Bringing Maya referencing process to Blender linking (Tutorial)

January.06.2020 · Posted By - Allan

When we started doing 3d projects 16 yrs ago there are many hits and miss with our work pipeline and this is true specially that things are young and immature, we kinda toss and turn when choosing which will work best for a certain project. Our main software ever since was Maya for general tools and we rely heavily with this software from establishing assets to animation and cementing renders. There are challenges that we have learned to deal with and new tools emerged and injected it in our pipeline, I got my hands on the very early version of Modo which I got hooked. The tool was very good and got my modeling skills to the top as it was easy to learn and as soon as I discovered the benefit of using it we quickly put them in our pipeline for project use and we were very successful of integrating both.Screen Shot 2020-01-06 at 1.32.27 PMScreen Shot 2020-01-06 at 1.20.49 PM

Years passed and after many thousands of dollars investing in to maintain our licenses we got to the point where we wanted to rethink our business strategy, not just Autodesk that is spiking its prices but many are also joining the “Hollywood Brand” elite price range. I don’t know how small businesses are surviving the ever rising prices but I can assume it is a bit of a pain to afford, we belong to a project based budget company and keeping these softwares are really hard to keep specially if things gets idled. But of course there are subscription base that gives the flexibility when dollars are tight.

10 yrs ago Blender was in our sight and it was very tempting since it is free and very capable, we thought this could be a game changer and that could trim company expenses but almost non from the team are eager to learn, its like the feeling of you were given an abacus where calculator is already at your desk. The UI was horrendous and keyboard + mouse shortcuts was far from the industry standard, we felt learning it will put us inside the cave for many months before we are confident that we can transition from our Hollywood tools, not to mention the documentation was almost non existence so the idea was shelved but it was not forgotten.

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Fast forward and Blender had evolved, I had the time to sit and learn to transition and I am surprised how easy it is to learn, I managed to port all my skills from using Maya and Modo very quickly and the transition was smooth. One challenge though is that we rely heavily on Maya referencing and I had to find a way how I can do the same in Blender so I can tell the whole team that Blender is ripe and that we can rely on it. I looked for any tutorials online but no luck, well maybe there are but it is not very well documented so I thought I’d  create one.

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The link below is a complete tutorial for how you can apply Maya referencing style in Blender and I hope this will help you understand the process.

 

 

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