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Mirye Software (http://mirye.net/) has released Shade 10, an update to their professional 3D modeling, animation and rendering suite. The new version emphasizes greater integration with other applications and export options, as well as overall improvements to workflow.
Shade is an all-in-one 3D solution that includes both curved surface modeling and traditional polygon based modeling tools. New features in version 10 include:
° Multipass rendering, which lets you render images into layered TIFF files that allow post processing of each discreet effect;
° New, interactive 3D manipulator, custom work planes, fully customizable viewports and more workflow enhancements;
° New support for adding 3D fur, hair masks, additional hair styling tools, hair collision detection and gravity;
° An interactive joint object allows models to switch between alternative geometry;
° External surface and geometry;
° Toon rendering features;
° Support for Smith Micro Poser 8 for incorporating or hosting Poser characters in Shade;
° The ability to export to Collada, Second Life and Blue Mars;
° Native 64 bit operations on Mac OS X 10.6 ("Snow Leopard").
Shade 10 files can reference external surface materials, geometry and more. It's available for Mac OS X and Windows. Shade Professional costs US$899. The Standard version is $249, and the Designer version is $49. Shade 10 is a free upgrade for any purchaser of Shade 9. Mirye Software is also making available two other resources with the release of Shade 10.
Learning Shade 1 with Taiyo is a free, 40-minute tutorial video that covers the creation of an animated character. This video is immediately available on the Mirye Software web site.
Mirye Software has also shipped Hanako for Shade, a professionally rigged, native Shade model of a beautiful Japanese woman. Hanako includes an expression system based on Shade 10 switch joints as well as multiple poses and props. Hanako includes an illustrated PDF manual. Hanako is available at an introductory price of $24.95 during the first two weeks of availability.