MAYA – BEGINNER FOUNDATIONS

 

Welcome to the Autodesk Maya Accelerated Learning Path for Aspiring Professionals!

Autodesk Maya stands at the forefront of the 3D industry, essential for those aiming to break into animation, game development, or visual effects.

This free video course is just the beginning. We’re committed to your growth in the 3D industry, which is why we’ll continue to enrich this learning path with comprehensive content added regularly.

From advanced techniques to industry insights, you’ll gain access to an evolving library of resources designed to keep you at the forefront of 3D modeling and animation.

 
 

DOWNLOAD – PROJECT FILES

 

Download and unzip the Project Files to follow along.

See Project Credits.

 
 

CONTENTS

 

1. Project Directory & Display Modes
2. Navigation In Detail
3. Selection
4. The Move Tool
5. The Rotate Tool
6. The Scale Tool
7. Component And Object Modes
8. Creating Primitive Objects
9. Modify Pivots
10. Duplicate Clone Instance
11. Assign Shaders
12. Parent & Group
13. Mirroring Objects
14. Snap Basics
15. Maya Cameras
16. The Display Menu
17. Troubleshoot & Reset Maya UI
18. Explore The Space Scene
Maya Project Credits


 
 

01. PROJECT DIRECTORY & DISPLAY MODES

This video will guide you through the fundamental steps of setting a Project Directory and opening an sc ene in Maya.

You will learn to the display modes in the viewport.

Download the Project Files to follow along.

Learn how to:
– Basic navigation in the Maya interface
– Set a project directory
– Load a project file
– Use The Basic Display Modes

Hotkeys:
– Tumble: alt + left mouse button
– Track: alt + middle mouse button
– Dolly: alt + right mouse button
– Display Wireframe: 4
– Display Smooth Shading: 5
– Display Textures: 6
– Display Lighting: 7


 
 

02. NAVIGATION IN DETAIL

This video will guide you navigating in Maya in more detail.

Learn how to:
– Navigate in the Maya interface
– Use Frame Selected
– Use Navigation Tips Like Triangulation.
– Use The View Cube

Hotkeys:
– Tumble: alt + left mouse button
– Track: alt + middle mouse button
– Dolly: alt + right mouse button
– Frame Selected Object: f


 
 

03. SELECTING OBJECTS

This video shows how to select objects in Maya.

Learn how to:
– Toggle Selection (shift)
– Add Selection (shift + ctrl)
– Remove Selection (ctrl)
– Deselect
– Use The Select Marking
– Lasso Select
– Paint Select

Hotkeys:
– Select: q
– Select Marking Menu: q (hold) left-click (hold)


 
 

04. MOVE TOOL

This video shows how to use the move manipulator in Maya.

Learn how to:
– Use The Move Manipulator
– Ctrl Disable An Axis
– Middle-Click Drag With Yellow
– Shift Middle-Click Drag
– World/Object Modes
– Use The Move Tool Marking Menu
– Reset The Move Tool
– Scale the Manipulator Size

Hotkeys:
– Move: w
– Move Marking Menu: w (hold) left-click (hold)
– Size Manipulator: + and =


 
 

05. ROTATE TOOL

This video shows how to use the rotate manipulator in Maya.

Learn how to:
– Use The Rotate Manipulator
– Middle-Click Drag With Yellow
– World/Object Modes
– Use The Rotate Tool Marking Menu
– Reset The Rotate Manipulator
– Scale the Manipulator Size
– Gimbal Rotation
– Snap 15 Degree Steps

Hotkeys:
– Move: e
– Move Marking Menu: e (hold) left-click (hold)
– Size Manipulator: + and =
– Snap 15 Degree Steps: j


 
 

06. SCALE TOOL

This video shows how to use the scale manipulator in Maya.

Learn how to:
– Use The Scale Manipulator
– World/Object Modes
– Use The Scale Tool Marking Menu
– Reset The Scale Manipulator
– Size the Manipulator

Hotkeys:
– Move: r
– Move Marking Menu: r (hold) left-click (hold)
– Size Manipulator: + and =


 
 

07. COMPONENT MODE

This video provides a brief introduction to Maya’s components and objects.

We will explore component modes in detail later, but for now, let’s focus on how to exit component mode and return to object mode.

Learn how to:
– Enter Component Modes
– Exit Component Mode into Object Mode

Hotkeys:
– Vertex/Edge/Face Modes: right-click an object (marking menu)
– Object Mode: right-click an object (marking menu)


 
 

08. CREATE PRIMITIVE OBJECTS

This video shows how to create primitive objects in Maya.

Primitive objects are fundamental shapes that are frequently used in 3D modelling.

Learn how to:
– Create Primitive Objects
– Shift-Right-Click Marking Menu
– Modify Primitives Popup Window (T)
– Channel Box Settings
– Height Baseline
– Middle-Click-Drag Attributes

Hotkeys:
– Create Marking Menu: shift (hold) nothing selected (marking menu)
– Options Popup Window: t


 
 

09. MODIFY PIVOTS

This video shows how to modify object pivots in Maya.

Learn how to:
– Edit An Object’s Pivot
– Snap A Pivot To Face/Edge
– Center An Object’s Pivot

Hotkeys:
– Modify Pivot: d (toggle)



 
 

10. DUPLICATE, CLONE & INSTANCE

This video shows how to duplicate, clone and instance objects in Maya.

Learn how to:
– Clone An Object
– Duplicate Objects
– Duplicate Multiple Objects With Offset
– Duplicate Special Options
– Numeric Duplication
– Instance Objects
– Uninstance Objects

Hotkeys:
– Clone: shift-drag an object
– Duplicate: ctrl d
– Duplicate Offset: shift d
– Duplicate Special Window: ctrl shift d


 
 

11. ASSIGN SHADER COLORS

This tutorial demonstrates how to assign colors to objects and how to reuse shaders on other objects.

Learn how to:
– Assign A StandardSurface Shader
– Modify The Shader Color (Attribute Editor)
– Use The Color Pickers
– Copy/Save Colors
– Rename A Shader
– Assign An Existing Shader

Hotkeys:
– Assign New Shader: Right-Click > Assign Favorite Material > standardSurface
– Attribute Editor: ctrl a
– Assign Existing Shader: Right-Click > Assign Existing Material >
– Advance Color Picker: Double-Click The Color Box


 
 

12. PARENT & GROUP OBJECTS

This tutorial demonstrates how to group and parent objects in Maya, which is crucial for organizing scenes and creating pivot points for multiple objects.

Group hierarchies are also essential for rigging and animation.

Learn how to:
– Group And Ungroup Objects
– Parent And Unparent Objects
– Nest Groups
– Parent And Unparent In The Outliner

Hotkeys:
– Parent: p
– Unparent: shift p
– Group: ctrl g


 
 

14. SNAP BASICS

This tutorial demonstrates how to accurately align objects to the grid and points within the scene.

You’ll learn how to adjust the object pivots to snap them together precisely and snap objects across a single axis.

Learn how to:
– Snap To Grid & Points
– Snap A Single Axis
– Snap Pivot Points
– Snap Newly Created Objects

Hotkeys:
– Grid Snap: x
– Curve Snap: c
– Point Snap: v
– Edit Pivot: d


 
 

14. MAYA’S CAMERAS

In this video, you will learn how to switch between Maya’s default cameras and create new ones.

Learn how to:
– Navigate To Front/Side/Top Views
– What Are Orthographic Cameras
– Showing The Default Cameras
– Create And See Through New Cameras
– Tear Off A Window
– Cycle Perspective Cameras

Hotkeys:
– Change Single View/Four Views: spacebar
– Hotbox: spacebar (hold)
– Set Camera Outliner: middle-click drag into view


 
 

16. TROUBLESHOOTING MAYA

In this video, you will learn how to reset Maya’s UI, tools, and user preferences to avoid any issues.

Learn how to:
– Reset And Lock Maya’s UI
– Reset The Main Tools
– Size The Manipulators
– Reset The User Prefs


 
 

17. SPACE SCENE

The last video on this page is a fun space scene you can open and explore.

Using some of the lessons learned so far you can navigate via the scene cameras, view and play the animation.

Please make sure you have set your project directory to the downloaded project files according to the first video on this page.

Learn how to:
– Open & Explore The Space Scene
– Play/Scrub The Animation
– Change Cameras
– Adjust The Display Modes
– Adjust Viewport Lighting


 
 

MAYA PROJECT CREDITS

 

Download and unzip the Project Files to follow along.

Space Scene Credits:
Space Ship By CGPitBull
Explosion By Detonation Films
Background Image By Yuri
All Scenes By Andrew Silke

License: Non-Commercial Educational use only. Please Do not distribute.

Copyright Create 3d Characters 2024