First projects in Carrara...

TwoCatsTwoCats Posts: 384
edited June 2017 in Carrara Discussion

Hi all,

So, I'm having a lot of trouble nailing down an idea for a first major project to begin in Carrara. Up 'til now, I've been doing a lot of what I'd call "doodling", just to learn my way around the interface, figure out what does what, how things work, etc. But when it comes to trying to think of a first project to do, that I feel would be within my capabilities, and that I could stay excited about working on, I'm having a difficult time.

It got me wondering what others' first projects were here. If you still have them somewhere, in a gallery etc... by all means share them!

Also, please share how you came up with the idea. Was it a particular theme? Was it a project to learn a certain feature, or set of features? Was it just kind of "freewheeling" and came together organically as you worked on it?

Not looking to copy anyone's ideas here... but maybe seeing others' earliest works, and learning how they came about might help inspire some idea in my mind that I could then launch into.

Thanks!

 

Post edited by TwoCats on
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Comments

  • DiomedeDiomede Posts: 12,130
    edited June 2017

    My first project in Carrara was for the first monthly Carrara challenge, which was themed "Welcome to My Garden."  (May 2013)  Prior to that, I had used Poser off and on going back to Poser 4.  However, I did not customize much with Poser because it had no tools for such things.  In contrast, I discovered that Carrara allowed for complete customization.  So, I created everything in my Welcome to My Garden entry from scratch.  Not saying this is the greatest image of all time, but I am still very glad that I did it.

    EDIT - my goal was to use many different methods to portray plants - the vertex modeler, replicators, spline modeler, plant editor, terrain modeler with spikes,...

     

    Post edited by Diomede on
  • HeadwaxHeadwax Posts: 8,631
    edited June 2017

    nice question - the first thing I made in anim8or was a twenty minute surfing animation - it was terrible and boring but I learnt a lot from it.

    So ask yourself - do you want to make animations, or stills - or both?

    What are you interested in? Ww2 planes? Surfing? Tron? Norman Rockwell.

    I'd take one of those interests and work from that.

    the other thing is to enter the next challenge and watch how everyone else approaches it

     

     

    cheers

     

    :)

     

     

    Post edited by Headwax on
  • wgdjohnwgdjohn Posts: 2,634

    Hello again.  My ideas come from all differentent places.... usually a Carrara Challenge that I want some of my own modeling in, see Learning tips and tricks from prior Carrara Challenge WIP threads for others ideas too.  Often I'll see something in a 3d store or in real life and get an idea from that.  Just sitting at my computer I can see a lot of ideas from real life objects.  I actually have a few empty wine bottles that sit close in order to remind me to take the time and model one,...  the wine I use to cook with.  I found it very good to make my simple models for mmoir's group animations.  I actually gained some speed in modeling since there was a short deadline... note that speed doesn't equate to better quality right away... what it does is to create mistakes faster and figure them out faster, most of the time.

    The question is what are you wanting to model, a vehicle, a figure, clothing or props...  I'm still mostly stuck on props and only ventured into what I call creature creation.  What I need to do is go through all that I have done and start a themed collection even if I need to add some more items to it.

    Hope that gives you a few ideas.

  • Steve KSteve K Posts: 2,484

    I'm not sure if you mean modelling (which I do not do) or creating a still image from available elements (e.g. models that come with Carrara or are purchased, which I do sometimes), or even animation (which is my real interest).  Like others above, challenges can get the imagination working.  I don't remember my first animation, but it was probably in an early version of Poser and involved the Poser male doing simple motions (the whole point of Poser in the first place).  So you might try loading a figure (I like Michael 4 from DAZ) and setting different poses at different times (key frames) in the sequencer, to get a feel for character animation.

    More recently (and many years after that first effort), there was a challenge at Carrarators  to do a "jump".  I got a little carried away with a purchased motion capture file I'd been wanting to try, a character jumping and catching an object flying by.  It's fairly complex, and definitely not  something I'd try without the motion capture file.  But the challenge did get me going, finally.  Here is the resulting one minute animation (the "jump" starts at 0:30):

  • StezzaStezza Posts: 6,150
    edited June 2017

    One of mine back in 2006!

    holy crap.... that long!

    Cobb and Co.jpg
    800 x 617 - 672K
    Post edited by Stezza on
  • VyusurVyusur Posts: 2,075

    Stezza, great image! I am amazed.

  • Mythic3DMythic3D Posts: 1,495

    My first Carrara projects were all for the monthly challenges, starting in November 2014. The first one I really spent alot of time on trying to do a little bit of everything in was for the "Winter is Coming Challenge." You can see my early Carrara attempts and my progression through the challenges in the Carrara Challenges sub-folder of my gallery https://www.daz3d.com/gallery/galleries/277815/. Early on I did a lot of trying to replicate photos of real places, although I often went "off-script" quickly and ended up adding fantasy elements.

    Here's an early one (my first time entering one of the Platinum Club Challenges, I had only been seriously using Carrara for a few months and I won the challenge with this one):

    If you browse through the main page of my gallery (link in my signature) and the other sub-folders there you'll find a fair number done in Carrara (I always say in the description what software was used), mostly inspired by some contest or challenge theme, but some of my favorites were just the result of playing around  

  • 3DAGE3DAGE Posts: 3,309

    Great advice above,.

    join a challenge or themed contest,. whatever gets you interested,. create something you like.

    you can also "test the water" with your project,. by uploading to a site like ShareCG.com ,. free.

    http://www.sharecg.com/3DAGE

    or just drop a link in a forum page here.

  • wgdjohnwgdjohn Posts: 2,634

    Mit must be busy working up a project. :)   Not to pound my own drum but there are many good examples in Modeling Objects in Carrara - Q&A - Come One and All posted by others... there are more and more useful links... forums and YouTube that get added from time to time.  "Drum"... hmmm... perhaps I'll model some drums, bongos or complete drum set... see there an idea just sprouted up from a single word. :)

     

  • MystiaraMystiara Posts: 38,106

    my 1st project was animating planes.  
    comparing sky and realistic sky, was trying to lower the sky instead of raising the plane.
    trying motion paths. directional force.

    the plane, the plane

  • TwoCatsTwoCats Posts: 384
    edited June 2017
    Diomede said:

    My first project in Carrara was for the first monthly Carrara challenge, which was themed "Welcome to My Garden."  (May 2013)  Prior to that, I had used Poser off and on going back to Poser 4.  However, I did not customize much with Poser because it had no tools for such things.  In contrast, I discovered that Carrara allowed for complete customization.  So, I created everything in my Welcome to My Garden entry from scratch.  Not saying this is the greatest image of all time, but I am still very glad that I did it.

    EDIT - my goal was to use many different methods to portray plants - the vertex modeler, replicators, spline modeler, plant editor, terrain modeler with spikes,...

     

    Nice! I've actually considered using one of the contests as a good 'subject'.... this way the theme is decided for me, and it's more about finding a good 'take' on the theme.

    Might do that yet. Maybe I'll catch the next one to come around. I don't know if there's much time left for the current one.

    Post edited by TwoCats on
  • TwoCatsTwoCats Posts: 384
    head wax said:

    nice question - the first thing I made in anim8or was a twenty minute surfing animation - it was terrible and boring but I learnt a lot from it.

    So ask yourself - do you want to make animations, or stills - or both?

    What are you interested in? Ww2 planes? Surfing? Tron? Norman Rockwell.

    I'd take one of those interests and work from that.

    the other thing is to enter the next challenge and watch how everyone else approaches it

     

     

    cheers

     

    :)

     

     

    I want to do both :p. Though not necessarily at the same time, and certainly not as my first project lol.

    Also, Anim8or is a neat little program! Its creator has a good head on his shoulders for UI design, etc.

  • TwoCatsTwoCats Posts: 384
    Stezza said:

    One of mine back in 2006!

    holy crap.... that long!

    Indeed! It's even in sepia tones!

    It's like you knew this subject would come up! :p

  • TwoCatsTwoCats Posts: 384
    MDO2010 said:

    My first Carrara projects were all for the monthly challenges, starting in November 2014. The first one I really spent alot of time on trying to do a little bit of everything in was for the "Winter is Coming Challenge." You can see my early Carrara attempts and my progression through the challenges in the Carrara Challenges sub-folder of my gallery https://www.daz3d.com/gallery/galleries/277815/. Early on I did a lot of trying to replicate photos of real places, although I often went "off-script" quickly and ended up adding fantasy elements.

    Here's an early one (my first time entering one of the Platinum Club Challenges, I had only been seriously using Carrara for a few months and I won the challenge with this one):

    If you browse through the main page of my gallery (link in my signature) and the other sub-folders there you'll find a fair number done in Carrara (I always say in the description what software was used), mostly inspired by some contest or challenge theme, but some of my favorites were just the result of playing around  

    Nice! Thank you for the info and the link! Will definitely go through your stuff. I try to get through people's galleries when they link them one way or another.

  • StezzaStezza Posts: 6,150

    I feel old!

     

     

    and cold! it's only 12C friggin freezin'

    thanks @vyusur

    @mitovo that would of been one of my first renders in Carrara and post was probably done in PS7 or PSP.. I even found the textures I made for the coach and did another render with it yesterday.. amazing what you find on backup hard drives lol

  • If you are looking for a project with a good learning curve why not start with a simple but challenging one. Just model your room. It is simple because everything is there at your hand (and your eye): reference, measures, textures, lightning...and a perfect live preview ;-) It is challenging because objects that seem to be simple at first glance (most of them deriving from cubes) often aren't that simple at all if you go into details. You may say: That is no idea, that is not creative! Well, at least it is a start to solve the "blank page" problem.

     

     

     

     

  • Mythic3DMythic3D Posts: 1,495
    edited July 2017

    If you are looking for a project with a good learning curve why not start with a simple but challenging one. Just model your room. It is simple because everything is there at your hand (and your eye): reference, measures, textures, lightning...and a perfect live preview ;-) It is challenging because objects that seem to be simple at first glance (most of them deriving from cubes) often aren't that simple at all if you go into details. You may say: That is no idea, that is not creative! Well, at least it is a start to solve the "blank page" problem.

    This is a great suggesstion. I've modeled the whole exterior of my house including grass and plants and several rooms of my house just for practice. It covers pretty much every aspect from modeling to plants to texturing and lighting. I did skip parts of the texturing in my case though, since Inot only have 40 years of accumulated books but the inherited library my dad collected over 70 years as an avid reader (just his added up to over 6,000 books), so literally every room of my home has at least one jam-packed bookshelf in it, and some of them have multiple floor-to-celing bookshelves -  coming up with textures for all those books is a pain and I wasn't going to take pictures of them all or scan the covers. laugh

    Post edited by Mythic3D on
  • wgdjohnwgdjohn Posts: 2,634

    Project:  Desk with accessories... including chair.  Suggested accessories list:  Think of different things the desk could be used for.

    • Tray for center drawer to hold pens, pencils, paper clips, etc.
    • Tape dispenser
    • Stapler... probably want a box for extra staples in a drawer... model the box to be opened and show staples too.
    • scissors
    • notepad(s)
    • Computer tower, monitor to set on desk with keyboard and mouse or trackball.

    Model a few diff versions or even entirely different for other eras... future, 60s or even one that Galileo might use.

  • MystiaraMystiara Posts: 38,106

    was a lot of fun modeling the arch  was a thread couple years ago.  several ways to make an arch

  • VyusurVyusur Posts: 2,075
    edited July 2017

     

     

    My first project in Carrara was chair modeling:

    https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL_egnJIU3cHYap4sYgaKBovySwCvmeqL-

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

    When I came to Carrara, I was used to using Poser and Vue, and Carrara seemed to offer elements of both within one program, plus things like modelling and dynamic hair. I spent a lot of time in the early days playing with Carrara's hair as it was a "new toy".

  • MystiaraMystiara Posts: 38,106

    1 project been on my mind a couple years.  there's a millenium env called magic falls.  been wanting to model a 3d version of it.

  • wgdjohnwgdjohn Posts: 2,634

    Cool idea Misty.  Would you be using Partical emmiters, directional forces and perhaps metaballs?  Don't kow but collision detection for the riverbed and rocks that the waterfall hit on.

    Check out PhilW's "Carrara Particle Effects - Waterfall and Fairy Dust" at Share if you haven't already.

  • PjotterPjotter Posts: 267
    Mitovo said:

    Hi all,

    So, I'm having a lot of trouble nailing down an idea for a first major project to begin in Carrara. Up 'til now, I've been doing a lot of what I'd call "doodling", just to learn my way around the interface, figure out what does what, how things work, etc. But when it comes to trying to think of a first project to do, that I feel would be within my capabilities, and that I could stay excited about working on, I'm having a difficult time.

    It got me wondering what others' first projects were here. If you still have them somewhere, in a gallery etc... by all means share them!

    Also, please share how you came up with the idea. Was it a particular theme? Was it a project to learn a certain feature, or set of features? Was it just kind of "freewheeling" and came together organically as you worked on it?

    Not looking to copy anyone's ideas here... but maybe seeing others' earliest works, and learning how they came about might help inspire some idea in my mind that I could then launch into.

    Thanks!

     

    I can help you with that. The best way is to start with a certain character. Maybe a clown or whataever. Than give him a certain character / attitude. Is he clumsy, aggressive, dumb, positive, or whatever you want. Than start building this thought. Is it in the future, in space, pre historical, etc. How do you create conflict? Without conflict you avoid being boring.

    In other words, start with a very basic, simple idea (like Donald Duck). If it is too broad you do not get a good starting point. And write every idea that pops up in your brain down.

  • MystiaraMystiara Posts: 38,106
    wgdjohn said:

    Cool idea Misty.  Would you be using Partical emmiters, directional forces and perhaps metaballs?  Don't kow but collision detection for the riverbed and rocks that the waterfall hit on.

    Check out PhilW's "Carrara Particle Effects - Waterfall and Fairy Dust" at Share if you haven't already.

     

    definitly particle emitters

    problem right now is the particles get bigger closer to the camera, so i think i have nice looking water droplets, but then close up ruins the illusion.

  • wgdjohnwgdjohn Posts: 2,634
    edited July 2017

    Move the camera. :)   Can the particles decrease in size when getting closer?  Might cut to a diff cam for a close-up shot using diff size particles??

    I'm picturing having the camera pulled back and perhaps only rotating around scene but not getting closer... no zolly doom. :)  Gotta be a way... multi cuts to closer views with diff emiters and smaller particals for each closer cut/fade in.

    If cam is stationary then divide scene up into diff spots for good sized particles/emmiters... as scene is closer load in the diff particles/emmiters, having the other perhaps dissapearing out of site... gotta be a way to do this.

    wear a will... don a way

    Post edited by wgdjohn on
  • 3DAGE3DAGE Posts: 3,309

    My first project in carrara was an Egyptian chariot,.

    I had recently found Carrara, and the Daz3D store,. so I joined the PC club,. better deals,. and I had joined in a few PC challenges based on that weeks new PC items,. which were Egyptian,.

    But,... I couldn't find a chariot,

    it's up on my ShareCG site,. Carrara and Poser/DS versions.

    Before this,. I had been using different 3D software for several years and was unaware of the "content market" of ready made stuff.

    I had seen Poser,. but discounted it completely since it was only a load and pose thing,. and my interest was in creating.

     

     

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 17,392
    edited July 2017

    I came to Carrara in 2010 with the dream of making a series of movie episodes and have been working my way toward that endeavor ever since.

    I came from Poser, where I would use things like Millenium Environment as my settings to start with, which was fun, but ultimately frustrating. Some products provide skydomes, so I started collecting those too. Getting into Carrara was very strange in that, what used to look HUGE in Poser was just a tiny opposition to infinity in Carrara.

    I never really wanted Carrara for its landscaping. I wanted its ability to model - more specifically, I wanted to be able to edit content, like make new morphs and shapes and such.

    Anyway, so all this time since 2010 has been truly enjoying getting to know Carrara along with an intense study toward working with shaders to be able to keep my render settings low and still get a decent result (as well as learning how to properly set up lights!). I wasn't really wanting to make something that competes with Hollywood, but I also wanted it to look pretty cool when I was finished.

    You'll see by this first example that after all this time, my characters haven't changed much visually, even though they actually have gone through a LOT of optimizations and improvements over the years. They are who I've worked on most. Here is my first (and very stiff) walk cycle test under a skydome. I still didn't know how to landscape in Carrara

    Yeah... that was Carrara 8 Pro Beta v.145, so that was when I first got Carrara - I bought a $29 book (from Daz3d - Figures, Characters and Avatars, by Les Pardew) which came with Carrara 6.5 Pro, an Upgrade to Carrara 7 Pro ($169), which included a Free upgrade to 8 Pro upon release. Since 8 was still in beta, I installed 7 Pro on my new machine that I bought strictly for Carrara, but Windows 7 complained that Carrara 7 and Aero didn't play nicely together. It really was not big deal, but 7 didn't have 64 bit, so I switched to 8 Pro beta and never went back.

    An early edition of Rosie testing out my purchase of Mimic Pro for Carrara, using one of the included sound files to try

    I also got aniMate 2, AniBlock Importer for Carrara, and some aniBlock packs when I got Carrara, and was now in the process of collecting more. I am also a fan of Posermocap's and later SKAmotion's animated pose files as well. Posermocap's are really cool, based around specific actions, which can be really fun if you need those moves!

    I started getting more and more used to the sequencer in Carrara. A lot of dedication. While not that great, being as new to this as I was... I still enjoy this very early test. I knew that I would have to figure out how to stitch various animation clips together to string them into a movie. I had no idea of film making or editing... so I also didn't know proper terms to look for. Windows Movie Maker was cool in XP, but for Windows 7 and since, they've switched to an online app: Live Movie Maker or something like that, something I didn't want. I wanted something I can run offline. Anyway, this was made in Movie Maker before I started my search

    (EDIT: Funny... in looking back at my older orders, I see that I was still collecting add-ons for Millennium Environment. I really liked that thing, but it felt difficult to work with in Carrara it was so small!!! LOL)

    I knew I wanted to have some scenes in Space, so I asked in the forum what people did about that and the only answers I could get from anyone and everyone dealt with using images in the background. Back then I didn't know the difference between backdrop and background, but either way, I wanted to have 3d stars, so I made what I thought was so cool that I eventually tooled it into my first Daz3d product: Starry Sky for Carrara. Here is an (again, very early) animation made using Starry Sky and a waaaay tooo fast ship flyby

    I couldn't find animations for the Millennium Dragon 2, so I set out to making my next Daz3d product. Still being such a newbie, I never heard of a "Titler" for videos, so this effect done on the Carrara logo was actually a plane with the logo and an animated light with lense flare... I was still very much a noob!!! But I still like the animations!

    Oh man! Daz3d came into the forum asking if we were interested in filling out a poll for future Carrara advancements. One question was whether we wanted Carrara to be made compatible with Daz3d new upcoming figure technology - something we still had no clue what they were talking about. At least I certainly was in the dark.

    Next thing you know... here comes Genesis, Daz Studio 4.0, and Carrara 8.5 beta - Making this fun video caused me to figure out how to fully animate switching entire character textures!

    Finally, I had a few short, but very informative communications with JonnyBravo, who helped me figure out how to get started working with video files, and eventually led to my purchasing Sony Vegas Movie HD (Cheap version of Vegas). That changed everything because it took away my nervousness around what the heck I was going to do!

    Before buying, I tried the 30 day trial - and all I had to test it with was a pile of test clips I haven't thrown away yet along with some of those I've used to make the first one 

    Since then, however, I've also grabbed up Corel VideoStudio Pro as well as now HitFilm, Fusion and DaVinci Resolve.

    Just a Bit of Fun, as crappy as it is, was a landmark for me, which got me to be able to shift my focus back into Carrara. So I bought Phil's awesome courses (brilliant move!!!) and started getting far more in-depth into this software.

    Truth be told, I'm not sure I'd even still be interested in any of this if it wasn't for Carrara.

    Post edited by Dartanbeck on
  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 17,392

    ...and now I'm still pursuing film making, visual effects, and 3d education as I can. Not too long ago, Pjotter gave me a nudge to get cracking on putting out a film and, in doing so, prodded me to learn script writing! Something that I've also never really studied... Yikes! He's also given some fine examples of books to get me started.

    I'm really glad that I never really approached this whole thing in a rush!

  • wgdjohnwgdjohn Posts: 2,634

    Hey Dart in "Just A Bit of Fun" did you animate the horse walk cycle yourself?

    I was looking for a good, they all are, anim you have done.  I want to place a link to it in my Animation in Carrara - Let's Animate - Q&A - Come One & All thread.  Which one do you consisder your best?

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