Let’s Get Blending: Shaking it Up with Open Source Software


If you are into making animated films, video games or even interactive 3D applications, you know firsthand how expensive it can get.  Furthermore, it’s not uncommon to purchase an animation program only to find you just don’t care for it at all.  As the dollars mount up, you are still in need of a great program.  That’s when you need a Blender!

Blender is one of the best open source software programs available.  It is for the public by the public.  It’s a professional program of 3D computer graphics.  It also supports video game production.  In this program, you can do so much in the way of 3D printed models, special visual effects, sculpting, matching animation movements, video editing and composing and so much more.  Blender does most anything an aspiring animation, video and gaming creator could want and…it’s all for free.

The concept of Blender began as an entrepreneurial endeavor.  Dutch founder, Ton Roosendaal, started the company in 1998 but was bankrupt only a few years later.  He launched Blender as a group-funding effort on the understanding that if the funds were raised, he would provide the program for free to the public.  The group funding was a success.  Thus, Blender remains free for the public to contribute to and to use as well.

While Blender isn’t real easy for beginners, it is for those who know a bit about what they are doing.  The user interface provides for object mode and edit mode editing.  It also operates modes allowing for Vertex Paint, Weight Paint and Sculpt Mode Hotkey.

One of the best features about the open source software program is that the user can customize the screen layout.  That is a lifesaver for those who specialize in one specific area and don’t want to hassle with going through unnecessary motions each time they get on it.

One real downfall of the program overall is that, since is it open source, there have been attempts by other programs to swipe it.  They have attempted to repackage and sell it as their own.  But overall, the program has been left alone and allowed to remain the free program it was designed to be.

The fact that users can not only use the program but contribute to it too has made it a social site in a way.  People are adamant about their artistic creations and the desire to learn and do more and so Blender has become a platform where users can share information and talk about their work, the work of others and the subjects of editing, video, gaming creation and the likes.

Blender keeps the site fresh with continual updates and contest that generate new blood and gives way to a creative flow that keeps on rolling through the community.  Some of the projects in the past have been “Apricot” which was to generate a game creation on the base of the Big Buck Bunny movie which featured a character named Peach.  The requirement for the contests are that the material within be created using the features of Blender.

Blender continues to keep the site fresh and alive and projects excitement as well as a sense of community and common ground.  The program does not set limitations so anything created in blender can be produced for profit or for private use.  The public has made great use of the open source nature of Blender and in turn, the company at Blender has returned the favor and rewards those who use it.  Blender…it’s a win-win in open source software.