Swilring air effect

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  04 April 2013
Swilring air effect

I'm working on a character rig for a personal animation and I'm having some trouble getting the air effect to work.

This is a practical example of someone doing it so I kn ow ti can be done in some program:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RnLgMkQg8ss

this is the actual effect from the source animation:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K05esEa-ZWE

My attempts so far:

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u...30/airtest1.jpg


I have tried nparticles, particles, and using animated alpha planes with hand drawn and photobased air wisps.

The hand drawn air wisps put on polygon rings and then spun on the Y axis at an angle kinda sorta look similar, but it's not where I want it yet. I'm really getting frustrated,a I would think a program as advanced as maya could pull off such a basic effect. I would think this kinda stuff is what particles were made for. I have not tried fluids yet as I don't really understand them and I have heard they are render expensive.

Tjhe problem I am really having with the particles in maya is that no matter what field I use no matter how much I crank up the magnitude or adjust the scale and opacity, it never looks like swirling air. It's either puffs of smoke or billowing smoke rising up.

Does anyone have any idea what method would be best to achieve this effect?

I'd prefer to get the one shown in the cartoon, but I'd accept the one in the game demo as well.

Thanks.
 
  04 April 2013
Create a curve with a lot of cvs.. then "editCurves: modify curves:curl" to turn in to a coil(or spring shape). Extrude the coil a bit down its length to create a shape somewhat like a cylinder. Use a lambert shader that is totally transparent and map a streak texture of some sort to incandescence. Then animate the uv offset of the texture. Duplicate the original geometry and scale negatively to create a second reverse direction spiral. You could make the mapping fancier by applying maps to the color gain of your texture to fade it out at the start and end of the ribbon. One might also use facingRatio on a samplerInfo to make the texture fade out when the angle of the surface with the view direction is near 90%.
 
  04 April 2013
Originally Posted by Duncan: Create a curve with a lot of cvs.. then "editCurves: modify curves:curl" to turn in to a coil(or spring shape). Extrude the coil a bit down its length to create a shape somewhat like a cylinder. Use a lambert shader that is totally transparent and map a streak texture of some sort to incandescence. Then animate the uv offset of the texture. Duplicate the original geometry and scale negatively to create a second reverse direction spiral. You could make the mapping fancier by applying maps to the color gain of your texture to fade it out at the start and end of the ribbon. One might also use facingRatio on a samplerInfo to make the texture fade out when the angle of the surface with the view direction is near 90%.


Thanks for the response. i appreciate it. I had tried using the create a polygon helix and modify convert edges to curves to get my spiral curve before. then I tried both a motion path as well as particle curve follow. neither of those were very successful.

So as I understand. you're saying to make a piece of actual geometry using the spiral curve and then use the UV offset to get the swirling along the curve affect?
 
  04 April 2013
I was describing something like the attached scene. I created the spiral curve by creating a 2 cv degree 1 curve on surface on a nurbs cylinder, then dragging one of the cvs around the cylinder to make a spiral shape. I then extruded a second 2 cv curve along the path of the spiral one to create the shape, then duplicated it with a negative scale and animated a texture.
 
  04 April 2013
Originally Posted by Duncan: I was describing something like the attached scene. I created the spiral curve by creating a 2 cv degree 1 curve on surface on a nurbs cylinder, then dragging one of the cvs around the cylinder to make a spiral shape. I then extruded a second 2 cv curve along the path of the spiral one to create the shape, then duplicated it with a negative scale and animated a texture.


I'm sorry, I took a look at the scene and I'm even more confused now then before when you explained it. I see the extruded surface, but there's no texture or even UVshells. I see the implicit uv set but no idea what that means. I don't really get how the cylinder helps also but, thanks for trying to help me. I apreciate you taking time out to give an option.

I don't really understand Duncan's solution, so if anyone else has any ideas or settings I can use with particles or other methods please continue to share. If Duncan would like to continue to elaborate I'd appreciate it, but we can't expect him to do much more short of making a video tutorial or something on it so please feel free to chime in.
 
  04 April 2013
Did you press play? there aren't any textures needed, it's an animated ramp. it's beauty is in it's simplicity. This is the kind of simplicity that allows you to layer complexity on top of it. The output, does look almost identical to the reference you posted.

Of course, this could be done with particles, and if your just trying to learn them, then this might be a great avenue for you. However, It will be extra work to get the particle blur smoothness that is absolutely for free with Duncan's method.

I have seen a website tutorial, on smoothing out the particle trail. Here is a start to your research.

http://www.sigillarium.com/blog/lang/en/228/
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  04 April 2013
Originally Posted by KidderD: Did you press play? there aren't any textures needed, it's an animated ramp. it's beauty is in it's simplicity. This is the kind of simplicity that allows you to layer complexity on top of it. The output, does look almost identical to the reference you posted.

Of course, this could be done with particles, and if your just trying to learn them, then this might be a great avenue for you. However, It will be extra work to get the particle blur smoothness that is absolutely for free with Duncan's method.

I have seen a website tutorial, on smoothing out the particle trail. Here is a start to your research.

http://www.sigillarium.com/blog/lang/en/228/


I was trying to open it up in 2009 and it didn't even have a texture assigned to it just flat dark blue. I tried it in 2012 and I got an actual results. That does look pretty cool.

I'm still a bit lost on how he created that cylinder thing. I've doen simple stuff like extruding and lofting a circle curve along a straight line to make pottery and things like that, but I've never seen any nurbs objects like that spiral thing. I'll see if I cna reverse engineer it insn ide 2012.

Thanks for the link I'll check it out.
 
  04 April 2013
Here are some steps..
1. create nurbs cylinder
2. Modify: make live
3. Create: Cv Curve tool: option curveDegree = 1
Click on top and bottom of cylinder and hit enter to create 1 segment curve
4. Select the top cv of the curve and wind it around the cylinder a few times( translate tool ). this creates a spiral shape on the cylinder.
5. Modify: make not live
6. Create another 2 cv degree 1 curve, but not on the sphere: just a short vertical segment about as long as the distance between the coils in the spring shape.
7. Select this curve followed by the curve on surface( I think that was the right order ) then do Surface:extrude. Set extrude type to flat.
8. Hide the original nurbs surface( or set intermediateObject to true).

You can scale down the top cvs of the nurbs cylinder to make the coils converge if desired.

Note that the texture animation might playback better in highquality rendering viewport than viewport 2.0.
 
  04 April 2013
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