I have around seven years of experience with Cinema 4D, and four with 3DS Max. I’d say I know them both pretty well, but I’m just getting started in Maya. To help me out, I’ve purchased a couple books – both of which look promising. The first is Learning Autodesk Maya 2008, and the second is Advanced Maya Texturing and Lighting – both of which are published through Autodesk Maya Press. I’m about 200 pages into the first book, and I have yet to seriously crack the pages of the second.
Overall, my initial impressions of Maya are mixed. There are a few parts to the application I like, and a lot that I do not like. The modeling workflow is extremely frustrating to me. I find the way they have handled subdivision proxy and sub-d modeling to be somewhat awkward. I especially do not like my base cage in sub-d only showing as wireframe. I want it to be like Max, where I can quickly toggle between smoothed and unsmoothed geometry. Also, creating symmetrical models has a bit too many steps for my liking. I do like the symmetrical options on some of the tools, though. That makes me happy. Hopefully, Cinema 4D will implement a tool like that soon,
In the meantime, I’m diverging from the books a bit to try some of my own models. The first is a replication of my razor – a Gillette Mach3. I’m doing this via polygonal modeling with subdivide proxy. Here are some screengrabs of the WIP base mesh. These are just the beginning stages of the modeling process.