Well after years of working as a landscape architect and getting more and more into administration, I have decided to return to one of the many reasons I became and LA...graphics. To that end, I am just beginning to explore the software available and the direction it might take me in. I want to become proficient at sketchy and photorealistic rendering as well as animation (went to film school for a bit before the LA degree). I was refered to this site by Shari Smith at 3DATS. I had asked her a handful of questions that she suggested I ask on this site because 1) the person she was going to ask monitors this site and 2) other users could possibly benefit from the questions and answers.
These newbie questions were provoked by my finding the "One Project from Start to Finish" book.As I looked around the 3DATS website other questions followed. I show them all here and also will place them in their appropriate forums. I hope to soon be up to speed and contributing my creativity to the group. Thank you in advance for taking the time to answer my questions.
1) Since the "One Project" book was using some high end software, I was wondering if 3DATS ever found software like SketchUp useful during an stage of the visioning process.
2) Why was Vray chosen as the renderer over Mental Ray in the "One Project" book, when Mental Ray is included/part of 3ds Max?
3) Is a "One Project" book going to be done on architecture/site planning? A reviewer of the book pointed out that the One Project book started out that way, but the idea was scraped?
4)Does one need to go through the beginner/intermediate and intermediate/advanced 3ds Max architectural visualization books before tackling the One Project book if they have never used 3ds Max before?
5)Do you use or recommend using tablets (Wacom etc...) for input with 3ds Max, SketchUp , Mudbox, Photoshop etc...or do you get by fine with a three wheel mouse?