Wednesday, June 30, 2010

3D drama ... and Vue: the interface from heaven




3D action drama -- "now for something completely different!" -- and some landscapes. And these are very different indeed! I've been getting a bit exasperated with Bryce lately. It's the interface from hell. Literally. And I decided to take something else for a spin...

Vue is a program I've been aware of for a while. I knew Version 8 was out ... I didn't know they're already up to 8.5, and I only recently learned that you can now get Version 7 as a legal free download (get that, folks, LEGAL, not a torrent of dubious origins that's probably loaded with viruses). So I just had to take it for a spin, as I said.

It's the interface from heaven.

I'm not saying there's anything in an way amazing about my first tentative renders:




...but consider this. I got these images in about ten minutes flat, including installing the program and seeing the interface for the first time!! That's the part that blows you away. Right now, I don't even have the proper render engine for it. Vue is different in everything they do. They don't make their current "core" program a free download (DAZ does). In fact, if you're not careful you can still pay $199 for Vue 7, from Amazon sellers, when you can get it free from the publisher. However, as soon as a version goes obsolete the do give away the core. But the program expands itself in modules for about fifty bucks each; and the first module you need is (!) the render engine, to give you higher-rez renders without the damned company logo.

And it's not just long distance landscapes that Vue is all about. You can fly the camera into the heart of the forest and zoom in for a super closeup on the bee sitting on the flower, while the squirrels frolic in the tree behind.

It's a whole 'nother interface to learn, but by comparison with Bryce, Vue is child's play. And not only that, it has POWER you don't believe. Turns out, Version 6 was used to do some of the work in movies like Pirates of the Caribbean 2, Terminator 4 and Australia. Half the time, I just don't believe what I'm seeing.

I gotta learn the interface and controls, so that I can get out of "wide angle shot of the whole world" mode, and get into the forest glades full of ferns and trees. It's going to be fun! Also, must buy the render engine, which is something called RenderUp, and get rid of that damned logo.

So, let this post mark the beginning of something new: my relationship with Vue 7, also known as Digital Nature.

Jade, 30 June
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