Blender 3D Basics: A Friendly Helping Hand for Blender Beginners

Learning Blender3D from a bookCan you learn Blender from a book? Should you even try? Actually, yes. If it wasn’t for a book – Blender 3D Basics by Gordon C. Fisher, to be precise — I might never have crossed the line that divides Blender users and, well, everyone else.

It wasn’t my first attempt. I first tried Blender years ago. Apparently I’m in good company there, or so the statistics say. It turns out most of us have a couple of false starts. Put that down in most cases to the learning curve.

Yes, it starts out steep. As you try to haul yourself up by your fingernails, only to slide down again, you can be forgiven for thinking it’s an impossible feat. Happily, the terrain … Continue reading

David 5: Take Him Home or Leave Him on the Shelf?

D5 Portrait in DAZ StudioI know, it’s not much of a riddle. I’m pretty certain you can guess the answer, so I’ll just come out and say it: I think David 5 is the best male figure in the DAZ Original family.

I say this even though Michael 6 was recently released, taking his place beside Victoria on the 3D throne. It’s a long and successful partnership, and I can’t imagine Mike has ever felt all that threatened by the appearance of other male characters. He knows he’s a hot ticket.

Yet David has an appeal of his own. A totally different character from Michael, and still relatively new, he brings a touch of realism to your runtime.

Who is David 5

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30 Books About Somebody’s Daughter

happy smile girl portrait Postcard
Like many of you, I’m a real book addict. Now the Kindle summer sale is on, I’ve been spending even more time than usual looking for good reads. If I’m not on Amazon or other book sites, I’m scanning the bookshelves out in the real world.

The long and short of it is that I pay a lot of attention to books. As a result, I’ve become fascinated with trends in book titles and cover art.

Lately, one trend that I can’t seem to escape is that of novels written about Somebody’s daughter. Replace ‘somebody’ with a profession of your choice. At first I was irritated each time I came across (insert groan) another one. I don’t know, it just seemed unimaginative, a too-easy option for an otherwise capable writer. Some of them prize-winning or best-selling authors. It smacked of jumping on the bandwagon, … Continue reading

Architectual Origami: Create Your Own Golden Pavilion

Architectural Origami: PavilionA couple of weeks ago I shared some fairly traditional Japanese origami, with a feminine twist, when I tried my hand at making origami dresses. I’m back today with a different kind of origami: architectural origami.

This is a craft for people with steady hands and lots of patience. If you want quick results, this would be a good time to make an exit. If, on the other hand, you’ll spend happily hours cutting and folding, you might just have found yourself an intriguing new hobby.

The book that started it all for me was Architectural Origami: Create Models of the World’s Great Buildings by Ingrid Siliakus, Maria Garrido Bianchini and Joyce Aysta. (It’s currently only available via 3rd parties on, … Continue reading

How a Gnome Named Wilbur Stole My Heart (The Book of Unwritten Tales)

Book of Shadows Binders The Book of Unwritten Tales was something of a secret treasure. This point-and-click adventure game came to my attention by accident, at a price that meant I had little to lose.

It turns out I’d have happily have paid full price for this enchanting adventure game — and still have considered it good value. It was like opening a humble wooden chest and finding it stacked with gold and sparkling gems.

The game takes place in a fantasy land, with a storyline that seems very familiar. An ordinary gnome is entrusted with a ring and sent on a mission, assisted by unlikely companions and shadowed by the minions of evil.

This light-hearted parallel is one of several the game draws with our favourite fantasy and adventure stories. Other adventure games borrow stealthily, trying to cover their tracks as they go. On the other … Continue reading

A Girl Called Stephanie: Meet S5

S5 Portrait in DAZ StudioFebruary 2014 saw the release of Stephanie 6. The new girl in town looks gorgeous, but is it a case of hello S6, bye bye S5? I don’t think so. Read on for why I still believe S5 is a must-have character for your runtime.

(This post has been fully updated for 2014)

Come and meet Stephanie 5, one of the most versatile and under-rated DAZ figures around.

A long, long time ago when I was very new to DAZ Studio (March 2013, to be precise), I bought my first character. The free Genesis Basic gals and guys only take you so far, and I was eager to get my paws on a more detailed set of morphs and texture. Unlike pretty … Continue reading

Inspiring Me Today: Catherine Anderson’s ‘The Creative Photographer’

What do you do with your photos once you’ve put them on your computer? Other than a little editing and tweaking the top few? With digital photography we’ve so much freedom to keep on shooting, but — if you’re anything like me — at the end of the day that leaves you with hundreds of unedited files.

Inspiring me today is someone who has all the creative photo ideas a photographer could wish for. Catherine Anderson is the author of a book called The Creative Photographer (Pixiq), where (just as the title suggests) her creativity comes together with her skill as a photographer. The resulting projects not only share the things of beauty that Catherine makes but inspires other photographers to do so too.

There are many excellent photography guides out there. I own a few. But The Creative Photographer manages … Continue reading