Decision between creating objects in OpenGL/Maya

I’m very new to graphics program. I’m making a game that is just a control panel (dials/switches/gauges), with the user interacting with that panel.

Would it be better for me to use OpenGL to make these basic gauges (like a speedometer), using cylinders and whatnot, or would it be better to model them in Maya, and then import them. Then I suppose there’s a third choice of creating the entire panel in Maya, and importing that panel.

For simplicity you can think of it like a car dashboard, and you interact with it by resetting the odometer. Is that better to generate in a 3rd party program or to manually do it in OpenGL, or maybe even SDL/GLUT?

Thanks, sorry if this sounds dumb :eek:

It depends on the degree of artistry required and the design of the panel.

Importing from Maya can be non trivial when you consider that the appearance of anything in Maya can be a result of many complicating factors. So when using Maya you will probably limit yourself to a subset of functionality and the artist will restrict themselves to that subset including a narrow path through the hypershade graph, unless you want to take on a very large project.

If you want a few regular buttons etc. then do it programmatically.

An alternative is to paint images in something like photoshop and use them as textures compositing them with blending on the fly including texture transparency. This can be high quality but is not 3D, but for a “panel” it may be all you need.