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I've restarted Nuke, so that we can load a Nuke Script I prepared to speed things along. Let's go to File > Open, select the Project Media > Lesson_06_Media > nuke script 01 Particles, Open. You can define your particles with either 2D images, or 3D geometry, so the number of looks you can create is limitless. So cursor in the viewer, type F to wake up our viewer, and let's open up the Particle Emitter.
It's just set for default, so let's do a couple of settings here. Let's set the max lifetime for 50, and we'll set the velocity for .1, and let's set the spread for .25. Okay, there we go, and we'll zoom out a little bit. Okay, we'll stop this. Now let's take a look at the particle input of the Particle Emitter node. We can hook it up to any 3D geometry. I'm just using the nuke sphere here, and now we have a whole bunch of little tiny spheres.
We can see that better if I set the display to wireframe, and now you can see, this is a true three-dimensional environment, okay, with depth perception, perspective, and everything. You can also apply texture maps to your geometry. So I'm going to put my display back to textured, deselect, and hook up the rainbow texture map, and now all the spheres have the rainbow texture map. In addition to 3D geometry, we can plug in 2D images.
The 2D images become sprites. That is to say, they're like they're on a flat polygon, and they're always facing the camera, no matter how they're oriented. And if the 2D image is colored, the sprites will take on that color. Now, there's a new concept I'd like to introduce, and that is range. Many of these parameters have a variable for the range. Here is the size range; here is the velocity range. To see how that works, let's first set the spread down to 0, and then let's set the emission rate to 1.
That way we can see our individual sprites. The size of them, of course, is controlled by the size parameter: .1. With the size range set to 0, that means there's no variability in the size. As we move the slider from 0 to 1, the range of variability increases. In fact, you can drive it past one, if you wish, and get a really wild variation in size. Okay, let's set that back to default, and again, several of these parameters have a range variable.
In addition to a single image, we can actually use a clip, a moving clip, as an input for the particles. Well, let's put our spread back to .25, and we'll zoom out a little bit. Now, my snowflake clip has only 5 frames in it. You can see that, if I jump to Frame 1, here's the first one, Frame 2, Frame 3, 4, and 5. As the playhead moves past 5, it's just going to hold flake 5 for the rest of the timeline.
The rules for how to read a clip are right here. The input order only has two variables: random, and in order. So random means it's going to pick them randomly, of course. In order means it's going to come in 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, etcetera. We'll leave it at randomly. Start at; this is the rule for where it is to start. Does it start at the first frame? Does it start at the current frame of the playhead? Let's choose random. The next one is very important: advance. This is the rule for what image we read in as the playhead advances.
For example, if we say constant, then it's going to hold whatever image it reads in, over the length of the timeline. So as I step through these -- let me get a little for you here -- ss I step through them, you see, even though they're randomly picking up what shape to use, they're actually holding that same shape over the length of the clip. However, if we set the advance to randomly, now every time the playhead advances, it's going to randomly go get a new image, and replace it every single frame.
So I'm going to set right back to constant, and play. Now that we've seen how to set up 2D and 3D particles, let's go take a look at how to set up emitters.
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