Maya is an integrated node-based software application for 3D digital animation and visual effects. Using Maya, you can create and edit 3D models in a variety of modeling formats and animate your models using a whole host of animation tools. It is a top choice for film and video creators, game artists, and 3D design professionals.
Now with Introducing Autodesk Maya 2012 you will learn how to build and animate your own digital models and scenes as well as develop professional skills in using Maya. Introducing Autodesk Maya 2012 is 648 pages and is divided into 12 chapters.
Chapter One, "Introduction to Computer Graphics and 3D," starts off by introducing you to common computer graphics terms and concepts as well as an overview of how computer graphics (CG) happens and how it relates to Maya. It also helps to establish a commonly used workflow.
Chapter Two, "Jumping Headfirst with Both Feet," gets your hands dirty by creating a simple animation that will help you find your way around the Maya interface and workflow as well as giving you a feel for how Maya works.
Chapter Three, "The Maya 2012 Interface," takes you on a tour of the entire Maya interface and shows you how it is used in production. You start off with the layout of the screen; thes chapter also describes how the program defines and organizes the objects in a scene.
Chapter Four, "Beginning Polygonal Modeling," looks at an overview of modeling by briefly describing the three methods of modeling – through the use of polygons, NURBS, and subdivision – and how these methods differ. The second part of this chapter focus' on modeling with polygons.
Chapter Five, "Modeling with NURBS, Subdivisions, and Deformers," examines how to use deformations to adjust a model as opposed to editing the geometry directly as you did with the prior chapter. This chapter also introduces subdivision surface modeling.
Chapter Six, "Practical Experience," begins to put in to practice what you have learned so far. In this chapter you will put together a toy wagon. It uses poly and NURBS modeling techniques to provide you with practical experience in modeling with a larger project.
Chapter Seven, "Maya Shading and Texturing," describes how you apply colors and provide texturing to your models. Here you will look at shaders and how they define an object's look – its color, tactile texture, transparency, luminescence, glow, as well as other characteristics.
Chapter Eight, "Introduction to Animation," shows that the best way to learn animation is to animate. That is just what you do in this chapter. You start with bouncing a ball and then move on to more complex systems of animation when you bring a locomotive to life.