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USEFUL VIDEOS FOR GETTING STARTED WITH LIGHTWAVE 2020

lightwave

LIGHTWAVE 3D

LightWave is a 3D program that makes it possible to create anything you can imagine. And while it is not open source, it is open architecture, which means that there are hundreds of plug-ins and other programs that support it and add features. Some of these are major plug-ins and include Octane Render, Turbulence FD, OD Tools, LWCAD, Deep Rising FX, RHiggit, 3rd Powers  , db&w Tools, and SyFlex, among many others. It also includes hundreds of other plug-ins, many of which are free and equally useful such as DPont's.  All of the mentioned plug-ins work with LightWave 2019, but not all of them are under active development. For instance, OD Tools still provides support for their suite of plug-ins, but they are no longer adding new features. Also, DPont's plug-ins are offered for free, so donations are appreciated. Please note that since significant changes were made to LightWave 2020, several plug-ins might not work so well with 2020 until those plug-ins are updated. And since these are 3rd party plug-ins, there is not necessarily any way of knowing which ones will be updated and which ones won't. All of the plug-ins mentioned above were compatible with LW 2019.

It is also worth mentioning that Liberty3D also sells several current tutorials and does occasional group buy-ins on major plug-ins. They also runs periodic specials on their products, so it is probably worth keeping an eye out for that and buy during discount seasons.

LightWave may not be the most popular 3D program available in 2020, but it is battle-tested and more than capable of creating high quality work. As mentioned, it is still supported by many third-party plug-ins and enjoys loyal and international support among many of its users. It is still used today by smaller studios and independent and freelance artists. It is not seen in as many major productions as it used to be, but it is still used on a project-by-project basis depending on the artist and studio.

The work of LightWave virtuoso, David Ridlen, was used in Green Book, the film that won the Academy Award for Best Picture for 2018. LightWave also played a major role in the production of Avatar (read the comments section), which represented a breakthrough in the use of motion capture and CGI and until mid-2019, was the highest grossing movie in history.

And it is not just the Layout portion of the program that is used in major feature films, it is Modeler too. Jet Cooper, an exceptionally talented 3D artist out of the United Kingdom, has used LightWave to model hero props for films such as Star Wars, Thor:The Dark World, and Harry Potter, among many others. Check out his website to see more.

So yes, it is fair to say that LightWave is production-proven and still used in major feature films.

 

CURRENT STATUS

At this time, New Tek is actively upgrading the program and adding new features and appears to be positioning the program for long-term sustainability. In fact, it appears as if New Tek will be releasing major upgrades on an annual basis going forward. And, of course, this means that the tutorials will need to keep up to speed as well, something that has not always happened in the past.

In April 2019, Vizrt acquired NewTek and while there is no way to know for certain what the future holds, there are many reasons to be cautiously optimistic. With the 2019 release, NewTek brought game-changing and much needed improvement to LightWave, and now with Vizrt, whose mission is advanced visual graphics for broadcast and storytelling, LightWave would seem to be a complementary fit. Vizrt's name itself is short for Visualization in Real-Time or Visual Artist, so again, that is not at odd with LightWave's purpose. According to the news reports, NewTek and LightWave will retain their names, will remain based in San Antonio and from all indicators, development and support will continue as is. One could reasonably speculate that development might even progress faster given the resources Vizrt brings to the table.

New Tek appears committed to maintaining LightWave and has now released new versions of the program for the last three years, 2018, 2019, and now 2020. But no matter what happens in the future, a good software program is a good software program and as the production-proven software it is, LightWave remains a more-than-capable tool not only in its past iterations, but in its current one.And this leads us to the fact that this year LightWave will be 30 years old, so we remain hopeful that NewTek, under Vizrt's leadership, will remain a standalone program and be allowed to stay on its current trajectory and continue to add innovations and improvements annually.

Obviously, we would expect Vizrt to make LightWave fully compatible with its existing Viz Artist program. Currently, Viz Artist is compatible with Cinema 4D and After Affects but not LightWave. Continuing to develop LightWave as a standalone product while seamlessly integrating it with Viz Artist would create unlimited possibilities, so we hope that is the direction things go. LightWave could become one of the primary portals into the world that Vizrt envisions, which is a universal platform for visual storytelling.

LightWave 2020 was released on April 23, 2020 and is currently allowing all existing users to upgrade for a limited time at a discounted rate. The new features list includes new GI illumination engines, two new shaders, and new production tools for VDB.  

lightwave 3d

THIS SITE

Because LightWave underwent major changes with the 2018 version, including its rendering engine, it can be difficult to know where to start as many tutorials relate to older versions of the program. Many of the very old tutorials using Modeler are still relevant today as Modeler hasn't changed much over the years; however, the Layout portion of the program has changed dramatically under the hood and many older tutorials about Layout are either difficult to follow or obsolete from 2018 and on. With that in mind, the purpose of this site is to provide some of the most recent and most pertinent tutorials we can to help point you in the right direction. Many of the concepts and principles you can learn in LightWave apply to other 3D programs and in some ways, many programs are converging, that is, using the same basic tools and concepts. It can be argued that the main divergence is in the interfaces, rendering options, and where things are located.

LightWave can be considered not so much as a single thing but rather a modular platform for organizing many tools and plug-ins, which even includes open-source programs and plug-ins such as Bullet and OpenVDB. In addition, you can control, configure, and customize LightWave's capabilities and interface in a myriad of ways and in that sense, its specific layout is up to you.

While LightWave is the program we use and enjoy using, we completely understand that you must ultimately choose the program that works for you and that's completely fine. But no matter which 3D program that is, even if it is a free program, all 3D programs require study and consistent practice to master. But even with that said, you have nothing to lose by learning LightWave. It is a solid and very capable 3D program.

Please note that while many of the tutorials use prior additions of LightWave, almost all still apply to 2020. At this time, there are only a couple of videos related specifically to 2020, but we hope to be adding more in the coming months. The changes made in 2020 are signficant in that they change how scenes are lit with GI, so that's a definite difference from 2019. If you are interested in seeing videos specifically related to 2019, then click here.  New Tek has devoted a web page solely for LightWave 2019 tutorials, which is helpful. (Some old but still useful LightWave videos are also here. )And if you really want to get up to speed with using LightWave 2019 especially its new rendering engine and don't mind spending a little money, then Rebel Hill's Lighting, Shading, and Rendering tutorial package is definitely the way to go. It is the best $86 you can spend on learning all the nuances, key settings, and details of the new rendering engine. The tutorials pay for themselves in terms of knowledge gained, time saved, and quality renders obtained.

Some people believe that training and education should be free, but when you think about things that you might buy like a guitar or things you might want to learn like karate, training is not automatically included for free and no one expects or demands free guitar or karate lessons. There is an understanding and respect for the discipline and the value of the information shared. Nevertheless, there are many LightWave users who offer tutorials for free on You Tube, so please consider subscribing and liking their videos, especially West Notts, who has been consistent in making very helpful videos. It is a small way of saying you appreciate their efforts. Anthony Hall, from West Notts, also maintains an active and very informative Facebook page here.

 

David Ridlen (Showcase)

LightWave Guru (Emo Reel)

What's New in LightWave 2020 (Liberty3D Kat meow)

Mark Warner


Antti Järvelä


Learn LightWave 3D


Rebel Hill


Greg Sullivan


Spacial Katana

Simon Smalley


Alex Hartley's tools


pro biner

Yunus Oz

Phil Nolan


James Roger (reducing crashes, clearing config files)


Hawaii Film


West Notts




burns

combs

db& w



SOME OF OUR FAVORITE LINKS

 

Intro to Python for LightWave (this will help you to understand Python in LightWave)

Bosschaert (Radiosity) (this will help you understand Global Illumination)

Bosschaert (HDR) (this will help you understand HDR)

TRH LOGOS (lots of useful modeling tutorials)

CG Meetup (nice assortment of tutorials)

erikals (playlist on tools NOT to learn in LW)

pro biner (nodal setup series)

Lightwave Guru (self-explanatory)

David Aguero (landscape creation)

Ivan B (oldies but goodies)

William Vaughn (more oldies but goodies + going over topics you won't find anywhere else)

Simon Smalley (another showcase from a talented LightWave artist)

 

 

 


Antti Järvelä https://www.youtube.com/user/anttijarvela77/videos
Bryan Phillips / bryphi https://www.youtube.com/user/bryphi77/videos
Mikael Burman / Cageman https://www.youtube.com/user/TemalCageman/videos
Carm3D https://www.youtube.com/user/carm3d/videos
Champ Lein / LookingMercury3D https://www.youtube.com/user/LookingMercury3D/videos
Chilton Webb https://www.youtube.com/user/chiltonwebb/videos
Chris Jones https://www.youtube.com/user/chrisjonestube/videos
Craig Monins / RebelHill https://www.youtube.com/user/RHLW/videos
Digital Mind https://www.youtube.com/user/DIGITALMINDSL/videos
Dana Burman / dwburman https://www.youtube.com/user/dwburman/videos
Erik Alstad / erikals https://www.youtube.com/user/erikalst/videos
David Agüero https://www.youtube.com/user/davidaguero3d/videos
David Ridlen / Mr Rid https://www.youtube.com/user/Xurgonic/videos
Fabio Annunziata https://www.youtube.com/user/ilchupacabras/videos
Greenlaw / Little Green Dog https://www.youtube.com/user/LGDTestTube/videos
Greg Sullivan https://www.youtube.com/user/gsullivanjr/videos
Kevin Phillips / kevman3d https://www.youtube.com/user/kevman3d/videos
Larry Shultz / SplineGod https://www.youtube.com/user/SplineGod/videos
Lino Grandi https://www.youtube.com/user/linograndi/videos
Louis du Mont https://www.youtube.com/user/mrlouisman/videos
Marco Valenzuela (OPEN VDB) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pQ86cpZQaik
Martin Zapata / NeonZ https://www.youtube.com/user/NeonZEntertainment/videos
Michael Ivarsson / Prometheus https://www.youtube.com/user/PrometheusPhamarus/videos
Mike Green / Dodgy https://www.youtube.com/user/dodgyb2001/videos
Rene Falk Thomasius / LightWaveGuru https://www.youtube.com/user/safarifx2010/videos
Ryan Roye / tnd Studios https://www.youtube.com/user/tndStudios/videos
Steve Clarke https://www.youtube.com/user/Escelce/videos
Steve White / hrgiger https://www.youtube.com/user/35hrgiger/videos
Teddy René Hansen / mis https://www.youtube.com/user/mistube/videos


If you have any channels or links to recommend, please email info to: admin@server808.net

light wave

surfaced studio

QUESTION POSTED TO YOU TUBE: WHY WOULD ANYONE USE LIGHTWAVE?

Mikael Burman replied:
Fom the perspective of using LightWave, I have extensive experience with Maya, and I have also done some heavy duty render wrangling in Houdini, mainly Redshift. This question doesn't have an easy answer.... because it is like asking "Why do you like apples? I prefer lemon!"... That said.... for the price I pay, I have unlimited rendernodes... so, no render licensing I have to deal with. I have several machines here at home, and I can use them for network rendering without any additional cost regarding software. The only other package that I know of that does that is Blender. Houdini does it with Mantra, but you have to bake things out to IFD files first. Secondly, I prefer to own a license. When it comes to "what does it offer that any other tool doesn't offer"... well... it can do pretty much everything Maya can do, in some cases easier, in other cases it will involve more work. Then, there will always be those 1% edge cases where you simply can't solve it in LightWave. But those situations are extremely rare for general Cinematic work. Since I started working with LightWave and Maya on a pro level (13 years or so ago, doing cinematics work for games, and I am still going strong) there are no perfect softwares. There are times I bang my head in LightWave, wishing I should have done this in Maya, and then, I sit in Maya, fiddling with something I could have done in 5-10 minutes if I had used LightWave instead. LightWave has some interesting "oldschool" workflows that actually are very solid that I havn't really seen in other applications. But... if I have to give you my number one reason to use LW in the year of 2020... it has to be the render-engine. Especially if you work at a workplace that has many workstations. Without any additional cost, you can have all those workstations help render overnight. Almost all other applications now rely on third party rendering solutions and that can become very costly if you would need 50-60 licenses ontop of what you already pay for the 3DCC app. I should also point out that Maxons Cinema 4D and Blender started on the Amiga. ;)  

Perhaps if you don't hear as much about LightWave as you do about other programs, do not assume the program is not being used or is not as valuable as it once was. Jet Cooper recently posted this on the LightWave forum:
LightWave Modeler

 

And now a little humor. This is a post from the LightWave forum on May 5, 2020. LightWave