Carrara 8.5 Documentation

DAZ_jaredDAZ_jared Posts: 0
edited August 2013 in Carrara Discussion

You can find the Carrara 8.5 documentation here:

http://docs.daz3d.com/doku.php/public/software/carrara/8_5/start

Keep in mind that currently only the new features are documented in the wiki. For previous versions of Carrara refer to the Carrara section of the old Artzone wiki: http://docs.daz3d.com/doku.php/artzone/pub/software/carrara/start

Post edited by DAZ_jared on
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Comments

  • bighbigh Posts: 5,413
    edited December 1969

    thank you - keep up the great job - looking forward to the next update

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 6,942
    edited December 1969

    It's excellent to have a start, and I really like what you've done so far.

  • 0oseven0oseven Posts: 386
    edited December 1969

    I haven't got 8.5 installed yet

    Any Idea if a "new" pdf manual was included ?

    or is daz still relying on folks like you ??

  • DAZ_jaredDAZ_jared Posts: 0
    edited December 1969

    The documentation is in Wiki format and can be found at the link above. You can export every page as a .pdf file if you prefer it in that format.

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 6,942
    edited December 1969

    Every item that I've seen so far is perfectly written, in my opinion. Love your style of numbers and arrows, etc.,
    Really well done, my friend!
    Thank for the devotion.

    I'll be using all manner of links to it to help people to find their way. This is a great help - and I look forward to watching it grow.:)

  • DAZ_jaredDAZ_jared Posts: 0
    edited August 2013

    Every item that I've seen so far is perfectly written, in my opinion. Love your style of numbers and arrows, etc.,
    Really well done, my friend!
    Thank for the devotion.

    I'll be using all manner of links to it to help people to find their way. This is a great help - and I look forward to watching it grow.:)

    Thank you for your kind words, your post just made my day. I look forward to the growth as well. The way we have the Carrara Docs section set up allows it to grow and scale.

    Post edited by DAZ_jared on
  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 6,942
    edited December 1969

    DAZ_jared said:
    Every item that I've seen so far is perfectly written, in my opinion. Love your style of numbers and arrows, etc.,
    Really well done, my friend!
    Thank for the devotion.

    I'll be using all manner of links to it to help people to find their way. This is a great help - and I look forward to watching it grow.:)

    Thank you for your kind words, your post just made my day. I look forward to the growth as well. The way we have the Carrara Docs section set up allows it to grow and scale.

    I see that. I really like the way it's set up. But the work you've done in there so far truly shows expertise in teaching by the page - I appreciate that, as I'm always looking for ways to help solve queries that come up. You truly deserve that pat on the back, man!

  • evilproducerevilproducer Posts: 7,577
    edited December 1969

    0oseven said:
    I haven't got 8.5 installed yet

    Any Idea if a "new" pdf manual was included ?

    or is daz still relying on folks like you ??

    I suspect DAZ_jared works for DAZ, so hopefully they do rely on people like him! ;-)

    So far, from what I gather, the C7 PDF manual is included with C8.5. 90% or more of it is still valid. The new features need documenting, so if you follow the links provided in DAZ_jared's first post, you'll see what is done so far.

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 6,942
    edited December 1969

    Man, I love this one that he did on the new Graph Editor! and now I can hardly wait to play with it! I was just asking for help with the graph editor, and 3dage hasn't yet come home to us. I got a tiny bit of play time but, again... some instruction would help... and here it is!

  • SileneUKSileneUK Posts: 613
    edited December 1969

    I can't wait for this to expand...the format is fantastic, the graphics are clear and the explanations actually make sense! Keep on going PLEASE...we need this and you!

    xx Silene UK

  • patrickgobelspatrickgobels Posts: 289
    edited September 2013

    I'd still prefer an updated PDF-manual which I could print instead of tons of wiki articles. (The last official manual is (!!!!) 5 years old!). And there are several broken links such as the following: http://www.daz3d.com/i/3d-models/Plugins+&+Utilities?cat=1083

    Therefore, with a printed PDF-manual I could go step by step without being online all the time and being frustrated by a broken wiki. :)

    Post edited by patrickgobels on
  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 6,942
    edited December 1969

    Having nothing directly to do with simply Carrara, but ALL DAZ 3D products that have links to wiki pages of more info, namely Howie Farkes Stoney Creek and many others, I think that we need to find a way to fix the wiki links that are all now broken. In Howie's case, he had included some vital information making his products even more valuable to any Carrara user. I'm certainly glad that I included my wiki info from Starry Sky in a pdf manual. I think that we also need to find a way to fix the "File List" link - as I've always found that to be helpful - especially since we really NEED to know where we can find the texture files for our products in Carrara - since none of the "Glow" map information comes through in the translation and we have to find them by hand.

  • DAZ_jaredDAZ_jared Posts: 0
    edited December 1969

    I'd still prefer an updated PDF-manual which I could print instead of tons of wiki articles. (The last official manual is (!!!!) 5 years old!). And there are several broken links such as the following: http://www.daz3d.com/i/3d-models/Plugins+&+Utilities?cat=1083

    Therefore, with a printed PDF-manual I could go step by step without being online all the time and being frustrated by a broken wiki. :)

    You can export each page as a PDF from the Wiki. This will allow you access to each article without having to go online every time you want to use it.

    If you could send me the page that the broken link is on I'll take care of it.

  • de3ande3an Posts: 518
    edited September 2013

    DAZ_jared said:
    I'd still prefer an updated PDF-manual which I could print instead of tons of wiki articles. (The last official manual is (!!!!) 5 years old!). And there are several broken links such as the following: http://www.daz3d.com/i/3d-models/Plugins+&+Utilities?cat=1083

    Therefore, with a printed PDF-manual I could go step by step without being online all the time and being frustrated by a broken wiki. :)

    You can export each page as a PDF from the Wiki. This will allow you access to each article without having to go online every time you want to use it.


    I would like to also go on record as one who would prefer a PDF version of the manual.

    With all due respect for all of the excellent work being done on the wiki manual, the way one can quickly search through a PDF manual to locate any and all occurrences of even the most obscure reference, makes it much more useful than either a wiki or printed version.

    Expecting your customers to export every page of the wiki as a PDF, and then compile them into a coherent single PDF manual, is not an acceptable solution. You should be creating the wiki from source materials that could be used to create both wiki and PDF manuals.

    It seems to be a somewhat minor thing to request, and I know that I've seen requests for the PDF format many times before. I urge you to reconsider the "wiki only" format, and also provide a PDF version.

    Post edited by de3an on
  • patrickgobelspatrickgobels Posts: 289
    edited December 1969

    @de3an: Wise words!

  • CarltonMartinCarltonMartin Posts: 146
    edited September 2013

    DAZ_jared said:
    If you could send me the page that the broken link is on I'll take care of it.

    http://docs.daz3d.com/doku.php/artzone/pub/software/carrara/start

    The current version isn't accurate. The Updates, Plug-in Updates, the SDK Download link don't work.

    None of the 6.1 Guide links work. The Mimic for Carrara links don't work.

    ==

    Post edited by CarltonMartin on
  • paulg625paulg625 Posts: 0
    edited December 1969

    Wow this is great, thanks for all the hard work and effort taken!

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 6,942
    edited December 1969

    DAZ_jared said:
    If you could send me the page that the broken link is on I'll take care of it.

    http://docs.daz3d.com/doku.php/artzone/pub/software/carrara/start

    The current version isn't accurate. The Updates, Plug-in Updates, the SDK Download link don't work.

    None of the 6.1 Guide links work. The Mimic for Carrara links don't work.

    ==

    Right. It's a bummer that the Artzone pages had to go away. That's gonna take some work to fix - those broken links are only the beginning, I think. As you work through some of that stuff, I have a feeling that the Digital Painters instructions aren't the only Artzone pages referred to that are totally missing - and now have to be re-written.

  • cdordonicdordoni Posts: 312
    edited December 1969

    I agree that a PDF manual is desirable; however, I think using the wiki form could work if the users could obtain a "current" version in an offline format that they could easily reference, PDF, DOC, HTM or other common format.

    To be useful, the previous manual content MUST be incorporated so the entire manual can be searched at once. Even putting the previous manual content as it is up on the wiki so it could be searched simultaneously with updated manual content would be valuable.

    Pixologic has done a fair job of this with updates to the ZBrush manual. They have an online manual and a search will find info in the last complete manual as well as any updates to it.

  • SpacelandSpaceland Posts: 124
    edited December 1969

    It is a wiki,

    What i like about wiki is usually every one can update and correct the wiki, but it seem here the wiki is only done by Daz. Would be cool if you can let peoples who use Carrara to update the wiki themselves too.

    I for one, would do it.

    But i understand the need to an offline version, sometime i like to read from my tablet some PDF files that i have of tutorials, i don't need to go online, and it is local to my computer. That away i can let it open on my tablet and go back again later but with online version, you always need to be online to be able to access the information, that is good and bad at the sametime.

    Regards

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 6,942
    edited December 1969

    Time, of course, would be playing a huge factor in this, but I would be happy to restructure new info into the current manual - go through and document everywhere in the current manual that lists "TBD" instead of a discussion, and list it for need of fulfilling, etc., and wrapping it up in a new, singular pdf tome. For I also enjoy having hard copies.

    On the topic of documentation.
    I know I've said this before. But I simply cannot help myself in stating that the manual that ships with Carrara is a fine resource, indeed.

    Print that bad-boy out and stick it in a giant binder. Now go through it and read what the authors have to say. It's a great masterpiece for anyone venturing forth into Carrara. Tips and explanations, and can really help to open ones eyes towards what we're capable of having this software - which is a lot. I also think that, while we still need to remind them, from time to time, about the importance of updating the manual, people should try not to get angry with DAZ 3D about it not yet being finished. They have a lot on their plate - and a lot of that is making improvements for us... their customers. That's just my view... but I feel strongly about that. At least we do have an amazing community here to help us to get the answers until docs are made more up to date.

  • RottenhamRottenham Posts: 247
    edited December 1969

    Hi,

    My brand new copy of 8.5 Pro is loaded up and ready to go, and I'm eager to learn to use it. The first thing I need is an item-by-item introduction to the UI.

    This is typically a screen shot with leader lines going to each icon or link, with a brief explanation of what that thing is. This is where we learn the terminology we need to use the rest of the documentation. Without a doc like this, getting started could be slow.

    It's not in the included v7 pdf. It's not in Figures, Characters and Avatars, which was recommended to me. I haven't found anything like this on the DAZ website.

    Hopefully a document like this exists, and I just haven't spotted it yet. Anybody seen anything like this?

    ......................................................

    I'm also hoping to find a list of keyboard shortcuts. A complex program like Carrara must have such a list, but I haven't found this either.

    Thanks.

  • evilproducerevilproducer Posts: 7,577
    edited December 1969

    Rottenham said:
    Hi,

    My brand new copy of 8.5 Pro is loaded up and ready to go, and I'm eager to learn to use it. The first thing I need is an item-by-item introduction to the UI.

    This is typically a screen shot with leader lines going to each icon or link, with a brief explanation of what that thing is. This is where we learn the terminology we need to use the rest of the documentation. Without a doc like this, getting started could be slow.

    It's not in the included v7 pdf. It's not in Figures, Characters and Avatars, which was recommended to me. I haven't found anything like this on the DAZ website.

    Hopefully a document like this exists, and I just haven't spotted it yet. Anybody seen anything like this?

    ......................................................

    I'm also hoping to find a list of keyboard shortcuts. A complex program like Carrara must have such a list, but I haven't found this either.

    Thanks.

    The Carrara manual is pretty good at walking the beginning user through the various features and rooms.

    To get something like you mention, try looking at page 28 of the C7 manual. Just prior to that there is a very general introduction to the various rooms and modelers.

    The text isn't really dense or overly full of jargon.

    Holly posted a pdf over at the Carrara Cafe listing C8.5 keyboard shortcuts. There's also a great tutorials section and articles. Including links to the free Carrara e-zine C3DE (Carrara 3D Expo).

    http://carraracafe.com/forum-3/?cid=25&show=625

    If there's some interface elements that aren't explained well enough by the manual, I can make up a little tutorial.

    There's also some very useful information stickied in threads at the top of this forum. Dartanbeck has quite an extensive thread with lots of links and resources, plus, if you like video tutorials, Cripeman is very prolific and usually spot on. Sci-Fi Funk also has many useful video tutorials.

    If you want an outdoor scene that uses many of Carrara's features, such as spline models, dynamic hair, ocean primitve, plants, replicators, etc. Plus has a manual that explains some general concepts and has some good tips and tricks, there's my Fantasy Village Terrain, either at my ShareCG site or through Dropbox. No messy installation if you don't want, just click the scene icon in the enclosing folder.
    https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/7370483/Fantasy-terrain1.7.zip

    http://www.sharecg.com/v/69697/view/5/3D-Model/Fantasy-Village-terrain

  • RottenhamRottenham Posts: 247
    edited December 1969

    Page 28 is just about exactly what I was after. I should read more carefully.

    The Keyboard Shortcuts file is great stuff, and it would have taken me a dog's age to find it, if I ever did.

    I've ordered the two Carrara books from Amazon, as well.

    I'll spend some time with both of these docs today. So far I've successfully imported a CR2 file of a fully clothed character, and I'm learning to use the camera controls. The program feels light and snappy, and the UI does not try to display every tool in the toolbox at the same time, for which I am grateful. Little by little, what I see, I like. I have dozens of questions, of course, but all in good time.

    After I get my arms around the controls, my first experiments will involve animation. Scenes, as fascinating as they are, will come a bit later.

    Thanks for your help, evilproducer, it is valuable.

  • evilproducerevilproducer Posts: 7,577
    edited December 1969

    I would recommend that if you have a Poser or DAZ Studio character that you import, that you then save it to your Objects browser. If the figure and clothes come in a group, it's a simple matter of clicking and dragging the top level of the group to an appropriate directory in the Objects browser. The advantage is that it is saved in Carrara's native format and should open faster the next time you want to load it.

    You can also add your own folders to any tab of the browser. Well, if it's not a runtime structure, I don't know if Carrara will allow you to load it into the Content Browser, and since I use C7.2, I don't know anything about the options on the Smart Content tab.

    To add a folder to the objects Browser, click the little black icon on the right side of the window, and select Add Folder. When the window opens, navigate to your folder.

    Many people set up folders for specific characters or clothing.

    Picture_2.png
    1129 x 436 - 192K
  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 6,942
    edited December 2013

    A really great video which shows nearly everything, where it is and what it does, is Carrara 5 Essential Training, by Jack Whitney, through Lynda.com, which is also available at Amazon. For a free starter course, try Mark Bremmers Site where you'll be treated to some very nice intro videos - the rest is available on DVD.

    I started to try and fulfill your request - but it will take a lot of time to go through everything! Here's just the beginning of everything:

    ScreenshotCarraraNoScene.jpg
    1679 x 917 - 1M
    Post edited by Dartanbeck on
  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 6,942
    edited December 2013

    I started working on the empty scene screenshot, where you'll see all of the tools that you get right from the start. Wow there's a lot in Carrara. An effort like this will take longer than I can afford to finish at the moment.

    As evilproducer has already mentioned, I am endeavoring to make ►►► Carrara Information Manual ◄◄◄ a valuable resource for helping folks of all skill levels find information needed - but it is still a bit out-of-sink and disorganized... I hope to do some fixing on that soon. Things that might be of more immediate interest are:

    Carrara 8 Training Videos from Infinite Skills
    These are explanations of the training videos featuring Phil Wilkes and include some great sample footage from the series. I strongly recommend these products unless you feel that you are an absolute expert at using Carrara.
    Learning Carrara 8
    Advanced Carrara Techniques

    This set of articles is designed to help familiarize our fellow Carrarartists with the friendly, yet powerful interface and tools that make up Carrara. This initial post will act as a table of contents for the walkthrough itself, so that the entire work may remain coherent in a forum thread atmosphere - so the walkthrough will include helpful links to help the readers navigate to where they'd like to go next.

    Your Carrara Browser
    Making great stuff isn't as cool if you can't remember where you put it. Let's get some good habits going right from the start

    Daz Install Manager - Installing Custom Poser Runtimes
    Basic walkthrough of designing your own custom runtime structure

    Navigating in Carrara
    some good tips on how to get around the work space, go to where you want to be at specific times, and how to send stuff to specific locations within your scene

    EDIT to Add:

    Forum Help Links are a set of links to topics that people have started here, on the forums. I made this list so that we can use what others have solved, discovered, shared, whatever... within a sorted list. It has been working well for me and a few others that I know about whom use it. It makes it so that, if the topic touches on what you need to know, but never actually answers the question, you can post more specifics to that same thread. Those that follow that topic will get an e-mail and possibly jump in and answer more quickly than just starting a new topic to whom ever may be on that day.

    Post edited by Dartanbeck on
  • RottenhamRottenham Posts: 247
    edited December 1969

    I examined the Browser function and I saw what can be done with it, evilproducer, and I expect to be making good use of it. I did save a copy of my file in native Carrara format, for the reason you describe. As for formats, I thought it was curious that DS did not have an option to save in Carrara format.

    Please don't fill any more of my requests yet, Dartanbeck, as I haven't eaten what's in front of me yet. I barely have the vocabulary to ask questions yet. Speaking of vocabulary, I was pleased to see the Carrara Manual had a glossary. A glossary is a key document for new users like me, but few software makers provide one. I'm eager to ask more questions, and it looks like I'm in the right place to ask them. I'm inspired by some of the animation examples I've seen, and I want to try my hand. But I only just installed this program yesterday. :-)

    Thanks guys.

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 6,942
    edited December 1969

    I know what you mean. I bought Carrara years ago - when 8.0 was nearly released, but still in beta. Although I've made it my permanent home for animation rendering, I'm still learning a lot! But that initial period of just taking in the tools that you already know takes some practice. The manual is an excellent savior in that regard. I actually printed out the entire manual before buying Carrara and stuck it all in a giant three-ring binder. What a massive tome!
    Anyone can tell that I refer to it often, by the shape it's in today. Although several things within it simply say: TBD (to be detailed?), the manual is an incredible help.

    So,
    Welcome aboard!
    I used to use Poser. I came to Carrara so that I could use a faster render engine and to have modeling capabilities. I certainly got what I came for - and a whole lot more! Carrara is immense in many ways - yet as friendly as can be about it. You'll quickly discover that the interface, itself, becomes its own learning aid as you go along. It just begs you to explore options. I am currently writing an article for the Carrara Cafe with the idea of helping new users get to grips with such a powerful tool. Coming from a Poser background, that's the approach I'm using to write about... coming over to Carrara. It's no short article, and discusses a lot of ways that will aid the new user into getting great use out of Carrara fast - then learn the rest as you evolve. I wish I already had it done for you but, alas... time has its own way of telling me what I can and cannot get done - and the when of it ;)

  • RottenhamRottenham Posts: 247
    edited December 1969

    Reading on screen is difficult for a number of reasons. The printed page has numerous advantages.

    I was taught, "You don't have to know everything. You just have to know where it's written down." The written word is the primary reason we aren't living in grass huts and eating roots. I have a high regard for our language.

    Videos are swell, but nothing beats a book.

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