Blender Master Class
A Hands-On Guide to Modeling, Sculpting, Materials, and Rendering
Publisher: No Starch Press
Released: February 2013
Pages: 288

Blender is a powerful and free 3D graphics tool used by artists and designers worldwide. But even experienced designers can find it challenging to turn an idea into a polished piece.

For those who have struggled to create professional quality projects in Blender, author Ben Simonds offers this peek inside his studio. You'll learn how to create 3D models as you explore the creative process that he uses to model three example projects: a muscular bat creature, a futuristic robotic spider, and ancient temple ruins. Along the way, you'll master the Blender interface and learn how to create and refine your own models.

You'll also learn how to:

  • Work with reference and concept art in Blender and GIMP to make starting projects easier
  • Block in models with simple geometry and build up more complex forms
  • Use Blender's powerful sculpting brushes to create detailed organic models
  • Paint textures with Blender and GIMP and map them onto your 3D artwork
  • Design textures in GIMP and map them onto your 3D artwork
  • Light, render, and composite your models to create striking images
Each chapter walks you through a piece of the modeling process and offers detailed explanations of the tools and concepts used. Filled with full-color artwork and real-world tips, Blender Master Class gives you the foundation you need to create your own stunning masterpieces.

Supplementary download includes files for each project in the book, as well as extra textures, brushes, and other resources.

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oreillyBlender Master Class
 
4.5

(based on 4 reviews)

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100%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Well-written (4)
  • Accurate (3)
  • Helpful examples (3)

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Novice (3)
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      • Developer (3)

    Reviewed by 4 customers

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    5.0

    Absolutely great!

    By NSlone

    from Ravenna, KY

    About Me Designer, Developer, Sys Admin

    Verified Reviewer

    Pros

    • Accurate
    • Concise
    • Easy to understand
    • Helpful examples
    • Well-written

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Expert
      • Intermediate
      • Novice
      • Student

      Comments about oreilly Blender Master Class:

      This book is a real pleasure to read, and it walks you through the various programs and explains how to use them. I've always been interested in 3D as well as animation, but wasn't sure which programs were the best to use. Now I know, thanks to this book!
      Chapter by chapter you are led though making three projects, from beginning to fleshing them out. Following his examples, one may expand on the themes and make their own 3D creations.
      From there, the sky's the limit. I went to the Gimp website, downloaded and installed it. I also went to the Blender website and downloaded it, after which I installed it and I had no problem with either program. I actually opened up Blender and played around with it a little bit. I have a grandson who is interested in 3D and gave him the links for Gimp and Blender. We are going to create 3D scenes and creatures and give each other feedback to see how we are doing.
      In the event that Blender Master Class piques your interest in 3D creation, whether it's creatures, scenes, movies or games, you can go further with this as there is more than ample documentation for Blender as well as Gimp. There are tutorials as well. Both programs have forums or communities I believe.
      Bottom line is that I would recommend this book to anyone.

       
      4.0

      Great for Learning Blender

      By hfb

      from Nashua, NH

      About Me Engineer

      Verified Reviewer

      Pros

      • Accurate
      • Helpful examples
      • Well-written

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Novice

        Comments about oreilly Blender Master Class:

        I picked up this book because I still need to learn some CAD modeling for the 3D printer I just purchased. My free options were OpenSCAD, Blender, or Google/Trimble SketchUp. I know Blender is the most powerful of the bunch so I decided on giving it a try.
        The book does a really good job in explaining some basics of how everything is set up on the GUI. It's similar to Photoshop in some ways, which can be useful if you use Photoshop. I haven't so it was nice to have all the explanations in the book.
        It also goes through a quick run through of GIMP as that will be useful for fully utilizing Blender.
        The rest of the book was pretty good but I ended up quitting half way through as it's better suited for modeling life like models instead of doing models you would normally 3D print. You can definitely print things you come up with in Blender but for my purposes 99% of the time, I wouldn't need something as powerful as Blender. If you want to do animation or life like modeling, Blender is perfect. If you want to do architecture, SketchUp is great. If you want to do basic parametric modeling, OpenSCAD works well.
        This book, as far as I made it, did a great job taking you step-by-step through how to make a few different models. The images used were very helpful to know how the modeling works.
        Overall, I would recommend this book for those doing life like models or animation. If you're looking for something more like engineering models, you'll be better served using something else.

        Disclaimer: This book was received as part of the O'Reilly Blogger Review Program. All comments represent my thoughts and opinions.

         
        4.0

        Blender — good to know

        By Przemysław

        from Kraków

        About Me Developer

        Verified Reviewer

        Pros

        • Accurate
        • Concise
        • Well-written

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Expert
          • Intermediate

          Comments about oreilly Blender Master Class:

          Recently I started 3D animation course at my university and I started learning how to use Blender. I decided to take a look into Blender Master Class book.

          After introductions to Blender and GIMP authors covers consecutive steps how to create "The Projects" from a scratch. Author presents and develop three projects through the book: The Bat Creature, The Spider Bot and The Jungle Temple.

          Blender Master Class was hard for me to follow because of many "manual" things to do. For things like 3D modelling, screencasts seems to be more approachable.

          I treat that book as a really good Blender reference and documentation. I learn a lot about possibilities of Blender (e.g. sculpting, hair and particle system, lighting, texturing, materials and so on).

          If you are new to Blender, maybe take a look at some screencasts first.

          (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          Fantastic book for people new to Blender

          By Christa Avampato

          from New York, NY

          About Me Designer, Developer, Educator, Maker

          Verified Reviewer

          Pros

          • Easy to understand
          • Helpful examples
          • Well-written

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Novice
            • Student

            Comments about oreilly Blender Master Class:

            Design skills are quickly becoming a part of the necessary knowledge base of professionals in a wide variety of fields. Plenty of courses, online and off, free and fee-based, are cropping up to demystify the process of design. Open source design software is also paving the way to help us evolve from media consumers into media creators.

            If 3D design is on your wish list of skills, you're in luck. Blender is an incredibly popular open source 3D design suite with a massive user community. No Starch Press has just published the book Blender Master Class by author and professional 3D artist Ben Simonds. The book guides you step-by-step through 3 intricate projects by teaching you modeling, sculpting, materials, and rendering skills. The book also explains how Blender interfaces with GIMP, an open source graphic design program, and includes a DVD with all of the relevant files for the projects described in the book.

            Simonds makes Blender, a sophisticated program, approachable by breaking down its basic features one by one. Blender is used by many artists for animation, simulation, and game design. However, these features are not covered in this book. Simonds focused his efforts on the niche that needed to be filled – helping new Blender users understand the basics of creating still images.

            With this book you can quickly get started on the task of getting those 3D designs out of your imagination and into the world. While Blender can feel overwhelming at first because of all of its bells and whistles, you'll have Simonds with you on every step of the journey as a guide and supporter.

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