So, good news and bad news.
As many of you may know, I create my artwork using a 3D rendering program (DAZ Studio), supplemented by postwork in Photoshop. I've seen multiple iterations not only of the program, but the 3D human models and the various clothing and hair models that attach to them, as well as the textures applied to same. Over this time I've acquired quite a library of all this stuff.
Not unreasonably, DAZ continually improves the software and the models, and they and various third party vendors who create content update things accordingly. The downside for artists like me is that over the last few years each iteration of the models has made the previous generation of models obsolete: the clothing, hair, and textures for the prior generation will not work on the newest one. So the pipeline of products for the old models cease, and you have to buy new (or replacement) versions of the content to work on the newly supported models.
This gets quite expensive. Due to the extent of my library, I am still primarily using a model from several years ago, Victoria 4 (and sometimes an even older one, Aiko 3). Lately I've done a small handful on a newer one, Genesis 2. However the most recent generation of the program and models has finally hit a wall for me.
With the newest release of Studio, DAZ has changed the basic render engine, from a product called 3Delight to one called iRay. While 3Delight is still supported, just as with the models, new products are starting to ditch textures that work with it in lieu of the latest and greatest. At the same time there is yes another new iteration of the models, Genesis 3, also not in any way backwardly compatible with the previous versions (except via some add on utilities that are less than perfect). Funds being tight, I can't afford to replace everything (again). But the biggest detriment is iRay. It is really optimized to create more photo-realistic renders, which is not at all what I am interested in. Aside from it not working with any of the textures, lights, or shaders I have collected over the years, it also is an intense resource hog. A render that might take me 5 minutes in 3Delight can take hours to render in iRay. All to get an effect I don't particularly want.
So the bad news is, I am not sure I will be going that path, and eventually the source of products to support what I do may dry up. The good news part of it is, I still have tons of zipped product files of the older stuff that I have not opened yet, so I still have quite a bit I can use for a while. And I will just have to get extra creative in figuring out how to make interesting and pretty pictures with the products I do have.
And if you've read this far... you deserve a medal.