Creating freebies for a year now.. Bit of a Ramble.

richardandtracyrichardandtracy Posts: 1,796
edited July 21 in Freebies

There are so many freebies around that I have benefitted from that I started to get a bit guilty about using them without returning very much to the community. So I thought it might be nice to offer something back. Not having a huge amount of experience in modelling for DS, I reckoned the only thing I could initially offer was poses, because everyone can do poses (ho hum). In 2004 I downloaded a useful set of poses by Musketeer for V3, and as it wasn't very easy to apply them to G8F, after asking Musketeer for permission, I thought I'd have a go at producing a look-alike set for G8F by using V3 as a reference and posing the G8F figure from scratch. I learnt a great deal about posing doing this, mostly that V3 & G8F have very different joints and some V3 poses are really awkward looking on G8F and needed a great deal of re-work to the pose. Took a bit of time to get both the pose right, find how to create the upload package etc etc. Anyway, I uploaded my first freebie 364 days ago, having finished it a year ago today.

The results have been somewhat surprising. OK, I'll be a little less English: The results stunned me.

Within a day or two the downloads exceeded 100. Over 100, Just for a little pose. What were people thinking of?

Anyway, it looked like I had found something I might be able to do to say 'Thankyou' for all the freebies I'd taken advantage of, and did the rest of the set. As I came close to the end, I accidentally applied a pose to G8F rather than my V3 reference figure, and that triggered the thought of a pose transfer script. Naturally it happened after it would be most useful!

So, the results. Well, I have been very surprised. Over the last year there have been 109,802 downloads of my freebies on renderosity and the fastest downloading set is the G8F warm-up pose set 01-05, getting to 1748 downloads since January. Being an engineer, I tend to like graphs and general data, and have found that there is a common shape to the download pattern of each freebie. It starts off with quite a few downloads, then the daily rate tails off to a pretty constant average figure. This can be seen with a plot of 16 downloads below:

As you can see, starts off fast, then tails off to a pretty constant rate. The only thing that's different is the overall popularity of the individual download which determines the slope of the curve. With a bit of data processing it should be possible to calculate the rough 6 month download rate after taking a 2 day and 7 day download quantity snapshot. As I can see no earthly need for this for freebies, I've not done it. Might be worthwhile if I ever have a massive change of heart & try to sell something, but at the moment it's highly unlikely.

So, at the 1 year anniversary of creating a freebie download I am left feeling 'Wow, that was wild and unexpected.'. It's also nice to have been able to give a little back to the community.

Does anyone else have any similar experiences or stories?

Regards,

Richard.

 

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Comments

  • maikdeckermaikdecker Posts: 1,719

    richardandtracy said:

    What were people
    thinking of?
     

    Don't know what others thought, but I thought "Oooh, nice... some more free quality poses." so I dl'd probably all of those poses You gave away for free at Rendo.

    Life is so much easier one has a basic pose that only needs a bit of adjusting, compared to to starting from scratch. And yes, I probably am a "s*cker for poses".

  • richardandtracyrichardandtracy Posts: 1,796

    I do agree with you about starting from a pre-existing pose making it easier to get to the one you want in the image you have in mind. The ones I have always found to be very good are from Itazura, Bbarbs and OneSix. And they are partly why I felt I needed to do something myself - I'd downloaded so many of their poses I felt the need to give something back to say thank-you. Not that I imagine they're downloading my little offerings, but the saying 'What comes around, goes around' can be for pleasant things too.

    Regards,

    Richard.

     

  • perlkperlk Posts: 268

    Richard, how did you get the data? 

     

    PS: I use your poses quite a lot. I'm terrible at posing, so they are extremely helpful.

  • richardandtracyrichardandtracy Posts: 1,796

    Perlk,

    I got the data by setting up a spreadsheet and going through adding a row for each freebie to the list as I released a new one. Then I entered all the download data for every download on a particular day into a column in the spreadsheet. Initially I did it in the 10 minutes before I started work on a 5 days a week basis, but once it got too time consuming I had to move it to [roughly] weekly after work. Anyway, after that, set up graphs to show 16 plots at a time, and then also added graphs for daily downloads, total downloads & mean download - all of which is interesting but not the slightest use!

    I honestly think I'm rubbish at posing, which is why I am so flabberghasted that there have been so many downloads..cheeky  You should see the looks I get from my family when I try to get into an approximation of the pose I'm trying for - to see if it's anatomically possible & then see if it's comfortable. If either comes out 'No', it gets changed. I cannot imagine someone deliberately putting themselves into an uncomfortable pose, that's why I try them out. On occasions I have to get my wife to check a pose for me as I don't have the correct upper body shape - but thankfully it's not often.

    Regards,

    Richard

     

  • perlkperlk Posts: 268

    richardandtracy said:

    Perlk,

    I got the data by setting up a spreadsheet and going through adding a row for each freebie to the list as I released a new one. Then I entered all the download data for every download on a particular day into a column in the spreadsheet. Initially I did it in the 10 minutes before I started work on a 5 days a week basis, but once it got too time consuming I had to move it to [roughly] weekly after work. Anyway, after that, set up graphs to show 16 plots at a time, and then also added graphs for daily downloads, total downloads & mean download - all of which is interesting but not the slightest use!

    I honestly think I'm rubbish at posing, which is why I am so flabberghasted that there have been so many downloads..cheeky  You should see the looks I get from my family when I try to get into an approximation of the pose I'm trying for - to see if it's anatomically possible & then see if it's comfortable. If either comes out 'No', it gets changed. I cannot imagine someone deliberately putting themselves into an uncomfortable pose, that's why I try them out. On occasions I have to get my wife to check a pose for me as I don't have the correct upper body shape - but thankfully it's not often.

    Regards,

    Richard

    Wow, that's dedication!!!! And the testing is, too...and worthwhile because your poses do look very realistic which is why they are so popular!

  • ioonrxoonioonrxoon Posts: 178

    Had the same idea as you, and the one thing I knew how to do somewhat were poses. And I was just as surprsed to see how popular they are... although I shouldn't be, since your poses were some of the first freebies I've downloaded myself. Afterwards I decided to try a bit of modeling, mostly to be able to make some simple props for myself, when I can't find a suitable item somewhere. But while I did grasp some of the basics, there's many things I can't figure out, like uv mapping - so my main offering will still be poses.

  • nonesuch00nonesuch00 Posts: 15,352
    edited July 21

    I have done only 3 freebies but they are not as popular as a good practical pose set like your Track & Field pose sets. One of the freebies I made involves gathering up freebies from 2 or 3 other people that made freebies on shareCG and installing them so the freebie I made works. So a (relatively, compartively) lot of work, not your typical DAZ 3D shopping experience.

    1: Toon scene of the a still of opening credits of well-known TV show from long ago, about 5 years ago

    2: Simple Facegen Artist Pro G8F morph of famous rock singer female, about a year ago

    3: Simple Facegen Artist Pro G8M morph of a famous rock singer male, 1 year ago

    So like you, the initial download rates were very (relatively) a lot and then slowed down a lot just as your did. The popularity winner is easily the famous female rock singer has twice the downloads in one fifth the time as the cartoon credits of the famous TV show The very famous male rock singer is about on par with the popularity of the cartoon credits of the famous TV show if you factor time into it.

    What I didn't realize is the Renderosity has so many more views than shareCG. I ought to upload those freebies there just to observe the difference of the math distributions (I kind of like math to, having got a degree in it after realizing I had only take an extra semester of classes to get the degree)  

    Post edited by nonesuch00 on
  • richardandtracyrichardandtracy Posts: 1,796
    ioonrxoon said:

    Had the same idea as you, and the one thing I knew how to do somewhat were poses. And I was just as surprsed to see how popular they are... although I shouldn't be, since your poses were some of the first freebies I've downloaded myself. Afterwards I decided to try a bit of modeling, mostly to be able to make some simple props for myself, when I can't find a suitable item somewhere. But while I did grasp some of the basics, there's many things I can't figure out, like uv mapping - so my main offering will still be poses.

    oh, yes. I still find the modelling hard. Which, I must admit, niggles a bit given that I design mechanical stuff for a living using SolidWorks. I have an old copy of SolidWorks on my home machine, but can only get it into DS by an STLtoOBJ translator I've written. Then the residual AV software on my machine prevents Blender from working, so I have to do any edits and UV mapping in my own modeller. It's very frustrating. Really need to sit down and work out how to program anything other than box/planar UV mapping. I simply cannot get on with Hexagon, I don't know why, but it doesn't work in any way my head can follow.

  • richardandtracyrichardandtracy Posts: 1,796
    edited July 21

    ...

    What I didn't realize is the Renderosity has so many more views than shareCG. I ought to upload those freebies there just to observe the difference of the math distributions (I kind of like math to, having got a degree in it after realizing I had only take an extra semester of classes to get the degree)  

    The download numbers from Rendo are amazing. I only put them up there because I have been a member for twenty one years now having seen a Poser 3 image advertising Renderosity in the UK's 'PCPlus' computer magazine. That was mind blowing. Many years ago (2004), I put up a texture for the Poser 4 Cat, to make it look a little more like my Avatar Cat Albert, but that disappeared a decade after dear old Albert died. I didn't have a DA or ShareCG account until last year. Must be a bit slow...

    A maths degree. Hmm, that takes a certain way of looking at the world. I found maths quite comforting until I ran into my maths ceiling just after the start of second year in the degree. At the university I went to, Applied Maths and BSc Engineering courses shared all the maths lectures and coursework. I simply couldn't get my head around anything beyond the start of the second year maths no matter how hard I tried. Fortunately for my sanity I have not needed that level of maths since transferring to a B.Eng course, and the levels of maths I have needed in my professional capacity were less complex than that - despite earning my living as a stress engineer for a good part of it.

    Post edited by richardandtracy on
  • nonesuch00nonesuch00 Posts: 15,352

    richardandtracy said:

    nonesuch00 said:

    ...

    What I didn't realize is the Renderosity has so many more views than shareCG. I ought to upload those freebies there just to observe the difference of the math distributions (I kind of like math to, having got a degree in it after realizing I had only take an extra semester of classes to get the degree)  

    The download numbers from Rendo are amazing. I only put them up there because I have been a member for twenty one years now having seen a Poser 3 image advertising Renderosity in the UK's 'PCPlus' computer magazine. That was mind blowing. Many years ago (2004), I put up a texture for the Poser 4 Cat, to make it look a little more like my Avatar Cat Albert, but that disappeared a decade after dear old Albert died. I didn't have a DA or ShareCG account until last year. Must be a bit slow...

    A maths degree. Hmm, that takes a certain way of looking at the world. I found maths quite comforting until I ran into my maths ceiling just after the start of second year in the degree. At the university I went to, Applied Maths and BSc Engineering courses shared all the maths lectures and coursework. I simply couldn't get my head around anything beyond the start of the second year maths no matter how hard I tried. Fortunately for my sanity I have not needed that level of maths since transferring to a B.Eng course, and the levels of maths I have needed in my professional capacity were less complex than that - despite earning my living as a stress engineer for a good part of it.

    Cool, I will try a couple of freebies at Rendo before the year is up. It will be good to see if I need to fix a problem in them how many emails I get.

  • Faeryl WomynFaeryl Womyn Posts: 2,121

    I'm not surprised by the popularity of your scripts, one thing many have mentioned on the forums is the ability to use poses between models of different generations, since come create models that are only suppose to use new products to boost sales.

    Your pose scripts are a godsend and much appreciated.

  • ioonrxoonioonrxoon Posts: 178

    I have no experience with hexagon or other programs, only ever used blender. I still do whatever I can directly in Daz with primitives. I'm planning to try and figure out uv mapping as well, but for now I want to learn what I can about lighting and improving character skin and details as much as I can. I'd also like to learn about painting and customizing skins at some point, but I don't even know where to start with that.

    I don't know anything about programming and such, scripts are completely foreign to me. :)

  • richardandtracyrichardandtracy Posts: 1,796

    I am a self taught C++ programmer, and I really only know how to use one programming environment - what used to be 'Borland' and is now 'Embarcadero's' C++ Builder. I use the brute ignorance & force method of programming, and get to the end of the job despite my [lack of] abilities rather than because of my abilities. I took the same approach to scripting. The DS script syntax is very similar, the use of objects is similar, but the implementation is unusual (to my limited knowledge). The script documentation is better than any other part of DS, but relatively poor compared to that found with C++ Builder, as a result I can just about muddle through with basic things like copying a pose from one generation of figure and put it on a second. However my scripts are hopelessly inelegant and wordy compared to what a decent programmer would produce. Some of the transfer scripts exceed 2400 lines of code. That's not efficient, or fast, but the job gets done.

    The idea of doing a pose transfer really came very late to me, and I could kick myself for not coming up with it much earlier. I'm also amazed no-one else has done it. There are correction morphs to go from G3 to G8 and vice versa, but no-one seems to have taken the next logical step to copy the pose to/from Generation 4 which is the one used for longest. Very peculiar.

    Regards,

    Richard

  • mCasualmCasual Posts: 4,323
    edited July 22

    since you program maybe you'd be a good candidate to model ( mechanical and furniture and architecture ) things in Daz Studio using https://sites.google.com/site/mcasualsdazscripts3/mcjbuildera

    i built most of my mcjNewCastle prop using that and also re_UVing scripts like mcjPlanarUVs 

    to add morphs i have many scripts like mcjAddStretchMorph

    it's a bit like the Logo/Turtle language but it extrudes shapes and you can add end-caps

    and the (.obj) objects created automatically have usable UV mapping

     

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  • richardandtracyrichardandtracy Posts: 1,796

    That is quite a script. Must admit I had missed it up until now. I shall take a look. Thanks.

    Richard

  • Faeryl WomynFaeryl Womyn Posts: 2,121

    MCasual I just took a look at the webpage for that script and, once at the bottom, I have no idea what to download...lol Help please.

  • mCasualmCasual Posts: 4,323

    MCasual I just took a look at the webpage for that script and, once at the bottom, I have no idea what to download...lol Help please.

    The last version seems to be mcjBuilderA_Beta_9_0.zip There's a pdf but it's for version 6. the web page is the manual 2 or 3 pages long. Note that you have to type text to generate objects, it's not modeling with a mouse. you need to know the basics of programming because adding a blank space wherr it shouldnt be is enough to make it fail mcjRibbons is less powerful but much easier to learn and use
  • tsroemitsroemi Posts: 604

    richardandtracy said:

    nonesuch00 said:

    ...

    What I didn't realize is the Renderosity has so many more views than shareCG. I ought to upload those freebies there just to observe the difference of the math distributions (I kind of like math to, having got a degree in it after realizing I had only take an extra semester of classes to get the degree)  

    The download numbers from Rendo are amazing. I only put them up there because I have been a member for twenty one years now having seen a Poser 3 image advertising Renderosity in the UK's 'PCPlus' computer magazine. That was mind blowing. Many years ago (2004), I put up a texture for the Poser 4 Cat, to make it look a little more like my Avatar Cat Albert, but that disappeared a decade after dear old Albert died. I didn't have a DA or ShareCG account until last year. Must be a bit slow...

    Just have to jump in here, that is EXACTLY how I got started on 3d - with the free Poser 3 on the PCPlus magazine CD! I wonder how many others got hooked right there? It was sooooo hard to get that magazine in Berlin / Germany where I was living at the time as there was just that one store carrying it, at the central train station. I'd read about the free Poser version someplace else and then moved heaven and earth to get my copy. And it really was mindblowing, even with no 3d knowledge to start with. Still is, come to think of it. Thanks for sharing that little story!

    As for freebies, I used to be a (very humble) PA at Rendo and here for a while many years ago, and before and alongside that, I also made some freebies. I think I started with textures not poses as I already had some Photoshop skills, also seamless patterns and such things. Then came poses if I remember correctly, and from a set of proper ballet poses for V3 (well, as proper as it was possible to do back then), my first Rendo product developed, a ballet set with poses and realistic (kind of ...) pointe shoes. I always kept up making freebies though, and also liked to include little extra somethings in the paid products. Really enjoyed that, seeing people actually wanting the stuff I made. I don't use freebies myself as much anymore these days, but I relied on them heavily back then, not having much money. They can be a real god's end, so thanks to everyone who keeps that up!

  • richardandtracyrichardandtracy Posts: 1,796
    edited 9:44AM

    Now that is remarkable, because that is just how I started..

    I was actually referring to above was how I saw an advert for Renderosity illustrated with this June 1999 image by Voodoo: https://www.renderosity.com/rr/mod/gallery/morning-swim/1098/ (Contains tasteful nudity [from just below waist upwards & long hair covering much of the chest] which is why it's a link rather than a display of the image) in the magazine, but later I did get my first taste, as you did, of Poser 3 as a freebie on the front of PCPlus magazine. Saved up for almost a year to get Poser 4 and I did play about with Posette for a while (probably 3-4 months) before getting V3 and being hugely impressed with the extra realism! In fact, with a careful choice of poses and playing with the shaders of V3 & V3 derived characters, they can still look very good ( here's a V3 character with 2x G8F characters : https://www.daz3d.com/forums/uploads/FileUpload/08/20c66fa575e224521ab59aaafbdee4.png). The use of V4 with early versions of DS (I have DS0.7.xx still on a CD I burnt) ended up overwhelming my PC of the time so I gave up until I could get a better PC. That meant a longer than expected  stop from 2007 to 2019!

    It's interesting to hear that you turned into a PA for a while. It has crossed my mind briefly a couple of times, but I feel I owe a return on the generosity of others. Also, I do feel I want to keep this as a hobby. I love making pens, and that got a bit out of hand after I sold a few. I suppose I have now made close on to 300 (and at 3 hours a pen, that's quite a lot of time), but orders & deadlines started to put me under pressure and I ended up having to wind it back to keep enjoying what I was doing. This is typical of what I was doing:

    Anyway, keep enjoying yourself

    Regards,

    Richard

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