Site administrator: Mike Gaynor

About Mike:

I am a professional motion graphics artist, and an animation and visual effects student at San Francisco’s Academy of Art University.  I enjoy playing guitar and piano, eating delicious food, watching Dexter and House, and making awesome visuals.

What software do you use?

For the majority of my tutorials, I will try to use Autodesk’s Maya, as well as Adobe’s Creative Suite.  It is safe to assume I am using the most current versions (Maya 2013 and Adobe CS6 at the time of writing this.)  The great thing about these packages is that they are becoming more accessible to people who are just learning or working independently.  Autodesk has an awesome deal for students, where they make all of their software available for free.  Adobe has free trials for 30 days, but they also offer the new Adobe Creative Cloud, which gives you full access to all of their software for $50 a month.  This may be expensive for many, but keep in mind that is a commercial-grade license, whereas the Autodesk student editions are for non-commercial work.

To purchase Maya, visit: http://www.autodesk.com

Students can download these titles free from: http://students.autodesk.com/

Adobe’s Creative Cloud is available here: Adobe Creative Cloud

Where did you learn this stuff?

I began teaching myself a lot of this stuff when I was around 16, just messing around in 3ds Max and Maya trials.  I downloaded GIMP (A free open-source program similar to Photoshop) and had a lot of fun making graphics and signatures for forums etc.  I have been studying visual effects more in-depth in college, and also work as a motion graphics artist which means I have to use this stuff every day.