The Cinema 4D XL Handbook with CDROM (Graphic Series) Bk&CD-Rom Edition
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About the Author
- Item Weight : 2.15 pounds
- ISBN-13 : 978-1584500391
- Paperback : 546 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1584500395
- Dimensions : 9.18 x 7.46 x 1.34 inches
- Publisher : Charles River Media; Bk&CD-Rom edition (August 15, 2001)
- Language: : English
- Best Sellers Rank: #6,799,236 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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I agree somewhat with others' comments that the tutorials can be vague. And the screenshots, which look great on the CD-included PDF files (250 extra pages worth), look simply awful in the book. They are small, low-contrast, grey, and sometimes impossible to make out. This is the book publisher's fault, I'd guess, not the author's. Luckily, the author has included every single screenshot on the CD. Makes me think he was doing his best to make a bad situation better. Charles River Media could learn a lot from Peachpit's Quickstart Guides.
If you are new to 3D and/or C4D, I'd highly recommend this book. There is hardly any information available on the Internet about C4D...yet. But my guess is, this product is going to leave its competitors in the dust. Maxon has just released version 8, and it SMOKES. I think this is a product worth learning, and this book is the place to start. I hope Mr. Watkins does a revision for R8.
I am new to the 3d world but not in any way new to tutorials and technical writing. While the author clearly has a command of the program, I have to disagree with the other reviews that praise the tutorials.
The book is a valuable resource but leaves out much needed information for almost every tutorial I have gone through in the book [I am just about to end Chapter 10]. All of the figures and or diagrams meant to explain or supplement the text are in black and white and small. For example: the double knife cuts that he refers to for the car model tutorial all appear as single cuts in tiny b/w pics so unless one knows to look at the corresponding pics on the CD, one would never know where and which double knife cuts he is referring to. Therefore much of the needed details are lost in almost every picture. In order to use the pictures one must look at the pictures on the CD to see them in color and zoom in to see the settings of the dialog boxes or the cuts he is referring to.
Many of the files referenced in the book that should be on the CD are simply not although I think the publisher has some of the files ready to be downloaded from their site. I think the more recent books are supposed to have an updated cd. Some cases in point would be the automobile sketches, sketches of the character head and the chandelier in the lighting tutorial.
Very few of the tutorials when completed can possibly look like the book because the author [or the tutorial authors] constantly uses relative terms like "extrude these polygons inward towards the interior of the car three times, by just slivers each time" or as in the lighting chapter "...the Outer Distance should be very large". The tutorials would be much more useful if the parameters were to be fully explained but this does not happen. So not only does one not know how large is large and small is small, there are so many permutations and combinations of some of the parameters [many of which are not clearly spelled out] that unless one keeps a careful log of the trial and error needed to reproduce the look of the tutorial - it is sometimes impossible to know when you are learning how to use a particular tool or type of light.
The character head tutorial makes it a point to tell the reader how important it is to determine the least amount of essential subdivisions and how to do it - drawing vertical lines on the frontal sketch at certain key points. It gives a fairly good written description of how to do it. It then goes into how many lines to put and where to put them BUT FAILS TO PROVIDE A PHOTO TO SHOW YOU WHAT A PROPERLY SUBDIVIDED FACE LOOKS LIKE. Again,a photo depicting what was described in writing would go a long way to aiding the student in future projects but alas, one has to figure it out on their own, never really knowing and only hoping their interpretation of the description was a correct one.
The author sometimes assumes the reader's knowledge of photoshop. The top of page 247 is an effort to explain how to create a bump texture for a floor. "...The process show in Figure 8.19 is building a final bump map by, drawing over the color map, and then deleting the color layer." Figure 8.19 is three images of the floor. These images have no captions no descriptions and no photoshop palettes in view. Take a look at those three images and see if you can "divine" a process from them without knowing photoshop.
While I am not discounting the importance of user exploration and experimentation, these tutorials do not have enough information. The information that is missing prevents a smooth "flow" and neccesitates trial and error in the very midst of the tutorial. The constant "searching" for the meaning of "large", "thin" or "close" completely defeats the purpose of a tutorial.
Again, the book presents many good concepts that I would not have learned elsewhere or would take months to learn some other way [if at all]. The problem with the book is that the author did not recognize exactly what tutorials are for and therfore did not take the time to put the information needed for the reader to be able to go through them smoothly. I understand that exact values may not encourage experimentation but ranges would. NO VALUES LEAVE READERS CLUELESS AS TO WHERE TO START OFF AND WHERE TO END UP.
Buy the book and get what you can out of it but do not expect to be happy when going through the tutorials.