I want to learn 3D. Do I need a class?

icon-drum-01Classes can be a lot of fun since you learn with other motivated people all in the same room. This is especially true if you are going with people you know or members of your own company team. However, there are a few drawbacks to consider.

  1. First, there is the cost and travel. For a Rhino 3-day class, you should budget $800-$1,000 for the course alone. But, if you go to a cool place, book some extra time for sightseeing!
  2. Secondly, the schedule. It can be hard to book several consecutive days (not including the travel) into your schedule. If you work full-time, many companies will pay for the training. If not, you may burn some vacation time.
  3. Finally, the pace. Unless everyone in the class is closely matched in skill (which never happens) the lecture will be too fast for some and too slow for others. Hopefully, YOU are in the sweet spot.

I remember a corporate training class where we had to stop every so often to help one student find a folder on his desktop. Obviously, he was not ready to learn 3D skills, as he had only used a computer for email and holding his coffee cup. After several rounds of desk-pounding and heavy sighing, the guy finally excused himself. To prevent this from disrupting future classes, we instituted some minimum skill requirements. Check to see if your class has the same.icon-cupcake-02

In an upcoming post, I will outline the best strategy for learning new stuff as quickly and efficiently as possible. If you’re guessing this will include lynda.com, you win a cupcake.


New V-Ray Service Release #3

Just released: A new V-Ray for Rhino 2.00 update is available for download. The build number is 2.00.25962 & dated 30 June 2015. It includes some important bug fixes and changes to the plugin:

• An issue with Material updates is now fixed.
• Material previews in “Rendered” display mode are now faster.
• Improved stability when detaching from a work session.
• Fixed VFB and mouse freeze.
• Removed bug which led to large files crashing BatchRender.
• File loading is optimized and much faster.
• V-Ray displacement uses less memory and is faster.
• Added support for HDRLS 5. Painting lights in a scene is easier than ever. Support for HDRLS 4.0 is still available.
• Newly optimized “ignore objects” code to improve diamond rendering.


Download it from ChaosGroup downloads. You need to be logged in and have an account, but it’s free for registered owners.


lynda.com Animation Course has Fantastic Start

In its first week of release, the course “Animation with Rhino and Bongo” is going crazy! Its the best launch of any Rhino course I have done for lynda.com. So far, over 600 people in 56 countries have seen it. That is A LOT for a two-hour & 30-minute commitment.

If you don’t have a lynda.com account, you can still preview 10% of any course. If you would like to join, it’s only $25 / month or unlimited viewing. Here’s a link for a free 10-day trial. Nice!

Now under development, the next course will be quite a bit different. It’s a new ‘mini-course’ format, where the work is focused on a single project and is completed in less than one hour. The goal is to let people ‘jump in & out’ and be able to finish it during a lunch hour. Stay tuned.


New! Animation Course at lynda.com

Dave Schultze is proud to announce the release of his sixth online course for lynda.com, ‘Animation with Rhino and Bongo.’ Running 2 hours and 26 minutes, the course focuses on generating beautiful animated videos for both product and architectural designs. In this comprehensive course, students use it all! Starting with McNeel’s Rhino 5 & Bongo 2 plug-in, you will learn V-Ray for rendering and Adobe After Effects for composting.

Those interested in previewing the course — or any of the other 4,000+ courses on lynda.com — are invited to a free 10-day trial. Here’s the full course summary below

Learn how to take your design presentations to the next level by animating them with motion, using Rhino and the V-Ray and Bongo plugins. Whether you are interested in promoting products or architecture (both examples featured in the course), author Dave Schultze shows how to make your work far more compelling with simple and powerful animation techniques.

First you’ll learn how to do a simple product design “turntable” animation. Then you’ll create a path-based “walk through” animation of an architectural design. After the animation work is done, Dave will demonstrate how to import the sequences into After Effects and edit them into a seamless video presentation with high-quality audio. The last few chapters focus on optimizing the final video for flawless playback on any computer or website and sharing and distributing your project.
Topics include:

  • Installing and setting up Bongo
  • Planning your workflow and storyboarding
  • Creating the turntable animation
  • Setting up a camera path
  • Animating a sequence of stills
  • Compositing in After Effects
  • Exporting and sharing your animation


Rhino Screen Capture Strategies

How do you make nice images before you are ready to render? Easy! Use these simple Rhino settings to make a clean and punchy screen capture. Now you can document your progress and share your work with others, and avoid embarrassing yourself with cheesy-looking default nonsense.
Run time = 07:41.


Offset Curve Dave Hack

Learn a great ‘hack-nique’ for off-setting clean curves with equally clean new curves, as opposed to the usual complicated mess. These cleaner curves will make a huge difference in creating higher quality organic surfaces.
Running time = 04:36.


Turntable Animation with Bongo (Part 3)

Create a 360 degree, turntable rotation for your design. This final video focuses on setting up After Effects to match your bongo animation settings, importing your sequence, and other excellent workflow tips.
Run time = 08:26.


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