Join Aaron F. Ross for an in-depth discussion in this video Attaching paint effects to curves, part of Maya 2014 New Features.
With Maya 2014, Paint Effects got a major upgrade. Now we're able to make Paint Effects collide with other objects and Paint Effects can actually collide with itself. And we can get all kinds of much more natural realistic effects, such as this one in which we have a vine that creeps around this column. And none of the individual creepers or tubes coming of that Paint Effects are colliding with any of the other ones. So we can look at several new features of Paint Effects in this chapter.
Here's a scene in Maya we can use to illustrate the new features of Paint Effects. And what we see here is in the Display Layers, there's a whole bunch of stuff. Really the only thing we want to work with right away is this so-called templeproxy_layer that I've created. Because Paint Effects really are pretty heavy in terms of calculation, we want to use simple geometry to collide with. I'm going to enable the visibility of that templeProxy_layer and disable the temple Renderable_layer. In fact, just to keep things simple, I'm going to hide everything else as well.
So that I'm just only focusing on this proxy-mesh. Go in the Perspective View, tap the Spacebar, and make that bigger. What we want to do here to begin with is to create a Paint Effects curve manually. Instead of drawing we want to actually create a curve and then attach a brush to that curve. Now attaching a Paint Effect brush to a curve is not technically a new feature of Maya 2014. But it is one that we will want to use in this case in order to get the most out of the new features.
Before we begin, it's important to understand that you have to have good UVs on your models, if you want to drop a paint effect on them. So if you've created a character or something like that, you want to attach Paint Effects to it, then you need to make sure you've done the UV layout. Okay, so I've got this proxy object, it's a single mesh and I'm going to go ahead and make it live, and then draw a curve on it. So, make live is the magnet over here that has no ornaments on it. Just a magnet with nothing.
So, when I click that now, the wire frames of the selected object turn to a dark green. And I can start drawing directly on it. And I'll do that with the CV Curve Tool. Go to the Create menu and choose, CV Curve Tool. And I can click to start making points here on this surface. And I want to try to keep those points more or less equal distant. It's not a hardened fast requirement that I do that. But it just will give me a cleaner result if those CV points are more or less equal distant from one another.
I'm just making a spiral going around, and if I have what I want I'll press the Enter key. So, now I want to make this object not live anymore. So click off of the object so it's not selected, and click the magnet icon once again to make nothing live. Alright, now, so let's look at this curve, I'll press the 4 key so we can see it in wireframe. You'll notice that the curve does not exactly correspond to the shape of the object, but that's okay since we can change that up later. So, our next step now is to load up a paint effects brush.
And we want to do that in the visor. Go to the Window menu, General Editors, Visor. And in the Paint Effects tab, I want to go into the plants section, plants, and I want to choose the vine leafy, let's get that one. Vine leafy thick, or just vine leafy period. Let's do just vineLeafy.mel, click on that. And now the brush is actually loaded. You'll notice here that in the current tool, we'll see a brush icon, meaning that the Paint Effects brush object is active.
Next thing I want to do is select the curve itself. So choose the Select Tool, choose that curve, and then I want to go to the Paint Effects menu, just in the Rendering menu set. Rendering > Paint Effect > Curve Utilities > Attach Brush to Curves. And now we've got that vine leafy brush attached onto that CV curve. And this is helpful too, because I can now edit the CVs and move the vine around if i want to, so I can select that curve.
Right-click and go into Control Vertex mode, and select CVs. And move them around with the Move tool, so that we can kind of fine tune the placement. Let's do this with Shading turned on, I'll press the 5 key. And maybe go out to one of the 4 view ports, and maybe take a look at this in the top view, so we can see more clearly. We just want to make sure that the vine is not inside the column here, so I can move some CVs around and make that happen. And if you have trouble with it, you can always put your Paint Effect Stroke on a template layer, so that is on selectable.
Okay so we don't have to get too obsessive about this, if it's more or less outside the column, that's probably fine. Alright, so now our next step is just to play around the brush attribute a little bit. I'm going to select that stroke, so make sure only that stroke is selected. And again, if you have trouble you can use the Outliner to select things. So I want to select that stroke and go into the Attribute Editor, Ctrl+A, and go to the Brush Node, vineLeafy2 and just play around with stuff. I'll set the global scale up a bit to a value of two.
And I'll go into the tubes section here, and in the creation section tube random, I actually want to set that to zero. Because what it's doing is it's kind of not evenly distributing the tubes across that curve. So I'll set Tube Rand back down to zero. Just kind of makes it more consistent. And I've got too many tubes, really. It's just too dense and too heavy, so I'll set Tubes Per Step, down to a value of two, and that'll just give me a Sparser Paint Effects brush. Alright, so we've got our brush attached and basic parameters set, and in the next movie we can look at colliding with an object.
- What's new in Maya 2014
- Using the Node Editor
- Understanding binary compatibility
- Using Increment & Save
- Creating a camera from a view
- Drawing in the viewport with Grease Pencil
- Making selections in multicomponent mode
- Enabling symmetry
- Choosing transform options
- Refining with Multi-Cut
- Transforming edges with Edit Edge Flow
- Creating Paint Effects
- Sculpting with Occupation Volume