Still learning what keys to pressI'm still learning shortcuts, critical ones too -- Cntl+Up Arrow for going full screen on your current view. I can't believe I battled on without learning that one for so long. I've been reminded of this little tool on Facebook's Blender group:
http://waldobronchart.github.io/ShortcutMapper/#Blender This too: http://download.blender.org/documentation/BlenderHotkeyReference.pdf
I'm not very keen on quick plugin solutions because they can dull my artistic senses - if you use Photoshop then you'll have had that experience of seeing someone's work and immediately recognising the work of a filter, probably because it was applied with little or no tweaking -- it just kills the work for you. I held off buying Cosmic Pack 3 product from Digital Heavens because of this fear - that if I use cosmic pack 3 outputs in my work anyone familiar with the product will very likely recognise that I used it to shortcut the creative journey.
Digital Heavens cosmic pack 3
..and that's when I bought it anywayWell, the lack of time that I have to spend being creative has forced me into a change of mind - I wanted to create some more planet maps but realised that I could spend a week just making a few maps without getting any actual work done. Not to mention that you can use these off-the-shelf tools as a starting point and make sure that you don't finish until the output is refined enough that it doesn't look like other example Cosmic Pack work.
|Blender output using Cosmic Pack 3 starfield and planet maps.|
I only had time to blindly run through a quick planet creation, there were some quirks that I need to research as I expected prompts for modifying masks and layer qualities, such as scale, however, I am instantly impressed. I'm seeing Cosmic Pack 3 more as an extended palette for space scenery and less like an stamp-on solution for generic space backgrounds.