Apr 19 2020
Blender 3D finally has an interface that is intuitive and makes sense for users coming to it from other packages.
I am happy to say that when they released v2.8 of Blender in 2019, suddenly it became intuitive (even allowing for shortcuts more commonly used in other apps), even making left or right button selection a preference (thank goodness for that!).
Not only has the interface changed for the better, but a raft of very handy features have been introduced that make it even more attractive.
It has it’s highspeed (sometimes realtime) renderer Eeevee for amazing previews in your viewport when you’re messing around with lighting, texturing or layout (…can even use it for a quick render, which is pretty good for a good preview of how things are looking but cycles is still what most would want to do final renders in).
It has cryptomatte support for comp work (allows selecting of masks based on object or material in your comping package, …super handy if you have to change the colour of a car’s paintwork or a horse without needing to re-render).
It has grease pencil which is becoming a very powerful animation tool (you can do traditional 2d style cell animations with it but will also convert your sketches into 3d drawing representations and all the benefits this brings for your final animation.
There are many many other changes and every point revision since then has added more features.
Things that look interesting are Mantaflow (as at 2.82 they have introduced it as a very promising fluid sim replacement to the old particle system, …but it is still early days). More render pass options are coming too (bring on an easier way to get position passes out for comp work).
Probably the biggest upcoming project in Blender is the Everything Nodes project, where they are looking to make everything achievable through nodes, …starting with animations I believe and eventually interfacing with mantaflow for a Houdini style of working).
For a beginners guide to Blender 2.8, check ou the following video. Below that i will put links to pages that describe the main features of 2.81 and 2.82.