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Old 04-01-2011, 09:07 PM   #1
Verinince
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Tony Zukas
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Exclamation My 3D Design College Sucks

I started in January, attending 2 classes a week for modeling and animation. At the beginning it seemed slow and artless. Before I was attending college I worked with 3DS Max for an entire year in my free time, I figured we'd get into some more fun projects, and we'd be learning from the professor, makes sense, right?


As time went on, it became increasingly apparent that our main source of study was from our 3DS Max Bible, and not from our professor. Normally, this would be okay, if he was avaliable more often to ask questions, and help us out. I decided to email him for help on a certain project. He helped me with it, and I asked him a couple more questions and he told me to read my 3DS Max bible. As this point, I became very disatisfied with the class, here I am trying to get my 800$ worth for the class, and he's telling me to read my book that I also bought with my own money. The book did not cost 800$, I bought it for 30$.

Most people go to college for a degree, my main focus is not for a degree, I'm going as a guest student, I came here to learn from a physical person, not from typed or written out texts. I'm sure everyone has ran into difficulties following an online tutorial and you just wish someone was around to help you. Truth is, things aren't ever simple, you gotta research whatever problem you're having, and sometimes fixing a problem takes a lot of work.

You may think I'm here to complain about having to do hard work, this is not the case. My complaint is with the way the class is run, and how my instructor teaches. Anyone who signed up for a class would tell me I should have learned about the class before signing up for it. Thing is, I attempted to talk to my professor weeks prior to me signing up, I needed to make sure I was getting what I wanted. In the end, I was running out of time and there weren't going to be any openings left. I no longer had time to waste, I signed up and here I am.

This is a terrible college for 3D Design, I signed up to reap the benefits of a college experience but it turns out, I could learn a whole lot better on my own. It's not just the fact that he doesn't want to help me, in many cases, he just doesn't know how. In a world based on a college requirement, I find the whole experience lacking. What I place the most value in is knowledge, I don't care about a degree, I'm there to learn. I worked so hard at this program, and I've been all over the place to get the knowledge I need. I'm sick of these little cat and mouse games, searching all over the web, and applying to colleges that don't know $hit about 3D film production. I'd have better luck kidnapping the special effects directors of Iron Man and Avatar, and forcing them to teach me professional 3D Design.

Alright, I can take a breath now. Anyways, my disapproval with this system is enough to make me crazy. I really need a good instructor, is there anybody out there?
 
Old 04-01-2011, 10:09 PM   #2
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If it's any consolation, you're not alone. The shitty 3D courses out there far, far outnumber the good ones. Incompetent and/or inexperienced instructors are one of the biggest reasons for this appallingly low level of education across the board.

Your options are to simply accept that you've unfortunately spent money on a crap course, but stick with it anyway, while teaching yourself as much as possible; or you could lodge a complaint with the school on the grounds of incompetent teaching.
 
Old 04-01-2011, 11:45 PM   #3
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FWIW, I used to run a 3D Studio (then MAX) user group. There was one guy that showed up every month asking completely clueless questions. Turns out, he taught 3D Studio classes...and GOT PAID FOR IT.

Don't waste your money taking software classes. Learn by doing. Get the software, come up with a project, and make it happen. Solving problems to reach a goal will teach you far more than a textbook regurgitation in some class.
 
Old 04-02-2011, 12:50 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wurger
FWIW, I used to run a 3D Studio (then MAX) user group. There was one guy that showed up every month asking completely clueless questions. Turns out, he taught 3D Studio classes...and GOT PAID FOR IT.

Don't waste your money taking software classes. Learn by doing. Get the software, come up with a project, and make it happen. Solving problems to reach a goal will teach you far more than a textbook regurgitation in some class.


Alright, thank you. You're right, for now I'll just have to stick with it. Maybe I'll find a better class later on.
 
Old 04-02-2011, 12:51 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leigh
If it's any consolation, you're not alone. The shitty 3D courses out there far, far outnumber the good ones. Incompetent and/or inexperienced instructors are one of the biggest reasons for this appallingly low level of education across the board.

Your options are to simply accept that you've unfortunately spent money on a crap course, but stick with it anyway, while teaching yourself as much as possible; or you could lodge a complaint with the school on the grounds of incompetent teaching.


I was thinking of complaining, things don't seem to be getting any better.
 
Old 04-04-2011, 07:27 PM   #6
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I'm in the same kinda boat, but i'm on a 2 year Games Art uni course(can be topped up to 3),the first year was extremely slow and didn't learn much in the way of 3D/Art Development ,and have projects focussed mostly on game theory,storyline writing etc, Been an Art course, i thought and was told that it would be 90% art based, which is hasn't. Which is a shame because this causes my grades to go down in them areas compared to the art side.

I haven't started the 2nd year yet, as i had to take a gap year because of medical grounds,but in that time , Ive taught myself Zbrush,getting quite advanced in maya,Ive also got into compositing recently.

This was all from books,online videos etc,making my own "projects", i'm hoping to finish this course to the end and either get a good placement, or go to bournemouth and do their MA Digital Effects,if i can get the funding.

But I do think self learning is the best possible way to learn.Especially when the industry is more reliant on good show reels/portfolio rather than qualifications.
 
Old 04-05-2011, 01:40 PM   #7
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Unfortunately this is the situation with College period! Some professors are great, but most are bogus. It's a mixed bag= some who know what they're doing but could care less if you do, som who BS their way through it and few who are actually passionate about what they are doing and their work- think it's like this in most fields (it is in mine).

I completely agree with the post in regards to you need to teach yourself!!! If you ever want to be truly successful, satisfied and in a place you want to be then you're going to have to strive for it! I read an article about this boy with autism, he's young maybe 12 and he taught himself physics- he is schooling the best of the field and even challenging some of Einstein's work- this is an extreme example but prooves non-the-less that passion takes you further than listening to some bonehead drone on and on. Here is a link to an article about the kid- not the same one I read but similar.
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Old 04-05-2011, 02:52 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CKPinson
Unfortunately this is the situation with College period! Some professors are great, but most are bogus. It's a mixed bag= some who know what they're doing but could care less if you do, som who BS their way through it and few who are actually passionate about what they are doing and their work- think it's like this in most fields (it is in mine).

I completely agree with the post in regards to you need to teach yourself!!! If you ever want to be truly successful, satisfied and in a place you want to be then you're going to have to strive for it! I read an article about this boy with autism, he's young maybe 12 and he taught himself physics- he is schooling the best of the field and even challenging some of Einstein's work- this is an extreme example but prooves non-the-less that passion takes you further than listening to some bonehead drone on and on. Here is a link to an article about the kid- not the same one I read but similar.


Thanks for the reply. Yes, it is becoming more and more apparent that I'll have to self educate myself in the ways of 3D. I heard game design and film companies care more about real world experience anyway, which is good. I've gone through my second year of college, but saddly enough, pretty much everything I know is from the internet. I had professors who were so bad, they would openly not help you if you asked for it. College is a joke, professors even fail you if they don't agree with you, and if they don't like you. If you even try to bring this up to the board of directors, it's you against the college, good luck.
 
Old 04-05-2011, 03:07 PM   #9
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Self teachings the way to go


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FiARsQSlzDc
 
Old 04-05-2011, 03:19 PM   #10
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yeah totally, i'm glad im not the only one, i think my tutors are good, but i think the course is just badly designed,also are work is marked with are names on, so pupils that suck up to the teachers get higher grades,even if the work isn't as good as others.

But yeah going to stick with it and learn things on the side.But i do think my money could have better been spent..
 
Old 04-05-2011, 03:59 PM   #11
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Angry

I went through the very same thing. I spent about $4000+ for a 16 week accelerated 3ds max course and the teaching was awful. There where times when the instructor would suggest we search for an answer to a question on the internet? what exactly was I paying them for? I have learned so much just being on this site that I will never recommend my school to anyone.
 
Old 04-05-2011, 04:08 PM   #12
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Cool Same situation

I totally understand what you've been through, i've lived the same situation, for 1 year $ 17 000 and the teachers was good,but we had 2 teachers that went off and the administration was awful i've got very good "notes", but i'm not working yet in the game industry. Im still working at home on some projects to insert in my portfolio. Never give up mates never !
 
Old 04-05-2011, 06:10 PM   #13
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Tony Zukas
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Setha
yeah totally, i'm glad im not the only one, i think my tutors are good, but i think the course is just badly designed,also are work is marked with are names on, so pupils that suck up to the teachers get higher grades,even if the work isn't as good as others.

But yeah going to stick with it and learn things on the side.But i do think my money could have better been spent..


In my class, it's almost like I'm being harshly graded because I know how to use the program, and if my stuff isn't perfect, it's no good. For an environment and effects project, we were assigned a project that requires us to use three effects from the environment and effects parameters rollout. I did the project with a very nice rotating sphere with shifting sides, I had the material shift from chrome to glass, with Depth of Field and Motion Blur. I even rendered it out with Vray. Our class is only taught to use the default scaline render, and on average, my project's quality was very nice. He had me redo it because I used quality vray camera blur instead of the shitty filter effects to create my blur.

My my first modeling project ever, he had me downsize from this http://www.flickr.com/photos/60108153@N05/5492550811/ to this http://www.flickr.com/photos/60108153@N05/5592372383/ because I wasn't using scaline. On the instruction sheets, none of this was even listed, he just makes up rules as we go along.
 
Old 04-05-2011, 06:50 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Verinince
In my class, it's almost like I'm being harshly graded because I know how to use the program, and if my stuff isn't perfect, it's no good. For an environment and effects project, we were assigned a project that requires us to use three effects from the environment and effects parameters rollout. I did the project with a very nice rotating sphere with shifting sides, I had the material shift from chrome to glass, with Depth of Field and Motion Blur. I even rendered it out with Vray. Our class is only taught to use the default scaline render, and on average, my project's quality was very nice. He had me redo it because I used quality vray camera blur instead of the shitty filter effects to create my blur.

My my first modeling project ever, he had me downsize from this http://www.flickr.com/photos/60108153@N05/5492550811/ to this http://www.flickr.com/photos/60108153@N05/5592372383/ because I wasn't using scaline. On the instruction sheets, none of this was even listed, he just makes up rules as we go along.


Yup mines the same way, you ahve to do something by how the sheets say,for example one of our projects was to do a 3 sculpt of a classmates head,but we 'Had' to use mudbox,but i had already alot of experience in zbrush, but yeah was still told to do in mudbox, so ended up with an half assed sculpt, because i couldn't use the program of my choice.

I mean i can understand that they have to get everyone to use the same program/requirements to make marking equal, but if a person can do it better in another program/technique they should be allowed to.

Also i'm loving your android character!
 
Old 04-05-2011, 07:58 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Setha
Yup mines the same way, you ahve to do something by how the sheets say,for example one of our projects was to do a 3 sculpt of a classmates head,but we 'Had' to use mudbox,but i had already alot of experience in zbrush, but yeah was still told to do in mudbox, so ended up with an half assed sculpt, because i couldn't use the program of my choice.

I mean i can understand that they have to get everyone to use the same program/requirements to make marking equal, but if a person can do it better in another program/technique they should be allowed to.

Also i'm loving your android character!


I agree, good 3D Design is good 3D Design, it shoulden't be program specific. and thank you, I did not model the android, though, I ripped him from the AVP game and enhanced his materials and such and rendered him in Vray. I'm currently working on rigging him.
 
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