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This website is a log of my many hobbies and passions with art, illustration and computer graphics. It will hopefully over time
fill up with helpful advice to encourage, inspire and guide others with similar interests.

September 2021 - rab3D Home Page

3D Computer Graphics Using Blender 2.80 - Modelling Methods, Principles & Practice 3D Computer Graphics Using Blender 2.80 - Modelling Methods, Principles & Practice 3D Computer Graphics Using Blender 2.80 - Modelling Methods, Principles & Practice 3D Computer Graphics Using Blender 2.80 - Modelling Methods, Principles & Practice

Different Angle 3D

This month was back to researching information and recording new video tutorials. Project 2 is the creation of a Steel Stock library of useful steel sections that will be typical of steel often used in DIY and hobby project. Video 13 in the Different Angle 3D Video Tutorial Course looks at where you can gather accurate information on the available sizes of steel section. The video then goes on to show a few precision modelling techniques to create different profiles of hollow section steel and highlights problems you can encounter along the way. It closes with a demonstration of how quick and efficient appending the steel stock sections into a new fabrication project can be.

(Video opens in a new YouTube window).

Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. 013 DA3D Construct a Steel Stock Library

With the Blender 3 launched scheduled for later this year and the new version including an Asset Browser, this is an excellent project to pre-empt the launch and create the steel sections in the stable Blender 2.93 ready for the first stable release of Blender 3. The second video in the project will include precision modelling techniques for hot rolled steel section and take a look at Blender 3 using a development build and how the Asset Library can be setup with the steel sections. At the moment the Library feature is still very experimental and buggy causing blender to crash, but hopefully will be stable enough to demonstrate when Video 14 is released in a couple of weeks time.


Early Build of Blender 3's Asset Library

Robert Burke - Portraits & Art

I am continuing to improve my traditional art skills and frequently work in pencil, soft pastel and acrylic paint, mainly producing pet portraits. If you would like to commission a portrait please visit my Robert Burke - Portraits and Art website for more details, or use the Contact form from the about drop-down of the top menu.

Robert Burke - Portraits & Art - a collection of pet and animal portraits
A Collection of Some of my Traditional Portraits

It would help me Immensely if you would like my "Robert Burke - Portraits and Art" Facebook page and share it with others. The further my websites are spread throughout the web the better the chance I will have of maintaining and continuing with future Blender and drawing tutorials.

Robert Burke - Portraits & Art Facebook Page

Robert Burke - Illustration

My technical Illustration website showcases a little of what I can do towards the creation of the more technical type illustration, graphics or animations.

If you are in need of technical or engineering type illustration for your technical manuals, training or sales literature and websites, please don't hesitate to contact me via the contact link on the illustration website www.robertburkeillustration.co.uk.

Robert Burke - Illustration

Follow my Technical Illustration page on Facebook

Robert Burke - Robert Burke - Illustration Facebook Page


August 2021

rab3D Website

It's nearly 15 years since launching the rab3D website in January 2007, initially content was brought over from my even earlier Robert Burke studio Ceramics website which went online with NTL-World mid 1990's. Its quite a long time to maintain a free personal website based on sharing the varied knowledge I had gathered over the many decades. Over this time however the one area I never dedicated enough effort to learning was web development. Over the past couple of decades web standards have changed significantly, moving from initially html pages, then splitting styles into css style sheets and more recently driving webpages from databases and php.

As some of the content dated back 20 years or so and even though I have updated the look of the sight with changes to the page layout, I never got around to updated the underlying code. 14 years ago the site topped out many search keywords bringing in thousands of visitors from search engines each month. Back then search engines relied on <meta keyword=""> tags and popularity of back links, which I was doing well with. The precision modelling tutorials were extremely popular with the Blender precision Modelling .pdf guide being downloaded over 1,000,000 times. However, since then things have got a whole lot more complicated, coding conventiones have changed, what was best practice is now frowned upon and search engines regularly put up new hurdles and require frequent changes for a sight to remain popular. Over the last few years I have noticed the site slowly sliding into search engine oblivion, and a significant drop off of site visitors.

Not one to give up easily, this month I decided to do something about it and try to correct much of the sites old coding and clear up the dross of the past two decades. In 2019 I updated the homepage, menu and a few other pages to a new mobile friendly template, but much of the site was still based on html tables for site layout and had many depreciated html tags. The only option was to try and stop the slide was to get stuck into learning about Search Engine Optimisation SEO and get to work on the 50 plus pages and bring them across to the new template. It's been an arduous task moving text from table cells to <p> tags </p> replacing depreciated <center> and <br> with the css equivalent and correcting all the header tags. I have even discovered what a canonical link is :-)

It's taken all my spare time this month, but I have managed to raise the SEO rating from 40 to 89 using one online SEO checker. Hopefully this together with the new range of tutorials I am working on will bring in a worthwhile volume of traffic.

There has been some casualties of the process though and quite a few older tutorials and less relevant pages, over 50 pages in total have had to be cleared from the site. I think I have added 301 redirects for all the pages, but you can never be 100% certain, so I have created a custom 404 error page. A little blast from the past for me, should be appreciated by any geeky Monty Python fan.

custom 404 page

Different Angle 3D

Sadly the work on website SEO this month has meant no time for more tutorials, but as part of the reorganisation I have catalogued the video tutorials so far on the tutorials area of the site. This work will give me a solid foundation to keep reporting on my projects and adding tutorials based on them.

Robert Burke - Portraits & Art

If you would like to commission a portrait please visit my Robert Burke - Portraits and Art website for more details, or use the Contact form from the about drop-down of the top menu.

Robert Burke - Portraits & Art - a collection of animal portraits

It would help me Immensely if you would like my "Robert Burke - Portraits and Art" Facebook page and share it with others. The further my websites are spread throughout the web the better the chance I will have of maintaining and continuing with future Blender and drawing tutorials.

Robert Burke - Portraits & Art Facebook Page


July 2021

Different Angle 3D

With other projects and work, I haven't managed to get any tutorials uploaded to the Different Angle 3D channel this month, though a fair bit of work has gone into preparing materials for the next few videos.

Project 2 - Plasma Cutting Table Design & Build


I mentioned last month that the next video will show you how to accurately model your own steel stock library, for use in future projects. This has meant I needed to put together my own organised library from the many blend files I currently use.

Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. Manual Plasma Table Design and construction

I have also looked a little closer at metal materials that can be used with the parts we model.

Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. Manual Plasma Table Design and construction

Keep an eye out for the next videos that will be coming soon and don't forget to subscribe to the Different Angle 3D channel so you are informed when they are put online. If you are finding the videos useful, click on the like button, it all helps others find the videos on YouTube and and will help keep me motivated to make more.

Robert Burke - Portraits & Art

Having spent some time practising my traditional painting skills, I have this month painted an acrylics on canvas portrait of my sons dog Asher, that was given to him as one of his birthday presents. My ability with traditional painting and drawing is growing with each portrait I do, it will soon be time to update my www.robertburkeart.co.uk website with the new range of work.

Acrylics on canvas portrait of Asher


June 2021

Different Angle 3D

Project 1 - From Blenders Cube to a Hay Barn

The first project in the Different Angle 3D Video Tutorial Course "From the Default Cube to a Hay Barn", is now now complete. The project has 4 videos covering the design and construction of a Dutch Barn style model, working from Blenders Default Cube to create all the features of the Barn.

The tutorial project is an ideal introduction for anyone new to Blender and looking to get an understanding of mesh modelling so they can progress on to their own models and designs. The four project videos combine over 2 hours 40 minutes of guidance and instruction. Combining this project with the "Getting Started" videos, the Different Angle 3D YouTube channel now has over 6 hours of free Blender video training content.

Different Angle 3D - Project 1 - From the Default Cube to a Barn

(Click image to open in YouTube)

Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. 009 DA3D Making a Reference Image in Gimp Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. 010 DA3D Cube to a Barn Part 2 modelling the RSJ Frame Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. 011 DA3D Adding the Corrugated Roof Sheets Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. 012 DA3D Adding the Side Sheets and Rendering an Image

With the "Cube to a Hay Barn" project using a barn reference image created from photographs in the Gimp image editor, I have also created a project asset pack with the barn photos, reference image and Key-Map showing the shortcut keys used in the project. The pack can be >>downloaded from Gumroad<< for free, or if you would like to support this and future project videos, you can make a small donation for the pack.

Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. 012 DA3D Adding the Side Sheets and Rendering an Image

Project 2 - Plasma Cutting Table Design & Build

The next project will look a little deeper at using blender to help create real world objects and continues the Steel Frames and Fabrication theme with the construction of a manual Plasma Cutting Table. All the components will be modelled with precision so they can be used to create blueprints for use in workshop to construct the table.

Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. Manual Plasma Table Design and construction

The first part of the Plasma Cutting Table will be a look at where to find details on different steel profiles that are readily available and how to recreate these as 3D mesh models scaled with precision to real world sizes. This will allow you to create your own virtual steal stock library

Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. Manual Plasma Table Design and construction

Don't forget to subscribe to the >>Different Angle 3D channel<< so you are informed when new videos are put online and if you are finding the videos useful click the like button, it all helps others find the videos on YouTube and will help keep me motivated to make more.


May 2021

Different Angle 3D

I just managed to squeeze in two more video tutorials and rather than starting the practical based tutorials with difficult CAD like numerical precision, I decided to make the first project a little easier and model a scene prop. The following few projects will based around the theme of Steel Frames and Fabrications .

The first of these projects is a simple walk through of how to turn Blenders default cube into a Dutch Barn using only a reference image. I needed a reference image for this and took some photos of a local hay barn, so the first video of this project is using the Gimp image editor to turn a couple of the photos into a useful reference image. With the reference image available, Part 2 of the project (video 10) uses the reference image to layout the barns RSJ supporting framework.

Different Angle 3D - Project 1 - From the Default Cube to a Barn

(Click to open in Youtube)

Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. 009 DA3D Making a Reference Image in Gimp Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. 010 DA3D Cube to a Barn Part 2 modelling the RSJ Frame

Hopefully this month I will be able to finish the Cube to a Barn project with a couple more videos and once happy I will probably make the reference image and blend file available to download.

Don't forget to subscribe to the >>Different Angle 3D channel<< so you are informed when new videos are put online and if you are finding the videos useful click the like button, it all helps others find the videos on YouTube and and will help keep me motivated to make more.

Robert Burke - Portraits & Art

I have a couple of pet portraits to show this month one in graphite pencil and the other in soft pastel.

Pensil portrait of Bently Pastel portrait of Smudge


April 2021

Different Angle 3D

This month I have managed to complete the Getting Started section of the Different Angle 3D tutorial series (Blender course). The two new videos are 007 Fundamentals of Edit Mode and 008 Edit Mode Tools.

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Different Angle 3D - Getting Started Videos

(Click to open in Youtube)

Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. 001 Introduction to Different Angle 3D Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. 002 DA3D Installing Blender 2.9 Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. 003 DA3D Understanding Blender 2.9's Interface Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. 004 DA3D Understanding Blenders Cartesian Coordinates Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. 005 DA3D Customising Blender2.9's Interface Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. 006 DA3D Working in Object Mode in Blender 2.9 Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. 007 DA3D Fundamentals of Edit Mode in Blender 2.9 Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. 008 DA3D Understanding Blender 2.9's Edit Mode Tools

With the Getting Started section now finished, my thoughts are moving on to the first practical project. As this needs to be both simple enough for a first time Blender user, but also interesting enough for an improver to learn new techniques, I am going to focus on a small engineering project to design and model a Plasma Cutting Table that I want to make for myself. Hopefully this will also be useful for anyone interested in product design and engineering as well as people just wanting to learn about using Blender for home/hobby engineering.

Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. Next Project - a Manual Plasma Table

I recommend you subscribe to the >>Different Angle 3D channel<< so you are informed when new videos are put online.


March 2021

Different Angle 3D

I have managed to get another two videos out this month, with video 5 demonstrating how to customise Blenders Workspace and video 6 looking at the fundamentals of working in Object mode.

The videos are quickly turning into an organised Blender course, building knowledge sequentially video to video. If you jump in at a later video and don't understand what is happening, go back and look over the previous videos, you will most likely find the answer.

There is already almost two hours of content in the videos and we are still only giving the necessary background information that every new user should know to fully understand what they are doing.

Video 5 - Customising Blenders Interface & Video 6 Working in Object Mode

Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. 005 DA3D Customising Blender2.9's Interface Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. 006 DA3D Working in Object Mode in Blender 2.9

The videos I am planning for April will look at the Fundamentals of working in Edit Mode and using Blenders native tool set.

It's unlikely that the videos will be released on a regular basis as they have to fit between other work and projects. I therefore recommend you subscribe to the >>Different Angle 3D channel<< so you are informed when new videos are put online.


February 2021

Different Angle 3D

February is a short month, but I have managed to get another 2 "Different Angle 3D" videos online. The third video is a look at what the different areas, controls that are presented on the Blender default screen. The fourth video explains how blenders Cartesian coordinate system works. Cartesian coordinates are the first of the fundamental principles you need to be aware of to properly understand 3D principles. Over the coming months I am hoping to build this channel into a full video series, teaching viewers to understand 3D concepts in enough depth to create anything they want to with Blender.

Video 3 - Blenders Interface & Video 4 Blenders Cartesian Coordinates

Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. 003 DA3D Understanding Blender 2.9's Interface Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. 004 DA3D Understanding Blenders Cartesian Coordinates

Next month I will hopefully be adding videos on "Customising Blenders Interface" and the basics of "Working in Object Mode"

It's unlikely that the videos will be released on a regular basis as they have to fit between other work and projects. I therefore recommend you subscribe to the Different Angle 3D channel so you are informed when new videos are put online.


January 2021

Different Angle 3D

I am pleased to say that I met my target to get the first video of the Different Angle 3D series online around mid January. The first video introduction looks at what Blender can do in experienced hands, then looks back at how blender was born from a crowd funding campaign to release what was commercial software to the open source community and finishes with a look at where I hope to go with the video series.

Video 1 Introduction to Blender

Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. 001 Introduction to DA3D

This has been quite an interesting few weeks brushing up on using Blenders compositor to add some green screen footage to the videos. It's also been pleasing to see how many improvements have been made to the Video Sequence Editor, it seems so much more refined than when I used it last a couple of years ago.

Besides the Introduction video I have also managed to squeeze in video 002 DA3D Installing Blender.

Video 2 Installing Blender

Free Blender 2.9 detailed video tutorial course. 002 DA3D Installing Blender 2.9

It's unlikely that the videos will be released on a regular basis as they have to fit between other work and projects. I therefore recommend you subscribe to the Different Angle 3D channel so you are informed when new videos are put online.