Tuesday, January 2, 2024

30 Years of Blender

It seems that this year marks the 30th Birthday of Blender (which is observed on the 2nd January every year). What a milestone!


On a personal level, I am forever grateful for role that Blender has and continues to play in my life. In many ways, you can say that Blender and I grew up together - right time, right place, all that sort of thing:

From starting out as a kid in his early teens in NZ wanting to make his own animated short films; to starting to put my self-taught programming skills to use tweaking and modifying this software to scratch my own itches; to starting to help the nascent few professional studios starting to use Blender to scratch their itches; and finally, spending the better part of a decade or so fighting hard to propel our favourite open source 3D content creation suite from "just a little hobbyist toy" to "serious film-production ready software on-par with (if not outright superior to) the other much more lauded 'industry standard' software".

I think it's fair to say that we've definitely achieved that goal of becoming one of the new industry standard DCC suites, playing a major role in production pipelines throughout the industry. Everywhere you look, there are people out the using Blender - often in places and ways that you'd least expect!   

What a thrilling ride it's been, along with getting to meet some many good lifelong friends along the way! 


As you may have noticed, I've been largely absent from active involvement in the Blender world for the past few years. While a return to actively developing and contributing to Blender is not completely off the cards, it is currently highly unlikely. Never say never, but between a fairly heavy workload on a complex + important / critical system in my day-job, some ongoing consulting work on some other projects I've been involved in, and also trying to have a bit more of a life outside of work (I'm trying... old habits die hard), it's unlikely to happen anytime soon.

(Admittedly, it's also been somewhat bittersweet seeing the recent resurgence of interest in Blender's Animation System. Seeing all the active discussion + development of things I would've really loved some feedback on a decade ago when I was actually still actively working on some of these things is fun to see... I just wish it could've happened sooner! Oh well... such is life!)

Happy 30th Birthday Blender!

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