Even though the web is already being flooded by news about the release of Blender 2.61, I want to report about it here too.
When Blender 2.59 was the final stable version of the Blender 2.5x development, which ported everything from 2.49 to the new 2.5 codebase and mainly gave us a great new UI, a smoother workflow and some great new tools, the 2.6x development is bringing us some awesome new features.
Blender 2.60, which has been released in October, included 3d-Audio, some improvements to the animation system and UI translation and other nice fixes.
One of the greatest releases of Blender ever is this one though.
Blender 2.61 includes production ready camera-tracking, a new physical based GPU realtime render engine, Ocean Simulation and Dynamic Paint, each of them a kickass feature.
Below a few videos that describe what these features do:
Dynamic Paint basically let’s you paint with meshes or particles on other meshes. And not only does it apply color, it also includes a wave-simulation and other ways to do interesting effects.
The Ocean-Simulator is exactly what the name says: It simulates an ocean. It is a pretty straight-forward workflow and performs really well.
Cycles is a totally amazing rendering engine that allows not only physically based Global Illumination, but also live tweaking of the render in the 3d Viewport. It’s an interactive way of setting up your render settings while rendering. Some features are still missing, but it’s a really great start.
For me the biggest and most important feature is the camera-tracking module. Though it is not a one-click solution like you get in Syntheyes, it allows you to get accurate and precise tracks. The fact that it is built right into the 3d-Application makes it a godsend for VFX.
There are already lots of great results on the web, so I’ll just link a short overview of the general workflow here.
Well, it is exciting!