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Book: A Complete Guide to Blender Graphics


CoverImage"While Blender is a wonderful free and open source program for computer modeling and animation, there has been a lack of unified, up-to-date documentation for beginners. Removing the frustration from the learning process, The Complete Guide to Blender Graphics: Computer Modeling and Animation helps beginners understand the basics of computer animation using Blender."

Alleviating the difficulties in learning Blender, this book provides thorough instruction on the basics of this 3D modeling and animation program.

The author begins with a detailed explanation of the Blender graphical user interface (GUI) and its method of navigation. He covers basic mesh modeling on both the object and sub-object levels. At this point, the beginner 3D modeler can create a wide variety of models. The author moves on to materials, camera, lighting, and rendering, allowing the creation of more complete models and rendered images. He also includes a section on animation. This sequence provides a solid foundation for the more advanced topics discussed in later chapters.

Author John Blain writes:

Hello Blender Enthusiast,

My new book 'A Complete Guide to Blender Graphics: Computer Modeling and Animation' is available for pre-ordering.


"The book is an instructional tool for beginners and a reference for advanced users. The book discusses the 3D modelling and animation program Blender. The author begins with a detailed explanation of the Blender user interface and its method of navigation. He covers basic mesh modelling on both the object and sub-object levels. At this point, the beginner 3D modeller can create a wide variety of models. The author moves on to materials, cameras, lighting, and rendering, allowing the creation of more complete models and rendered image. He then includes section on animation. This sequence provides a solid base for the more advance topics discussed in later chapters."

“The major strength of John's Blender manual is its breadth of content and its depth of detail. The material covered in the manual is extensive. All aspects of beginning to intermediate 3D modeling and rendering with Blender are covered. His language is clear and concise and is accessible to users of all ages. It is expertly illustrated with screenshots that allow even those without the substantial understanding of English to follow the flow ideas and concepts.”

“I have spent much of this morning looking through your Blender manual and I must say that it is the best introduction to Blender that I have seen. It is concise and extremely well documented. It represents considerable insight into the rather mystifying world of Blender and presents it with an enormous amount of clarity.”

Sincerely, John M Blain (Author).



  1. chromemonkey on

    I am glad they are doing a book dedicated to the graphical aspects of Blender.  Too many books out there that have nothing to do with the visuals.  :)

  2. Looks good, but what I wouldn't give for an intermediate to advanced blender book. It would make my life so much easier if I didn't have to convert stuff from maya to blender.

    • I am in the same boat as you man. It seems no one wants to write for that  particular market perhaps because it might be too small. The are just so many beginners books and tutorials I am dying for advanced material. 

      I have bought a few Blender books and with most the first 4 to 5 chapters are usually to me I guess that has increased now to practically most books been useless of an intermediate user

      • Just to let you guys know in case it skipped your radars that there's a book called mastering blender by Tonny Mullen which is for intermediate to advanced users of blender. I am about to start reading it after I finish blender foundations. I am by no means a beginner in blender but am a bit curious about the newest version. Anyways mastering blender though written for the older 2.49 version seems to be a very well writen book to get you up to speed with blender's advanced features. Hope that helps ;-) 

  3. With due respect to all previous authors that have come before you, when they wrote their books, it was 'up-to-date'.  How do you plan to keep this up-to-date in six months?

  4. Lawrence D’Oliveiro on

    Does it mention BMesh at all? If not, it’s already out of date. Cycles? Please tell me it at least talks about Cycles...

    Face it: printed Blender documentation is always going to be out-of-date before it can even reach the shelves. Free Software is often a fast-moving target, and Blender is one of the fastest.

    • That's true, but the unconventional basics of the Blender interface don't change much - right-clicking to select, no need to specify a unit of measurement, and just moving about in 3D space. These always need explanation to the new user, and once they're on board they'll want to discover the rest...

      • Well, when I read through the "Noob to pro" wikibook it is sometimes very unclear what to do because of all the comments for different versions of Blender. So some things don't change much in the interface, but other things do. 

        • Lawrence D’Oliveiro on

           In my edits to “Noob To Pro”, I added “Applicable Blender version: x.xx” tags to the top of pages to try to give you an idea of how out-of-date the contents were.

  5. 5ecular4umanist on

    As others have said, Blender updates are frequent and printed books gradually become more and more out of date. An electronic book may appeal to more people, with free (or subscription-based) updates.

    I'm new to Blender (Feb 2012) and have so far resisted the urge to buy any books. I find online tutorial videos are a good way to get started. Perhaps when I have a few months' experience under my belt I will look around for a book that meets my longer term needs.

  6. Mmmm, doesn't mention what is covered in detail anywhere. It also isn't very clear what the "introducing Blender 2.60+" on the cover means. Is the book based on Blender 2.60 and up or does it only include an introduction...? This is also omitted in the text above.
    To top it all off : it's one of those famous Amazon pre-orders...
    I'm not going to risk $33 based on guesswork.

  7. Jonatan Bijl on

     Now let's not bee too pessimistic about books; they're not the only thing that is easily out of date (but still useful). How about the wonderful training DVD's that have been made? Blender's changing a lot, true, and therefore any form of documentation is easily out of date. The wiki has a form of versioning in which the goal is to keep it up to date with the blender versions, but even that is outdated on most pages.
    The other side of the coin is that the fact that somebody took the time to write a real book, and somebody found it worth printing, is one of the telltale signs that blender is becoming increasingly professional.
    So even if parts of the book are outdated already, and maybe the book will be totally useless in three years, please accept it as a compliment to blender and a tool that might help people learn blender 2.62.

  8. Blender books are not so useless. Look e.g. at that on modeling a char by Jonathan Williamson. Bmesh apart (it's all "old school" modeling) I found  it rich in informations and very detailed. Only retopo techniques (no use of greasy pencil there) are really out of date, but maybe Jon wanted to stay away from add-ons.

  9. It seems a shame that people are hammering the book. They don't seem to consider that there are people that don't have the familiarity that they do with the system and to some of us who only get to play at iregular intervals, things like nodes - that so many people here take for granted - look like magic.... and a good explanation that shows us how it works has got to be a good thing. Personally - if I was able to understand nodes and some of the other editing tools, I might be pushing the graphics side of my business far more than I do now.

  10. MercuryCrest on

    Although printed books do go out of date quickly, my library now has a collection that spans the life of Blender.

    I would suggest that those who consider this a "risk" simply contact your local library and make a purchase suggestion.  Mine allows me to do that right from their homepage and I have taken full advantage of that.

    Hopefully, they'll decide to add this title soon....

    • Lawrence D’Oliveiro on

       If I bought paper books for everything I needed to learn, I’d need a whole extra room just to hold them.

      • MercuryCrest on

         I think it would be in the Blender Community's best interest if there were ONE introductory ebook that had a dedicated author (or the community itself) who would oversee documenting all changes included every time there's a new release.  I know that that's what the wiki is there for, but I just get lost trying to navigate to what I need to know....

  11. I would really consider adding a sample chapter so people can view your writing style in addition to posting a table of contents.  Personally I like printed books, but I won't even consider them unless I can get a real flavor for how they are set up,  My first clue is always the index.   If I can't quickly scan the index, for example "rigid bodies" ,and quickly find where this is discussed, than it really becomes no use to me.

    Like others have mentioned, cycles is where my biggest interest is right now, I hope someone will come out with a printed or ebook which would be like a cook book for materials (specific node set ups )and all things having to do with cycles)

    Best of luck with your book, if you do consider adding a way that potential buyers can view it's contents more closely prior to purchase, than I will certainly consider it.

  12. As mentionned above, the evolution of Blender is faster then book printing. :) I do understand why the book is for beginners because blender's basic are the only aspect of the program witch should not undergo any changes. And when the author is teaching intermediate (i.e. modifiers, textures) it is always the basics.
    That said, I haven't read this book so I may be out of my league here but by experience it is usually the case.

    What I would really like to see and would be willing to pay is a bi-monthly Blender Tutorials Magazine. Each issue would be for one specific aspect of blender. Some may need more then one issue (i.e.modifiers) but the strength of the BTM would be the depth in details for one topic in each issue . (imagine an issue of 50 pages explaining how Dynamic paint works) Of course the basics doesn't need 50 pages but a lot more could be demonstrated. Each issues would have beginners/intermediate/advanced tutorials by concrete example. (please stop using the ... darn cube as an example.-specifically if its not meant for beginners)

    Ok so maybe I'm dreaming here to imagine 50 pages on the same topic written in 2 weeks could be done but you get the idea. (Well yes, it could be done but not by just one writer.) More Blenderheads means more ideas so similar to BlenderArt mag, Blenderheads could contribute to the issue he'd like. And since the BTM is a profit based mag writers could be paid for. Each topic could be decided in advance thus the chance for Blenderheads to contribute.

    Also since it would be in the form of a subscription (monthly/yearly) and the issue would probably be pdfs,(hopefully also ebooks) the updates could be added. (just re-download the said pdf to have the updated version of the Dynamic Paint issue to name the same example from above. :)

    Anyway... it's nice to daydream :)

  13. Would go for a subscription arrangement only. This is easily and securely implemented, and you get a higher return on investment.

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