PDA

View Full Version : Hair animation with Lightwave???



injacphi
01-06-2015, 01:58 PM
Hey guys,

I'm trying to achieve this kind of animation with Lightwave (link below). Anyone has an idea of a good way to reproduce this kind of effect. I was thinking about making the background animation of the hair with Lightwave and add the special effect with AE...?

look at 11 seconds from start of video

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pLv5GB8kNgw


Thanks for your help in advance

prometheus
01-12-2015, 01:22 AM
Hey guys,

I'm trying to achieve this kind of animation with Lightwave (link below). Anyone has an idea of a good way to reproduce this kind of effect. I was thinking about making the background animation of the hair with Lightwave and add the special effect with AE...?

look at 11 seconds from start of video

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pLv5GB8kNgw


Thanks for your help in advance

Donīt you hate it when no one is answering, so here I go..

exactly what part is it in the clip? is it the technical part with one hair strand, or do you mean the real thing flowing hair, the real thing flowing hair I think you will not be so lucky with..so I wonīt even suggest anything on that, at least not with Lightwave hair tools of today.

Not sure either on the single strand effect, but use a null to move along the strand and use surface mixing with nodes and reference the null to "reveal" the new surface.
think you also should use displacement and morphs to smooth the strand at the end as shown in the clip.

the glow part..use after effects I would say, either track it directly in their, you could use the null perhaps as a tracking point, maybe use the AE export input and output connections to lightwave If you have that lightwave version.

erikals
01-13-2015, 03:52 PM
can you use a 2 point poly chain to drive hair in Layout now?

if so, just create the chains and make an endomorph in Modeler,

in Layout, animate the endomorph, the hair will now move...
(i guess you can add bones on the 2 point poly chain hair also, if you want to...)

prometheus
01-13-2015, 08:33 PM
can you use a 2 point poly chain to drive hair in Layout now?

if so, just create the chains and make an endomorph in Modeler,

in Layout, animate the endomorph, the hair will now move...
(i guess you can add bones on the 2 point poly chain hair also, if you want to...)

Im a bit suprised you didnīt know that?:hey: that has been possible for quite some time, Or do I missunderstand your comment...and it was a question to him if he has the right lw version that can handle it?

But I donīt think he is after the full realistic photo hair moving, but the part on the one strand where the reperation effect is to be seen.

for hairguides and polychains, you can animate with procedural textures, or use bullet, or cloth fx and either forces or wind dynamics to move the hair guides, you just need to deactivate gravity so the fiberfx follows the
polychain properly.

erikals
01-13-2015, 09:22 PM
Im a bit suprised you didnīt know that? that has been possible for quite some time, Or do I missunderstand your comment.
http://erikalstad.com/backup/misc.php_files/smile.gif nope, you are correct Sir, i haven't tested FiberFX animation much... :°

true, dynamics and displacements are other ways to go about it http://erikalstad.com/backup/misc.php_files/047.gif

pinkmouse
01-14-2015, 05:52 AM
Had half an hour spare so had a quick play:


http://youtu.be/eR2w-utKwhs

You'd need to spend much more time on the surfacing and environment. ;)

jasonwestmas
01-14-2015, 06:52 AM
Does Bullet constraints fix the fact that you cannot parent 2P-Poly chains (From Modeler) to a bone or joint and expect them to stick to the scalp (when using Bullet Soft Dynamics)? I'll have to check that out some time.

Syflex Nails are a different story.

Ryan Roye
01-14-2015, 07:14 AM
Syflex is basically mandatory if you intend to have character rigs operate in tandem with dynamics elements like hair, clothing, etc. It is challenging (but not impossible!) to constrain soft body items to other items using Bullet dynamics. Add the fact that Syflex is between 5-10 times faster than bullet, it is more than worth the pricetag of $200. Leave bullet for hard body and bone-constraint sims.

Regarding hair, the nail property might not fit the bill; pins should be used instead as it calculates position/rotation based on the deformed vertex points of the character mesh (mainly to keep the hairs on the back of the neck from floating in place as the character looks up or down). Often times a proxy object is required to use the pin constraint as there's currently no other way to isolate what points it operates on.

Getting good looking hair that renders fast and is stable... that's a different story. The number of people who have production experience in that area for Lightwave can probably be counted on one hand :)

jasonwestmas
01-14-2015, 07:34 AM
Pins, right. I vaguely remember that one. Thanks for the info Ryan.

prometheus
01-14-2015, 01:19 PM
Iīm sure the effect and topic question is not about rendering beautiful hair as seen in the live footage, thereīs no need to that in visualfx ..since a model can do it better and more cost/time effeciant as well as more realistic.

what pinkmouse has posted, that is probably what injacphi needs...right injacphi?

But just for the challenging part..
Getting smooth hair to flow and move smooth looking, that is still a challenging topic for the vfx industry it seems, and those making propriate tools for it seems to have gotten close.
I donīt think it is the movement the hair that is challening, at least not initial movement, self collsion and collision overall might be troublesome, but I think it might be the hair interpolation that prevents cgi hair to get up close to the real thing, and perhaps the shading.

Apart from that, styling hair is cumbersome if we donīt have better styling tools than fiberfx in layout, modeling them in modeler is probably the best option, the style brush tools in layout..I just canīt stand them and I had
hoped they were trying to improve those for fiberfx, maybe in the future.


We all got problems with hair, itīs not there were we want it too, and itīs there where we do not want it too, or is it just me ? :)

"Give me a head with hair, long beautiful hair
Shining, gleaming, streaming, flaxen, waxen
Give me down to there, hair, shoulder length or longer
Here baby, there, momma, everywhere, daddy, daddy

Hair, flow it, show it
Long as God can grow, my hair"



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SbkJEDqFaDI

jasonwestmas
01-14-2015, 01:46 PM
yeah, bullet works with the hair guides that layout uses, unfortunately the styling/ dynamics capabilities don't go beyond medium length fur.

injacphi
01-18-2015, 08:39 PM
Pinkmouse yes it's the effect I'm looking for. I dont need to see the full hair animation but just the single air with light effect that show the inner structure of the hair.

All people Thanks for your tips!!!!

Greenlaw
01-19-2015, 06:19 PM
This is a really old Bullet test I did as part of the R&D for Brudders 2. It has a bit of a 'slow motion' look because I'm just hitting Play in Layout and it's a lot of data being pushed around. Scrub to the third test at around 4:17:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H-kQRSsaCpg

I think I just used the usual hair settings but gave it a bit of dampening to give the hair some 'drag'. Also give it less gravity--that makes the hair a little 'floaty'. If you're using Bullet, you might also try slowing down the dynamics in the World panel.

Many years ago, long before Bullet was available in Lightwave, I did something similar for a Fable 2 E3 trailer using ClothFX. In that situation, I placed some wind under the character to blow the hair upwards. The result was a swimmy, underwater look.

G.

Edit: Sorry, I totally misunderstood the request. I paid attention to the wrong part of the video. :)

Greenlaw
01-19-2015, 06:38 PM
Regarding styling, the native styling tools do work well but, as Jason points out, not so much for long stylish hair. ZB FiberMesh works much better for long hair styles and it's compatible with Bullet and FiberFX. (It's what I used for the above test.)

Using FiberMesh takes a bit of skill and practice though. There's an excellent course over on Digital Tutors specifically on the subject that I highly recommend.

Here's a series of pics showing how Sister's hair had been styled using FiberMesh. The last pic is FiberFX in Layout.

126595

You can import the guides directly to Lightwave. It's been a while since I've done this but I think when you convert the guides using FiberFX Strandmaker, it generates the needed anchor point on the guides for Bullet sims. In the above case, however, I think I just parented the guides the head bone--it was just easier and I didn't need it to be any more complicated than that.

G.

Greenlaw
01-19-2015, 06:47 PM
In general, the experience with styling in FiberMesh is not too different from styling in Layout. It takes a lot of practice so if you don't really have a handle on the tools, it will produce a big mess. I would start with something simple first and really get to know the subtleties of the tools. IMO, the big advantage with FiberMesh is being able to create groups (the color coded areas,) which can be hidden or excluded from brushing. This makes is easier to create fairly complicated shapes with selected locks of hair. (And, of course, ZB just has a lot more crazy brush effects to play with.)

Hope this helps.

G.

sudac20
01-19-2015, 07:00 PM
Syflex is basically mandatory if you intend to have character rigs operate in tandem with dynamics elements like hair, clothing, etc. It is challenging (but not impossible!) to constrain soft body items to other items using Bullet dynamics. Add the fact that Syflex is between 5-10 times faster than bullet, it is more than worth the pricetag of $200. Leave bullet for hard body and bone-constraint sims.

Regarding hair, the nail property might not fit the bill; pins should be used instead as it calculates position/rotation based on the deformed vertex points of the character mesh (mainly to keep the hairs on the back of the neck from floating in place as the character looks up or down). Often times a proxy object is required to use the pin constraint as there's currently no other way to isolate what points it operates on.

Getting good looking hair that renders fast and is stable... that's a different story. The number of people who have production experience in that area for Lightwave can probably be counted on one hand :)

Does Syflex work with 2 point poly chains?

jasonwestmas
01-20-2015, 05:06 PM
Does Syflex work with 2 point poly chains?

yes but syflex does not work with the extra fiberFX "root points" that appear on the end of each chain when you convert a spline into a ffx chain. I think it's because the extra points are located in exactly the same space as it's neighboring point and syflex does not work with that and makes syflex crash lw. So to make this work you'll create your 2point poly sim without the ffx root points and then bake it to mdd. This .mdd file will run correctly on your ffx chains if you created your sim chains from the same ffx chains. . . essentially the same chains but without the root points which you can find in the 'w' component editor.

Another tip is don't try to convert 2point poly chains into ffx chains using the ffx hair guide tool, it messes things up bad. Always convert splines into ffx 2point poly chains.

Ryan Roye
01-20-2015, 05:14 PM
Does Syflex work with 2 point poly chains?

It should be noted that 2-point poly chains currently cannot self-collide with Syflex, so if that is needed (unlikely for FFX fine hair scenarios), you have to use tris or quads. Fortunately this isn't a significant hit on performance as you can get some crazy numbers of things going with workable computational speed:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7cA0s0yjoq4

Greenlaw
01-20-2015, 05:31 PM
Also, depending on your character, it may not be necessary to create a ton of hair guides for interesting hairstyles. The following example isn't meant to be a finished piece but it's an example of what you can do using a single curve from Modeler.

126606 126607 126611

There's a lot you can do with FiberFX with very little effort. It just takes a little bit of imagination and creativity. :)

G.

jasonwestmas
01-20-2015, 07:26 PM
It should be noted that 2-point poly chains currently cannot self-collide with Syflex, so if that is needed (unlikely for FFX fine hair scenarios), you have to use tris or quads. Fortunately this isn't a significant hit on performance as you can get some crazy numbers of things going with workable computational speed:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7cA0s0yjoq4

What I have done in the past is to extrude planes from the 2point poly guides. I simulate with those and the mdd you can create still works on the 2point poly FFX chains.

sudac20
01-20-2015, 08:09 PM
Thanks guys... looks like I might have to buy Syflex

prometheus
01-21-2015, 04:42 AM
Also, depending on your character, it may not be necessary to create a ton of hair guides for interesting hairstyles. The following example isn't meant to be a finished piece but it's an example of what you can do using a single curve from Modeler.

126606 126607 126611

There's a lot you can do with FiberFX with very little effort. It just takes a little bit of imagination and creativity. :)



G.

yupp..in fact in some cases it might be better to use only a few hair guides or curves and let the fiberfx amount and cluster do the work for good hairstyling.

jaxtone
09-11-2015, 09:23 AM
Since Dodgy went to sleep and I am about to I just have to try my question here as well.

The Scene I add seems to have a problem with the dynamics of the hair when moving the scalp around. It stiff like an iron bar and not what I am looking for.

Dodgy told me that one strange thing was that it works better if I turn the Kinematics of for the scalp so I tried to deactivate the scalp itself and voila, the hair starts to act more like natural, but...

I cannot find any tool setting or adjustment option that keeps the hair in top of the scalp and to me it looks more like things have gone really bad when there are no information for how the hair interact with the scalp.

Help is needed from you who know more than me!

Regards, Jack

Greenlaw
09-11-2015, 01:45 PM
Off the top of my head (so to speak,) you might try weighting the Shape Retention so that it's stiffer near the scalp and looser towards the ends. This should make the strands move less near the scalp and more away from it. For long hair, I find this looks more natural in most situations. I have to be sitting in front of the Bullet panel to be sure this is all I do, but I think that's my SOP for this sort of thing. I'll take a look tonight and post again if I need to revise what I just suggested.

BTW, you always want at least a little Shape Retention to move the hair back to it's original shape when the character is not moving around so much.

G.

jaxtone
09-12-2015, 09:21 AM
Greenlaw, I listen, learn and look forward to see what you come up with!

jaxtone
09-12-2015, 09:51 AM
Greenlaw, I listen, learn and look forward to see what you come up with! Since I am not a native English speaking person so I have to ask a few things!

1. I've never heard the expression "shape retentention" before but guess its the same as adjusting levels on an item.

2. When talking about stiffness I see what you mean but can't find an editing tool where I adjust the end or start values of the "strand_weightmap"?

3. I guess you mean that I can edit the "strand_weightmap" afterwards?

4. Or do you mean I have to add a new weight map after the strands were created?

Jack

Greenlaw
09-12-2015, 10:38 AM
Oh, I assumed you were using Bullet for hair dynamics. Are you using ClothFX? It's been a long time since I last used ClothFX for hair--that would take me longer to remember how I used that.

If you're using Bullet, after you apply Deforming, you'll see Shape Retention under Properties. This kinda does in Bullet what Hold Structure did in ClothFX, and you can use a weight map to control how 'loose' it gets along the length of the guides. Also, under Shape Lock, you want to set it to Translation and Rotation.

That's the basics of using Bullet for hair guides anyway. The details depends on what you're animating. The simplest setup is probably what I set up for 'Sister' in the music video we're working on. In her case, the wig is just parented to her head bone so it moves with the head. Calculation time is super fast this way. There are some old tests on our YouTube Test channel: LGD Test Tube (https://www.youtube.com/user/LGDTestTube). The final result can be seen in the excerpt on Vimeo (https://vimeo.com/68543424).

This is a pretty old example actually, done way back using 11.5's Bullet and FiberFX. This summer we dusted off the project and are finishing it using 2015.3. So far, it seems to work pretty much the same way it did in 11.5, but with many improvements in the settings. 2015.x also fixes some aux channel problems that appeared during 11.6.x.

Getting back to the weight mapping, FiberFX StrandMaker and Edit Guides both generate a weight map for you. If you want to edit the weights yourself for more specific control, you can crawl along the guides using Shift - [ and ] and set the weight values. This assumes all the guide have the same number of knots of course. I suggest using as few knots in your guides as possible--this makes editing the guides a lot easier and it makes running dynamics (bullet or other system) much faster.

Oh, I should mention using collision objects. I don't reommend using the deforming character mesh for collision because it's too slow for practical use. Its much more efficient to use proxy objects parented to the bones instead. Look at this video to see an example: Sister Motion Test (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jASC8IOsIqY). You can see the 'bean' and 'pill' shapes used for collision in the middle section of the video at around 0:50.

When we're finished with this music video, I'm thinking of creating a video tutorial series, some of which will will cover FiberFX and Bullet in production.

G.

jaxtone
09-12-2015, 11:05 AM
I use Bullet and will melt down you kind explanation, try things out and sweat.

As I remember from the past there were at genial Weight Map editing tool in Lightwave were you could chose how much weight you wanted to add to parts of an object. Cannot find anywhere now and hope not the Lightwave team has erased the Weight Map editor functions in Lightwave!

Canīt tell how happy at least myself would be if you could share your experiences from that music video's FiberFX and Bullet parts with the world!

Jack

prometheus
09-12-2015, 11:20 AM
I use Bullet and will melt down you kind explanation, try things out and sweat.

As I remember from the past there were at genial Weight Map editing tool in Lightwave were you could chose how much weight you wanted to add to parts of an object. Cannot find anywhere now and hope not the Lightwave team has erased the Weight Map editor functions in Lightwave!

Canīt tell how happy at least myself would be if you could share your experiences from that music video's FiberFX and Bullet parts with the world!

Jack

You can use modelers spline guide and operation weight map, then move the handles to adjust weights.
you can also use maps, weigth/weights and use numeric tab and different falloff..like linear, right mouse click and drag the linear tool to fit your object, use left mouse to set weigth values.

the problem with strands and weightmaps, they donīt show up in display unless having polys I think, so you might need to copy and paste weightmaps.

jaxtone
09-12-2015, 11:47 AM
Hi Promotheus!

I see what you read but cannot find the "spline guide" or "operation weight map" command of function anywhere. Can you please describe where to find them?

Regards, Jack


You can use modelers spline guide and operation weight map, then move the handles to adjust weights.
you can also use maps, weigth/weights and use numeric tab and different falloff..like linear, right mouse click and drag the linear tool to fit your object, use left mouse to set weigth values.

the problem with strands and weightmaps, they donīt show up in display unless having polys I think, so you might need to copy and paste weightmaps.

prometheus
09-12-2015, 11:52 AM
Hi Promotheus!

I see what you read but cannot find the "spline guide" or "operation weight map" command of function anywhere. Can you please describe where to find them?

Regards, Jack

splineguide in modeler is probably hidden by default in the typical more tabs..
go to modify/transform/more..
personally I have ripped it out of the more tab and placed it under the other transform tools, so you can do that with edit menu.

And a note...you will not see the spline guide tool show up..even if you click on it once you have the button there..you need to hit numeric tab and activate it their..yeah..they need to adress that old tool.

jaxtone
09-12-2015, 11:55 AM
So here's a new scene setup but I guess it is just as weird as the earlier one since I could't find the weight map editor anywhere. At least the hair looked a little bit better before the head start moving.

One strange thing is that I still have to deactivate the scalp in Bullet to make the hair deform. I added a null object that I made as a master for the scalp and then let the hair become a sub to the scalp.

Maybe this is the wrong way of doing it but it at least made the hair deform even if it doesn't follow the nulls moves!

But I would still be a little bit wiser if someone could take a look and tell if there are any settings that are totally wacked!

Jack

erikals
09-12-2015, 11:57 AM
anyone knows how to solve this FiberFX problem by the way ?

Chris Jones - More Fiber Malfunctions (http://forums.newtek.com/showthread.php?148041-More-Fiber-Malfunctions)

jaxtone
09-12-2015, 12:11 PM
Promotheus!

Thanks! I found it, the Spline Guide editor... it was deeply hidden between the menus as you told.

Now I wonder if I misunderstood you or just acting like an idiot.

Did you mean it isn't possibly to edit the weightmap of strands in the Spline Guide.

Because I do not see how I can edit any levels here at all!

prometheus
09-12-2015, 12:14 PM
So here's a new scene setup but I guess it is just as weird as the earlier one since I could't find the weight map editor anywhere. At least the hair looked a little bit better before the head start moving.

One strange thing is that I still have to deactivate the scalp in Bullet to make the hair deform. I added a null object that I made as a master for the scalp and then let the hair become a sub to the scalp.

Maybe this is the wrong way of doing it but it at least made the hair deform even if it doesn't follow the nulls moves!

But I would still be a little bit wiser if someone could take a look and tell if there are any settings that are totally wacked!

Jack


havent looked at it properly, but why using two layers? if you set the scalp with 100% weight shape retention, and the beginning of the strands a bit lower and the rest very little retention weight map..and all in one layer..wouldnīt that work?

You are not an idiot..at least not in this case :)

you can not see the weight values on spline curves or points only, but you can edit them blindly :)
or create additional polys next to it..and adjust the weightmap on that...as a reference guide..then delete that geometry, the map is still there.

prometheus
09-12-2015, 12:58 PM
Taking a second look at it.

made the scalp kinematic..low ..low collision value, or maybe set to 0, and used that in one layer.
the strands in another layer, parented to the kinematic scalp.

didnīt use any weights at all..

might work.

prometheus
09-12-2015, 01:07 PM
to bad he didnīt do this one in english..
you might want to pm and ask about some initial directions..



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SbkJEDqFaDI

prometheus
09-12-2015, 01:25 PM
I also think your hairguide could use more divisions, and as uniform divided as possible.
To note, the hairguides rootpoints need to reside inside of the scalp kinematic object layer, or else it will loose itīs hair just as I do nowadays :)

Greenlaw
09-12-2015, 03:19 PM
It's true that native Modeler doesn't show weight values for guides in the viewport, so I like to use Show Weights from TrueArt. It's part of the TrueArt Modeling Pack. (http://www2.trueart.pl/?URIType=Directory&URI=Products/Plug-Ins)

129713

This is a very handy tool to have when working with externally modeled guides for FiberFX.

G.

Greenlaw
09-12-2015, 03:30 PM
As for divisions, you don't really want too many divisions because that will cause the hair to bend and kink unnaturally. Too many divisions may also cause the dynamics system to bog down with unnecessary calculations. I would experiment with a simple object (just a sphere will do,) with a few guides--this will help you understand what geometry and settings will be optimal for your design.

The fibers themselves don't really need a lot of small divisions in the guides because their shape will be interpolated through the guides--just like with a Curve. (Side note: not many know this but FiberFX is compatible with Curves. That's not very useful for dynamics though since you can't use Curves with Bullet or ClothFX. But it's good for rigid guides that you want to edit using Curves tools.)

In the Sister example, there might be a dozen divisions and most of that is in the upper region near the scalp. That's the region that would be most heavily weighted so there would be little movement there anyway.

G.

jaxtone
09-13-2015, 12:28 AM
Hi Greenlaw!

I was about to try importing guides with less divisions in when something strange happened this morning.

Donīt know if Lightwave FiberFX have some kind of heat filter built inside but it seems like the whole engine are gone!

Got this message and wonder if it ever happened to anyone of you guys out there?

Jack

Greenlaw
09-13-2015, 01:02 AM
It sounds like your plugin config file has somehow gotten corrupted. You could re-scan but personally I would do a rebuild from scratch just to be safe.

What I like to do whenever I have a set of configs I'm happy with, is to make a backup copy of them so that if such problems ever arise, all I need to do is drag the good copy back into my configs folder. If you use the default folders, it also makes it easy to quickly mirror your setup to other computers.

G.

jaxtone
09-13-2015, 02:03 AM
Ok Thanks!

I better re-install the whole program then! Just a question about where the config files are supposed to be located to take affect in Lightwave! Is the location on the attached image correct?

jaxtone
09-13-2015, 02:32 AM
Now I reinstalled the whole program but still get the same message as described in the attached image!

Anyone knows where this VolumeHandler is supposed to be located in the native software?

Or if it is a third party plugin which I do not believe it is myself.

The FiberFX engine is still collapsed and I feel itīs very strange since I deleted Lightwave re-started my computer before I installed a clean Lightwave directly downloaded from Newtek.com!

???

PS. I would also like to know which e-mail address a crash report is supposed to have as recipient?

Greenlaw
09-13-2015, 02:32 AM
No, no need for that! Just rebuild the configs. All you need to do is delete the existing ones and Lightwave will make new ones.

As a matter of fact, if you don't delete them, a new re-install of Lightwave will just continue using your existing config, not create new ones.

If you don't know how to do that, hold on--this topic has been discussed in other threads. I'll do a search. BRB.

G.

jaxtone
09-13-2015, 02:44 AM
Oh My God! I was too fast... should have listened to you first!

But what if I delete all config files before I re-install Lightwave? Then I guess Lightwave will create new ones from a default value... I can be wrong but still wonder if this isn't a possible way to do it?

Another alternative would be to ask someone to send me a functional config file if he/she work in the same environment as me!

Greenlaw
09-13-2015, 03:14 AM
Nevermind...it's easier for me to just type the steps here.

Don't be intimidated by the length of the following--it might seem like a lot of steps but it's not really. I'm just explaining what each step means as we move through the steps. (By now, you should know that long posts are normally what you can expect from me.) :p:

1. Make a back up copy of your configs and then delete them. The files are generally called LW.CFG, LWEXT.CFG, LWHUB.CFG, and LWM.CFG, with variations for each LightWave version. For example, LWEXT.CFG for Lightwave 2015.3 x64 is called LWEXT2015.3-64.CFG.

By default, these files are found in your User folder, in a folder called .newtek. Each version of LightWave will have its own folder to prevent conflicts. Go to the folder for the version of LightWave you're using. For example, if you're using LightWave 11.6.3, go to that folder.

Typically, I like to make a folder called oldConfigs and drag everything to it. This way, if things don't work out, I can always revert to the old configs by dragging these files back.

2. Launch Layout. Now you should have a clean LightWave. If you were to quit now, Lightwave would write your new configs for this version. But wait...

3. Let make sure it's writing the configs correctly. First scan your plugins folder. To do this, open Edit Plugins and click on Scan Directory. Point to Lightwave[your version]>Support>Plugins. Click Okay. A few seconds later, Layout will have added all your native plugins.

Note: Some users will tell you to just scan your entire Lightwave folder. If you do this, make sure you delete or move the Rollback folder--this folder may contain previous versions of your plugins so you don't want to scan those--that's just begging for trouble. If you want to keep your Rollback folder, you can move it back after the scan. Personally, I just delete it whenever I update my Lightwave. It's not terribly useful and it can take up a lot of disk space.

If you keep your third party plugins in another folder, scan that next. (I typically keep a folder in the top level of the Lightwave folder called Plugins for third party plugins.)

Now if you were to quit, it would save the updated LWEXT.CFG file for your plugins. But wait, there's more...

4. Select Edit Menu Layout and select Presets Default. If it's already selected, select any other option and then select Default. The Default setting is always the most current setting and it loads all the current plugins. If you choose one of the ancient presets, like Studio Production Style, you will get an incomplete menu for modern Lightwave. (LW3DG really should remove all the obsolete presets--long time users ignore them and there presence just confuses new users. That's one of my pet peeves with Lightwave: there's a lot of legacy stuff in there that just needs to be pulled out...but I digress...)

5. Just for kicks, set your Keyboard Shortcut settings to Default. Same reason.

6. You may as well set all your personal default settings too.

7. Quit Layout.

Now you have good configs for Layout. But there's more...

8. Launch Modeler. You do not need to rescan plugins but set your Menu, Keyboard Shortcut presets to default, and set your other Modeler defaults to what you want.

9. Quit Modeler.

NOW you have a fresh set of configs with all the proper settings. The final step is for future peace of mind.

10. In your config folder, make a folder called configBU150913 (or whatever the currrent date it.) Drag a copy of the current 'good' configs to this folder. If your config every go bad again, you can replace them with these files.

Naturally, whenever you make a big change to your configs, like new plugins or menu changes, you should back those up. I like to put new configs in another configBU folder with the current date. If you make multiple config sets on the same day, append the folder name with a letter--like configBU150913a for example. That might sound a bit anal but, trust me, when something goes wrong you'll be thankful to be back up and running in just the two seconds is takes to drag your backup copy out of the folder.

Hope this helps. If I missed anything, hopefully another user can fill in the the info.

G.

P.S., asking for somebody else's configs is not ideal because another user's configs might not reflect how you want to work or the plugins you have on your system.

P.P.S, if all is successful, you can probably delete that 'oldConfigs' folder.

jaxtone
09-13-2015, 03:26 AM
Oh my God!

You really did a good job there Greenlaw... how many beers di I have to buy you on a sunny day now?

I will take action directly to see if I can correct this failure on my computer directly.

Iīll get back to you and hope it doesn't take enough time for my own physical hair to go nuts!

Jack

By the way, how would anyone that isn't top notch skilled know all these tips and tricks of how to make things right with the missing FBX volume handler?

Greenlaw
09-13-2015, 03:45 AM
I don't know for certain that the configs went 'bad' in your case. There could be other reasons for that error but 'bad' configs is what came first to my mind, especially if you experiences any crashing recently. Normally, if I have backup configs available, so I can check/fix this in a few seconds.

If you use LightWave, knowing how to rebuild your configs is probably essential. And after you've done the above a couple of times, I'm sure you'll see that it's not too big a deal, especially if you've made a backup of your configs. I don't know if this topic is mentioned in the manual but if it's not, I agree, it should be.

(Note: you might want to refresh the page...I did a bit of editing to my previous post for further clarification.)

jaxtone
09-13-2015, 04:14 AM
I listen and learn and will definitely go through this!

Just one thing. the config files you mentioned isn't available in the user account... but I found the ones described in my attached image below!

jaxtone
09-13-2015, 04:28 AM
Oops! There seems to be two different kind of folders with configs... did you mean I should delete all of them, even the ones in the folder named as configs as show on the image?

Greenlaw
09-13-2015, 12:06 PM
You should leave the folder called 'configs' alone. It's the files outside of that folder we're interested in.

You'll see other configs, settings and preferences files appear here as well, which may be related to different plugins (like for the color picker and various modeling tools.) If you delete those, the plugins will create new ones the next time you use them.

Which makes me wonder, maybe you should delete any FiberFX related settings/configs? Try removing the ff4.cfg file. I'm not sure that will make any difference as I think that's a Modeler preference, but see what happens. You can always bring it back in.

All that said, it's strange that you should see that error after installing a clean LightWave and completely rebuilding the configs. This makes me wonder if it's something about your scene file and not the program.

Is the error repeatable if you make a simple example? Just try growing fibers on a plane or a sphere and see what happens. If that's okay, try another quick test with your full mesh--don't worry about styling it, just see if it works without triggering that error. Can you post the files?

Or is the problem that FiberFX isn't opening at all now? In which case, I'm wondering if you're LWEXT.cfg is still incomplete.

Try this:

1. If you haven't deleted the Rollback folder or at least moved it out of the LightWave directory, do that now. (You can move it back later if you really want to keep it.)

2. Launch Layout and open the Edit Plugins window.

3. Click Clear--this flushes all your plugins.

4. Point Scan Directory to the Lightwave[your version] folder. This will scan all folders, and not just the 'plugins' directory. (If you're third party plugins are not located in the Lightwave folder, that's okay--let's not worry about that for now.)

5. Just to be safe, go to the Edit Menu Layout window and choose Default. This will set up your menus to reflect current native plugins and command.

6. Quit Layout and relaunch it.

Let's try one more thing before opening the file. If you know where the content directory for the scene is, set it now. If you don't know, open Preferences>Paths and enable Auto-Detect. Now open your scene. If Layout asks you questions about the path, say yes allow it to do its thing. If the path was not properly set before, you may need to show it where your objects or textures are.

If the scene opens up properly, save it. Let me know how it goes.

G.

Greenlaw
09-13-2015, 12:33 PM
Oh, I should add that when you scan the entire LightWave folder like that, you'll probably see a couple of errors pop up. This happens because the scan will read some .dll files as plugins that are not actually plugins. Don't worry about that...these won't be added to the plugins config.

G.

Greenlaw
09-13-2015, 12:49 PM
Let me ask one more thing: was the scene created in the same version of Lightwave you're using now? Or was it originally created in an older version? The reason I ask is that older scene files with FiberFX may not be fully compatible with newer versions of LightWave because features were added or changed, property values are interpreted differently now, and even the .lwo format has changed over the years. This is especially true for very old FiberFX scenes.

That said, our Brudders music video scenes that were created using 11.5.1 appear to be translating well to 2015.3...but I haven't fully checked that yet. (At the moment, we're busy upgrading our mocap workflow and not dealing with FiberFX so much yet.)

G.

jasonwestmas
09-13-2015, 01:36 PM
Most likely you are dealing with old data conflicting with new data. That happens over and over and over again with ffx.

jaxtone
09-13-2015, 01:47 PM
Greenlaw!

Wow... I followed your instructions and learned a lot on the way to a successfully recover of the system. A big thank you and please do never excuse yourself for long explanations. Its most appreciated, especially when the information contains so much positive values.

Now I suddenly went back to my first problem with the hair that didn't follow the head in a natural way. I did what you told me, kept it simple and minimized the amount of information in each guide. However it looks like a disaster... and if you or someone else have a spare minute to judge what I am doing wrong here!

Please see attached object and scene file!

P.S. I wonder if the first scalp and hair example I used as an example was to small to work ok with FiberFX and Bullet? Anyone knows if FiberFX have problems with dynamics when the object is to small?

- - - Updated - - -

JasonWestmas!

It seems like FiberFX still is very fragile!

prometheus
09-13-2015, 05:01 PM
Greenlaw!

Wow... I followed your instructions and learned a lot on the way to a successfully recover of the system. A big thank you and please do never excuse yourself for long explanations. Its most appreciated, especially when the information contains so much positive values.

Now I suddenly went back to my first problem with the hair that didn't follow the head in a natural way. I did what you told me, kept it simple and minimized the amount of information in each guide. However it looks like a disaster... and if you or someone else have a spare minute to judge what I am doing wrong here!

Please see attached object and scene file!

P.S. I wonder if the first scalp and hair example I used as an example was to small to work ok with FiberFX and Bullet? Anyone knows if FiberFX have problems with dynamics when the object is to small?

- - - Updated - - -



JasonWestmas!

It seems like FiberFX still is very fragile!

yes dynamics is best used within a certain scale for best simulation, check the manuals about the proper scale.
frame rate increasement might help simulation accuracy, but takes longer to simulate.

Fiberfx fragile? unfortunatly it seems so..depends on, one needs to do a lot right when working with extending 1 point polys etc...it can cause crashes, exactly why it does that I donīt know, would take a long time to track down maybe, some time I can get it to work, sometimes not..so one need to be careful and check point info and vertex panels etc.

fiberfx has it charms...and some things you just hate, personally I get annoyed with sculpting or editing strands in modeler with the strand tool..which only allows for single strands to be edited one at the time...and in layout the styling of guides are not very comfortable either...not sure if sensei and his trueart hair styling plugin is still out there for purchase..and if it would be of any help? the styling tools in modeler and layout is quite poor in my opinion unfortunatly..so fixing of styling tools, crashes, and perhaps better shadow depth on hair, then they might have something decent.

Michael

prometheus
09-14-2015, 04:35 PM
regarding bullet dynamics, basics could be to start with a single strand/hairguide..
Sensei/trueartīs make bezier might be a good start, you can create a curve with spline draw, convert to bezier curve..and then freeze it with selectable divisions and also a mode to directly turn them to hairguides.

select all points you want to be deformable and create a weightmap at 100% leave root points non selected ..and they will retain a value of 0 , once
in layout..making the strand a bullet deforming body, open bullet item properties and select mesh filter and the weightmap you created to deform it..so the mesh filter works in opposite to clothfx wich used fixed pointsets, in bullet you select points that are to be deformed with mesh filter.

click play and watch the hairguide swing, to have fiberfx follow the hairguide properly, you should turn down the gravity to zero in fiberfx panel.
increase, cluster, cluster radius, guide radius, and perhaps give it a little more fiber quantity..and you got a ponytail swinging based on one single strand.

Greenlaw
09-14-2015, 08:46 PM
Exactly! That's very good advice. Animating a single lock of hair is a great way to learn the FiberFX/Bullet system. If you haven't learned how to make 1 strand do what you want, trying to get tens of thousands of guide chains to interact and perform exactly the way you want is really quite ambitious.

I like to keep my own tests simple when trying something new. Once I feel I have a handle on the basics, I'll build up to more complex systems from there. This helps me understand problems as they arise since I'm generally dealing with one issue at a time. It also helps me identify user error from actual software bugs.

G.

prometheus
09-14-2015, 09:12 PM
one simple strand, bullet softbody dynamics..just gravity letting it fall and sway...
some artifacts and to short..but I just wanted to show how one strand could look like if you tweak styling bundle twist..where I use a procedural.
some jerky jump due to weight setting to sharp perhaps..

regarding copying points from a scalp..pasting to another layer, convert to one point polys then extending sizing and moving to style hair..I would recommend running strandmaker on such polychains and use only that..otherwise it will most certain crash in layout when turning on fiberfx.

jeric_synergy
09-15-2015, 12:28 AM
It's true that native Modeler doesn't show weight values for guides in the viewport, so I like to use Show Weights from TrueArt. It's part of the TrueArt Modeling Pack. (http://www2.trueart.pl/?URIType=Directory&URI=Products/Plug-Ins)
129713
This is a very handy tool to have when working with externally modeled guides for FiberFX.
G.
That is VERY cool.

CMIIW, but Modeler is incapable of displaying weights on anything that doesn't have an area, right? So Curves/Splines are in the same boat. TrueArt Modeling Pack would be handy there too.

Greenlaw
09-15-2015, 12:43 AM
For some reason I had it in my head that you couldn't apply weights to curves...but I just checked and you totally can.

And, yes, Show Weights can show it. :)

jeric_synergy
09-15-2015, 01:06 AM
I cheated: I weighted a box and then deleted one side.

prometheus
09-15-2015, 06:29 AM
I cheated: I weighted a box and then deleted one side.

thatīs what folks tend to do I think.

and you can also train your mind to see what is not visible..ehh..by selecting point by point and give each point exact weight value of 10,30.40 etc..then visualize in your head :D

weights on points only..comes in infrared for modeler :) not sure...but truarts shows weights only with numeric id values? not vertex color shown?

jeric_synergy
09-15-2015, 09:08 AM
@[email protected] Coloring a 2d line wouldn't be that helpful anyway: I >>LIKE<< a numeric display, it's clear. The color one is slightly ridiculous in that it only give approximate info, depending on one's vision and monitor.

Greenlaw
09-15-2015, 09:39 AM
IMO, it would be good to have both, with the option to use either or both at the same time. If you have a dense mesh, the numbers can get cluttered and unreadable.

G.

jeric_synergy
09-15-2015, 10:03 AM
"Display decimation". Feature request!

"Display decimation with offset", so you can 'move' the skipped ones around, that is, adjust which are skipped.

Greenlaw
09-15-2015, 10:47 AM
That's a cool idea.

Generally I haven't had a problem with 'number clutter' when using Show Weights because I don't usually work with meshes that dense. But obviously that can happen with hair guides easily.

G.

prometheus
09-15-2015, 02:01 PM
@[email protected] Coloring a 2d line wouldn't be that helpful anyway: I >>LIKE<< a numeric display, it's clear. The color one is slightly ridiculous in that it only give approximate info, depending on one's vision and monitor.

agree to some degree..at least maybe for a single strand..but with several strands it would be different and give a good approximation just as it does with polys with lots of points and color weightmaps.
with several strands it would be a clutter to interprete number values id.

Sensei
09-15-2015, 03:12 PM
That is VERY cool.

It was screen-shot from actually working tool.



CMIIW, but Modeler is incapable of displaying weights on anything that doesn't have an area, right? So Curves/Splines are in the same boat. TrueArt Modeling Pack would be handy there too.

Modeler doesn't show weight maps as digits on anything. It shows red-gray-blue gradient on normal polygons. Hardly useful when we want to know exact value of weight at certain vertex.
Show Weights is showing weight maps on any points, regardless whether they're part of spline or regular polygon or sub-patch.

jaxtone
09-15-2015, 03:23 PM
Greenlaw and Promotheus!

I just noticed you've been sharing a lot of valuable information but before I try things out I just have to ask two things.

1. It seems like you have different opinions about divisions on the guides. I admit my skills are totally blank when it comes to what method is the best but would appreciate if you could leave a note about how and why you see things in different perspectives here!

2. Is it true that the TrueArt Modeling Pack is available for 300 bucks?
(I guess it is worth it but sometimes it feels like "flay.com" seems to be located in Shangri-La nowadays.)

Greenlaw
09-15-2015, 04:11 PM
For me, the tools are an interesting and sometimes curious collection. Some of the tools in the collection made me say "Now when would I ever need that?," but then the need arises and boy am I glad to have them!

The only problem with the collection is that there are so many tools, I sometimes forget what's in it. :p

Some of the tools are fairly specialized so I would look over his demo videos and decide for yourself if you can use them.

The Show Weights plugin is probably an essential one if you need to work with weight maps a lot. I know that's one I use fairly often. I don't know if Sensei sells his plugins a la carte but you could ask him.

G.

Greenlaw
09-15-2015, 04:24 PM
As for guide chain segments, try a few tests and see what works best for you.

The reason I prefer to minimize the number of segments is mainly for speed and control. In my personal experience with both Bullet and ClothFX, fewer segments result in fewer collision errors and smoother motions. Fewer collisions also means faster calculations. The results are fine for what I typically need but you're requirements or tastes may differ. My personal workstation is five years old and generally under-powered for most of the things I animate and render on it, so I tend to minimize, optimize and cheat obsessively.

Of course, having too few segments can be a problem if the hair is very long. The number of segments you need really depends on your character's hairstyle and how you want it to move. Keep in mind that the the FiberFX fibers are able to render much more smoothly than the guide chains they're following, so it's not necessary for the guide chains to form perfectly smooth curves.

Here's my first Bullet hair test from a few years ago: Sister Hair Test in 11.5 (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H-kQRSsaCpg). The motion might look slow but that's because I'm just hitting Play in Layout and I don't have the fastest computer in the world. That said, you can see how quickly Bullet can calculate quite a lot of guide chains when the number of segments is set to only as high as what you need. (I don't remember exactly the number of segments but the longer guides probably between 12 and 16 segments, and the bangs are fewer (or at least weighted differently).)

FYI, we're using a variant of middle setup in our music video (I think it's around 5k guides). The number of dark hair on a human head is about 100,000 but remember that each guide chain actually represents a lock of hair, not a strand. In many situations, you can get away with far fewer guides than you might think.

Here's this hair setup on the rigged character again: Sister Mocap Test (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jASC8IOsIqY). The calc time is reasonably fast: almost 1000 frames in 12 minutes, and on a fairly old computer. My goal here was to create a simple hair setup that didn't require any fussing and calculated quickly. Once I had Sister's hair setup locked in, it's been mostly plug-and-play from shot to shot.

G.

jeric_synergy
09-15-2015, 05:43 PM
Modeler doesn't show weight maps as digits on anything. It shows red-gray-blue gradient on normal polygons. Hardly useful when we want to know exact value of weight at certain vertex.
Show Weights is showing weight maps on any points, regardless whether they're part of spline or regular polygon or sub-patch.
I undersold the weakness of the native display. Maybe my color acuity is crap (actually, I know it's not tops) but the Weight Shade display is I believe only supposed to give you a general impression of the underlaying numbers.

So, IMO TrueArts display is a HYYOOOOOOOGUE win. :thumbsup:

Still, Sensei, consider the "Display Decimation" idea, it might be a good one.

jaxtone
09-16-2015, 03:38 AM
Hi!

So, Greenlaw and Promotheus, I listened to your advice and kept the hair guides less and simple.

This isn't really a problem to make the hair guides to act almost like hair when I add these items into Bullet. (See attached scene file "HeadAndHair01.rar")

I even had a chance to experience that I came a little bit further thanks to you guys. I added FiberFX but still do not get how I can avoid the hair from interfere with the Ballhead? (See attached scene file "HeadAndHair02_FiberFX.rar")

Anyone of you wavers that understands how to avoidi collision between hair and head?

Regards, Jack

P.S. I will handle the mapping information later with respect for you point of view where one shall start easy!

Greenlaw
09-16-2015, 05:19 AM
The collision is working properly in your scene--the guides do not appear to penetrate the 'head'. The problem is that your FiberFX settings are spreading the fibers far beyond the collision margin of the guides (currently set to 5mm) so naturally they they penetrate the 'head' object.

The easiest way to work with this is to reduce the number of fibers so the update can be interactive (I dropped it down to 10), and then start dialing in your fiberfx settings to move properly with the guides. For example, drop your Stray and Splay settings down to 0 and move them up gradually until you get what you want. You should be able do this while Bullet is playing. Once you get the motion and fibers working correctly, you can increase the number of fibers. You may need to tweak further as you increase the number of fibers, but do it gradually so you can see what's going on. Don't just enter arbitrary values--that makes it difficult to understand the effects of your values.

If it's your desire to have the hair fly around like that, you'll need to add more guides (for each lock). But work with this setup first, and add more guides later when you have a handle on making the simpler setup work for you.

G.

Greenlaw
09-16-2015, 05:27 AM
I also noticed that you don't have any gravity set in Bullet. This will make the hair float unnaturally, like it's underwater. And don't forget set your Shape Lock to to T&R. If you want the hair to go back to it's 'rest' position when the head is not moving, you'll also need to add some Shape Retention. (See my earlier post on this subject.)

You should also remove gravity from FiberFX--it's just a fake gravity effect and it conflicts with Bullet's real gravity.

G.

Greenlaw
09-16-2015, 06:06 AM
Here's your scene with a few tweaks. It's not meant to be 'finished' by any means but hopefully it will give you some ideas for where you want to take it. I reduced the number of fibers to 10 to keep the scene interactive for testing purposes.

129772

I think the most significant thing I changed was moving your weight map into Shape Retention as suggested earlier. This holds the hair guide in place at the root with a gradual falloff to the tip.

For more realistic motions, you'll eventually want to add more guides of course. But play with this for a while first before moving on to more complicated setups.

Good luck!

G.

prometheus
09-16-2015, 07:34 AM
Greenlaw and Promotheus!

I just noticed you've been sharing a lot of valuable information but before I try things out I just have to ask two things.

1. It seems like you have different opinions about divisions on the guides. I admit my skills are totally blank when it comes to what method is the best but would appreciate if you could leave a note about how and why you see things in different perspectives here!

2. Is it true that the TrueArt Modeling Pack is available for 300 bucks?
(I guess it is worth it but sometimes it feels like "flay.com" seems to be located in Shangri-La nowadays.)


1. not sure I would say we are of different opinion, depends on, if it is to be animated or not etc...and also how evenly the segment divisions should be, I thought your sample might have been to uneven..and perhaps to few segments because of that, but Greenlaw is probably right.

2. have no idea of the cost, I donīt have the package..might look in to it later.

I wonder why sensei gave up on truehair, two packages, styling hairguides and volumetric in layout, I can understand that he gave up volumetric layout part when they implemented fiberfx...but the styling tools looked interesting..but I am not sure, maybe the same styling could almost be equally done with extending of points and cutting manually..he has a lot of movies covering the styling functions.
but I canīt see truehair for sale...maybe he should include the truehair styling tools in the modeling package.

http://www2.trueart.pl/Products/Plug-Ins/TrueHair/Graphics/Movies/

Hotte
09-16-2015, 09:33 PM
I also noticed that you don't have any gravity set in Bullet. This will make the hair float unnaturally, like it's underwater. And don't forget set your Shape Lock to to T&R. If you want the hair to go back to it's 'rest' position when the head is not moving, you'll also need to add some Shape Retention. (See my earlier post on this subject.)

You should also remove gravity from FiberFX--it's just a fake gravity effect and it conflicts with Bullet's real gravity.

G.

True. Can't argue with that. Thank you very much for sharing your experience.

prometheus
09-17-2015, 09:26 AM
You should also remove gravity from FiberFX--it's just a fake gravity effect and it conflicts with Bullet's real gravity.

G.

yeah..itīs not ideal, adding a procedural ripple texture in the gravity envelope.. can yield interesting fake wind effect..it might work under certain circumstances, could work for grassy fields, if fiberfx getīs improved and one day can be applied on large areas, like sasquatch.
no true dynamics and interaction with object or its own self interaction though... so one have to look out for hair not intersecting properly etc.

Otherwise it is easy to "dial in" the ripple fake wind effect with the procedural texture and itīs speed/wave lenght and amount of waves and scaling, all visible directly in open gl while doing so, and no simulation time really.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5USThM-wvfk


By the way..let me know if the clip isnīt playing properly..and especially when replaying, somethings started to be whacked up when replaying things on youtube..donīt know if it is on my computer or something.

jaxtone
09-17-2015, 10:06 AM
Damn!

I thought it was the opposite! When I tried different settings I suddenly found a way to make the hair less disoriented by lower the real gravity and raised the value of the gravity in FiberFX. I noticed that the hair still floated around but thought that could be fixed by the static settings. Now I know this rookie were totally wrong. Thanks for the information Greenlaw!


I also noticed that you don't have any gravity set in Bullet. This will make the hair float unnaturally, like it's underwater. And don't forget set your Shape Lock to to T&R. If you want the hair to go back to it's 'rest' position when the head is not moving, you'll also need to add some Shape Retention. (See my earlier post on this subject.)

You should also remove gravity from FiberFX--it's just a fake gravity effect and it conflicts with Bullet's real gravity.

G.

jaxtone
09-17-2015, 10:12 AM
... and suddenly the coin fell down into my mental machinery.

Honestly I never understood the thing about moving the weight map into Shape Retention as you suggested earlier. But now! Good damn it! Crispy clear!

Thanks... this was really helpful!

Jack





Here's your scene with a few tweaks. It's not meant to be 'finished' by any means but hopefully it will give you some ideas for where you want to take it. I reduced the number of fibers to 10 to keep the scene interactive for testing purposes.

129772

I think the most significant thing I changed was moving your weight map into Shape Retention as suggested earlier. This holds the hair guide in place at the root with a gradual falloff to the tip.

For more realistic motions, you'll eventually want to add more guides of course. But play with this for a while first before moving on to more complicated setups.

Good luck!

G.

Greenlaw
09-17-2015, 10:33 AM
yeah..itīs not ideal, adding a procedural ripple texture in the gravity envelope.. can yield interesting fake wind effect..it might work under certain circumstances, could work for grassy fields, if fiberfx getīs improved and one day can be applied on large areas, like sasquatch.
no true dynamics and interaction with object or its own self interaction though... so one have to look out for hair not intersecting properly etc.

Yup, it depends on what you need and how efficient you want to be about it.

In the 'B2' (https://vimeo.com/channels/littlegreendog/68543424) excerpt, for example*, I'm using Bullet's wind dynamics for the leaves to make them swirl and follows channels and paths--it's pretty powerful and surprisingly directable.

The curly grass is all instanced geometry and I'm using procedural displacement like in your hair example, except it's baked in to allow me to offset it--this keeps the grass moving with the procedural texture but it also keeps it all from moving identically. This was fastest and most predictable way to get convincing results and once set up, I no longer had to think about it from scene to scene.

The ivy is not instanced (used the free Ivy Generator) and all of it is using the same procedural texture for displacement (just good old Fractal Noise) but in World Space to make it feel like it's, well, all in the same world. I think the leaves in the trees were animated that way too.

The clouds are done using two different methods. When they're moving overhead, I'm using Vue Infinite with the LightWave camera/object importer. This allowed me to have fast rendering 'rolling' clouds that are synched with the LightWave scene. Almost anywhere else, the clouds are just an even faster rendering cylindrical cloud panorama or cards rotating around the center of the scene location--in other words, totally faked. As long as the looks are consistent, you can save the heavy duty shots for where it counts and cheat everywhere else.

Like the hair dynamics in this music video, most of the dynamics--real or fake--have been designed for 'plug and play' use. This was out of necessity because the project is already complicated enough without fussing over every detail, and for the most part I'm doing the animation by myself. (My partner Alisa is mainly handling the music production this time.)

The great thing about LightWave is that it offers many different solutions, so you're rarely stuck with trying to make just one tool or method fit your needs. Just add imagination.

*Sorry to keep citing this project but it does seem to feature just about every 'cheap' trick in book. I should probably make a training course based on making this silly cartoon. :)

G.

Greenlaw
09-17-2015, 10:45 AM
Thanks for the information Greenlaw!
One more thing: in that test, I think I used the real world gravity setting of 9.8, but you shouldn't feel you must use this setting. In fact, I rarely stick to real world values...9.8 is a good place to start but I'll use whatever values get me to look I need. This is true for many of the properties in Bullet.

Remember, there's 'realistic' and then there's 'Hollywood realistic'. Most of the time what you see in the movies is the latter and it usually has very little to do with real world dynamics. In entertainment, effects are often more about making things look dramatic and exciting than it is about being completely realistic.

G.

jeric_synergy
09-17-2015, 11:02 AM
*Sorry to keep citing this project but it does seem to feature just about every 'cheap' trick in book. I should probably make a training course based on making this silly cartoon. :)
G.
Not a horrible idea: I've been noticing a dynamic in my personal projects wherein I'll run up against One Little Roadblock, usually something stupid, and it'll impede my progress to a great degree. Have a good source of cheap tricks would be welcome to get around them.

As it is, they're all very educational, often in the worst way.

jaxtone
09-17-2015, 01:04 PM
Whoa! Now I get confused!

Do you mean that the Guides and the head are supposed to be on the same layer?

I noticed that if I have the head and the splines at the same layer when using "make strands" both the head and guides are created in the same layer. But I chose to delete the head created by two point polys and just keep the hair guides.

Thought that was the only way for Bullet to make a difference between the objects, to separate them on two different layers.

Jack


havent looked at it properly, but why using two layers? if you set the scalp with 100% weight shape retention, and the beginning of the strands a bit lower and the rest very little retention weight map..and all in one layer..wouldnīt that work?




You are not an idiot..at least not in this case :)

you can not see the weight values on spline curves or points only, but you can edit them blindly :)
or create additional polys next to it..and adjust the weightmap on that...as a reference guide..then delete that geometry, the map is still there.

Greenlaw
09-17-2015, 01:36 PM
There's no firm rule for this; it depends on how you're using FiberFX with Bullet and how you want to animate the guides for your character. Some guidelines:

A. If you're using Edit Guides in Layout, the common workflow is to polygonize the guides. These guides grow from the vertices of the mesh, meaning they're firmly attached to the mesh, so in this case the guides and mesh are in the same layer. This method is useful if you're using subpatching for the mesh and you want to use the UV map from the mesh to color your fibers.

B. For human head hair, the simplest method is to simply parent the hair to the head bone in your rig. Since the hair doesn't need to follow the deformation of the head, Bullet calculation times are lightning fast. For collision, use a separate 'head shaped' object also parented to the head bone. This is considerably faster than using a deforming mesh for collsion and in this situation, it's every bit as accurate.

C. If you absolutely must use a deforming mesh as your collision object and you need the guides to follow it, you'll want to use one of the Metalink options in LightWave. The most reliable one is to scan an mdd with ClothFX and then use Metalink to attach the guides to the mesh. This can be slow but sometimes it's the best option.

There is a similar option in Nodes but a few years ago it I think it had issues with subpatching. (Need to check on that with 2015.)

Alternatively, there is DP Fit, which works great but it can be slow to start because it does its scanning when the node is applied or when scene first opens. Once the scan is done, it's pretty fast though.

In general, it's recommended that you use proxy objects for collision (i.e., pills and spheres) and parent the objects to the skeleton--the speed gain is so great, you'll probably never want to use the deforming mesh for collision if you can avoid it.

D. If your character came from another animation program and is using MDD or Geocache for animation, you can still parent guides to the head without using Metalink. Do a scan of the mesh using ClothFX, then use EditFX to select a vertex on top of the head, and then use the Makepath command to create a null with that vertex's motion path. You can then parent the hair guides to that null. (You may need to re-position the guides at the first frame, so it's helpful if there is a T-Pose there.)

Like I said, many options for many situations. :)

G.

Greenlaw
09-17-2015, 01:51 PM
Oh, and if you're using a third party tool like ZBrush FiberMesh to make guides, there is one more consideration. FiberMesh guides do not have weight maps or UV maps so you may need to create them. Or they might not be necessary; it depends on your character and its rig.

If you do need vmaps that conform to the character mesh, the easiest way to do this is to use DrainBGVmap to project vmaps (UV, weight, and even morph maps) from your character to the guides. The downside to this tool is that it only works in x32 Modeler so you may be limited to how many guides you can project to at once. For human head hair, it's not likely to be a problem but for full body animal fur, memory can become an issue--the cats in 'B2' pretty much push the limit for this method.

Alternatively, there's Weighter 2, which gives you different projection results but it works well with x32 or x64 Modeler. It runs well in 11.6.3 and earlier but crashes in 2015.x. Liberty3D is aware of this issue and working on a patch to fix it--hopefully, we'll see that soon.

You can use the bones used to deform your mesh to deform these guides, but this may not work well if your using subpatched meshes (subpatching does not affect two-point polygons so the rootpoints may not conform to the subdivided mesh surface.) You can make this work using one of the Metalink methods described above or just avoid subpatching for the characters. (It was easier to do the latter for 'B2'.)

And, of course, if it's just head hair (i.e., not facial), you can probably just parent it directly to the head bone. This is usually only problematic at the back of the neck but you could probably apply a separate FiberFX 'short hair' layer, without dynamics, directly to the skin for that. (I used to do that with Sasquatch all the time.)

G.

jaxtone
09-18-2015, 05:07 AM
The more I learn the more I understand I am a rookie! Ok, I guess I am on the right way here but want to clear a few things out.

Now I've added a dummy with guides for the dancing queen Sue. I know that the dummy doesn't fit in on the moves she makes but leaves that behind for now.

Can you check out if my solution is close to what you meant before I try to put this together. I am not sure of if the Weightmap you added under Shape retention were included in a magic conspiracy because when I add Sue and her Weight maps the only UV map visible is "Model_Uv".

I know it was there a fem seconds ago!

About the texture maps I couldn't include them because size matters even in RAR-files :)

Damn, it seems that my scene and object files in this rar could not be uploaded, is there a limit?

It is only 11 MB

Regards, Jack

prometheus
09-18-2015, 07:46 PM
Whoa! Now I get confused!

Do you mean that the Guides and the head are supposed to be on the same layer?

I noticed that if I have the head and the splines at the same layer when using "make strands" both the head and guides are created in the same layer. But I chose to delete the head created by two point polys and just keep the hair guides.



Thought that was the only way for Bullet to make a difference between the objects, to separate them on two different layers.

Jack

I might have mislead you, it might be best to use two layers or objects..however it isnīt the only way, you can have the hairguides in the same layer as a scalp for instance, scalp weight set to 0% and the hair guide 100% weight..in bullet the map to select as mesh filter will thus have the same map for the scalp and the hair guide, but only the hair guide will deform since they are at 100% value.
now if you were to hit play ..it will all fall down, you could add a null and parent the scalp to that, then make that null kinematic.

heres a simple sample with guides and the scalp all in one layer, parented to a null with a kinematic force on it.

Greenlaw
09-19-2015, 01:53 PM
I almost always have my hair guides in a separate layer or object--I find this much easier to manage this way, plus it can be less demanding calculation wise. (Most of my sims only take a few seconds or a few minutes to solve.)

The only time I have the guides in the same layer as the character is when I'm using guides that were created with Edit Guides for Bullet. There are strong advantages to this approach and a few disadvantages (the reasons were explained earlier.)

Also, when rendering, you'll want to bake your Bullet sims first and disable or remove bullet. (I usually make a separate 'render' scene for this.) Again, it's less demanding on the computer and there should be fewer chances of error. If you're rendering to a farm, baking to mdd is in fact necessary for consistent and predictable results.

I also find baking necessary when using Edit Guides without dynamics. Without baking, I tend to get 'popping' results. This might just be a problem with my own farm though--some users I've talked to say it renders fine for them without baking and they've been able to render the test scene I sent perfectly. Also, I should add that this was back in 11.5.1 using BNR 4.

Nowadays, I'm using 2015.3 with BNR 6, so this might not be an issue. Don't know for certain, just haven't gotten around to testing it yet--but as a rule of thumb, it's a good idea to bake any simulations, whether it's Bullet, ParticleFX or ClothFX.

I'm not saying you need to work the way I do. You should do what works best for your project of course, which may have very different requirements from mine. Try out different approaches and see what happens. If something isn't working, break the scene down into small, manageable tests and learn why it doesn't work, and then make the necessary adjustments or try something else.

G.

prometheus
09-19-2015, 03:01 PM
I posted a simple fake wind effect mov sample before on youtube..where a procedural ripple texture drives the fiberfx filter and gravity effect so it fakes a wind effect, that will not be properly interactive.
Now this sample would work with collisions and is more the way to go perhaps.

Lightwave and fiberfx, not the same as previous effect..previous was faked wind in the fiberfx dynamics gravity tab with procedural texture and only effecting fibers.

This is actually pushing the hairguides, which are bullet softbody and thus reacting to other bullet forces.

one forcefield is pushing the hairguides, but I also use a procedural ripple texture... but in this case in the vector field channels of the bullet force field, which helps get undulated wind effects in a nice way..not perfect in this sample, but can be tweaked to perfection if I choose to do so :)

I Need to throw in a nice model to fit with the wig too :) when I find one :)

letīs hope the youtube conversion dont screw the sample up.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XRTlR4mqGtM

jaxtone
09-20-2015, 03:00 AM
Greenlaw!

I totally don't understand this! But if you could help me out here I would appreciate it a lot.

Itīs about the file you sent me where you've added a weight map to the retention field in Bullet.

How did you succeed with that because when I open my head and guides there is no weight map in sight where one can add a gradient map to.

How did you do that?

Oh, just forget about this... I noticed that the input parameter must be set to Weight Map first.

I will get back to you in another part of this matter though!

jaxtone
09-20-2015, 03:04 AM
The only head shapes that pops up in mind when seeing this faceless clip are Carola or Pernilla from the Swedish Eurovision contest though they use exactly the same wind machine in front of the stage!

Maybe you shall not try rip of their faces for real to find head shapes that fits your wig. But when thinking about it I guess an digital CG environment sometimes, would've fit these modern divas better :)


I posted a simple fake wind effect mov sample before on youtube..where a procedural ripple texture drives the fiberfx filter and gravity effect so it fakes a wind effect, that will not be properly interactive.
Now this sample would work with collisions and is more the way to go perhaps.

Lightwave and fiberfx, not the same as previous effect..previous was faked wind in the fiberfx dynamics gravity tab with procedural texture and only effecting fibers.

This is actually pushing the hairguides, which are bullet softbody and thus reacting to other bullet forces.

one forcefield is pushing the hairguides, but I also use a procedural ripple texture... but in this case in the vector field channels of the bullet force field, which helps get undulated wind effects in a nice way..not perfect in this sample, but can be tweaked to perfection if I choose to do so :)

I Need to throw in a nice model to fit with the wig too :) when I find one :)

letīs hope the youtube conversion dont screw the sample up.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XRTlR4mqGtM

Greenlaw
09-20-2015, 03:37 AM
I believe I just used the existing weight map in your scene. I assume you created the guides using Strand Maker which generates a weight map from 0 to 100% along the guide. This trick is in using the Gradient to adjust or redistribute the strength of the weights non-linearly. If you look at the gradient, it's set to spread 100% beyond the root point so the shape is firmly retained near the base of the two pony tails. Past that point, the weight falls off gradually but quickly, allowing Bullet to have a greater effect along the length to the tip.

Adjusting the effect of the weight map can be done almost interactively this way--much easily than jump back and forth between Layout and Modeler. This also leave it open for special tweaks based on the action in the scene--if the character is jumping up and down a lot or in a wind storm, it's easy to loosen the weight values in the gradient without altering the actual weight maps, leaving other scenes using this object unaffected.

It's actually pretty simple if you think about it. Just the way I like it. :)

BTW, as mentioned earlier, you'll probably want a little Shape Retention throughout to help the hair return to it's original styled shape when it's not moving.

G.

P.S., I think I did adjust the shape of your pony tail guides slightly to allow them to hang a little more nicely from the root end.

Greenlaw
09-20-2015, 03:47 AM
If you want to check the actual weight values along the guide, you can go into Modeler and use the info panel to see the values of the points. Of course, this is much easier to see using Sensei's Show Weights tool.

But if you're using Strand Maker, you can safely assume the first point is 100% and the last is 0%. (I might have that backwards--I don't really think about it until I have to. If you need to reverse the values for some reason, I think there's a tool on Dodgey's website that does this. I know I've had to do that for a couple of effects shots in the past but I don't recall the exact situations. However, for normal human hair animation, you shouldn't have to.)

G.

prometheus
09-20-2015, 09:35 AM
The only head shapes that pops up in mind when seeing this faceless clip are Carola or Pernilla from the Swedish Eurovision contest though they use exactly the same wind machine in front of the stage!

Maybe you shall not try rip of their faces for real to find head shapes that fits your wig. But when thinking about it I guess an digital CG environment sometimes, would've fit these modern divas better :)

Haha...Yeah, I am sure those images from carola from the winning entry in the eurovision "catched by a stormwind" and the other one "invincible" might have something to do with the outcome here...as well as pernillas 80īs hairstyle..

for outlanders, those are some swedish euro diva singers..probably not heard of outside sweden.

For reference only..donīt try this at home :)


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7wnS4nu-bOc

jeric_synergy
09-20-2015, 01:32 PM
It took me a long time to figure out those guys weren't wearing masks. Thanks, YouTube.

jaxtone
09-26-2015, 09:15 AM
Hi all!

I have been struggling to get this right and guess I am heading for the right direction. I bought Senseis plugin show weight maps, opened a file I've made with an egg head and two guides. I guess it looks ok but are not sure.

However I have a question for you who master Lightwave better than me.

What if I want to edit the value in different weight points. At the attached image they are static so where are the editor for change the values?



Regards, Jack

Sensei
09-26-2015, 09:27 AM
You can use f.e. Map > Weights. It's interactive tool.

Non-interactive, but precise, is of course Map > Set Map Value.

Alternatively, select point, press 'i' for Point Info, and enter weight there.

Greenlaw
09-26-2015, 02:01 PM
What Sensei said.

A little more info: Click Weights, move your mouse cursor over the point you wish to edit, click and drag right to increase the weight value and left to decrease it. This also works for multiple points selection.

G.

jeric_synergy
09-26-2015, 02:30 PM
Does Sensei's (http://www2.trueart.pl/?URIType=Directory&URI=Products/Plug-Ins ) Show Weights work WHILE the native Weights Tool is doing its thing?

'Cuz that would be AWESOME. (Or if Sensei had a knockoff to make this happen because of API limitations, either way.)

EDIT: I see it probably does.... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J3BV0465gbo

Greenlaw
09-26-2015, 04:10 PM
Yes, it's just an added visual feedback. All regular Modeler tools are still usable while Show Weights is active.

jeric_synergy
09-26-2015, 05:26 PM
Yes, it's just an added visual feedback. All regular Modeler tools are still usable while Show Weights is active.
Outstanding. --I was under the impression that that kind of persistent plugin-ocity was not possible in Modeler. {braces for torrent of obvious examples}


See ShowWeights in action:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T1DvdkvvfAo

Sensei
09-26-2015, 11:53 PM
EDIT: I see it probably does.... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J3BV0465gbo

This one video is showing Show Edge Weight. Similar, but not the same tool, as we talk.
For Catmull-Clark Sub-Patches edge weighting.

jaxtone
09-26-2015, 11:59 PM
Hi Sensei!

Thanks for the information of these three alternatives!

Regards, Jack


You can use f.e. Map > Weights. It's interactive tool.

Non-interactive, but precise, is of course Map > Set Map Value.

Alternatively, select point, press 'i' for Point Info, and enter weight there.

jeric_synergy
09-27-2015, 12:15 AM
This one video is showing Show Edge Weight. Similar, but not the same tool, as we talk.
For Catmull-Clark Sub-Patches edge weighting.
My mistake-- it was hard to see on my laptop.

Sensei
09-27-2015, 12:23 AM
Thanks for the information of these three alternatives!


There is yet another I forgot to mention ;)
Weight Polygon Groups (http://www2.trueart.pl/?URIType=Directory&URI=Products/Plug-Ins/WeightPolygonGroups)
It can be called "Set Map Value" on steroids. It's interactive tool (with Numeric panel options).
Jeric showed above video where it was used. I will show yet another:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ILKNEB63vGE

jaxtone
09-29-2015, 12:55 AM
Sensei!

Even if I feel like a total idiot when it comes to programming and scripting it still feels like Cristmas ever ends!

Thanks a lot for sharing your excellent skills!

Regards, Jack

By the way, since this is a thread about hair and stuff I send this question to all of you.

Is there a way to create hair in FiberFX with different colors that follows a bumble bee's pattern?

Greenlaw
09-29-2015, 09:53 AM
Sure. FiberFX can pick up color through a texture map. That's how I'm coloring the cat fur in the Brudders excerpt.

If you're using Edit Guides, this is easy because the guide chains come directly from the vertices of the mesh. In other words, if you have a UV map for your character, the guides can use a texture map that conforms to the character's body.

If you're using externally modeled guides, like FiberMesh for example, it's a little more complicated because these guides do not automatically have UV maps--you will need to create them. For the Brudders cats, I used a plug-in called DrainBGVMap (you can download it from Dodgey's website) that can transfer vmaps from the vertices of one object to another object. Using this plugin, I transferred the cat UV, morph and weight maps to the FiberMesh guides so they get the 'fur' texture for FiberFX and so they can deform properly with the mesh. The only catch with DrainBGVmap is that it's for x32 Modeler only.

An alternative is to use Weighter 2 from Liberty3D. It gives you different results but it can also run on on x64 Modeler. Currently, it doesn't work in 2015.x so you'll need to have an earlier version of LightWave installed to use it. (The devs are working on a patch but no release date announced yet.)

(I think I mentioned all this earlier in this thread. Might be good to go back and read it through again.) :)

G.

jaxtone
09-30-2015, 11:04 AM
But what if I need no hair guides just use the Bumble Bee Body as a hair grower? Do you mean that everything will get more complicated then and that it doesn't work to let the hair get different colors?

Regards, Jack

Greenlaw
09-30-2015, 11:27 AM
If your bumblebee has a UV map for the texture, you can have fiberFX use its color texture map for the fiber color. The fiber color is added in a separate panel from the skin surface so you can use a different texture for the skin and fibers. They only need to share the UV map. You can apply this directly in FiberFX--no need to use any other plugin or tool so long as your mesh has the necessary UV map and textures.

The key thing to getting texture color on your fibers is the UV map. If you're not using Edit Guides for your fibers, then you will need to create UV maps for your guides if you want to apply texture maps. This is possible but the techniques are more advanced--as a beginner, I suggest sticking with Edit Guides for now.

Styling fibers is a separate thing. The easiest method is to use Edit Guides--it will comb, scale the fibers with a brush tool. Like any tool, it takes a bit of practice to use.

For more general stying, use the main FiberFX panel. Here you can also use texture masks and gradients to constrain where you wish to grow fibers and how dense it should be.

The best way to see how this works is to just try it out for yourself.

Try not to over-think the process. It sounds like you're trying to jump ahead without learning the basics--if you learn it a step at a time, it's really not that difficult.

First learn the basics of FiberFX--use simple geometry and get a feel for what all the settings to. When you're comfortable, then start experimenting with edit guides. When you understand the basic operation of the tool, then try animating it.

Once you understand that, then you can move on to hair dynamics--but be sure you understand the basics of dynamics in LightWave (whether its Bullet or ClothFX) first.

Hope this helps.

G.

Greenlaw
09-30-2015, 11:47 AM
Also, when you exit Edit Guides, don't forget to save your object. Styling is done using Vmaps generated by Edit Guides and these Vmaps are embedded in the object. If you don't save your object, you will lose your styles. (Just like when you edit Surfaces in Layout.)

G.

Greenlaw
09-30-2015, 12:47 PM
Since you're using FiberFX Strand Modeler in Modeler, I should add one more bit of info: this tool does not generate a UV map based on the object's UV map. It generates its own UV map based on the length of the fiber, not the position. You can check this in Modeler.

If you're going to use this tool instead of Edit Guides, you will need to create a UV map for the root points manually or semi-automatically by using DrainBGVmap or Weighter 2.0. I would try DrainBGVmap first. (But you'll need to install the x32 version of Modeler.)

Or, just use Edit Guides, which uses the existing UV map from the mesh automatically, and it works with sub-patching too.

G.

jaxtone
09-30-2015, 07:14 PM
I will definitely try this with guides instead!

I will try to adapt some of you excellent information on Mr Bumble Bee immediately!

Just another couple of silly question in the attached image if you have time!

Regards, Jack

Greenlaw
10-01-2015, 03:18 AM
Strandmaker does not extract UV coordinates from the mesh. All this tool is meant to do is convert curves to a polygonl guide chain with a root point for FiberMesh compatibility. AFAIK, it doesn't do anything for UV mapping. If you want to transfer the UV coordinates to a Strandmaker guide, you will need to use DrainBGVmap or Weighter 2.0.

As mentioned above, only Edit Guides assigns UV coordinates based on the mesh UV automatically--I highly recommend using that over trying to do this manually in Modeler. IMO, it will be a lot easier, especially for this kind of creature model.

Here's a 'quick and dirty' example of the FiberFX texture/EditGuides workflow:

130060 130059 130058


This image is the mesh with a uv map and texture. This is all you need from Modeler.
The mesh is sent to Layout, color texture is disabled.
FiberFX applied to mesh. No textures or styling yet.

Continued in next post...

Greenlaw
10-01-2015, 03:20 AM
...continued from previous post.

130061 130062 130063


Texture applied in FiberFX using the mesh's UV map.
Edit Guides activated. Combing the fibers took a few seconds. Remember to save the object after exiting Edit Guides.
Render. (Tip: Use sRGB CS--it's much easier to light FiberFX in sRGB colorspace.)


Not exactly a beautiful example but I hope this helps. :)

G.

Ryan Roye
10-01-2015, 05:58 AM
Not exactly a beautiful example but I hope this helps. :)

Thanks for sharing your pointers. Sometimes just knowing where to start can make all the difference.

jaxtone
10-09-2015, 11:15 AM
Wow... its been a crazy week at the emergency twice... but I have been reading and tried the bumble bee example you shared.

It worked fine and looks good, just wonder if thereīs a way to make this bumble bee hair to follow dynamics when the bumble bee crashes into a flower? In this case I've just let the FiberFX create guides from withing itself and not used the Make Strand command!

Is the make strand command the only way to make hair like this react when the bumble bee stop or accelerate? I added a few hundred strands but it made the system crash. It feels much better to use the Grow command inside FiberFX in this case.

I think your explanations are splendid and are almost ashamed to ask for help and hints but one day you might need my help as well. I look forward to this moment so it ends up with a give and take friendship.

jaxtone
10-09-2015, 11:28 AM
I guess I have another question for any of you who are familiar with instancing and hair!

How come the hair from this bumble bee object doesn't appear on the instances?

Greenlaw
10-09-2015, 02:47 PM
There's a pretty good tutorial in the manual on this--look for the section called 'Bullet and FiberFX'.

Basically you convert the Edit Guides guides using the Polygonize Mixed command. You'll need to resave the mesh because it's been modified with polygonal guides attached. You absolutely don't need to use Strand Maker here because the guides are already polygonal and properly weighted. (You really, really want to use that tool don't you? Sorry.) :)

Once you have this, all the Bullet/FiberFX stuff discussed previously applies.

Also, be aware that once the guides have been converted, they cannot be further edited with Edit Guides. So before you convert the guides, be sure to save a backup of your original mesh and save your FiberFX settings in case you want to change something later on. Alternatively, you can edit the polygonized guides in Modeler using the normal modeling tools or the Strand Tool. (This is where the Strand Tool is actually quite useful because you generally have far fewer guides to deal with when using Edit Guides guides--remember, they only grow from the mesh veritices when using Edit Guides.)

G.

Greenlaw
10-09-2015, 02:59 PM
For instancing, I think you need to use Volume mode for the fibers. But to be honest, I'm not 100% sure FiberFX works with Instancing at all--I never needed to do this yet myself.

IMO, even if it is does work, this may not be a practical technique unless you're using highly optimized settings. You can do it if you really want to but you should also expect long render times. Personally, I would just fake it with convincing textures extracted from actual bee photos for the instances, and use actual fibers only on 'hero' bees that are close to camera. At a fair distance and in motion, you would never be able to tell the difference, especially with motion blur applied. If you really, REALLY need fibers on your instanced bees, you should use geometry. You can either bake instanced bee fibers for your source object or place them using a tool like Random Cloner. (This tool works great--years ago we used to use it to apply feathers to chickens, cranes and other birds. You can even embed morph targets to the feathers for 'ruffling' animation. But I digress...)

FYI, FiberFX can output accurate motion vector data so I prefer to do the motion blur in post the same as all other geometry rendered from LightWave. (Man, I really wish we had this option in Sasquatch like ten years ago.) :p)

G.

Greenlaw
10-09-2015, 03:09 PM
Well, what do you know...it does work. The cubes seen here are all Instances, except for the original source object of course.

130262

Hope this helps.