12 mighty Maya tutorials to try today

Autodesk Maya is one of the go-to packages for serious 3D artists, with its advanced tools and high-end plugins, this software is capable of creating some incredibly impressive 3D art to add to your design portfolio

The Maya tutorials on this page will help to demystify its core features and improve your skills. So whether you're a beginner or seasoned pro with the software, there's a Maya tutorial here for everyone to get their teeth into. 

Give them a go and show us what you've created on Facebook or Twitter.

01. Mastering Maya's interface 

If you're just getting started with Maya, it's definitely worth taking a look at this interface tour video from its maker Autodesk. This will give you a basic overview of the layout and show you where to find the most used and useful tools for beginners.

02. Beginner's guide to Maya

Pluralsight has extensive library of in-depth Maya tutorials

If you're wanting to learn Maya (or any other creative software for that matter, Pluralsight is a brilliant place to start. It has a huge library of Maya tutorials depending on your project type and skill level. When you sign up to Pluralight with a demo account you can watch select lessons and courses for free, including this beginner's guide to Maya. The helpful video tutorial explains the essential workflows, terms and techniques to help you get started with Maya.

03. Maya for Beginners

If you want to get to grips with Maya without any sign up, this free Maya tutorial video by Shane Whittington will teach you all the basics, starting with the tools and user interface. Over two hours you'll learn how to create and texture polygon models, how to light your scene and finally create a rendered image of your work.

04. Exploring Maya 2018

Learn all about the 3D modeling tools and workflows in Maya in this brilliant video tutorial series

For those of you lucky enough to have your hands on the latest iteration of Maya, you can find an absolutely brilliant series of instructional videos over on the Autodesk website. Here you'll find everything from building models and animation to creating UVs and working with lights. 

05. Introduction to Animation 

Create your very own alien environment from scratch in this free video Maya tutorial

In this free Maya tutorial you will learn how to create your own 3D scene from scratch. The 90-minute video includes how to sculpt environments, texturing, working with lights and cameras, animating, creating visual effects such as fire and electricity and rendering and exporting animated films.

06. Maya 2017: Easy rigging 

Rigging a 3D model can be a complicated task, but the team at Faex Editing have tried to simplify things with this helpful Maya tutorial. Easy to follow, this guide will help you get a basic understanding of and set up the human bone structure in Maya 2017.  

07. Create a walk cycle in Maya

Learn how to create a convincing walk cycle with this detailed 40-minute Maya tutorial. Master each pose, set up the timing and refine the walk cycle using the graph editor. 

08. UV Mapping

Master the art of placing 2D textures on to 3D models in Maya using the UV editor tools with this 30-minute guide.

09. Maya shaders and textures

Wrap your head around all of Maya's different material types with this detailed guide

As part of a Know the Basics series by Paul Hatton, this guide delves in to the process of creating and assigning materials in Maya. Wrap your head around all the different material types and how to render them in Maya's default renderer, Arnold.

10. Maya 2018: Bifrost fluids

Get to grips with simulating fluids with this in-depth Maya tutorial 

For the more advanced Maya user, this brilliant Maya tutorial from Lynda shows provides an overview of simulating fluids in Bifrost. Topics include emitting from and colliding with a polygon mesh, adding velocity, friction and drag with motion fields and optimising space and accuracy. You will need a Lynda account to access the course, you can sign up here or opt for a free 30-day trial

11. How to design an animated hero

Learn how Scott Raymond animated Bink to be as appealing as possible

Scott Raymond shares his process for animating Bink, a curious little seafaring creature, for Eric Miller Animation Studios' web series. His challenge was to make the most appealing introduction to the character as possible, in just a short amount of time, incorporating Eric Miller's vision and existing setups, while trying to define Bink's unique personality. A versatile rig made it possible to really push the character poses and find the most appealing version of him. 

12. Create a realistic environment in Maya

Eva Ng explains why getting your references right is key to nailing environments

Creating different environments is exciting, but to make them believable it's key to study your references. In this Maya tutorial, Eva Ng demonstrates how she made this project based on Vivienne Gucwa's photo Summer on Perry Street, NYC. It's also an opportunity to explore new production workflows and to improve your future projects.

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