I would like to begin this blog by telling you a little bit about myself. I am masterxeon1001 however, that’s just my 3d identity. In my regular life, I am much more boring. I began 3d Feb. 1, 2010 at the same time that I began the worst job ever… at a call center. I have always been very into technical things and how things work, so this job was entirely torture. I answered back to back calls with PCs that had everything enjoyable win-locked out of the system. One day, I discovered that I could run Blender 2.5 from a pen-drive and with that, my life changed.
From what was an unfortunate series of events, in what I can only describe as the worst job I’ve ever had, I found a friend in Blender. Even on Pentium 4 PCs with 512 MB of RAM, I was able to efficiently do my job while practicing 3d. I remember going in to work and thinking, “Man! I wonder if I can build a character, and rig it, before my shift ends?” I would watch tutorials on the bus, and get to work amped up to get busy modeling. This method of getting past the beginner stage, was beneficial because I leaned efficient multitasking. But to be honest, I was just dealing with calls and focusing my full attention to Blender. It was a uniquely bad situation which also provided hope. Maybe if I could get good enough, I could escape this life of servitude, and stop doing tasks that I wasn’t suited for.
As time went on, the job began to get more ridiculous and tedious, to the point that it was not the same career anymore. My job changed from fixing problems, to being judged based on salesmanship, while maybe fixing problems. I endured as long as I could, but I had to move on. After five years of taking phone calls, my nerves were shot. I couldn’t talk to people without feeling the urge to go “Super Saiyan” on them. And god help you if you asked me a basic PC question like, “How do I use the mouse?”
Since this is my introduction, I’ll go over a few interesting tidbits from my adventures working there. I would work in Blender while taking calls on DSL. I would be so focused on modeling tasks that I would lose focus on the customer, causing me to say interesting things on calls. I remember telling a woman that birds cause DSL trouble. She put the phone down and went outside screaming at the birds before I could tell her that I was kidding. Another lady went insane because I told her that it was silly to unplug your PC because it was not a modem. A modem has been a modem for hundreds of years but a tower has never been called a modem. I became more cynical as time went on and it began to shape me into the person before you now.
I was getting to the point, where I would take calls, and be able to complete tasks in blender, like rigging, bone naming, or compositing, before they could find the label on their modem units. It’s not that I’m some sort of genius – it’s just that, the people I was dealing with, weren’t by a long shot.
Through my experiences with troubleshooting, I was able to improve my learning and teaching skills by using the work I was doing as a tool, and the people I talked with as lessons. Thus the personality of masterxeon1001 was born.
My very first videos are still online, showing my journey from where I was when I started using blender, to where I am today. I would like to talk about some other jobs I’ve had, however, the next place that I worked, at the same time as the call center, is worth mentioning.
Fleshlight. Do you know what that is? It’s a sex toy for men. I was working at the company that made them. The terminology was pretty hilarious. “Hey go grab those pink p***** vortexes and finger them.” It wasn’t funny after a week. I am probably a master fingerer, but who knows. Haha! Maybe that’s where I got master hotkey skills and iron fingers.
So this company was very strange and different because, instead of being behind a PC, I was on my feet, and the work was literally fingering stuff. I once again had to figure out how to best utilize this time to advance in 3d, because I was aware of the competitive nature of the 3d industry. I had not yet truly joined the 3d artist community. I docked my ipod, set up the wifi on it, and watched Blender tutorials while fingering p*****. What an adventure so far.
So, another strange thing about this job, was that no one thought it was weird to sell a product that was basically a double gulp you busted a n** in. I thought I was just being prude, so I endured. Then I met the owner. Haha! He can only be described as “Porno Jesus”, because he acted like he walked on water, and looked like Jesus. I remember one day, we had a meeting about how we should be grateful for the air conditioning. I was like, “What?! Don’t you have this so these rubber p****s dont melt?” But, it gets more interesting. They also only gave us half hour lunches, so that leaving was out of the question. But, no worries, we had the Fleshlight Diner. Sure! This was an overpriced kitchen, within a company that forced us into eating like rabid wolves, in a p**** shop. As time went on, the menu got more and more pathetic. How pathetic? Well, how does a potato salad sandwich for $5.00 sound? If that doesn’t sound appealing, then you’re like me – a guy who never eats a sandwich without meat.
I found myself becoming popular here, since I could not stop cracking jokes about the situation. It’s actually my curse. I can’t stop lamenting irony.
I put a dollar in the suggestion box, saying that if they are a billion dollar company, they should at least have quality grub, so I can have the strength to make sure consumers won’t injure themselves, with staples or plastic molding tubes. I guess people are so eager to try the product, they don’t think of inspecting it first.
As a result of my suggestion, I was confronted during a 150-person meeting. Instead of blushing away like a shy girl seeing a prince, I decided to stand up for myself. “Cmon bra! You eat a potato salad sandwich!” Sorry. I have sandwich standards. They probably didn’t like it, but it didn’t affect my career immediately. I was working from 6am to midnight 6 days a week, so I didn’t care. Being slaughtered was more glorious than working to death, and if I was going to die working, I might as well keep my voice.
As time went on, I continued developing my skill at 3d. Everyone who ever met me, knew I was obsessed, with some strange PC game called Blender. Its not a damn game!
I modeled Fleshlight, after Fleshlight, in an attempt to demonstrate my worth as an employee, to management on the other side, while being shut down repeatedly. I took that as a challenge to earn their amazement. I continued working on the fleshlights until, finally, they started looking photo-real. But by this time, they had made it clear that I was a boxboy, and that to even approach the office was heresy. “No advancement ever,” was the message. I still think that, if you begin as a servant, they’ll never see you as anything more no matter the determination shown.
My then girlfriend found this to be a good time to break up with me. Her last words to me included the phrase “amateur loser”. I remember hearing that and thinking, ” ^#**@! I will show you that I’m more than that. How dare you!”
She was right. I was an amateur loser. I was still making cube art. But those were harsh words, nonetheless.
So finally, after a year and a half working for Fleshlight, I was laid off in “company cutbacks”. This didn’t matter, since I was already aware that there was no future, except as a laborer. These hands of mine can do things more beautiful than fingering Fleshlights.
These events set my determination into overdrive. I told myself, “This woman will never see me. The closest she will get, will be to see my art from the outside at the top.” That was my goal – to make sure that when masterxeon1001 was googled, only pretty images and progressive growth would be found. There would just be me on the first page with my accomplishments.
After all of that, I moved out and began living with a coworker, which was very relaxed. Court and Les were the greatest roommates ever. I was able to come home from work, practice art, and make tutorials. This situation was very peaceful and nobody messed with me. I would just shut my door and do my Blending.
To be honest, the goal I set for myself was to put 10+ hours a day into 3d, so it has been a very intensive journey for me. I also take it very seriously.
That’s the end of “Intro Part 1”. I just wanted to get this in writing, so that my history and beginnings were established, while hopefully entertaining with my tired words. Sleep for now, but I will return.
13 thoughts on “My 3d Beginnings”
That is a great story and funny too.
Just wanted to say a massive thanks for your tutorials …. my story is a long one (in a nutshell) as a talent at university – I studied illustration and photography heading down the digital route. Got lost/ignored in my final year as I was the only illustration specialist and my course was being cut.. ended up working in head office for the company I worked for… which went ended up being dissolved and I bought one of the shops during the liquidation. And I turned it good…. very good in fact … I had it all… then the financial world turned back in 2008. I lost everything including nearly loosing my wife and kids … but I carried on working in any place I could find work … dead end jobs and stuck eventually working nights in a pertol station.
Last year I suffered a massive breakdown, I couldn’t find my way out of the dead end.
During this dark time I started messing with photoshop again … and started looking online for inspiration and stumbled across Blender … it was free and looked cool.
A few tutorials later I stumbled on your tutorials and was amazed that you where willing to teach indepth without trying to squeeze money from me (I just get by)
Anyway back to my thanks … its because of amazing people like yourself that do these tutorials that helped me regain my focus in life. I love my wife and kids to the moon and back and couldn’t have got myself back together without them. But its the blender community that gives me a feeling of moving forward and keeps my creative brain alive ..
I now back at work and with the help of guys like you keeping the intelligent part of me alive I’m being noticed as a talent again and being put through for management training.
Only problem now is finding time to blend now I’m hooked and also trying to save for a pc that can handle my imagination without crashing lol… but again with the help of guys like yourself I’m finding and learning ways.
Many thanks and sorry for the long reply but I think it’s so important you hear my story and how you’ve helped.
thats inspirational as hell bro. haha lets not get emotional here. However I am very glad i was able to make an impact on your life. 3d is almost a monks journey man. Except the road is polygons and seams are showing. I think through learning 3d we also learn about ourselves as people and become better at understanding out own minds in exchange for people around us hating us. I know your story will have a happy ending. You just gotta work hard towards your goals and remain confident and steadfast. Your reply was just what I needed since coincidently when I got your email I was just saying I hope I leave lasting mark on cg. Becuase its the closest thing to another dimension if our world leaders dont tank the economy or bomb us over irl bullish. You gotta take it one step at a time but you must never give up. I also remember learning and thinking wow I should at least leave a road for the common man. Because moving from peasant to noble is neigh impossible but I want to leave an open road free of paywall where someone with pure determination can pull out the master sword. Who knows what the meaning of life is. I feel mine is to create something that is capable of explaining this dimension I’m so engrossed in that its impossible to explain to a non 3d human being. Keep up the good fight!
I feel positive for the future, and I hope one day you’ll see some work by me and think … job done.
Maybe I will weald Excalibur … after all I’m from England 😉
Thanks for taking the time to reply.
Take it easy and have fun.
I can’t wait to receive your add-on I just purchased, I’m guessing I get download link?…. It looks cool and I’m on a tight deadline to pull together some 3D polish on a project I’m working on for a client. I’d love to see what this can do for buildings and architecture, would be great if you had a library of crown molding, door knobs, key holes, drawer handles. : ) Keep up the great work, a leader is powerful to the degree he empowers others. Farewell mighty CG Warrior, may the legends of Albion look after you. : ) hugs Joule
haha. Best comment ever!
I’m all a-buzz and in a strange state bouncing between scattered-as-heck and super-focussed.
Good things are in the pipeline thanks to you MasterXeon.
I spent my entire 30s working behind a checkout. If I think on it too hard it gives me dreadful vertigo. I was top-o-the-class at art school, and then immediately got lost on graduation. Holy jizz, did I get lost. It’s funny. I ended up going down to London and working as a runner in a post-production house in Soho, along with a couple of other dudes. Now they are Nuke and Maya art-director monster goliaths, and I am only just starting out.
I entered a time-slowing timewarp in 1998 and am only just emerging. Somehow, now, I am 42 years old and I work as a junior motion designer in a big ad agency, fiddle-faddling with Adobe AE and occasionally being let loose in C4d. I must be the oldest junior on earth. I have a beautiful son and a beautiful-but-very-tricky wife and I live on the other side of the planet. If you want to remain connected with all your buddies and family from 40 years, do not get a Kiwi girl pregnant. You will be suddenly exiled to a distant land and not know how to ever get back to everything you know. So I went from time flowing like thick tar for ten whole years to a lightspeed catapult in a single breath. And when I landed I said “I’m getting into CG.” And CG has been like, weird as it sounds, a kind of spiritual anchor ever since I landed in NZ.
I started out in Cinema 4D and up til I came across your Blending Away The Pain course, I did the usual open-it-close-it-download-the-new-version-open-it-close-it dibble dabble with Blender. Even after I subscribed to CGCookie, as awesome as those dudes are. But I just came across your teaching, right at the precise moment when I really figured out that a career working for fancy CG or VFX houses is probably a very bad idea, health, sanity and money-wise. The timing was uncanny. Right when I realised that I’ll be better off blazing my own path in CG than trying to learn the heck out of Autodesk or Sidefx or whatever software just so I can join the ratrace even more frantically, right at that moment, I stumbled upon your teaching. I’m so thrilled. Your stuff is special. It’s super-rich, super-fun, super-deep and I love your accent. Is that a southern US twang? Heck I could listen to that just about all day.
In summary, you’ve lit the fire my friend. I now see what an astonishing mind-bomb Blender really is, and I AM HOOKED.
Hello and awesome comment,
Sometimes I wonder if this post is the best choice. However the glowing responses I get like this one show me that it was definetely the best choice. It’s always interesting to hear about peoples adventures with blender. In fact I personally think it’s better if you come with an extended artistic background. Then you can see more readily what is offered in comparisson to something else.
Ha those timewarps right? It’s like everytime I sit down the day just dies and another one grows into maturity. You always can get on my good side talking about BATP. I really put my all into that course. I can’t wait to make a sequel. I always tell people that a job is a byproduct of my endeavor not the endproduct. If I get hired it’s because my personal work was looking that awesome. Autodesk and the other guys are still worth using and watching but their pricing structures are evolving faster than the sofware. By the end of it we’ll be paying just to study and stay relevant. Wheres the future in that haha. I also have a youtube channel if you really want more Texan blender goodness.
I hope you continue to enjoy and use Blender. It’s too lightweight, customizable and brilliant to not use. With every development the power becomes more apparent.
Hi MasterXeon1001. Yep, awesome beginnings (for not giving up in sh177y situations).
May I reference your story in an up coming video for this 2020 new decade? (I am not mentioning your name, but I will reference cases like yours in the video) Privacy is a must on these things.
I’ll post something on my blog, you’ve inspired me to tell my sh177y story as well.
giving up is accepting loss. Ill never admit im a loser. Have at it! This story was intended to show my beginnings and hopefully inspire others.
Inspiring story. So can I reference it?