Introduction to Blender LiveLessons

Video Description

11+ Hours of Video Instruction

Introduction to Blender LiveLessons provides a comprehensive overview of Blender, the professional, free, open source software used to make 3D graphics and animation for animated films, visual effects, art interactive applications, and video games.


Blender Foundation Certified Trainer Oliver Villar starts from scratch, downloading and installing Blender. Then he jumps into the interface and basic controls. Learning how to create and manipulate objects is the next step before creating a simple scene to understand the workflow. After that, he goes a little deeper, explaining how to model your own creations and unwrapping and shading in both Blender Render and Cycles. An introduction to rigging and animation gives designers the ability to deform and animate their models. Finally, the rendering and compositing process is explained to show how to achieve the resulting image or video. The course aims to take beginners in a journey through the main basic Blender features to help them understand how 3D works.

The source code repository for this LiveLesson is at

About the Instructor

Oliver Villar is a Blender Foundation Certified Trainer, author of the book Learning Blender, and founder and instructor of After studying arts, he was really interested in 3D animation and visual effects. He is a self-taught 3D generalist, now with more than eight years of experience working on 3D as a freelancer, and since 2010 he’s been creating online tutorials and courses and also doing Blender workshops. He’s currently working as a Blender trainer for clients and as the codirector of Luke’s Escape, a short film entirely made in Blender.

Skill Level

  • Beginner

What You Will Learn

  • How to install and run Blender
  • How to use the interface and navigate in the 3D scene
  • How to create your first 3D scene
  • How to use Blender’s modeling tools
  • How to unwrap, add materials, and apply textures with Blender Render and Cycles
  • How to use rigging and basic animation tools
  • How to light and render
  • How to use the node editor for compositing and taking your render to the next level

Who Should Take This Course

  • Designers and artists interested in creating 3D still images or animations for marketing, design, or visual effects

Course Requirements

  • Understanding of using an OS, navigating through folders, and basic usage of a computer.
  • Having a keyboard and a mouse (preferably a keyboard with a numeric pad and a mouse with a middle mouse button).
  • Design and previous 3D knowledge helps, but the course starts from the beginning, so this is not mandatory.

Table of Contents

Lesson 1: Blender Basics

This lesson covers how to download and install Blender, use the main interface elements such as areas and editors, and configure Blender with your custom settings.

Lesson 2: 3D Navigation and Selections

Lesson 2 shows you how to navigate in your 3D scene, use navigation keyboard shortcuts, and configure the 3D View and object selections.

Lesson 3: Creating Your First Scene with Blender

In this lesson you learn the basic workflow to create your first 3D scene with Blender: creating and transforming objects; adding modifiers, materials, and lights; and rendering the final result.

Lesson 4: Advanced Object Manipulation

This lesson explains how to transform (move, rotate, and scale) objects using snapping options. It gives you an understanding of datablocks, duplicating and instancing objects, and using pivot points.

Lesson 5: Using Modifiers

Lesson 5 covers the process of adding modifiers to your objects, and you learn about the most-used modifiers and in which cases you can apply them.

Lesson 6: Modeling in Edit Mode

In this lesson, you see how to access the different interaction modes, and then you dive into the main modeling tools to create your own 3D meshes and adjust their shapes. Finally, there is a practical exercise to put those modeling tools to good use.

Lesson 7: Unwrapping and UVs

Before you can apply textures to a surface, you need to unwrap it and create its UV coordinates. In this lesson, you learn how to use the tools available to do this. You also see how to test those UVs and make sure they work right.

Lesson 8: Materials and Textures

This lesson covers the process of adding materials and textures to 3D objects in both Blender Render and Cycles.

Lesson 9: Introduction to Rigging

In this lesson, you learn about armatures and bones, parenting, and constraints. An armature made of bones is what allows you to create a rig that moves your complex objects in an efficient and comfortable way. Also, you see how to deform a mesh based on the bones’ movement, useful for posing organic models or characters.

Lesson 10: Introduction to Animation

After seeing what the different animation editors do, you learn how to set keyframes, add timing to an animation, use animation curves and interpolation, and mix or manage different animations using the NLA Editor.

Lesson 11: Rendering in Blender Render

This lesson shows you how to reach the final resulting image from your 3D scene through the rendering process in Blender Render. For that, you learn how to add lights and configure the render settings.

Lesson 12: Rendering in Cycles

Rendering in Cycles is similar to Blender Render, but there are some substantial changes, and that’s why in this lesson you learn about the rendering process and settings for Cycles.

Lesson 13: Introduction to Compositing

In this lesson, you learn how to use the Node Editor for compositing. Using nodes, you add the final touches to your render. Things such as color correction, mixing different render layers, and adding effects like a vignette are all possible during nodes compositing, before exporting the final output.

About LiveLessons Video Training

The LiveLessons Video Training series publishes hundreds of hands-on, expert-led video tutorials covering a wide selection of technology topics designed to teach you the skills you need to succeed. This professional and personal technology video series features world-leading author instructors published by your trusted technology brands: Addison-Wesley, Cisco Press, IBM Press, Pearson IT Certification, Prentice Hall, Sams, and Que. Topics include: IT Certification, Programming, Web Development, Mobile Development, Home and Office Technologies, Business and Management, and more. View all LiveLessons on InformIT at:

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
    1. Introduction to Blender LiveLessons: Introduction 00:05:29
  2. Lesson 1: Blender Basics
    1. Learning Objectives 00:01:36
    2. 1.1 Download Blender 00:05:53
    3. 1.2 Install Blender 00:06:29
    4. 1.3 Understand Blender's interface elements 00:15:01
    5. 1.4 Understand Areas 00:10:47
    6. 1.5 Understand Editors 00:26:54
    7. 1.6 Manage Workspaces 00:03:53
    8. 1.7 Configure Blender 00:19:44
  3. Lesson 2: 3D Navigation and Selections
    1. Learning Objectives 00:01:10
    2. 2.1 Use the keyboard and mouse 00:02:32
    3. 2.2 Pan, Orbit, and Zoom 00:02:01
    4. 2.3 Use navigation keyboard shortcuts and options 00:10:24
    5. 2.4 Configure the 3D View 00:26:13
    6. 2.5 Select objects 00:11:39
  4. Lesson 3: Creating Your First Scene with Blender
    1. Learning Objectives 00:01:56
    2. 3.1 Understand the 3D Cursor 00:09:18
    3. 3.2 Create objects 00:06:17
    4. 3.3 Transform objects 00:04:40
    5. 3.4 Add modifiers 00:05:27
    6. 3.5 Add basic materials with Blender Render 00:09:29
    7. 3.6 Add basic materials with Cycles 00:08:45
    8. 3.7 Light the scene with Blender Render 00:07:10
    9. 3.8 Light the scene with Cycles 00:04:54
    10. 3.9 Understand drawing options in the 3D View 00:03:39
    11. 3.10 Render the scene with Blender Render 00:06:40
    12. 3.11 Render the scene with Cycles 00:08:27
    13. 3.12 Save the render result 00:03:04
  5. Lesson 4: Advanced Object Manipulation
    1. Learning Objectives 00:01:05
    2. 4.1 Transform objects with keyboard shortcuts 00:10:18
    3. 4.2 Use snapping options 00:09:58
    4. 4.3 Understand datablocks 00:15:08
    5. 4.4 Duplicate objects 00:03:35
    6. 4.5 Use linked duplicates (instances) 00:06:13
    7. 4.6 Use pivot points 00:03:23
    8. 4.7 Modify objects' origins 00:03:40
  6. Lesson 5: Using Modifiers
    1. Learning Objectives 00:00:47
    2. 5.1 Add modifiers 00:07:29
    3. 5.2 Know the most used modifiers 00:20:57
    4. 5.3 Apply modifiers 00:06:32
  7. Lesson 6: Modeling in Edit Mode
    1. Learning Objectives 00:00:53
    2. 6.1 Switch interaction modes 00:08:37
    3. 6.2 Understand vertices, edges, and faces 00:08:44
    4. 6.3 Select elements 00:22:32
    5. 6.4 Use main modeling tools 00:33:18
    6. 6.5 Modeling practice 00:28:33
  8. Lesson 7: Unwrapping and UVs
    1. Learning Objectives 00:00:53
    2. 7.1 Understand UVs 00:05:14
    3. 7.2 Project basic UVs 00:19:33
    4. 7.3 Understand advanced unwrapping 00:22:34
    5. 7.4 Test UVs 00:25:01
  9. Lesson 8: Materials and Textures
    1. Learning Objectives 00:00:57
    2. 8.1 Understand materials in Blender Render 00:13:32
    3. 8.2 Understand materials in Cycles 00:10:38
    4. 8.3 Understand node materials in Cycles 00:10:17
    5. 8.4 Use textures in Blender Render 00:16:30
    6. 8.5 Use textures in Cycles 00:11:37
    7. 8.6 Use additional material options 00:08:10
  10. Lesson 9: Introduction to Rigging
    1. Learning Objectives 00:01:03
    2. 9.1 Create an Armature 00:06:09
    3. 9.2 Manipulate bones 00:06:52
    4. 9.3 Use parenting and constraints 00:15:02
    5. 9.4 Create a rig 00:20:55
    6. 9.5 Deform meshes 00:14:30
    7. 9.6 Use Drivers 00:13:11
  11. Lesson 10: Introduction to Animation
    1. Learning Objectives 00:01:12
    2. 10.1 Understand animation Editors 00:06:16
    3. 10.2 Set keyframes 00:07:19
    4. 10.3 Add timing to the animation 00:06:27
    5. 10.4 Understand animation curves 00:08:50
    6. 10.5 Use actions and the NLA Editor 00:11:46
  12. Lesson 11: Rendering in Blender Render
    1. Learning Objectives 00:00:54
    2. 11.1 Add lights 00:07:22
    3. 11.2 Configure the render 00:05:37
    4. 11.3 Set output 00:04:09
    5. 11.4 Launch the render 00:05:28
  13. Lesson 12: Rendering in Cycles
    1. Learning Objectives 00:00:52
    2. 12.1 Add lights 00:05:42
    3. 12.2 Configure the render 00:06:19
    4. 12.3 Launch the render 00:11:40
  14. Lesson 13: Introduction to Compositing
    1. Learning Objectives 00:01:01
    2. 13.1 Understand nodes 00:06:55
    3. 13.2 Understand Mix and Alpha Over nodes 00:07:28
    4. 13.3 Use color correction nodes 00:07:31
    5. 13.4 Use Render Layers 00:09:00
    6. 13.5 Finish the composite 00:13:22
  15. Summary
    1. Introduction to Blender LiveLessons: Summary 00:04:13

Product Information

  • Title: Introduction to Blender LiveLessons
  • Author(s):
  • Release date: May 2015
  • Publisher(s): Addison-Wesley Professional
  • ISBN: 0134191013