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May tutorial Text animation Snake effect

May 11, 2013
Maya for motion graphics purpose sounds confusing. You can create amazing Motion graphics with Maya. But in Motion graphics degree of easiness also important as much as creativity. You won’t get a whole year to produce something for motion graphics. Barely may you get a couple of days to produce the final output, so most of the people use other 3d software like Cinema 4d. But I always like to work in Maya. So always am searching for new methods to produce the things in Maya. And In this tutorial you will learn another motion graphics element, typography in Maya.
Remember I already covered some tutorials about typography or the text in Maya. If you never watched those interesting tutorials watch them here.
Producing text animation is not easy in Maya. You need to manually tweak a lot of settings. And you need to know more things in Maya to produce interesting effect. In this tutorial I will lead you through the process of creating “Snake text effect in Maya”. Watch the below video tutorial for the interesting effect. If you want to read the step by step processes, skip the video tutorials and read.
Software          Autodesk Maya
Difficulty        Beginner
Author             FermiCG

text in maya
I am skipping the basic stuffs like creating texts and curves because they are already covered in previous tutorials.
Create your Text elements as curves.
Create path/ profile curves right in front of the texts. You need to create the same number of curves as the number of text letters.
Deform the curves as you need.
See I created “FermiCG” as text curves and I created a curve and deformed it like a wave. After that I modified the curve using rebuild curve in order to place the vertices in equal distance. Then I duplicated the curve six times and placed them right in front of each letter.
Now select the first text i.e. F and shift select the curve 1 i.e. facing the letter F. Go to Surface> Surfaces> Extrude>options and change the values as
Style = tube
Result position = at profile
Pivot = closet end point
Orientation = profile normal
Curve range = partial
Output geometry = nurbs
Press apply.
Do the same for the rest of the letters.
Now we need to animate the extrudes. First select the extrude 1 and in channel editor find sub curve 2 and change the max value from 1 to 0. You can see the extrude is animating. Create keys in desired frames. Do the same for the rest of the extrudes.
Now we need to create bevel plus geometry for the text and it should follow the extrude. In order to do that go to last frame, select the first extrude and go to component mode and select the first isoparm. Now apply a bevel plus with polygons as output.
Change the values as follows
Bevel at start = 0
Bevel at end = 1
Bevel width = 0.1
Bevel depth = -0.06
Extrude distance = -0.120
Cap at start =0
Cap at end=1
Bevel inside curve =1
Polygon output options,
Method = sampling
Curve spans = 18
Do the same for all the letters.
Add some shaders and change the colour.
I used Phong. Used background colour white while rendering with Mental Ray, turned off Ray tracing and turned on final gather. Rendered out occlusion and comped in After effects.




































Particle dynamics in Maya tutorial- Dancing LEDs

May 05, 2013
Particle dynamics in Maya is awesome for creating wide varieties of effects. If you know expressions and scripting, you can create wonderful effects in Maya using the particle system. While studying the Soup Development node I accidently watched some discussions in Web about transferring animation data from polygons to Particles. I.e. without using Soup node or any external plug ins user can transfer animation to particle system. You can control the look and feel of particles, their behavior over time can be procedurally change by using animated mesh.
In this tutorial you will learn to create some procedural animation and simply transferring that animation to the particle system using fields and simple expressions. It is procedural animation i.e. by simply changing the animation you can interactively change the behavior of particles. The idea behind this technique is very simple. Create some deformable mesh which animates over time and that vertex animation is captured using fields and transferred to the particles. By applying appropriate variables and simple expressions the field property can control any attribute in particles.
leds.047
I got this expression from website which helped a lot for creating this tutorial.

Rgbpp= (mag (force) > 0)? 1: 0;
Watch the video tutorials for better understanding. If you don’t want to watch the video tutorials you can get a step by step instruction below.


 
1. Create a new project. Set the play back range to 100
2. Create a poly torus and change its properties as follows
· Section radius = 0.01
· Twist =45
· Subdivision axis = 400
· Subdivision height = 4
3. At frame set a key frame for section radius and go to frame 25, change the radius to 18 and set a key.
4. Duplicate the torus by 6 times by selecting the torus and go to edit> duplicate special with duplicate input graph turned on.
5. Select all the torus and change their keys sequentially by moving the keys forward so the animation is like a ripple effect.
6. Select all the torus and combine them. Polygon>mesh>combine
7. Rename the resulting mesh as ripple.
8. Create a new text by choosing the curves as output.
9. Make a planar of these curves by Surface> Planar with following option
· Output geometry =Polygons
· Type = quad
· Tessellation method =Count
· Count = 5000
10. Select the resulting mesh and give extrude. Add some depth.
11. Delete the history and change the name to text.
12. Give some transform animation to the text.
13. Save the scene
14. Now we need our particles ie the LEDs
15. We will create a particle grid by going to ndynamics menu ( you may use normal particles instead of nparticles).
16. Ndynamics>create particles> (balls)>nparticle tool> option
17. Change as follows
· Turn on create particle grid
· Particle spacing = 0.25
18. Click anywhere on the perspective grid and once again click diagonally opposite to the firs click. Press enter. This will create a particle grid.
19. Change the particle attributes as follows
· Nparticle shape 1,
· Radius = 0.1
· Conserve = 0
· Collision = 0
· Self-collide = 0
· In nucleus
· Turn off the enable
20. Select the nparticleshape1 and add a turbulence field.
21. Select ripple and turbulence field 1 and go to fields> selected as source of fields
22. Change the turbulence 1 attributes as
· Magnitude = 1
· Use max distance = on
· Max distance = 0.30
· Apply per vertex = 1
23. Select the nparticle 1 and add another turbulence field.
24. Select the text shape and turbulence field 2 and do selected as source of field.
25. Change the turbulence 2 attributes as
· Magnitude = 1
· Use max distance = on
· Max distance = 0.30
· Apply per vertex = 1
26. Now we need to transfer the field attribute to the nparticle shading attributes. In order to do we need to create some e custom expressions.
27. First break the connections of nparticleshape 1‘s rgbpp and opacitypp.
28. Now add a creation expression on the rgbpp.
29. Add the following expressions,
Nparticleshape1.rgbpp=<<1, 1, 1>>;
Nparticleshape1.opacitypp=0.25
30. This will create pure white particles with 75% transparency. If you want other colours play with the expressions or watch our previous tutorial about particles.
31. Now we need to add two custom attributes. Click on general tab adjacent to the colour tab and add userscalar1pp and userscalar1pp from particles tab.
32. Add the following as creation expression
Nparticleshape1.userscalar 1 pp=rand (0,1);
33. Click edit
34. Now right click on the uservector1pp and create a ramp. Select the userscalar 1 pp as input v of the new ramp.
35. Select the ramp and change the colour if needed. Change the noise to 1.
36. Now add the following as creation expression.
Nparticleshape1.rgbpp= (mag (force)>0) ? nparticleshape1. uservector 1pp:1;
Nparticleshape1.incandescencepp=(mag(force)>0) ? gauss (0,1):0;
Nparticleshape1.opacitypp=(mag(force)>0) ? 1:0.25;
37. Save the expression and click play. You can see now the particles interactively change its colour and opacity according to the mesh animation.
38. You can now hide the mesh and take a render out.
39. Play with expressions and different mesh deformations. Add more animated mesh and field.

Flower texture 01

May 04, 2013
Give away of the day. You can use this high quality texture in your commercial or non commercial use. Please respect my effort to create this texture. Do not redistribute or upload in websites. You can link to this page if you wish.
Maps include
Flower diffuse
Flower Displacement
Flower Normal
Resolution   4000 x 4k
The download should be in compressed 7 zip format. Use 7zip to unzipping the file.
Download size        10 MB
Uncompressed size     40 MB
Flower_texture



Get the download link by clicking and sharing one of the button below.


Nice, you found it!

















Maya tutorial_Soup Plug in_Cage mesh

May 03, 2013
Continuing our master class in Maya for motion graphics degree. In this tutorial you will learn about a new tool named Soup for Maya. In this tutorial I will share about the Cage node inside Soup.
Soup plug in is a collection of nodes which give procedural animation capabilities in Maya. Using these nodes, user can create wide varieties of effects which are not possible normally in Maya. You can create effects which are available to the technical director or scripting guy with this soup plug in. Due to the lack of tutorials and documentation the Soup node seemed little difficult and confusing. First of all you need to know about the use of the node. Then you need to know how things are connected.More details about Soup node
Cage node allows you to cut any polygon mesh with other poly mesh. It is like intersection function of Boolean option. But with cage node you can intersect very complex mesh even with animation.
soup for maya cage node
Software Used Autodesk Maya 2012, Soup Plug in for Maya
Difficulty Intermediate
Author FermiCG
Watch the video tutorial for better understanding of Cage Node in Soup Plug in For Maya
For those who can’t follow the video tutorial find the step by step instruction below.
First you need to install the Soup plug in.
Load it in Maya and restart.
Create basic scenes for the animation. I have a polygon sphere without history and a poly converted paint effects stroke without history. You can keep history if you need complex animations like growing paint effects. For this tutorial I deleted the history because for performance gain. Remember this is a heavy scene for calculating.
In order to create a successful cage mesh you need to create following connection.
Psphereshape1.world mesh 0> cage1.inMeshcage (psphere is the source cage mesh)
Pfxmeshshape1 orig. world mesh 0> cage. inMeshv (pfx is the source in mesh)
Pfxmeshshape1 orig.world mesh 0>delete component 1. input geometry
delete component 1. output geometry> Pfxmeshshape1.inMesh
cage 1. Out components> delete component1.delete component
Turn on Hypershade first. We need a lot of dragging and dropping inside Hypershade.
Add cage node. Go to shelf Soup> nodes>cage
A cage1 node will be created inside Hypershade. You cannot see anything inside the outliner.
For things to high light in Outliner you need to do the following
Turn off the DAG objects only, Turn on the shapes
In order to create Pfxmeshshape1 orig select the Pfx mesh and select any vertices and apply a cluster Animation>create deformers> cluster
Delete the cluster. This will create a .orig node to the pfx mesh. If you want to see the node, select the pfx mesh and press the input-output button inside hypershade.
Now we need to create a delete component node. In oreder to do that
Create a polygon mesh, here I created a plane. Select any face and delete. This will create a delete component node.
Go to hypershade and press show input-output connections button. Break the connections between the delete component node and the poly plane.
Delete the poly plane shape and transform node with in hypershade.
Clear graph.
Open outliner and middle mouse drag these components inside hypershade
Psphere shape
Pfx mesh shape
Cage
Delete component
In hypershade make the connections as described earlier
First select poly sphere shape 1 and middle mouse drag it to cage 1
This will open connection editor. In order to get all the necessary nodes do the following
Options>attribute order> alphabetical, ascend
Left display > Show hidden, output only
Right display> show hidden, input only
Select the worldmesh of polysphere shape and select the in.mesh cage of cage 1 This will create a connection. Close the window
Middle mouse drag Pfx mesh. Orig to the cage node.
In connection editor connect the world mesh of .orig node to the inmesh of cage. Close
Middle mouse drag and drop Pfx mesh. Orig to the delete component 1
Connect the Pfxmeshshape1 orig.world mesh to the delete component 1. input geometry
Close
Middle mouse drag and drop delete component 1 to the Pfxmeshshape1
delete component 1. output geometry> Pfxmeshshape1.inMesh
Middle mouse drag and drop cage 1. Out components to delete component 1
cage 1. Out components> delete component1.delete component
We finished the connections. Now you can translate the cage mesh i.e. sphere in viewport and see the interactive effect.

Ncloth tutorial Explode and morph mesh in Maya

May 02, 2013
If you are a motion graphic designer degree of your animation quality can be boosted by applying some ncloth effects in Maya. Visual effects artist and animator can also use ncloth for mind blowing effects and animation. In this Maya master class you will learn to use ncloth in Maya to create exploding character face using some texture which is embedded on a mirror. You can create some character face is forming from exploded mirrors then shattering down.
render
Watch the following video tutorial to create the effect. For those who hates video tutorial, there is a step by step description is available at the bottom.

Software used Autodesk Maya 2012
Difficulty Intermediate
Author FermiCG
Download the Dog texture used for this project



If you are a motion graphic designer degree of your animation quality can be boosted by applying some ncloth effects in Maya. Visual effects artist and animator can also use ncloth for mind blowing effects and animation. In this Maya master class you will learn to use ncloth in Maya to create exploding character face using some texture which is embedded on a mirror. You can create some character face is forming from exploded mirrors then shattering down.
Watch the following video tutorial to create the effect. For those who hates video tutorial, there is a step by step description is available at the bottom.
Software used Autodesk Maya 2012
Difficulty Intermediate
Author FermiCG
1. Create a new project. Set the frame range to 100
2. Create a poly plane with 50x50 segments ( If you need much higher detail use 100x 100 or 200x 200 segments, but that will really slow down your simulation!)
3. Scale it to 25 in XYZ axis
4. Delete the history Edit> Delete by type> History
5. Freeze transformation Modify> Freeze Transformation
6. Rename it to source
7. Select the source plane and duplicate it by pressing CTRL+D
8. Rename it to target
9. Select the target plane and add it to new layer
10. Select the source plane and add to new layer
11. Hide the Target Layer
12. Select the Source plane Go to poly go to menu Mesh> Sculpt geometry> option
13. Using the sculpt geometry tool we need to project the custom displacement with the help of texture
14. Adjust the brush settings as follows
v Radius = 12
v Sculpt parameters operation to pull with auto smooth turned on
v Max displacement to 5
15. Click on folder icon in the brush profile and select the custom texture for displacement. Here I used custom painted dog image
16. Go to top menu and left click exactly the centre of the source plane. This will give a rough displaced image of the dog face in the mesh. Using this technique you can create custom terrains with less effort.
17. Scale the displaced mesh in Y axis for the desired amount.
18. Using the smooth profile in sculpt geometry tool smooth the area where too mush distortion are seen( try displacement value 1). Keep the edges equal square as much as possible.
19. Unhide the target plane/layer
20. Select the source plane, shift select the target plane then apply blend shape Animation> create deformers> Blend shape
21. Hide the source plane and change the blend shape source value to 1. You can see the mesh is displaced as the source mesh.
22. Reset it to zero. Set a key frame for the blend shape at frame 30 and set another key in frame 35 with value 1.
23. Save the scene
24. Rotate the target plane x=90 Move it in y axis so it is above the grid
25. Split the vertices in mesh by selecting all the vertices Polygon>edit mesh>split vertices
26. Add secondary objects such as frames for collision
27. Select the secondary mesh and go to ncloth >create passive collider. Change its collision width scale if necessary
28. Select the target plane and rename it to mirror.
29. Select the mirror and apply ncloth.
30. Change the nucleus settings as follows
  • v Space scale = 0.25
  • v Sub steps=1
  • v Max collision iteration=1
  • v Use plane=yes
  • v Wind velocity = 1
  • v Wind direction = z=1 (xy=0)
  • v Wind noise= 1
If you get so much penetration change the sub steps and max collision iteration to default
31. Select the ncloth shape 1 and change these
  • v Collision layer range= 1
  • v Max self-collide iterations=1
  • v Max iteration= 1000
  • v Bend solver= simple
  • v Mass= 4
32. Turn on input mesh attract. Change the input mesh attract value to 1 and add a key at frame 35
33. Go to frame 35 change the input attract value to 0 and add a key
34. Play the stimulation and save the scene
35. Select the ncloth mesh 1 and create an ncache with default settings
36. Following step is for Maya versions 2012 and above only
37. Once the cache is completed select the ncloth mesh 1 and delete the ncloth by going ncloth>Delete ncloth. Select all the mesh and do delete history.
38. Select the mirror Apply the cache again by Animation>Geometry cache>Select the ncloth 1 cache
39. Play the scene. You will get a nice effect.
If you need time warp effect
40. Now we need to add one more cache. Do the same step once more
41. Now we have two cache applied to same mesh with a cache blend node
42. Select the second cache and scale it to 4 Start frame to -127
43. Now you need to key frame the cache blend values as follows
v At frame 40
  • v Ncache 1= 1
  • v Ncache2= 0
  • v At frame 50
  • v Ncache 1= 0
  • v Ncache2=1
Add visibility keys to the mesh and play with the scale and start frame values of the second cache.
This will create a slowdown effect. If you need the mesh to be back to the same speed after slow down add another cache and plat with the settings.
If you want you can give some extrusion to the mesh. It will be very slow because of the heavy dependency node.
Watch the videos carefully for better understandings and explanations.
 
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