View Full Version : Anybody know how to move individual pins in a group?

01-24-2012, 08:06 PM
This is a simple idea, just a little hard to explain. I've got this grid of 500 nails pointing down. Like one of those pin sculptures you buy, I need individual nails to move up and down depending on what they're resting on, like if you put your hand underneath them, the points of the nails would rest on your skin and of course the heads would resemble the shape of your hand underneath.

In this case, I actually need the nails to move down on Y axis randomly about 2cm and then back to original position. I can't possibly make a model with 500 layers and 500 separate objects where 250 of them move down randomly. That would make me insane. I need to try to do it as a single object. But I can't quite figure out how.

I'm figuring I've got to find a way to make them follow a grid of points that are on a displacement map, but can't get my head around it.

Anyone got an idea? I don't need step by step walkthrough, just a general approach should work.

Robert N

01-24-2012, 08:18 PM
Displacement map. William Vaughn did a video about this around the time that Nine Inch Nails did a music video using this effect.

Check the Newtek Youtube channel and Lightwiki to see if you can find the video.

01-24-2012, 08:25 PM
Ahh ok, I'll check those sources. Should have figured William would have had this up somewhere.

Thanks a bunch.


01-24-2012, 10:08 PM

01-25-2012, 05:44 AM
That's it! Exactly what I was looking for. Thanks.

Oh man, that trick where you reduce the pins to points as a morph and apply the UV map to them as points only is brilliant. Would never have thought of that on my own. That opens up so many possibilities using displacement.


01-25-2012, 07:05 AM
I also made a tutorial about this a while ago: