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Dark Matter Filaments - Suggestions for form like this?

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I am trying to create some organic form in Houdini, which is meant to look like the dark matter filaments in cosmological simulations like Illustris.

Here is an example image:



I am trying to create the look on the left, with this tangle of filaments, and clusters of particles which are denser in certain regions than others.

Here is a video reference: http://www.illustris-project.org/movies/illustris_movie_full_cube.mp4

Again, I am looking to recreate something similar to the left side of the video.

I'm sure Houdini must be ideal for something like this, but I'm having trouble figuring it out. I've been playing with volumes and cellular noise, then converting to polygons and scattering points, but it's not working out very well, and seems like there must be a better approach.

Any recommendations for tutorials for something like this would be most helpful!


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Nice ref


I would say that if you take a cube, convert it to a volume,

scatter a bunch of points in it,

connect adjacent points with lines using the connect adjacent pieces HDA or custom vopsop/vex setup.

create random with for each line and scatter point on the lines, offset the points from the lines with some random noise multiplied by the width of the lines.

Should be a pretty good starting point. Creating volumes out of the lines using VDB could also be worth trying


Good luck


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Hey, thanks for the response.

I'm now on my fifth iteration of trying out different techniques. Have something pretty similar to what you're describing. Think I'm getting there, slowly! Will share something when I'm done.


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