Lately I've been fiddling around with 3D programs, because I was fed up with the programs I was using that crashed too often which caused a lot of effort to be lost. This is very frustrating so after having the usual crashes in trueSpace, I changed to Hexagon which crashed less often, but enough to annoy the crap out of me. After visiting some friends who I hadn't seen for 8 or 10 years (...) I suddenly remembered that I had the same program - Cinema 4D - that one company I used to work for planned to throw away because they couldn't get it to work. I never gave it much attention until recently.
C4D is actually quite nice; loads of options and not nearly as buggy as the other two applications mentioned above. In fact it has yet to crash... As with all 3D modelers / renderers the learning curve is rather steep, but it surely is worth ones while once the initial pains in the neck are left behind. Many 3D programs have similar functions, but their approach and nomenclature are different, as is the user-interface. Fortunately there's Youtube where there are a lot of useful tutorials that reduce the agony of having to figure out everything all by yourself.
Kudos to all those guys and girls out there who go through the trouble of putting together the tutorials. It is a lot cleaner than airbrushing (...) and the undo-functions are a great feature that is lacking in the analog trade. 3D programs also allow to fiddle with the shape, size and position of objects and lights while allowing to instantly change camera-angle, background, material textures and skies. Finally, besides stills these programs also make it possible to create animations which is whole different ballgame, but one that has enormous appeal (at least to me it does).
Of course, it is not the same - analog and digital art remain two entirely different things, but I'm not so obsessed with either of them to not be able to see the advantages each of them offers. So the above logo was integrated in a business card quite easily. The texture of the half spheres in the globe were easy to change by the way. After I found a better image of a world map and of a carbon fiber sheet, changing them was a piece of cake. The image of the rendered card is below.
C4D has more options than the other two 3D programs I used to work with which means there is more to learn, but also that its potential is greater. I will probably be busy familiarizing myself with this application a lot in the time to come. Below are two views from my first attempts to create car bodies; far from perfect, but remarkably better than I was able to model with the previous programs I used.
C4D hasn't yet crashed on me once, which is even more remarkable since I don't use functions in the proper way (yet) due to the fact that I'm still in the process of getting familiar with the application. It enables to actually apply several functions in a sequence without continuously saving the model in between to prevent loss of data. The structure was obviously made with the same discipline and logic that put the German car-industry on top of the bill. It looks like C4D is truly a magnificent program!