Join Ian Robinson for an in-depth discussion in this video Building fractured letters with Thrausi, part of Mograph Techniques: Fractured 3D Type.
Now, any time I need to use Cinema 4D and break something up into different pieces, I like to use this plugin that's been out for a number of years now. It's called Thrausi. One of the great things about it, is the fact that it's free. Now, another thing to note, is the fact that it only works with the full version of Cinema 4D. So, if you're using Cinema 4D Light, this plugin won't work, but if you're using the full version, let's go ahead and download and install this plugin. Let's go ahead and open your web browser and you'll see that I'm on nitro4D.com.
If you're not there, go ahead and type nitro4D.com and make sure you're on the site. Now definitely when you're here, you'll probably want to check out under donation ware and look at some of the other cool plugins that are made for cinema. But for right now, let's just go to the freebies section and choose Thrausi. If we scroll down here, you can see that it definitely works with Windows and Mac and it works with Cinema 4D R11.5 and newer. Now, you want to make sure to download the version specific to your specific applications.
So, I'm going to download this version for R12, 13 and 14. Obviously, this also works for 15. If you just click on the word here, it'll go ahead and download the file. Once its downloaded, you should see a folder. I'm just going to navigate to my desktop and you'll see on my desktop I have a Thrausi folder. And if I open that folder and look inside, you can see there are a couple different things here that are contained within the folder. Now, I don't need to move any of this information around.
Actually, what I need to do is just install this entire folder into the Maxon plugins folder. So on the Mac, we can get there pretty easily. It's in the Applications area so I'm going to open a new finder window here and go to my applications. On Windows, you'll want to go to the Programs section and now I'll navigate down to Maxon. And we'll go to see C4D R14, that's the version I'm currently using. And if we going to plugins you can see I've already have this folder installed.
If you don't have already on your system, go and drag the Thrausi folder and drop it right into the plugins folder. Just understand once you do this, you'll probably have to authenticate on your computer or type the password to allow the install. Now, it's always wise to quit Cinema 4D before you do the install, so I'm just going to jump back to Cinema 4D and quit, and then you can go ahead and drag and drop the folder into your Plugins folder. If you've already installed and it was already running, don't worry about it.
Just quit Cinima 4D and then relaunch it to actually see the plugin. So I'll go ahead and launch Cinema 4D one more time here. And if you go up under File and navigate to your Exercise files folder in chapter one, I have 0104 fractured letters. We can go ahead and open that. Alright, now to see the plugin, all you need to do is go up under the Plugins area and here you'll see Thrausi listed. Now I could go ahead and check out the Thrausi by clicking here, but I want to take a closer look at my text first.
One of the things that Thrausi does is material management. Now currently, my model has two materials applied. Now as I'm looking at this material, I can tell it looks sort of funny, see the streaking around the top edges? That's how the material's wrapped. Now, I want to select this. And notice it's set for UVW. Let's go ahead and change this to cubic. That should sort of smooth things out here. If I go ahead and render this, you can see, now it's starting to look a little bit more sinister which is exactly what I wanted.
Even when I'm zooming around here, you may see the tiles, but when we go to Render you won't see any of the tiles, because they're seamless. We are looking good so far. So, now that the material is wrapped properly, I can go ahead and select my Cracked model and go up under plugins and choose Thrausi and we'll choose the top option here for Thrausi. Now this leftmost tab is what we'll use. We could leave the pieces set to random. Now we'll leave the rest of these settings set up at their default settings.
The most important thing to pay attention to, are the pieces. This number is specific to each individual letter, not the entire word. So this'll be two pieces per letter. I want to choose seven pieces. So let's go ahead and choose seven. And if you'd like to keep a current version of your model, you can just select Keep original object. I'm not going to worry about that. So I'll just go ahead and click Break now. Then you will notice throughout Thrausi goes through and does what it does. It's actually fractured the text.
We can go ahead and close this window that opened up here. And you'll notice, I have a bunch of Fracture objects that have been created. If we render the scene, notice the text actually still looks like it's one piece. But if we open up our Fracture object here, you can see I have multiple pieces and each Fracture object corresponds to an individual letter. So by all means, you could definitely double click on your Fracture object and just name it whatever letter. If you want to move a piece, go ahead and select a piece and then just click and drag on one of the control handles, and you can see that it's actually taken that piece of that letter out.
So, this is pretty awesome. It's not only cut up the letters, but if you actually look closely, here let me slide this out again. I'm going to press S to zoom into that one section. Notice it's properly wrapped to the materials. I have my external material and if I render here, you could see, I have a separate material for the inside. So, later on, we'll actually adjust the inside material, but notice, it's automatically been applied properly to this individual piece. So, I'll just Cmd+Z to undo that last move there.
And, we can go ahead and just select all the objects here, and press S, to re-frame. There we go, I'll zoom back out. Okay. So we've successfully fractured our letters. Now if you were paying attention, you'd also notice that we have these dynamics tags as well. This has actually created dynamics for these broken pieces. So if I wanted to create another plane here, I can have this text automatically fracture, and break apart and fall down onto the plane.
Now we'll get to that in a little bit. But for right now, go ahead and just rename the individual letters for each one of these letters, and that way you'll know exactly what you'll be working with as we continue on through the course.
- Modeling type in CINEMA 4D
- Building fractured letters with the Thrausi plugin
- Creating dynamic camera moves
- Refining animation with MoDynamics, force, gravity & collisions
- Adding lighting, glows, and reflections
- Creating smoke with particles