This is probably the most common question that I get in the industry. In all circles, its the one everyone wants to know. Well before I speak about that, I have a story about it.
In 2007, I attended Siggraph in San Diego. Its a huge animation trade show. There is a job fair and for the hell of it I thought Id take a few showreels and see what might happen. (Im still here but the story goes on).
My strengths are in ‘archvis’ : the 3D modeling of buildings and environments so I naturally gravitated to a firm that seemed to have that specialty as they had lots of pictures up.
The line was long, when I finally reached the recruiter for the studio, he simply took the reel out of its case and added it to a tall spindle of discs. I asked a few question of him, which he liked because the interview was clearly going differently than normal. He asked what software do I use, I replied Cinema 4D. He was shocked! Really! To do this kind a stuff? Well yes, So I answered “why? what software should have I said I use? He informed me that they were a 3DS Max studio. I then said, “I expected that, so I read the manual on the way over here.” “What?” “It was a long 12 hour flight…and then there was a train… so why not become prepared. He was awestruck. I explained that it was my process and I knew my software was in minority use (for Arch Vis and Film work) so I thought Id buy a book on another just to see what I might be missing out on.
Anyway, I could tell I left him with a memory, or even a story… either way, I never did get a call.
2 years later I attended a VizMasters conference in Boston on the other side of their country… I met some guys working for one of the top firms there, Neoscape. I wanted to do the whole “Were not worthy” skit but refrained as much as possible. They invited me over to their office for some drinks and a hangout so I went. It was a full house.. and I knew nobody really other than people I might have noticed from Magazine articles. Then a guy shouts out “No way! And a group invites me over “Its the Cinema 4D guy!” he says. Now I recognize him as the same artist recruiter from 2 years ago. He remembered me, but I really did not recognize him. LOL
You still using Cinema 4d? I answered, you know I really consider moving to 3DSMax but I read the book and to be honest I got more happy about Cinema… So yes Its rocking! He loved the comment, and all of a sudden many of the Neoscape guys started asking me questions and ranting over the minor grief they see daily in their software. It turned out that everyone loves and hates their software but they are all doing great work.
So, I have been a long standing veteran Form Z user and I still 3D model all of our CAD models and Architecture within it. I regularly stop and laugh out, “FormZ when your good, your awesome, when your not good, your really shit…” Its important to use each software for what its great at, but avoid the things it really lacks at.
We then do most of the work in Cinema 4D and render in Vray but my advertising work is usually rendered in cinema’s native renderer that keeps on getting better and faster each year.
EVERY job then passes though Aftereffects or Photoshop. We dont use Realflow, Max, Maya or houdini… not because we dont like to, but its about needing features that were missing. And today, were are content.
I welcome your comments, replies, even retorts, but Im looking forward to comments referring to strength of their software rather than weaknesses of others.