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tdu :: Intro to Cloth with Dreamworks Char. FX TD Matt Leishman

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January 26 - March 2nd, 2015 COURSE OVERVIEW

The purpose of this course is to demystify nCloth and teach students how to utilize it to create many different character based effects.  Much of what character effects artists do is to solve problems.  Matt Leishman (Character FX TD at Dreamworks Animation) will teach students to consider the different circumstances and needs of any given cloth scenario and employ the different tools available to best solve the scenario’s problem.  Students will learn how best to manipulate the various cloth and solver attributes and the many various cloth constraints to achieve appropriate results.  Different situations where nCloth is employed include, but are not limited to, clothing on characters, dynamic props that a character might interact with (curtains, boat sails, ropes, etc), and “one-off” dynamic elements on the characters themselves (such as bandages, headbands, weapon tassels, etc), and the students will learn to use nCloth in all these situations.


Each week a video tutorial created by Matt will be uploaded covering that week’s topic. At the end of each lecture, Matt will give the students a challenge to complete. The students will spend the rest of the week working on the challenge, posting updates to the forum-style site to be reviewed by the other students and the instructor. Along with these updates, the students can also post questions to be answered by the instructors, not only about the specific challenges, but general questions as well. Then at the end of the week, students will submit his or her completed work for a final video critique conducted Matt. For an example of a course lecture, the various critiques, and an example website click here.



  • Week 1 :: General Introduction, Quickstart dive into the nucleus solver, Introduction to collisions and simple draping
  • Week 2 :: Using nConstraints, and Fields in cloth simulation
  • Week 3 :: Different workflows for using cache data to combine and blend caches to solve various problems
  • Week 4 :: Cloth development and simulation for character garments
  • Week 5 :: Character “Finaling” – solving problems for character one-off situations





Check out tdu's other courses including Cloth Simulation, Lighting, Texture Painting and more!



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While I applaud multi-disciplinary pursuits, this is a purely Maya course. And maybe a little off topic.

Also, I think PBD is going to be a serious game changer. But I could be wrong.

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Absolutely!  Couldn't agree more. 

These classes focus on the art of creating vfx elements regardless of software.  Software comes and goes all the time, but learning the underlying fundamentals of cloth or fx or whatever will stay with you throughout your career. 


Thanks, Kleer!

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