ccclarke View Post
    I feel your pain. The days of self-taught artists who can pick up a major 3D app and become proficient at a professional level are for the most part, over. Even for a dedicated hobbyist, without help, it's easy to flail, get discouraged, and eventually give up. It takes a tremendous amount of motivation, drive, and passion to succeed, and the learning never, ever ends. The time to master an app like LW isn’t measured in weeks or months, but years. The absolute best way to learn is butt-in-seat training with an experienced LightWave teacher, giving constant feedback. Unfortunately, that doesn't exist, with the exception of FMC's two-part, six-day course, (which I've attended) but the main lesson that experience taught me was how much I needed to learn.

    Currently, I'm in the process of trying to identify candidates within our organization to take over my position before I retire in five years. If I can't, and we want to retain the capability, the best option is to hire me as a consultant, and I've promised management that will be very expensive, if I even want to take it on. I estimate it will take that long to get a trainee up to speed where they have the ability and confidence to tackle whatever assignment comes their way using standard industry apps. Modeling, (Hard Surface, and Organic) texturing, rigging, lighting, and rendering techniques take several years to really master with constant practice to learn the most efficient way to spend one's time, because DEADLINE always rules. Constant mentoring in the beginning is essential to prevent bad habits from becoming ingrained in someone's workflow. I modeled for six months using tutorials before attending the DAVE school, (on the company's dime) and spent the first month, unlearning all of the bad habits I had acquired on my own, learning in a vacuum. Constant critiques with a classroom full of eyes were a tremendous help. Fragile egos are a definite impediment to making the best use of constructive criticism.

    If I were able to find four potential students, I know the odds lean heavily toward (maybe) one making the cut, within a month of forty-hour a week training. That's where the all-important qualities of drive and passion comes into play. We lost half of our 30 student class in three weeks at DAVE and they all were excited to be there on the first day. The realization that 3DCG requires hard work kicked in and they bailed. I asked the director if a 50% attrition rate was normal after so short a period, and he nodded. A few more students dropped out later. -Good intentions will never replace hard work.

    Books and tutorials are often lacking because they don't emphasize one of the most important aspects of LW: workflow and techniques. They might explain the "How" something works, but rarely the "Why" behind the modeling techniques being presented. You can know the operation of every tool in Modeler, but that's not enough to build a photo-realistic car model. Technique is the important missing ingredient to creating a great render in a reasonable timeframe. The first question a new artist asks when taking on a project is often, “Where do I start?” It can seem overwhelming.

    Though dated, William Vaughan's short video tutorials are still some of the best available. I'm partially biased because he was my modeling instructor, but with many years of teaching experience under his belt, he was able to present the material in a layered approach that built upon previous lessons. In my notes, I recorded not just what he taught, but how he taught it. As I mentioned, though dated, Modeler hasn't changed appreciably in the last decade, with the exception of the new texturing methodology, which is still backwards-compatible. The future is PBR, and I'd like to see a lot more in-depth tutorials made available because I suspect it's keeping a lot of LWavers from making the leap to 2018. Retaining the existing user base and bringing in new artists is one of several paths to keeping LW viable.

    It would be to Newtek’s ultimate benefit to invest the resources required to create a comprehensive training series, with real-world goals. The current method of sporadically highlighting new features is appreciated, but only scratches the surface of LW's true power.

    The quality of most third-party video training currently available is consistently inconsistent. Knowing a subject and effectively being able to teach it are not the same.

    The popularity of LW has been declining for years. Once, it was THE de-facto 3D app, but there was less competition then. LW’s standout feature remains however: A single, experienced artist can create absolutely amazing work in a relatively short period of time with LW. Achieving that level of performance has become harder, not easier. Newtek created LW to bring affordable, professional-level 3DCG to the masses, and they succeeded brilliantly. There were magazines and evangelists to propel its popularity. Maybe it's time to self-assess and return to the basics of those early days with a modern training approach to match in an effort to "re-light the fire". Everyone loves a successful come-back.

    LW docs have come a long way and are so much better now, but professional level, high-fidelity training (which requires a tremendous effort to produce) continues to lag considerably, and hinders LW's growth to the detriment of all. A comprehensive, immersive training effort on Newtek’s part would bring more users to the community and boost the chances of LW being accepted deeper within the CG industry. It’s a win-win for everyone involved. Newtek can create the best 3D app in the world, but without a robust user community to sing its praises, and studios to add it to their pipeline, the effort would be wasted. LW’s evolution requires equally evolutionary training to promote it.

    A two-week, (beginner and advanced) Lightwave Academy course at Newtek would be awesome.

    "Training the Trainers" with a company-supported user-group rep to spread the word couldn't hurt.

    Regular communication with their base supporters (the LW Newtek 3D Group Announcement sub-forum hasn't had a company post for over seven months) is another area that could use some attention.

    Suggestions solicited!

    CCC
    Thank you for the reply. From my limited view, I can agree with everything you say. I can also offer that the problem certainly isn't limited to LW-how many times have I been told to customize the interface in the first 2-3 pages of a User Guide?-but Lightwave could be the most complicated application I've tried to learn. By now, thanks to the aftermarket books on LW 9 and 10, I at least have a place to start, but even those leave a lot on the cutting-room floor. I was hoping that a report from the trenches by someone who doesn't know bugger-all about how to use the app (that would be me) could remind current experienced users how far back they really need to go to find the starting point, i.e., "Modeling" shouldn't start with a finished, pre-made model. Thank you for considering my original post.
    BC

  5. #20
    Male Modeler ccclarke's Avatar
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    I have all the books you've mentioned (and many others) and you're absolutely right. There's a lot of valuable info that's left out that experienced pros often take for granted.

    How can you customize the interface when you don't know what's important? I keep about eighteen of my "goto tools" on my desktop; the others I use a lot are hotkey shortcuts.

    If you don't have them, these are LW must-haves for a beginner:

    Digital Modeling: William Vaughan
    Lightwave 3D 1001 Tips and Tricks Beckwith, Warner & Wood
    Lightwave 8 Killer Tips - Dan Ablan/Randy Sharp

    A few things to master right away:

    1) The 3D Coordinate System. Know it, live it, love it.
    2) Proper LW Project File Structure: Three Folders (min): Objects, Images, Scenes
    3) How to manipulate and view an object in the viewports using the mouse, CNTRL and Alt keys. NEVER use the three icons in each viewport! This is a HUGE timesaver over the viewport icons.


    This is first day of school subject material.


    As for customization, the one thing I push first with students is to bring up Modeler's Display Options panel ("D") and under the Viewports tab, check all of the boxes except Show Cages and Show Guides for now. Do this for each of the four viewports within this tab. Why? So that you don't have all viewports zooming or scrolling sideways at the same time, for one thing. When you Quit LW, these settings will be saved in LW's configs, and will be your default setup the next time you open LW.

    While the Display options panel is open, open the Layout tab. Check all the boxes except Show Guides/Cages (for now.) Under the Layout dropdown menu within that tab, select what viewport setup you want each time LW opens. I used the default Quad setup for a few months but eventually switched over to the bottom selection on the list, since I work in the Perspective mode a lot and like having it larger. It's a matter of personal taste with a large number of adjustable viewport options.


    Once you've got all of the above figured out, it's time to experiment with a basic shape, or primitive. Press the Box tool button and press "N" on the keyboard. This activates the default 1 m box. Practice using the mouse along with the CNTRL and ALT keys to spin the view around the box, scroll sideways and zoom in and out of it.

    My default workflow is to use the Textured Wire display mode in the Perspective viewport and leave the others as Wireframes. I work this way 80% of the time and change the Perspective view to Wireframe for accurate Poly/Edge/Point selection, because it's too easy to select adjacent ones that you don't always want in the other views.


    The spacebar selects which mode you're working in: Polys/Edges and Points. I alternate often, so my thumb usually rests there. The ring and index finger of my other hand rest on the CNTRL and ALT keys most of the time while I'm modeling. Hand placement is one of those basic, take-for-granted tips I've never seen in a book, but it makes a big difference time-wise.


    Once you master moving around the screen (press the "A" key to center the view of "All" of the geometry if needed.) practice selecting Polys/Edges, and Points. This is usually covered in the beginning of the self-help books. After that, you learn to move them about the coordinate system using a few basic keys, like the "T" (Translate) and "Y" (Rotate) keys. "H" is for Stretch. Shift/H is for scale.


    Another selection cardinal rule: If nothing is selected, EVERYTHING is selected. In the Modeler workflow, you select something, then do something. Select a couple of points and then press the "T" key and only those points can be moved. One way to drop your current selection is to press the "/" key. If you select one poly/edge/point but really want to select all of them, press the "]" key.


    As in most other skills, practice is the key. Like math and music, LW is not a spectator sport. You only learn by doing it. I promise, you'll get out of it what you put into it.

    Feel free to PM me if you have specific questions or get stuck.

    CCC

  6. #21
    Hi, guys. Since the thread here is "Outdated Tutorials", I'll skip my usual p*****g & moaning about my plight and get straight to the question: I'm working in LW2015, trying to follow beginner toots from Albee & Warner's Inside LW 9 and having predictable problems. This time it's: To cut off the lower half of a simple sphere (Create/Ball tool/Numeric panel), then Control-H to select polygons in the sphere's lower hemisphere. That last step apparently worked to select the entire lower hemisphere via a lasso in LW9, but not in LW2015. Now, it (Control-H ) selects only the visible polygons touched by the cursor, rather than lassoing the entire lower half of the sphere. So I am stuck. What command or tool do I need to use to select the entire lower hemisphere in LW2015? Is this the best thread for asking questions like this, or is there a better place?
    BC

  7. #22
    Member devin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Birck Cox View Post
    Hi, guys. Since the thread here is "Outdated Tutorials", I'll skip my usual p*****g & moaning about my plight and get straight to the question: I'm working in LW2015, trying to follow beginner toots from Albee & Warner's Inside LW 9 and having predictable problems. This time it's: To cut off the lower half of a simple sphere (Create/Ball tool/Numeric panel), then Control-H to select polygons in the sphere's lower hemisphere. That last step apparently worked to select the entire lower hemisphere via a lasso in LW9, but not in LW2015. Now, it (Control-H ) selects only the visible polygons touched by the cursor, rather than lassoing the entire lower half of the sphere. So I am stuck. What command or tool do I need to use to select the entire lower hemisphere in LW2015? Is this the best thread for asking questions like this, or is there a better place?
    Should work just the same in 2015. Your viewport is set to "wireframe", not "hidden wireframe", correct?

    In the future, you'll probably want to post this type of thing to the "General Support" area.

  8. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by devin View Post
    Should work just the same in 2015. Your viewport is set to "wireframe", not "hidden wireframe", correct?

    In the future, you'll probably want to post this type of thing to the "General Support" area.
    Thanks for the prompt pointers and the suggestion about where to post. You probably are right. I'm missing something in the tutorial. I'll have to watch it a few more times. And the three non-perspective viewports were set to wireframe. Thanks. Back to the tutorial.
    BC

  9. #24
    Male Modeler ccclarke's Avatar
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    To remove the lower half of a sphere, ensure the sphere is centered on the origin (F2). In wireframe mode, select the points below the +Y axis, and press Delete. If you want to put a polygon on the bottom of the sphere, select each point in succession on the Y axis 0 coordinate, then press "P". You now have half a sphere.

  10. #25
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    You can also use the Selection=>Select By Normal, set the angle to 90 degrees and choose -Y as the base direction for the polygon normals. But, lasso in a wireframe view should work - if you're only getting the forward visible polygons, you may be in the Texture / Perspective window, which is expected behavior.

    mTp

  11. #26
    Thanks, CCC. On my Mac keyboard, hitting the Delete key doesn't do anything. Am I missing something, or will I need to use Edit/delete every time? I'm beginning to realize how much there is to get used to with LW, like the 3 mouse buttons.
    BC

  12. #27
    Super Member Kryslin's Avatar
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    I would check the keyboard shortcuts to make sure that something hasn't been cleared. Stranger things have happened in Lightwave...
    --------
    Intel Core i7 960 @3.20 Ghz, 24 GB ram, EVGA 6GB GTX980Ti "Classified" driving 2 x HP LA2405.

  13. #28
    Registered User ianr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Petrus01 View Post
    I am wondering when or if Newtek is going to provide users with adequate learning resources. The "Learn Lightwave" page is grossly outdated (most tutorials are of the the 2015 version or older), and the organization by topics is awful. I am trying hard to introduce LW to new designers in my team but, unlike C4D, Maya, Blender or pretty much anybody else, Newtek does not help with a good, updated comprehensive learning center that can guide new users.


    Well this week Craig (Rebel Hill) has brought out he new sparkly set of tutorials for getting the the best render in differing conditions

    I know they are third party & cost BUT also there is no better rigging tuts than his ' Rhiggit', easily & in some places above Maya rigging tuts.

    They are both worth every penny. Also look at his free ones on Youtube as well. www.rebelhill.net/

    also https://www.youtube.com/user/RHLW.

  14. #29

    I think it isn't working.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kryslin View Post
    I would check the keyboard shortcuts to make sure that something hasn't been cleared. Stranger things have happened in Lightwave...
    Hi. I just checked the keyboard shortcuts for "Delete", and the interpretation is "remove". Seems like it should work, but it doesn't. I'll try it under different conditions.
    BC

  15. #30
    RETROGRADER prometheus's Avatar
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    For simple straight deletion of object parts, I would suggest to use volume mode, click on that and drag a rectangle or box over the area you want to delete, unlice polygon or point mode, you do not have to use wireframe mode either, it will delete in the full depth axis whatever you have within the volume mode.

    I am a bit dissapointed though that we Still after so many years...do not have a marquee selection mode.

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