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Yafaray Feature Video - why doesn't Blender have this?


We received this Yafaray 'commercial':

Personally I don't think this is such a great video (it's slow and the samples aren't great), but the concept is quite powerful.

There have been discussions about a Blender 'commercial' in the past, but is just hasn't happened yet. What do you think such a commercial should look like? What should be included in it?

(via abhishek)

About the Author

Avatar image for Bart Veldhuizen
Bart Veldhuizen

I have a LONG history with Blender - I wrote some of the earliest Blender tutorials, worked for Not a Number and helped run the crowdfunding campaign that open sourced Blender (the first one on the internet!). I founded BlenderNation in 2006 and have been editing it every single day since then ;-) I also run the Blender Artists forum and I'm Head of Community at Sketchfab.


  1. Why doesn't Blender have this? Because it would sounds like a commercial you don't believe it works! Modelling, shading, rendering, animation, compositing, game engine, ALL IN 1! Isn't that Amazing? And best of all, It's FREE!

    But honestly, I would see a commercial for blender which can be promoted on the blender website, youtube, or something like that. And it would be just great if the commercial is like a movie trailer for an epic movie.

    We'll see what the future brings!

  2. +1 @uggi. Blender open movies are the best testimonies of Blender abilities. It shows what happens when you put a decent group leader, and motivated peoples around an idea.

    I often show the movies each time someone ask me "Blender? What's Blender?"

  3. A commercial for blender ... hum... it should show all the cool stuffs (movies, games, video editing, nodes, smoke and liquid, etc.) with beautiful finished projects (orange, abricot, durian), even this kinf of beautiful projects we see here at blendernation.
    I know blender people don't like to hear about them, but why not look at Maya's and Max's commercials ?

  4. Autodesk have done lots of commercials and it is almost always a mix of pieces from several feature films, short films, other commercials...
    Blender already has something like that, I have seen it for several Siggraph editions. Almost every year there is a call for submissions and a mix made of the best of them.

  5. Most commercial 3D packages have an amazing 'demo reel', Blender had a siggraph reel a few years back, but that's about it. A professional looking demoreel would definitely be something. Frankly I am not too impressed with the the Yafaray video above. It need to look less like 'test renderings' and have more footages from real productions.

  6. hey that's amazing guys, but i think there is some missing to consider yafaray for production.. RENDER PASSES...
    AO, mask, alpha, Zdepth (can get it from blender internal) specular, diffusse, color, shadow(<---very important)

    But THANKS a lot.. yafaray its very very good render engine. it will be amazing to useit with GPU.

    thanks to developer team.

  7. @AlexDS
    We're talking about a commercial, not about Blender becoming commercial ;)

    Actually the only thing I really liked in this vid was the music.
    Btw. the best commercial for Blender are the open movies I think...

  8. I think a reel/ commercial would be great in addition to the open movies, because it shows better the diversity of Blender features and projects and visual styles you can achieve with it.

    You know, all the cool stuff condensed.

  9. The Yafaray advertisement, (correct me if I'm wrong but Yafaray may be used for commerce but it is not sold, so in that sense this is not a "commercial"), is paced rather than slow. It gives time for a viewer to look at, assess, and understand each of its proposals. I would suggest that it would work on television and many other fora and it works for many levels of user. It is deceptively simple and effective.
    The difficulty with achieving something similar for Blender would be in selecting five or so things
    blender does well and showing them to good effect. I imagine twenty ads of the same ilk but that could get hard to sustain.
    I like this format and would suggest looking for the five good things. :)

  10. That first clip featuring global illumnation is simply awe inspiring! It looks like the Death Star tunnel scene from Star Wars IV, sort of.

  11. Some of the features are actually Blender features and would be impossible to achive without nodes. About Blender demoreel - great idea but it should be made as a presentation of Blender 2.5/2.6 abilities (not Blender in alpha/beta stage).

  12. I agree with Mike Pan and Ruben and like the idea of having 'new' versions of the siggraph reels from a few years ago. It could propably be interesting too, if there were several of these 'commercials' always about one (or more - depends) subject like dynamics having Smoke, Fluid, Particles, Softbody & Rigidbody stuff and another one about rendering and/or modelling, sculpting, characters and so on. They'd work like an improved version of the commit logs and be easily exchangable...maybe.

  13. Well... looks like THAT IS A COMMERCIAL FOR Blender... unless another software was used to make it. Most of it looks like Blender produced.

    Yes... my vote is definitely a video commercial... it's called a "Reel" and I feel it is a must "to do" for promoting Blender in many places.

    Sintel... yea, it's great, but... it's not a presentation "Reel" full of quick action, mind blowing images of what this amazing program can do with "anyone" in the driver's seat who is eager and willing to learn... and that's all it takes to be creative.

    Making a presentation Reel is necessary. You can touch on more information is less time and reach more people than you can reach by doing the talk and making the walk about Blender's wonderful tools. A Reel is a forced presentation intended to captivate the audience's attention, impress the socks off them and not intended to teach.

    The Yafray video is slow in transitions, however, their focus is on the moment the image is looked at for the details. Blender Reel should be quick pace, music mood changes and not a single beat repeater. And, have a trademark ending logo ending with a trademark sound moment.

    any way... that's my few minutes... best to all.

  14. Not sure if some people do not understand that a commercial does not mean the product is for sale.

    Commercial means advertisement, what is considered a demo reel when a person does it for their
    own portfolio.

    The open movie projects might be nice as a feature movie since they are solid, but from that movie
    I cannot see nor grasp about the functionality of Blender.

    From Sintel you can see that you can do animation, and render, and model, but HOW you cannot.

    Thus a feature focused demo reel like this for Yafaray might be a nice addition for those who might
    be interested in Blender, but I rather question if we need to have it.

    This demo reel could use content from the movie projects to show how to use Blender.

  15. I think the "commercial" should have shown more than just some "feature demo" scenes. It's nice to see those demonstrated, but there're feature demos all over the internet already.
    Regarding Blender: There are already three commercials, each a lot longer than the yafaray one and looking a lot better. They have fast-paced and slow scenes, they show off all the features nicely, and if they don't get people interested in blender (and looking up those Blender tech demoes, they were probably not in the target group anyway :)
    Having said that: maybe putting together a "blender demo reel" might be a good idea. With clips from Elephant's Dream, Big Buck and Sintel, some tech videos for good measure, but really most people will probably want to see you can actually can make something "real" with the software.

  16. Hi. Blender need to have a advertisement on the internet. I was a 3d studio max user, and a friend of mine show me the blender, i try to find something on the internet about what the blender can do and i find just unfinished projects, until blender made "elephant dream" and then i understood what this "space station" with a lot of buttons can do. Is very difficult to understand what a 3d platform can do if you don`t have a good example. In the open projects you have made some stuff are not so intuitive to find, like hair texture, fluid`s, smoke sim., volumetric materials, SSS and the big advantage of blender the compositing nodes. When i show the Sintel of a friend of mine he ask me... "They use Adobe after effects?" and I answered "No they use a 26 mega program called Blender" he don`t believe me and i know way, it`s exactly like me when i hear about the blender, he it`s without reference about what is inside of blender.

  17. Sure there are features videos all over the internet... everywhere... but that is the problem. A well made presentation Reel could do more for Blender than imagined. I really like the movies and watching what people do with blender... but... that isn't like a reel or commercial. This is the same thoughts when people talked about no tutorials just a few years ago. There were thousands of obsolete tutorials everywhere and now look at how that area has been turned around today!

    I present these thoughts... for every 100 people you expose to knowledge about Blender in any manner... something like maybe 1-10 will go into 3d while something like over half will then be conscious and intrigued about Blender and they will be the future audiences and patrons.

    Sintel is wonderful for me and it is a "short video or film". Blender will be in full feature move production one day with the talent that is growing every day and then Blender will be seen as a Lightwave, 3DMax, Cinema3d... or etc. We all know that, we just need to convince the rest of the world.

    It's all about the "visuals". Show them that Blender is bigger than life and they will understand how wonderful Blender can be for them.

    And a well made advertising Reel can do that more better than beating a bible and preaching on the street corner.

    best to everyone, great discussion, great comments everyone.

  18. It's funny, I was thinking about this for blender just the other day. I'm not sure how affective it would be at winning over individual artists but it would be cool to be able to point a manager or someone new asking about blenders capabilities in this direction for a quick wow factor.

  19. On the topic of yafaray does anyone know why blender is still going down the route of developing and maintaining it's own render engine rather than integrating one such as yafaray. Is it a license thing or a bad case of not developed here syndrome.

  20. how about show of using Cad data in Blender, Technical Illustration, animations of machines using Cad data. No one else doing this?

    Yea... it was great the look at faces when I opened up a free program to show Cad data file brought into Blender, optimized... etc. Huge files, real time client investigation of information during a discussion and a cool render to boot... inside Blender.

    Line art rendering, isometric illustrations... there are even more possibilities with Blender. Think Technical manual with exploded parts illustration... from Blender. That has been my goal and direction.

  21. Unlike any other external renderer (even Luxrender has multiple exporters...) ,Yafaray seems to be the most tightly integrated with Blender one...I didn't heard anyone to have mentioned it...
    so..instead of spending our time in considering Blender and Yafaray as separate and distinct products (that are,actually,not...)and comparing their "demoreels respectively,why we just don't join our forces so that the integration of Yafaray with Blender speeds up and a great Blender-modeled and Yafaray-rendered demoreel ("commercial" seems not to be the exact word here,"promotional" would be better instead..) finally appears? Blender-Yafaray case there is no room for comparisons,imo...this would be unesseccary luxury...let's ,better,realize our common (open source) mission...

  22. The commercial/demoreel is pretty good. I don't know why you think it doesn't look good, but I personally think it's pretty sweet.

  23. I am not against a better render engine but I am not sure if Yaf can replace all functions Blender has.
    Sure Yaf has some Blender does not like GI better glossy surfaces etc.

    Anyway "Igna Valer" made a pretty good point.

  24. I quite like this demonstration, which is more like a feature showcase than a proper commercial. Blender perhaps needs that too. I don't think the open movies can function as commercials, not everybody will watch a whole movie, especially if they don't like it (e.g. I'm not such a great fan of Sintel, I know I'm a blasphemer ;). I've seen some responses to Sintel from people outside the community, and the responses were varied. If you don't like the script, or the general concept, or pick all the errors (like people have), then you miss all the great features and potential of the software. And, as some people have pointed out, people won't know what a whole array of features Blender has by just watching a short movie, which is of a certain type and only uses certain methods (e.g. how can you know Blender has a great sculpting system, or any sculpting system at all, by just watching a movie?). You need a condensed presentation. All those great features such as nodes, VSE, sculpting, SSS, etc. etc. need to be highlighted.

  25. slow pacing at the beginning and some of the demos could have used a wow factor. But that break-dancing manikin that demoed motion blur at the end made my day.

  26. they forgot :
    - no raytraced motion blur...
    sure you can handle some situations with post motion blur, but not efficient for shots with reflective/refractive surfaces.

  27. Garland-Waide Bradford on

    From an editing perspective. There are a few problems that mess with the ad's flow. The intro where the lights go on, the cut should've been straight into the action. Not in and out pop to the white Jpeg. It jars the edit. The motion blur should've stopped on the motion and then zoom in on a still. And, it needs to be tighter, little on the long side. Things just need to be shown and happen faster.

  28. Blender commercial... YES PLEASE!

    An official video from BF is the best way to say: we are professional, we know our users and we include their works in our official reel.

    Also having a mix of commercials, users works, and BF movies like sintel can show to the rest of the wold what Blender can do also in combination with other software (imho)

    Anyway great idea!

  29. @bachnoral
    My thoughts exactly! Not everyone is doing arty cartoony Sintel-esque stuff. I use Blender almost purely for technical animations, and there are many people using it for physics, science, mocap etc. So any 'commerical' would need to show Blender's breadth of talents, and not hold up Sintel as the example of Blender's talents.

  30. The statement about motion blur is a bit misleading, that specific breakdancer animation uses vector blur in post, so Yafaray doesn't acutally render motion-blur.

  31. Well, if you want to have a commercial, it should have a mini-story to grab the viewer and make it memorable. For Blender, I thought of something like this: A fellow is looking to use a major motion picture studio, and he's in this limo being taken to a mysterious studio lot that he's never heard of. All Area 51-ish kind of thing. They come to cavernous buildings out in the middle of the desert. Really over the top. They drive to the largest building in the complex. They get out, go inside, it's dark and empty except for in the center of room, where there's a guy sitting on a chair at a table with a laptop on it. He looks over the shoulder of the guy working and then you see what's on the laptop. Then the view switches to all the cool stuff that's been done on Blender, movies, gallery stuff. Big cascade of stuff. Then you end with a tag line: Blender -- Studio On A Laptop. Boom. Make it jaw-dropping.

  32. thanks Reaction and Dor seems to be on point about ideas. A gentle reminder at this point... This discussion thread is about "Why doesn't Blender have this?"

    Keep focused... Story board that ida Dor... very cool.

    Scope of a reel...? If there is a story line, it should move through many areas. Showcasing lots of Blender capabilities could be easier than you imagine. Don't think we would need an hour movie to do that. Pick strong, state of the art in the world view effects to showcase first.

    Keep in mind that another world is out there with huge commercial software and that stuff does work... you know. blender isn't the only kid on the block, just need to show off better and top the show and that means looking at the competition.

    The salvation is that Blender is not trying to take away from commercial software vendors. Blender is actually stimulating the artist market.

    no time for bragging, only time for showing... Guys... make it an open project...!!!!!

  33. Why a story?

    No way, a "feature reel" is a feature reel! just show flexibility and coolest of the tools, NO STORY, just show the RAW POTETIALITY of Blender.

    my 50yen.

  34. For a Blender demo reel, a character with this level of detail, complexity, quality and realism:

    No story. Technical and beautiful. Very (very) short but very fluid body / facial animation, with soft skin deformations. Same character composited with real footage, showing the different steps of the composition.

    Very short Fluids scene showing it's full potential (5 seconds?). Same with explosions/smoke/fire. Some interesting effects with particles.

    It doesn't need to show EVERYTHING Blender can do. It just needs to show amazing stuff donde with Blender.

    It can be done, just needs the appropriate hands on it.

  35. I think that IF someone someday makes a Blender commercial, it should be a mix of two things:

    - Show all of it's major features (BGE, animation, nodes, modeling, Physics,etc)
    - Show the amazing new interface of 2.5x

    Using a mix of footage from Sintel, Yo Frankie and whatever comes next alongside with images taken from Blender itself.

    It wolud be a showreel with great footage and a quick peek in between of what Blender looks like in timelapse. Of course, with professional look with nice transitions and so on.

    Imagine Sintel in clay beeing modeled, a few quick frames giving a preview of Nodes Editor with a massive composition of a material, etc.

    It would be a 80-20, more footage and just a few peeks of Blender just to make people curious to see how it's made.

  36. Gotta agree with Eclectiel also. That 4th link to the image of the girl is amazing! We need to showcase this kind of work in a demo if Blender wants to be taken seriously. I fully agree with the need for a demo. I wish Blender would lose the counter-culture, granola-munching, anti-commercial mentality! Beat them at their own game! Make Blender look like a commercial product throughout. with 2.5, Check!

    Still needed:
    Instruction manual....what instruction manual? The wiki is currently a joke!
    Website? Well, Andrew at Blenderguru has already covered this. He is so right!
    Demo reel?...again, what demo reel. This is a great idea!

    And please can we do all this before the launch of the stable 2.6.....errr 3.0!
    Can we force Ton to rename Blender properly? Countless people have commented on this issue. Why in the world isn't Blender selling this once in a generation overhaul properly?

  37. Personally I liked this video :)

    It's just nice to see basic, working things. They don't have to be doing epic space battle scenes or anything: just emphasize what you're actually talking about. And it was relaxing. Too many videos are "SHWAMPOW!" and it's like *brain rush*. This was a good video.

    Now I'm going to be a hypocrite and suggest (nay, demand) that any blender reel/commercial uses this music: Requiem for a Dream.

  38. @Terrachild
    I think if one of us were to have achieved half of what Ton has for blender then that person might be entitled to ask or suggest something to Ton. I think perhaps you are being a bit too enthusiastic.

    As for beating someone at their own game and not munching on Granola, (whatever that is), I think it depends on what the game is. For me one of the attractions of open source software is the openness. I would hate to see blender competing with Autodesk in litigation. I would much rather Autodesk free their patents and try to compete, (and cooperate), with blender on our ground. If that is too hippy for you well it will probably not happen anyway.

    The idea of a professional ad is good. But we probably want to assess what groups we want to reach and what we need to reach them. Blender is far too big to explain all it's capabilities to novices at one thirty second ad. Even professionals probably only need a taster.

    My suggestion is keep it short, very short and make many of them.

  39. nolan tyrrell great suggestion..."keep it short, very short and make many of them."

    all who make Blender reels... will be making their own reel as well. Thats the idea I put forward now.

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