Monday, January 17, 2011

Video Tutorial - simming thick cloth

I guess this video that I made a few months ago is relevant.

On a project I'm working on called Rock in the Road, the characters were all modeled with REALLY thick cloth and many of them have many (many, many, many) layers of cloth. This cloth has some pretty intense texture too. Obviously, with all of this going on, we couldn't just select the modeled cloth, apply nCloth and have a nice day. So people ask how did we sim the cloth when it was so thick. Didn't that take forever? Well, it didn't take forever. In fact, the process is pretty quick.

Wow, I said cloth 6 times in the paragraph.

We used Wrap Deformers.

Our basic workflow.

1. Build a proxy mesh based on the modeled cloth object(s). To do this simply, you could duplicate the outer faces of the cloth object, simplify the topology by deleting extra edges until you have something reasonable then delete the history of this simplified mesh. This is your proxy mesh.

2. Make the proxy mesh nCloth and sim this.

3. CACHE for the love of Pete! (I'll get into that later, this step isn't in the video.)

4. Select the hi-res cloth object, select the proxy mesh and in your Animation menuset, go to Create Deformer > Wrap. You may need to adjust the Max Distance setting of the wrap deformer, but there you go. The hi res mesh (your thick cloth) now acts exactly like the proxy mesh (the thin, one sided cloth you made in step 1).

You may need to adjust your volume for this video. I hope you enjoy this full screen and in HD:


Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Demo Reel Review

I went on and on a couple of months ago about demo reel creation I even got a nice response, which is a shock since I didn't (and still don't) think more than two people will ever read this blog. Anyway, before I graduated this December (yay!) I had to have a portfolio review with three of my teachers. Talk about nerve wracking! You start looking at your demo reel and you notice all of these things you never noticed before, and you go insane trying to tweak them.

I, for one, think that's awesome. I spent a lot of time taking things out, reworking things, I even redid a couple of the shots trying to get everything perfect.

Of course, nothing ever is perfect and my teachers had quite a few things to say about my reel. It needs more diversification, so far I only have one project in there, even though I've worked on more. There are some unnecessary shots, and some that either need to be cleaned up a lot or dumped. I also heard that I should include some of my scripting work/tools I've developed using MEL. Learn Python, etc.

It was great hearing what they had to say. While I'm proud of my work (I wouldn't have put it up if I weren't), I can see where I really need to do better. It's great to get a fresh pair of eyes to look over what you've done. Sometimes you've fallen in love with a piece that you seriously need to divorce. I've sent out my demo reel, because why not, but I really hope I can have some amazing new things in the next couple of months.