Getting Started With Blender


Where do I even begin?

Everything here looks quite intimidating at first but like any other programs out there, all you gotta do is learn all 50,000 functions in the program. Easy!

Jokes and sarcasm aside, I wanted to learn how to create a 3D environment using VR technology. I figured Blender is a great way to start since it’s completely free to use.

When was the last time you picked up a completely new program?
What is something that was crucial and completely necessary to pick up the pace?
In a program like Blender where you have to tinker a lot, learning hotkeys is a must.
Hotkeys make each finger stroke efficient. It saves time. It makes “work” easy.

Where I Started With Blender

I just Googled “Blender Tutorials” and eventually arrived at a site called CGCookie.
The only other interactive tutorial I’ve done online was through Codecademy where I learned different types of code. I thought Codecademy was amazing!

CGCookie is essentially on the same level of “amazing” as Codecademy. That’s saying a lot since Codecademy is the resource I would recommend to those who want to start learning how to code.

They have an incredibly smooth website with an amazingly intuitive UI.

Why CGCookie is Amazing

Here’s what I mean:
CGCookie Tutorial Interface

The top goes over some basic navigation like my account info and notifications.
The navigation around the video is pretty normal too. A video embedded in the site with “previous/next lesson” buttons. Simple stuff.

Things get real when you scroll down. Each lesson has chapters and each chapter shows a progress bar which is in sync with your video tutorial in real-time!
If you happen to leave the page for whatever reason and you want to go back to your lesson – it’ll just drop you off where you left off.

CGCookie Isn’t Free – but That’s Why It’s Brilliant

It sucks that such an awesome resource isn’t free.
Well, it kinda is. CGCookie’s “Blender Basics” tutorial covers everything you need to know about getting started with Blender. It teaches you how to navigate, explains the interface and all necessary hotkeys to make your workflow efficient.

Here’s an analogy:
CGCookie providing the basics of Blender is like Usain Bolt teaching you how to walk.
If you want to walk faster, it’s completely up to you and your physical abilities.
However, if you want to become an Olympic sprinter, you gotta pay the coach.

And that’s why I think CGCookie’s business model is amazing. The product is amazing.
The tutorial teaches you the very basics to get started completely for free, and you can do anything with your creative mind. Want to make some amazing piece of art that doesn’t look like the gray rectangular prism in the picture at the top? Well, you gotta pay the coach.

I quite like the tutorial they provide and I’m sure I’ll end up paying for the additional lessons.
This is a business model that I approve of.

Edit: Even got a thank you tweet from Blender!

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