Sep 282013
 

NEXT SESSION: TBD – (GMT-5) – RSVP

BlenderTutoringGooglePlusHangout

BLENDER G+ HANGOUT ON AIR:

I’m hosting Blender tutoring / instruction sessions on G+ Hangouts On Air for anyone who would like to attend.

The purpose of these sessions is just to provide some real-time assistance for people who would like to improve their Blender skills. For the time being these aren’t really planned lessons so much as just ‘some guy that might be able to show you how to do stuff in Blender’.

The format will just be me hanging out online and answering questions that pop up in the chat window (as much as I can anyway).

I can be of most assistance to those in the beginner to intermediate range. I have strengths and weaknesses in various areas so I may not be able to answer every question right off the bat, but even if I don’t know something specific, I might be able to point you in the right direction.

If you’re just getting started with Blender, you should probably start with some basic tutorials first, then if you run into some hurdles, I can probably help you over them.

These sessions are and will remain free, but if you really appreciate them, then I’ve put a Paypal link at the bottom of this page and it would super cool if you wanted to donate a little to defraying the cost of my internet connection and keeping me fed and the lights on and whatnot.

ABOUT ME:

I’ve been a regular Blender user for over 5 years and I’ve hosted classroom lessons and ‘labs’ for Blender users in the Baton Rouge and New Orleans area. I’ve helped a few people get from newbie to intermediate user and I really enjoy teaching Blender.

My portfolio is available on this site so you can see a little bit of what I’ve with Blender up to this point. I’m by no means the most qualified or advanced Blender user on the planet, but I’m a reasonably knowledgeable ‘generalist’. I’m very enthusiastic about Blender, and open-source, so I hope that hosting these sessions will be useful.

DONATION LINK:

If I’ve helped you a lot and you have a little to spare, please consider donating a little ‘fundage’ to the cause.



PRIVATE / GROUP SESSIONS:

If you would like to schedule a private tutoring session or a group lesson I would be perfectly happy to accommodate. I will have to ask for fee for these classes and ask that we schedule them at least a week in advance to ensure availability. I will ask for $15/hr for private sessions and $25/hr for group sessions.

These sessions can be on topics that you would like covered, assuming these are within my skill-set.

If you like, I can provide an introduction to Blender using a 6 part ‘Survey’ course (approx 2-hours each) that I developed for classroom instruction. Here is the outline for the sessions:

Session-1 – Introduction to Blender UI
Session-2 – Basic 3D Modeling in Blender
Session-3 – Materials, Textures, and Lighting
Session-4 – Animation and Basic Rigging
Session-5 – Blender Internal Rendering, Compositing, VSE
Session-6 – Physics: Particles, Cloth, Soft Bodies, Rigid Body Dynamics

I’ll also add the caveat that I consider myself more technician than artist. I can teach how to use Blender as a tool to use in the creative process, but I cannot teach artistic style. Let’s just say that if you saw what I can do with just a pencil and paper, you probably would not be impressed.

PREVIOUS SESSIONS:

Nov 10, 2013 - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PE2CsFUhb8g&feature=share

Nov 03, 2013 - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PJ16ZuLjwhs&feature=share

Oct 23, 2013 - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V0YW6iETUhY&feature=share

Oct 20, 2013 – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zDVz41OuceE&feature=share

Oct 16, 2013 - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7c6JYrh7H00&feature=share

Oct 13, 2013 – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BpQVP8prFlU&feature=share

Oct 09, 2013 –  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zXwcpTHgYaE&feature=share

Oct 06, 2013 – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xa-OW3kqWCU&feature=share

Oct 02, 2013 - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h-vSEALysaI

Mar 072013
 

RagdollRBD-POST

The folks at Blender have given me a couple of new tools with which to satisfy my desires to maim and mutilate ragdolls.

Rigid Body Dynamics in the animation system and Cycles Hair Rendering.

So in honor of that or whatever… here’s my first non-game-engine ragdoll (with hair) for your demented pleasure…

http://funkboxing.com/wordpress/wp-content/_postfiles/ragdollRBD-POST.blend

Dec 072012
 

If you’re a Blender user or are interested in Blender and live in South Louisiana (or around) please take a moment to fill out this survey to help the Baton Rouge Blender User Group expand to support and unite all the Blenderers in the South Louisiana area.

Aug 202012
 

I guess I’ve been using Blender for so much for so long that I tend to look for ‘Blender-like’ controls in a/v projects. So inevitably when I started working with LED strips I immediately tried to weasel out of having to think through functions and loops in arduino code to create effects I could do intuitively in Blender.

So after a few bad UI attempts I thought – hey, wish I could just design a light sequence in Blender and run it with ALT-A. So that’s what I did.

On the arduino side it’s using the FastSPI and CmdMessenger libraries for LED and serial communications.

The Blender script just reads the diffuse color in r-g-b from each LED objects material and spits it out to the USB port. Getting the pyserial library hooked up in Blender wasn’t a breeze but the “sys.path.append” line should help anyone having the same issues I did.

Here’s the arduino code and Blender file

(Using Arduino Duemilanove 328 and LED strip with WS2801 chips)

EDIT:

Blendernation article (Thanks Bart!)

I forgot to mention I’m using Ubuntu so the sys.path.append thing wont work for windows, you’ll have to find the pyserial library solution elsewhere (there’s plenty of reference out there)

Also – the script runs on each frame change. Here’s how that works (WARNING: kinda hacky) http://funkboxing.com/wordpress/?p=236

QUESTION: For any API guru’s out there – currently this script opens and closes the serial port on each framechange. I know this is radically inefficient. Any ideas on how to keep the serial port open persistently but to close it when blender closes?

 

 

 

 

Dec 272011
 

This is an attempt to merge Blenders Dynamic Paint feature with cellular automata. It started as a python script but then became even more of an educational experience when I realized python wasn’t going to be fast enough to run conway’s life on a 64x grid, let alone a 4Kx one, which was my initial goal. These ended up being 512x grids. I could have gone bigger but I’m using a little netbook for all this so I didn’t go nuts.

After figuring out that python wasn’t going to be fast enough I set out to make a c++ version, not in Blender, just in c++. Long story short it’s an atrocity of loops inside a main function. I didn’t even bother to pass any arguments, just recompiled every time I changed paths. Anyway it ended up being lots faster than the py scripts and I finally had an excuse to write a function I knew very well in a language I’ve been intimidated by for some time (and still very much am).

The c++ code uses the ImageMagick++ library, which made things much easier, but you’ll have to get this lib if you want to compile and use this. Hopefully this whole process has prepared me to get on porting the lighting generator to c++, which really needs to happen if if it’s ever going to be more than a gimmick.

So anyway, here’s the c++ code and here’s the Blender python script that I abandoned in favor of doing it in c++. For the record- this is bad, bad code. Very bad. Also here’s the command line to compile with g++ and imageMagick++, since that took awhile to get past.

conway_cpp_py.zip

user@pc:~$ g++ `Magick++-config –cxxflags –cppflags` conway.cpp -o conway `Magick++-config –ldflags –libs`

Here’s the process for using this to dynamic paint with conways life.

1) dynamically paint a canvas with a brush. This will paint ‘live’ cells onto the canvas
Turn on ‘dissolve’ and set to dissolve in 1-3 frames. Otherwise these become ‘immortal’ cells, which makes for a weird simulation.
I used red channel only for these demos.

2) compile and run the c++ code.
This will run the simulation on the dynamic paint cache images. It runs the simulation from the initial frame, but always includes the red cells from the next dynamic paint frame so they will be used in the next simulation step.

3) use this simulation output as a map in place of the dynamic paint output.
Sounds easy, and it kind of is, and kind of isn’t.
So if you want to do this yourself- if you know c++ it should be easy. If you don’t it will be very hard. If you’re just learning c++ it may be worthwile to try.

Not sure where I’m going with all this, as usual it was just something to do. Hope you dig it.

 

 

Dec 182011
 

Here’s a simple script that lets you ‘bookmark’ camera positions.

It’s a little redundant since the same thing can be accomplished a number of different ways but after a discussion with another BR BUG member I thought I’d take a swing. So here’s the script (right-clk>save as)

camera_marks

Just uncompress, then copy the script to your addons folder and then activate.

You get a panel in the 3DView>Toolbar that lets you add, delete, and change marks.

 

 

 

 

 

It saves the loc/rot/dofdist/lens to a textblock called CAMERAMARKS. I know this is a hacky implementation but I’m a hack and that’s just what I do. It’s super rudimentary now but it was only about 3 hours of coding and most of that was looking through old code to remember how to setup the UI, which I needed a refresher on anyway so this was a good little project. So tell me what you think, if it’s useful, what it needs to become useful, etc.