Changes to Infinite Skills Carrara Training

PhilWPhilW Posts: 5,102
edited April 2017 in Carrara Discussion

As most of you will know, I am the author of several training titles for Carrara which were published through Infinite Skills.

Around a couple of years ago, Infinite Skills was bought out by O'Reilly. Initially this had no real impact, but as of the start of April this year, they have changed the way that most training under their brand is accessed.

The Carrara Infinite Skills titles are only now available through Udemy, Amazon US and O'Reilly's own online platforms, with outright purchase only available via Amazon US, the others being subscription sites.  I have no control over this as Infinite Skills own the titles and I just get a small royalty on sales.

Sorry if this causes any issues but that - for now at least - is the only way to access them for new users.  Existing users can still download a copy (I believe) from this link with an Access Key:

https://www.infiniteskills.com/download/

If you still want to purchase, the only option seems to be from Amazon US (although several titles are marked Unavailable when I looked). As they are no longer available from the Daz Store, I hope it is OK to post a link:

https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=srs=3447380011&search-alias=specialty-aps&field-keywords=infiniteskills+carrara

My latest training  (Animation in Carrara) wasn't done through Infinite Skills, I produced it myself and so that title is unaffected and is still available on my store here:

https://www.daz3d.com/philw

Post edited by PhilW on
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Comments

  • UnifiedBrainUnifiedBrain Posts: 2,939

    Thanks for posting, Phil.

    Your courses are such a staple in the Carrara world, this is a little disenheartening to hear.

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 17,392

    As long as they're still available, I think, is the main thing. Still... it was nice to have them here, in-house... but what are ya gonna do, Right?

    Who knows? Perhaps Daz3d will find a way to deal with them in the future.

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 17,392
    edited April 2017

    I've fixed the links over here, but when I tested it using the one listed above, it never led me to the Carrara training courses, so I'm trying this one instead.

    Does this one work for you? 

    When I went into Amazon using the above link (from Phil's post), it set Infinite Skills as a category and left out Carrara. So when I typed in "Carrara", it couldn't find anything. 

    So I cleared the category and typed "Carrara" (space) "infinite" (no quotes) into the Search and all of them came up, including some physical DVD packs - even a DVD Bundle! 

    I'd like to take this time to thank Infinite Skills for allowing Daz3d to offer the courses the way thy did. I'm grateful to have purchased all of these excellent titles, and will cherish them for all time! ;)

    Post edited by Dartanbeck on
  • DiomedeDiomede Posts: 12,130

    Fortunately, I have already downloaded the recorded files.  But I would also add that I first viewed the basic intro as part of a subscription plan with infinite skills.  I think it was before offered st Daz, but not sure.  I could justify it because the subscription also included tutorials for spreadsheet and statistical software I was using for work.  The subscription might not turn out all bad if it includes other programs that increase the number of people.  Guess PhilW's royalty will depend on how they handle subscriptions.  But I bought it outright during a Daz sale and still go back for reference.

  • I SamuelI Samuel Posts: 232

    Thanks Phil for update and great training; I think it is a good time to buy them since they seem to be on sale on Amazon like other infinite Skills/O'Reilly Media titles. Your Carrara training titles are very informative and everything is explained in very simple and informative way from great Professional and Expert like you!! And they are like central hub of all the information about Carrara.

    May be DAZ can work with O'Reilly Media to bundle these titles with Carrara Sales.

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 17,392

    I agree. I was already feeling fairly advanced in my Carrara use before ever buying my first of these courses: Advanced Carrara Techniques. I wanted to check them out so I bought that one first and was amazed at how wonderful it is!

    It covered parts of Carrara that I haven't yet explored, and even thinks that I was already doing was demonstrated in an entirely different method of doing so... and they are also quite entertaining!

    I downloaded the working files, made a folder within my "My Documents > Daz3d > Carrara 8.5 > My Presets > My Objects folder called PhilW Training

    I extracted all of the working folders into that folder, so now I have access to them easily from my browser.

    Wow... there's a LOT of value just within the content he builds throughout the course to show us how to do it! A LOT!!!

     

    So as soon as I could, I bought the rest of them - and haven't been disappointed in the least. In fact, I love watching them still! I also still enjoy loading the working files.

  • I SamuelI Samuel Posts: 232
    edited April 2017

    Here are some sample Carrara vidoes (Author: PhilW ) posted by O'Reilly Media  on their youtube Channel:

    https://www.youtube.com/user/ifskills/search?query=Carrara

     

     

    Post edited by I Samuel on
  • wgdjohnwgdjohn Posts: 2,634

    Gosh... sorry I missed this until UB pointed me here.

    Phil,  You're videos absolutely Rock!

    They are an excellent source for learning Carrara... While helpful to new users they are equally helpful to those who want to learn even more about Carrara's many features and also to learn from a Real Pro... adding to their abilities.

    These are well worth the price!... Even at list.  For myself only a digital or physical copy of anything will do... I don't do Subscriptions.

    I've broken down each into separate text files each that I own, except Animation yet, the chapters, subchapters and what each covers... they are a great time saver when only wanting to find a specific feature or function Phil covers.  But of course it's great to watch each in it's entirety 1st and re-watch again now and again to not miss anything.  If Phil doesn't mind... I can put them in a .zip file for those interested.

    Phil and Dart... Thanks for the links to Amazon.

  • PhilWPhilW Posts: 5,102

    Sorry for the delat in responding, I have been on holiday.  Thanks for the kind words - and yes, no problem with sharing that.

  • wgdjohnwgdjohn Posts: 2,634
    edited June 2017

    Kewl,  Thanks Phil... I'll get to it when done fighting tomatos.

    For everyone:  Oh... I had asked CS what is going on... "their reply in different words"... they can't coment on anything they don't own.

     

    Post edited by wgdjohn on
  • TwoCatsTwoCats Posts: 384

    Hi, Phil!

    Funny I saw this post pop up first. I'm watching the Replicators section of your Carrara Training vids as I type this. Well, obviously.. I'm not watching it at the moment (it's paused), but you get the idea...

    Anyway! Interesting news about the changes to your courses. Being on Udemy is nice.. I'm a big fan of that site; have purchased a number of courses through it already, for other software/subjects. If your Learning Carrara series is on there, I can already tell you yours is among the better quality courses on there. There's lots of people who clearly know the subject matter very well, but aren't very good at teaching it. It's also good to see Carrara getting a footprint on Udemy; it's a great piece of software, and I think it's sad that it's so overlooked. I mean, you could argue it has such a different approach to modeling and such, but then again... so does Blender and that's got tons of content on Udemy and elsewhere. Maybe it's the lack of active ongoing development and promotion/exposure (looking at you DAZ) preventing it from being more well known and adopted.

    Anyway, interesting news!

  • Jay VersluisJay Versluis Posts: 142

    Just a heads up, Phil: the courses seem to be available now at Amazon.com. They're all showing as "available". 

    Still extremely glad I've bought them when they were on DAZ, in fact I've been watching the section about reating a rurual scene this afternoon.

  • Omega ManOmega Man Posts: 52
    edited December 2018

    Could someone be as good as to confirm all the different titles of the Phil Wilkes Carrara training material.  Form what I can understand they are:-


    Beginners Carrara 7 Training

    Carrara 8 Training DVD
    Advanced Carrara Techniques
    (above two also a Discounted Bundle release)

    Learning Carrara 8.5 - Training DVD
    Carrara - Realism Rendering

    What I don't understand - is there yet a separate one called Advanced Carrara Modeling Techniques or is that just the same as Advanced Carrara Techniques ?

    Is the list broadly accurate ?  Many thanks.

    Post edited by Omega Man on
  • Is there any way to reset downloads?  or do I just have to hope and pray that the "missing" download is somewhere in my backups?

  • Omega Man, I am only familiar with two packages.

    Learning Carrara 8.5 is the all-inclusive beginner instruction video.  Unless you have a specific reason to buy an earlier version, this is the one you need.  I doubt that I would have learned much in Carrara without it.  Phil does an awesome job.

    Advanced Carrara Techiques is the same as Advanced Carrara Modeling Techniques.  This is for the more experienced Carrara user.

     

    Miss Bad Wolf, I don't know how to reset downloads, sorry.  You may have to contact Infinite Skills or O'Reilly.

  • Thanks UnifiedBrain, that makes sense.  It seems like the ones to have are:-

    Learning Carrara 8.5
    Advanced Carrara Techiques
    These are still available as discs from Amazon.com and are worth having as a hard copy, so I will order those.

    But also Carrara - Realism Rendering, which is no longer available as a disc anymore, so I will wait for a used copy.  Nowadays the magic word seems to be PBR, which I see everywhere, and I'm guessing Carrara use methods before that, but I look forward to diving in anyway.

  • UnifiedBrainUnifiedBrain Posts: 2,939
    edited December 2018

    Omega Man, I think that most Carrara artists serious about PBR simply get Octane and the Octane plugin for Carrara.  It is fairly expensive.  Last time I looked it was over $500.  However, Carrara is virtually free these days, so other than a decent GPU for Octane, that is about your only major expense.

    I don't yet have Octane.  Right now, the Carrara native renderer is enough for me.  The native render engine runs mostly (entirely?) off of the CPU, so more cores is the direction to go there if you want faster render times.

    Post edited by UnifiedBrain on
  • PhilWPhilW Posts: 5,102

    Just for clarity, Learning Carrara 8.5 includes everything from the Carrara 7 and the Carrara 8 versions.  Then there are Advanced Carrara Techniques (mostly covering modelling but also some other features), Carrara - Realism Rendering which covers a more realistic approach to using Carrara's native renderer which can give results on a par with the likes of Octane and iRay, and Animating in Carrara, which unsurprisingly covers all aspects of animation. This last title is still available through Daz as I did it myself, rather than being published through Infinite Skill as the previous titles had been. Infinite Skills then got taken over by O'Reilly, who have prioritised online access to their training content rather than being able to buy it outright.

  • A special thank you to Phil, and to everyone else too.  I have now ordered the Carrara 8.5 and Advanced discs via Amazon (they don't ship direct to the UK but I use myus.com for that).  I recently bought Animating in Carrara in a Daz sale after I saw the extraordinary and excellent trailers (but realised a deeper understanding was needed).  I will wait and buy a used Realism Rendering disc.

    Now a little past midnight here in the UK so Happy Christmas everyone.

  • PhilWPhilW Posts: 5,102
    Omega Man said:

    A special thank you to Phil, and to everyone else too.  I have now ordered the Carrara 8.5 and Advanced discs via Amazon (they don't ship direct to the UK but I use myus.com for that).  I recently bought Animating in Carrara in a Daz sale after I saw the extraordinary and excellent trailers (but realised a deeper understanding was needed).  I will wait and buy a used Realism Rendering disc.

    Now a little past midnight here in the UK so Happy Christmas everyone.

    And a Happy Christmas to you too - I hope you get a lot out of the presents you have bought yourself!

  • DiomedeDiomede Posts: 12,130

    Fortunately, I have already downloaded the recorded files.  But I would also add that I first viewed the basic intro as part of a subscription plan with infinite skills.  I think it was before offered st Daz, but not sure.  I could justify it because the subscription also included tutorials for spreadsheet and statistical software I was using for work.  The subscription might not turn out all bad if it includes other programs that increase the number of people.  Guess PhilW's royalty will depend on how they handle subscriptions.  But I bought it outright during a Daz sale and still go back for reference.

    Would just add that I still return to these PhilW videos.  Recently, I watched the advanced sections on making a complete rural scene and a replicated urban scene over again.  I still pick up great tips to add to my own landscape approaches.

    Thanks, Phil, for all the help.

     

  • PhilWPhilW Posts: 5,102

    Fortunately, I have already downloaded the recorded files.  But I would also add that I first viewed the basic intro as part of a subscription plan with infinite skills.  I think it was before offered st Daz, but not sure.  I could justify it because the subscription also included tutorials for spreadsheet and statistical software I was using for work.  The subscription might not turn out all bad if it includes other programs that increase the number of people.  Guess PhilW's royalty will depend on how they handle subscriptions.  But I bought it outright during a Daz sale and still go back for reference.

    Would just add that I still return to these PhilW videos.  Recently, I watched the advanced sections on making a complete rural scene and a replicated urban scene over again.  I still pick up great tips to add to my own landscape approaches.

    Thanks, Phil, for all the help.

     

    Great to hear!

  • good that i've bought beginners, advanced and realism rendering long time ago :)
    I haven't got animations in Carrara yet but you've talked about it in your training dvd's but as long as i didn't got a real render workstation with maybe amd ryzen 2990wx + Radeon Pro Duo 32GB GPU i don't really need to do animations (simple animations with low quality are ok but realistic animations with high quality, high resolution, 60fps and so, i don't even need to try)
    But i think it's a bad choice to make the videos only available through amazon us.
    Do you have the right for the content of your training dvd's? maybe there are other options for publishing them with an easier way to get access.

  • PhilWPhilW Posts: 5,102

    good that i've bought beginners, advanced and realism rendering long time ago :)
    I haven't got animations in Carrara yet but you've talked about it in your training dvd's but as long as i didn't got a real render workstation with maybe amd ryzen 2990wx + Radeon Pro Duo 32GB GPU i don't really need to do animations (simple animations with low quality are ok but realistic animations with high quality, high resolution, 60fps and so, i don't even need to try)
    But i think it's a bad choice to make the videos only available through amazon us.
    Do you have the right for the content of your training dvd's? maybe there are other options for publishing them with an easier way to get access.

    O'Reilly now own the rights to all of my training sets except for Animation in Carrara and I have no control about where they are available. I agree that pulling them from the Daz store was a bad move as it is the natural home for all things Carrara.

    You don't need a hugely powerful computer to get good results with animation if you are careful with render settings - and powerful graphics cards won't do much for you if using Carrara's native renderer as it uses the main CPU for rendering. If doing a major project now though, I would render in Octane and that does benefit from a powerful graphics card, but it needs to be an Nvidia card. I do everything on a laptop and have never felt unduly disadvantaged.

  • PhilW said:

    good that i've bought beginners, advanced and realism rendering long time ago :)
    I haven't got animations in Carrara yet but you've talked about it in your training dvd's but as long as i didn't got a real render workstation with maybe amd ryzen 2990wx + Radeon Pro Duo 32GB GPU i don't really need to do animations (simple animations with low quality are ok but realistic animations with high quality, high resolution, 60fps and so, i don't even need to try)
    But i think it's a bad choice to make the videos only available through amazon us.
    Do you have the right for the content of your training dvd's? maybe there are other options for publishing them with an easier way to get access.

    O'Reilly now own the rights to all of my training sets except for Animation in Carrara and I have no control about where they are available. I agree that pulling them from the Daz store was a bad move as it is the natural home for all things Carrara.

    You don't need a hugely powerful computer to get good results with animation if you are careful with render settings - and powerful graphics cards won't do much for you if using Carrara's native renderer as it uses the main CPU for rendering. If doing a major project now though, I would render in Octane and that does benefit from a powerful graphics card, but it needs to be an Nvidia card. I do everything on a laptop and have never felt unduly disadvantaged.

    Octane does not support other cards than Nvidia?
    If that so, it's a real shame as there are great ones available from HD Radeon for much lesser price than the same nvidia card.
    At the moment i only can use my Notebook but it have the Quadro FX880M card, so octane won't work with this now, on my PC which is still out of order i have 2 560GTX Ti overclocked with 2GB each and animation took a long time with octane, well i did 60fps and even if it was just a few seconds, it was high quality, high resolution and i think about 300 samples per image, wouldnt get finished it within 2 weeks as it was a closeup to the face with dynamic hair, just opening and closing eyes, opening mouth, moving the head a bit and changing pupil size while opening and closing the mouth but that was about 10 - 15 seconds and 60fps would have been 600 - 900 images for the full animation to render, maybe 30 to 50 samples would still be good but than i think there is too much noise left in the animation, so can't really get that done with my PC right now.

    Do you plan to make more training DVD's you offer than on Daz Store? Like from Octane? Or Iray rendering on Daz Studio?

  • PhilWPhilW Posts: 5,102
    edited December 2018

    You can get away with a lot lower samples per pixel for animation than for still images, the noise per frame effectively evens out.  I would tend to render at 30 fps and not 60 (or even 24 which is what movies are traditionally shot in). You can also look at using the Direct kernel which is a lot faster. It depends on your target audience but there is a lot you can do to get results in a reasonable time.

    I'm not looking at doing any tutorials at the moment as I am busy with other projects. But it is always a possibility for the future.

    Post edited by PhilW on
  • Hi Phil,

    some time ago I purchased the Carrara 8 Training Bundle double DVD from amazon and just got to using it now.

    I'm new to Carrara and when trying to follow your tutorials it seems that to take full advantage of these videos the iSkills Runtime is required.

    For example on the first DVD, in chapter 3 Working with Poser DAZ content the Injection Morphs don't appear.

    And that's just one example.

    I'm using the very latest version of Carrara, namely 8.5 Pro that I just downloaded from DAZ3d.

    Is the iSkills runtime available for purchase?

    Cheers from Canada

    Anthony

    Anthony Tower

  • PhilWPhilW Posts: 5,102

    I think you may find it on the disks that you have - I included a bunch of working files which should be included with the distribution disks.

    However the Injection Morphs sound like those for Victoria 4 which are a Daz product. At the time V4 was the most up to date figure and most people would already have the head and body morphs packages. Of course times have moved on and more recent figures are available - albeit that Carrara only supports up to Genesis 2 figures natively.

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