Free Learning.


Don’t Houdini still have the apprentice scheme? Thanks for the heads up, we are only including free apps and open source. Thanks though.


Yes, they have both. The starving artist edition just removes the watermarks and allows to render at higher resolution.


Nope, my students are members of the education program. Checked yesterday, student versions are full versions of the software, no watermarks, no resolution restrictions. That is ALL the autodesk software. Motion builder, mudbox, Max, Maya and many more.

Student versions are not free software however. You can’t produce commercial work with them.


For those who are self educating, do they need some academic proof to buy these non watermarked student packages from Autodesk?

Big list of freeware apps but how easy it is to get a job with only freeware experience? Blender is great but how many studios actually use it much? Most job ads i’ve found in this forum has commercial app requirements like Max and Maya.


Those who are self educating cannot get the edu version of the software. Our college bought something like 30 licenses so our students can use their student email adres for download specifics.

It’s not easy to get a job period. Showing you are proficient in making 3d assets/art to meet commercial requirements is more important than the application you use. Leaning 3d is harder than learning an app. Even so, if you were really worried about this aspect the price of software is peanuts compared to a salary. It would be a small investment compared to the outcome. Unlike the cost of commercial schooling which can often be far greater than a salary over a lifetime if loans were to be payed back via savings.

Hope this helps.


Thanks for the interesting tips and a large database of free software. Currently I’m learning to use Blender. I hope that someday I’ll work as a graphic designer, it’s my first step to fulfill my dream …:wink:


Thanks Kanga.

I’m probably going to apply to some free 3D school in my country. It would make things much easier. I could get financial aid for the studies, the edu versions of the software and wouldnt have to waste so much time and energy in odd jobs while studying. Plus of course the support from the school. Tho, in my country there aren’t many school options to choose from and the courses probably aren’t the same quality as in those expencive US schools, but still better than nothing.

Didnt know hdrshop had free version. That really is a missing piece. I’m currently looking into making some decent sky domes for IBL purposes.

Vue Pioneer would be usefull aswell. Looks like it’s 9.0 pioneer and 8.5 PLE now that are free.


I miss the days before Kaydara got gobbled up by the little company eater, Autodesk… back then there was a freelancer version of Motionbuilder that cost 100 bucks or so. Now that Autodesk owns it, it’s usually around 5k at most resellers.


GoodAsNew, glad you found it useful guys!

jeffthomann, yeah MB is kick ass. It will pay for itself after a couple of good jobs, but you have to get those jobs first :slight_smile: damn.



I don’t know if anybody’s already posted about it, but Wikipedia has an amazing link that has side-by-side comparisons of dozens of different raster graphics editors. It includes freeware, shows what operating systems are supported, file support, basic features, and some other stuff. Anybody new who wants to download a free alternative to Photoshop should check it out! :slight_smile:


Thanks Cathy, added!


Looks like the link that I gave isn’t showing up on your main post. :x

It’s because I just copy/pasted it from my address bar and the url’s too long…I’ll put it through tinyurl:


Yeah I tested the link to see it was what you said it was, it was. Should be fixed now though. Thanks for the tiny although the original wasn’t that long. Will keep an eye on it.


This was a priceless post from the standpoint of someone just starting out like myself… I particularly liked the part about forging ahead even though others will think your work is horrid. Great advice, thank your for taking the time to make such an informative post.


Hey Chris, pleased to hear you found the post useful!



I found a list of free trials and software for 2d and 3d animation. :slight_smile:


Thanks Cathy!
Much of the stuff we have links to but not the trials. However quite a job to sort through them all so I will leave your link here for folks to find.

Thanks again.


From the “Learning” post I tried to download Pencil.
I have a bunch of stuff from that effort. 10 Files. Two tries and I have two Pencil files.
But cannot open the “Pencil” file.

Where is the “Operator Lead Through” for the “Software Challenged” old farts?
The page is full of info, but no instructions.
What to do next?

This reminds me of a Cop or Teacher trying to get some information or response from a Sullen student.


From the website I saw the application is from 2008. Google pencil install problems brings these posts up. I would look for an alternative and if I dont hear from you that it works I will withdraw it from the list.

Oh dear, so this has been my third late night trying to install synfig! Is there something I’m missing? I mean, am I SUPPOSED to download all these different things before I can use it or is there one giant .EXE which I can just download and run. At least on this attempt they had instructions on how to install it, but I got a third of the way through, and they started explaining it like I know exactly what they’re talking about. I’m an Animator, not a computer technician! Did you have any problems putting it together Will? I’m annoyed I spent a part of my night installing god knows what, just to get lost in a river of computer babble.

Not all free software is user friendly at the install stage I agree. Mostly though you can get it running with a bit of research, … not always though.

GL. man


RE: Pencil,
I tried to download it again and got the same blank stare.

When I click on the little Pencil Icon, I get an err message:
“The Program can’t start because < mingwm10.dll> is missing from your computer. Try reinstalling the program to fix this problem.”

I have Win-7 (Dell Inispiron) and don’t know where to go from here.