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Thomas Helzle

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Everything posted by Thomas Helzle

  1. More wound wire: "Dual Shell" In the meantime I reworked some of the above for large scale printing (10,000px square). https://fineartamerica.com/profiles/thomas-helzle.html "Curled Wire" Cheers, Tom
  2. Over the last couple of weeks I started to learn Houdini, partly from tutorials by Entagma and others, partially by implementing things I worked on in Grasshopper for Rhino (which is single threaded and rather slow for larger assets) over into the Houdini world. This one started out from the Entagma tutorial on differential growth but I then first extended it to avoid the text areas and today implemented a first version of a threading solution to make it look more like yarn: This one is similar to an older test I once did in Softimage XSI and Arnold, but this time with Houdini, exported as FBX and rendered with my favourite renderer Thea Render: And the last one for today was a study on how one can visualise noise in Houdini. It uses a solver and the trails node. I found it hard to make it look really subtle in Mantra, so in the end I created poly wires and also exported it to Thea Render via FBX: Thanks everybody on Odforce for knowledge and inspiration!!! Cheers, Tom
  3. Great it works now! ;-) Well, that depends on what you want to do. With midi CCs, you can for instance directly midi-learn many VSTs (many have right-mouse menus for that on every control) and you should be able to do that with Live factory stuff too. That's mostly used for life use with hardware controllers though, since the DAW-automation is much finer so you don't get stepping. If direct mapping does not work as you want it, you can try to simply copy and paste the automation curve from the midi CC to the volume or pan in the Live mixer and see if that is compatible - you would have two identical automation curves then, one for midi and one for the dedicated Live stuff. Cheers, Tom
  4. Yeah, make sure you actually automate Midi CCs. It's been a while since I used Ableton (switched to Bitwig when it came out ;-) ), but "Volume" in Ableton isn't identical to "Midi Volume". DAW-internal the automation is much higher res (floating point 0-1 usually instead of 7 bit 0-127) and usually does not use Midi. If you explicitly automate Midi CCs it should work though, at least in theory if Ableton hasn't borked it. ;-) Cheers, Tom
  5. It's definitely the Control Tab. The dropdown lists most common CCs or you can go by "Index" which in Midi-speak would be the CC-number. I don't have many Midi files with automation, but the one I tried had Pan and it showed up when I selected Pan from the dropdown as well as "By Index Only" with Controller Index 10. Seems that by index you can also have multiple CCs "10 7" loads Volume and Pan both. I still get a headache from how chops "think"... ;-) Cheers, Tom
  6. https://www.awn.com/news/pixar-animation-studios-showcases-new-rendering-technologies-siggraph-2017 Could be interesting. Basically what Thea does for years (using CPU and GPU simultaneously) but in a more production oriented renderer... Looking forward to how it actually performs. Watched Matt Ebbs video and Anastasia Oparas so far - awesome to see how some people are wired. One writes a path tracer for thrills, the other is so into proceduralism that she even creates image frame profiles with an L-System. Simply brilliant! :-) Cheers, Tom
  7. Okay, rendering finished... I updated to the latest substance plugin and it kind of works here with Houdini 16.0.678. But its extremely slow and doesn't correctly update the view when changing parameters. I don't get the resolution slider though and honestly still think it's a complete fail in it's current state. That may be the reason why not many people bother with it... Good luck! ;-) Cheers, Tom
  8. Can't really help you there, but some things to look into: You can check the .cfg files in your Documents\houdini16.0\dso\substance folder, they configure how the plugin works. substance.cfg defines what shader config to use, the others define the mapping to Houdini shaders. This way you can even define your own setup. Maybe they use the wrong shader code for the current Houdini? Otherwise it could be read/write access rights maybe? Or the plugin is compiled for an older Houdini version? Will give it a try as soon as my rendering is finished (12k image at 8k samples - Redshift can be slow too... ;-) ). Cheers, Tom
  9. My machine is rendering ATM so I can't check if there is anything new with the plugin, but last time I checked, the plugin would bake the texture to your temp directory every time you hit render, no matter if any parameter had changed or if you already had baked out high quality maps. So what looks like realtime in the video would become very slow fast when dealing with serious texture sizes like 4k on dozens of objects. It also did not clean up after itself, so your temp directory would get clogged with old textures fast - and of course you don't want your textures in your local temp folder if you render over the network - not very efficient to re-bake the whole lot on every network node... The least thing I'd expect would be that it would allow to set the path for the temporary textures created, not recreate them when already existing and no parameters changed and that it would use the manually baked ones if present. It could also create a substance-independent material with all texture maps assigned automatically as a way to use it in production. But IMO the whole workflow currently is adverse to how non-gaming workflows work and I see little point in using the plugin other than for quick, low quality tests like in their video. If I'm missing something or if there were major improvements in the plugin I'm unaware of, I'm all ears - I originally had high hopes for the tool so part of me being rather negative is my sadness over how clumsy it was implemented... They seem to realise recently that there is a world outside of games though, so I keep hope up that over time the plugin will become usable... Cheers, Tom
  10. I never use the plugin since I found it rather "underwhelming" to say it politely. Instead of - like you said - being a real procedural texture that is evaluated at rendertime, it only allows you to bake your textures inside of Houdini in a clumsy way - and you need to re-bake the textures after every parameter change. I therefore prefer to do my texturing in Designer or Painter directly, since there I have way more options. Initially I also thought I do something wrong, I just couldn't believe that this is how it's supposed to be used. If Allegorithmic want's to enter the non-game markets, they need to do MUCH better IMO. I'm not the biggest fan of their software anyway but this plugin is really bad. Cheers, Tom
  11. Hey, I always start with the "Unread Content" view when visiting Odforce but am baffled that clicking on a post in the list does not transport me to that latest post but to the first page of the thread it's in. I think I tried to click on everything but did not find a way to jump directly to the post that's show in the list. Am I missing something or could this be improved to teleport me directly to the post shown? Thank you very much! Cheers, Tom
  12. I see ;-) Well, since basically the forum already shows the relevant post in the list, I had the hope that it would be "trivial" to derive the post number and create a link to it instead of just to the thread. But I managed so far and won't die from doing so in the future ;-) Would be great though! Cheers and thanks, Tom
  13. "Up into the Light" 2560x1600 - makes for a great wallpaper (if I say so myself). :-) Nitpicking: It seems Redshift could use some work on the convergence of it's noise patterns. Even with (insane) 8492 samples and an error-threshold of 0.00025 the DOF is still pretty grainy, although the defocus is not very strong. I rendered this at 4000x2500 originally where it's even more pronounced. It feels the same when using RS's progressive rendermode - where Thea Render clears up noise pretty quickly, RS never seems to get anywhere in that mode. For stills, I often prefer progressive rendering since I can simply let it cook until it looks good... Cheers, Tom
  14. The Houdini node view explained - what it really is all about: Unbelievable :-) Cheers, Tom
  15. "The Ring" This is fun :-) Starting with a circle I created this entire object with about 7 of my threaders... Rendered in Redshift (BTW. The "glow" comes from using DOF with a "Power" of 0.1 - interesting setting that...). Cheers, Tom
  16. "The Crown" Again further enhancing the threader with adjustable spread, phase offset, random radius variation, radius envelope, random thread thickness variation... Rendered in Redshift, DOF in camera with bokeh-image. Cheers, Tom
  17. "Twisted" More work on my custom threader... Rendered in Redshift. Cheers, Tom
  18. Yeah, I saw some of his experiments that start out REALLY interesting looking, almost like a fetus, but most of the time at one point they get overwhelmed by the overall growth (almost like cancer). Would be fascinating to dive into ways to stop that and keep refining those shapes. Basically what nature does after the initial "everything grows" phase where growth becomes limited to detail and intricate features... Otherwise we would probably all be huge blobs or amoebas... ;-) Maybe having a fixed amount of nutrients available and concentrate them on very specific parts? Refinement as goal, not general growth? Cheers, Tom
  19. "Morpho" Played with the file from Activate today, replacing the random nutrition distribution with a noise function for a more diverse structure and rendered with Octane... Cheers, Tom
  20. "Dark Knit" Worked on my own strand multiplication tool for a while and did a closeup: Cheers, Tom
  21. Played with this a bit today and it's quite fascinating. The main code is a bit over my head but I changed the nutritient building from random values to using noise to get less even distribution and played with some octane rendering: Thanks for the file and cheers! Tom
  22. Hey, sorry for the short notice - just got the news that there will be a Berlin Houdini User Meeting today: Everybody welcome, no matter the experience with Houdini - old hands as well as people starting out or even being just curious about Houdini. Looking forward to see you tonight! :-) Cheers, Tom
  23. "Toms Knitting" ... And of course I did the latest Entagma tutorial too ;-) I wasn't really happy about the very involved boolean solution though, so I came up with a much faster and simpler one. It's meant for rectangular UV patches only though. The alternative weaving style was contributed by Konstantin Magnus on Vimeo, for the strand multiplication I used the great Aelib tools. Cheers, Tom
  24. "Radial Audio" Two tests to see if I could finally grok chops for Audio. Those could really really really use some love, the potential for great stuff is there but in it's current form it's rather clumsy and feels totally outdated. Inspired by the great work of Simon Russel, also with Houdini and some of Gmunks projects with radial systems. Cheers, Tom
  25. "Glowing Lights" A test with Redshifts displacement in Houdini Core: Cheers, Tom