Getting to grips with Blender – The Big Maoi
This is the result of my first serious attempt to create anything in Blender. Using a combination of Edit and Sculpt mode – I was able to recreate a 3D Model of this “Big Maoi”. The “real” Maoi sits on my desk, is about 12inches high – and doubles as a Kleenex dispenser – although I decided (on this occasion) NOT to render the tissue sticking out of his nose :-) For those that really, really want a Big Maoi on their own desk – you can find it here.
The actual model is constructed from only 2 primitive objects – both spheres. I could probably have created it all using just one – but the neck and base of the sculpture was an “afterthought” – so decided to build it separately rather than mess up my crafted head :) This had an interesting side-effect, in that I could very easily take the 2 primitive objects and export the UV maps into other virtual environments (like Second Life, or OpenGrid) that use UV maps to represent free-form sculpted objects. Finally, the texture is just a free “stucco stone” texture taken from the internet. The real statue on my desk has a very “stucco” feel to it – so it actually suits it very well.
So what are my impressions of Blender? I have to say that even tho I managed to create this relatively easily (after a few failed attempts), there are still some aspects to it that are going to take some getting used to. The most simple of which is that, unlike other packages I’ve used in the past (3D Studio, Lightwave, etc) the controls are very “Keyboard and Menu” oriented. So it took me a while to figure out all the keys just to (a) move my own view about and (b) move objects about in the scene. Once mastered, tho, it’s quite powerful. The only thing I still can’t find out how to do, is control the view of the camera from within the camera view itself – something I was used to doing in other packages. Once I master enough – I’ll create a little “cheat sheet” to stick on my monitor.
However all that being said, I’m relatively optimistic that I’ll be able to continue to further my skills and create more 3D sculptures. My next project is to create something that has multiple textures “painted” onto a single primitive object. I’ll scan my office for the next likely victim :)