Maya Particle Effects
Illustration by John Hersey

Creating embers


From:

Maya Particle Effects

with Audri Phillips

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Video: Creating embers

So here we have the same smoke that we had in the last movie and this time we're going to add another expression to the particles that will increase its velocity. Remember that velocity is a change in position over time, so we need to use a vector expression for it, because we need to show the three directions X, Y and Z for it. So I am going to select my particles and add an expression to them, my smoke particles, and look there is a place for Velocity I am going to make it in to Creation Expression. Let's go right here and Ctrl+C, Ctrl+V, = and let's really have it speeding along. I don't want it to go any faster in the X direction.
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Watch the Online Video Course Maya Particle Effects
2h 8m Intermediate Jun 11, 2009

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Particle effects can be used to create everything from realistic smoke and light to abstract design elements. In Maya Particle Effects, Audri Phillips demonstrates the particles she has found helpful in her work creating dynamic visuals for video games,film and fine art. This course goes deeper than the basics, tackling topics like saving time by reusing MEL expressions, implementing physics to create realistic effects, and manipulating paint effects to give particles the look and feel of an envisioned design. Exercise files accompany the course.

Topics include:
  • Working with particle emitters and fields
  • Instancing paint effects and geometry to particles
  • Using Maya particles to produce graphic design elements
  • Using the relationship editor, creating particle collisions and collision events
  • Creating realistic effects such as smoke by emulating real life physics
  • Rendering and exporting final projects
Subject:
3D + Animation
Software:
Maya
Author:
Audri Phillips

Creating embers

So here we have the same smoke that we had in the last movie and this time we're going to add another expression to the particles that will increase its velocity. Remember that velocity is a change in position over time, so we need to use a vector expression for it, because we need to show the three directions X, Y and Z for it. So I am going to select my particles and add an expression to them, my smoke particles, and look there is a place for Velocity I am going to make it in to Creation Expression. Let's go right here and Ctrl+C, Ctrl+V, = and let's really have it speeding along. I don't want it to go any faster in the X direction.

But I do want to make it really speed along in the Y direction. So I will make that 8 and then in the Z direction, forgot one over here, close it off and go Edit. All right so let's see what we have got now. So look, there is my smoke really speeding along, really change of velocity for that. Now I am going to do something else with it. I am going to try to change the Acceleration, and remember Acceleration is a particle's measurement of how it changes its velocity over time. And it's also a vector expression because you wanted to deal with the three directions to it.

Notice that sometimes if I have a Velocity and an Acceleration expression Maya will crash. I would normally want to put the Velocity expression in creation, and the Acceleration in the Runtime before dynamics. But I am going to get rid of this expression for Velocity to be on the safe side here. I am going to go Delete and Edit. Now in the Acceleration I am going to add Runtime before dynamics. So this expression, Maya will calculate it before any of the fields affect the particles.

Enter. So I am going to do this. Ctrl+C, Ctrl+V, =0 in the X, so really make it apparent. Let's see if we can do 10 for the acceleration of it in the Y direction in 0 and I'll hit Edit. And let's see what we have got. So it seems to go faster and faster over time. Now you can pull back on that.

It's going to the front window. Maybe then I will show it. Pull way back on this. See what we have got. There you can see it really accelerating over time that way. So you could see how the Acceleration expression really works. Okay so now we're going to live dangerously and try adding a little bit of fire to this scene. So I am going to go into the Acceleration Expression Editor, Runtime Before Dynamics and I am going to remove this expression. I will edit that, go back to the beginning and our fire, our smoke should be moving at the same speed it was previously.

Now we're going to trying to add some fire embers to this. Now in my Window, my Rendering Editors, my Hypershade. You can see I have this fireEmber material here and if I look at it, you can see I use the crater and that it has a lot of Incandescence on it, and the Color, this crater and lots of Incandescence.

We're going to hook it up. So in my Window, my Relationship Editors, my Dynamic Relationship, I have got a particle1 that I am going to hook up to my fireEmit1 okay. Let's see if this is going to show up. So here comes my little fire particles right there. I put some turbulence on them. Now let's see what this looks like.

Hopefully you'll have a faster machine. Wow! They are really blowing out fire. I bet if I take off the lights, they won't be as hot. Let's try it doing that. Still pretty hot. But you can adjust your little embers to taste. I just wanted to show you. Like I said before I would probably render my particles in different layers and take them into Compositor. I would render these separately and I might render my different smoke layer separately and take them into Compositor, and then I'd be able to adjust them the way that I wanted to adjust them, to the work the way I wanted too.

So hopefully you'll be able to play around with your velocity on your smoke, and play around with adding different layers of smoke, so that if you can increase its thickness. A long time ago when I first try to do fire I found out that the best way to do any kind of organic effect is to do it in layers and to render out many layers of it, and then composite it together rather than trying to get one render to do everything and have it work in one render.

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Maya Particle Effects will be retired from the lynda.com library on July 22, 2015. Training videos and exercise files will no longer be available, but the course will still appear in your course history and certificates of completion. For updated training, check out Maya 2016 Essential Training in the lynda.com Online Training Library.


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