If you have been put off learning Blender because of the arcane user interface and myriad of invisible shortcut keys, it is probably time to reconsider learning Blender. If you learned Blender 2.49, you may be frustrated with 2.5. I know one of the challenges I’ve had shifting over to Blender 2.57 is figuring out where the tools are that I use in 2.4. The new 2.5 user interface in Blender has drastically changed. I think it is much easier to learn than 2.4. If you are looking for good, simple tutorials on 2.5 read on.
It seems most tutorials are about how to do something in Blender. How to use Blender, it’s user interface, is a byproduct of learning to build or texture something. The basic information needed to use Blender is skipped over and it is assumed you know or can find the commands needed.
Blender 2.5 handles many interface problems and makes many things easier to do. But, there is so much to learn and not all of it is intuitive. Much more of the user interface is in menus, but not everything.
Coming from other programs like 3DS or Maya creates another set of learning issues. Blender has settings to help ease the transition.
Good Basic Blender Video Tutorials
There is a set of 25 videos one can download over at 3DBuzz.com. These 25 deal with the new Blender user interface. Learning how the interface works is probably half the battle to learning how to model in 3D space.
The first set of Blender tutorials can be found here: Blender Fundamentals: First drop of videos
The second set (12-25) can be found here: Blender Fundamentals: Drop 2 is now ready
These are videos that one downloads and watches on their computer. They are all MP4 files that are zipped into RAR files and vary in size from 1.6mb to 15mb. To unzip a RAR file you can use ZipGenius, a free compression program for Windows. I have no idea why someone would try to compress an MP4 file, which is already a highly optimized compressed format.
These are well made videos. There is very very little stumbling around. A few mis-clicks here and there but mostly right on point. The narration is fast paced. As boring as learning an interface can be, there were only a couple of places I found boring. After years of using Blender I still found something I did not know in each video, even the one on (OMG) saving files. If you have ever closed Blender late at night and forgot to save… be sure to watch the video and learn how to recover.
These videos are well worth your time. Even if you have been using 2.5 for a time, check them out. I am glad I did.