Let’s get straight to the answer, and to be clear, this is purely based on my opinion.
Short answer, the Blender tool for 3D modelling & rendering is beginner friendly (or at least as much as any 3D tool can be), but maybe not in the way that you think!
Any 3D package will require a relatively high learning curve. However, there are other factors to consider over and above how to “use” the software. For example, the individual will also require an understand of 3D space to know instinctively how to get started with the modelling process and what features to use and in what order.
In short, it is not only about how easy the user interface is, but whether the user has an understand of 3D space… and that’s not down to the software, that’s dependant on you!
However, Blender is Open Source and completely free to download and use. It’s fully integrated with features that are comparable (and in some cases better) to industry standard equivalents. In my personal opinion if you are a beginner, you are going to struggle what every tool you use.
So why not get familiar with a free tool to see how you “feel” about it, and as you get better at modelling, texturing and rendering you can asses whether you want to move onto other tools and whether to cost is worth it. Consequently, if 3D modelling is not for you, then you’ve lost nothing but a bit of time.
What Others Say About Blender As A Starter Tool
I understand the above is very much based on opinion, so I thought it would be interesting to see what others said about Blender and whether it is a beginner friendly package.
Here we look at a reddit threat (r/blender) started by rushingtonpost on this very subject, let’s see how people respond.
The first responder states that even though they only have used it for 1.5 months and that the tool does have an initial high learning curve, it is completely doable for complete beginners to learn and use Blender.
They then recommend watching Youtube videos by Blender Guru (formed by Andrew Price) mentioning the order of two specific videos that should be followed to improve the rate of Blender learning.
And finally, it’s recommended not to get overwhelmed and that learning the program does take time, but is very possible.
The second person to respond makes a good point, and one that I’ve already touched on and agree with.
The advice given is that it does not matter which package is chosen. They all require a learning curve and that patience is paramount to succeeding! Start working on tutorials at least as a starting point and wait until you are comfortable with the basics before trying to experiment.
I think what is being said, if you are to experiment with the tool too soon, you are likely going to waste valuable time on learning. So learn the basics through the help of tutorials first and then experiment away.
This next piece of advice really hits home. I remember when I was working on my own projects and a great deal of time was spent on them. Some of them came out decently for a beginner, but you could tell they were not quite right.
I ended up holding on to them, as subconsciously did not want to let go of them because of the time spent on them. As a result, I was too scared to improve the existing model in case I messed up, and feared starting again because of the time it took.
Ultimately, this resulted in being in limbo and seriously stunted progress… it is amazing what the subconscious mind can do… do not get too attached with projects that you know haven’t been successful!
Author’s Final Thoughts
Really, this is a no brainer, Blender is a free tool.
If you feel you might be interested in 3D but are not sure, then why not download it and give it a whirl.
As already stated, any beginner will find 3D modelling hard to start with, it really depends on whether you are prepared to sacrifice your time to learn!?
Essentially, if you struggle with Blender, you will likely struggle with other 3D packages too!
You’ve got nothing to lose, it’s FREE!