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DaveT.

Need a Houdini master - Beam Effect

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Hi-

I was wondering if anyone could tip me off on how to create the beam effect from Thor. I need control over the amount of noise within the beam as well as over the colors distributed through the beam. I have tried several methods but unfortunately am too unfamiliar with how everything ties together within Houdini to accomplish anything. If anyone has a good system for me, I would appreciate the help (especially if you could give it to me in layman's terms). Here is what I am going for:

Thanks!

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Edited by DaveT.

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Peter-

You're awesome brother. I've noticed you have helped a lot of people on odforce and other forums. You're a stud. I appreciate the feedback. I'll see what damage I can do.

Thanks again,

Dave T.

Hi Dave,

following up from what I wrote to you by email:

******************************************

There is the cheap way of doing it and a more expensive way of doing it.

*) the cheap way would be to use a few nurbs cylinders and using their parametric coordinates to drive a noise pattern along them, which displaces the surface. Add a fresnel type shader (think x-ray), some glow and 2d distortion in comp and you will be 90% there.

*) the expensive way to do it would be with a fluid simulation. Think: "rocket lifting off". That would give you all the swirly detail and would allow for parts of the energy to break free. You could advect a ton of particles and render those with high motionblur to get fine streaking details.

This type of effect will be all about layering different elements together.

Generally:

- a big overal beam effect

- some atmospherics (fog/dust clouds that are slowly being pushed by your beam... that is how you would read that the beam is affecting the environment.) around it to make it sit in the environment - some really small elements like sparks/embers/energy particles to help establish a sense of scale.

- mixing the elements together in comp with glows, a darkening of the background where the effect is happening (kinda like changing fstops on a camera -- if you were to look straight into the sun everything else becomes dark because your eye/iris is trying to compensate.), 2d distortion (this just makes it sit and look cool) -- this can be normal distortion or even chromatic distortion.

Things to search for on the forums: "tornado", "solar flare", "ink", "beam", "pyroclastic clouds". There are a lot of scene files on the forums with pretty much all the components you require for your effect. So go for a search on odforce.

******************************************

*) scene file -> inexpensive way with particles example.

-- you should cache some stuff out to disk. I had limited amount of time, so just rendered it directly.

The vops should give you plenty of ideas to play with and to help control your particle sim.

It needs some work, but you can add extra pieces of geometry as emission sources, make duplicates, combine several sims together, etc...

Have fun learning.

cheers,

Peter

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Just happened across this thread now.

Thanks for the .hip Peter! Very nicely done!

Matt.

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There is the cheap way of doing it and a more expensive way of doing it.

*) the cheap way would be to use a few nurbs cylinders and using their parametric coordinates to drive a noise pattern along them, which displaces the surface. Add a fresnel type shader (think x-ray), some glow and 2d distortion in comp and you will be 90% there.

HI all

I had a question about getting a similar looking render to the Thor film, your saying we can get particle to look that solid with so few particles using shaders and and glow fx and if so can u clarify more, like beside the fresnel pass what other passes should we render out .

Thanks.

Edited by houdiniMAN

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Do you have a still reference image?

One of the things I would definitely play with now is the new pointreplicator procedural (added in H12.5). This would allow you to do 100 million points and get really beautiful high frequency detail.

Check it out, it requires you to build some extra CVEX deformation, but it is really fast and seems robust. There are no real examples in houdini, but Jeff Wagner posted a good example file on Sidefx forum.

http://www.sidefx.com/index.php?option=com_forum&Itemid=172&page=viewtopic&p=136287#136287

In terms of passes:

- various noise passes, with a different frequency in each channel (red,green, blue) at shader level. This way you can layer those in comp.

- the fresnel pass could be useful

- an occlusion pass -- you can invert this and make it glow from the deep edges

- perhaps a subsurface pass

- layering noises in the displacement to get different sets of displacements working at different scales.

- Perhaps render from inner core to outer core so you have 4-5 different solid sheets of energy that you can dial in and out in comp.

- with vdb you can create a volume now as well that you advect a little bit with a sopsolver and you make it fade off... this will smooth in the edges. Kinda what a ton of particles also could do. And since it is procedural, there is no need to do a full on dops sim. Just remodel the volume on the fly.

- you could also add in some individual curves -- like high energy lightning bolts within the stream and turn those into geometry lights to create secondary illumination. Where they intersect with the surfaces or near particles they could give hotspots.

These are all just creative ideas, it takes some experimenting to see what mixes and matches.

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THis is amazing i have been looking all over the net for a particle effect pclaes. This is gonna help Massively with my houdini class though i think that i am gonna have to get my teacher to help me figure out what is going on

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