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MAUROCOR
10-26-2015, 10:52 AM
That is the kind of fur I would like to see in LW.

http://omelete.uol.com.br/filmes/noticia/zootopia-essa-cidade-e-o-bicho-imagens-apresentam-novos-animais/

http://static.omelete.uol.com.br/media/filer_public/c6/3b/c63b9b57-053f-4f80-a359-58150c2c30f5/zootopia-04.jpg

http://static.omelete.uol.com.br/media/filer_public/bb/d0/bbd0d694-4d82-446a-8274-c4a9b0b6e785/zootopia-02.jpg

DogBoy
10-26-2015, 04:47 PM
Nice examples :i_agree:.
I've not played with FFX for too long, maybe I'll see if anything has changed in 2015.3

Kryslin
10-26-2015, 06:10 PM
The second picture is what I've been trying to get out of FFX for 3 major and 8 minor versions. Short, dense, fine fur appears to be beyond FFX's capabilities at the moment. It's easy enough to get out of Sasquatch, but not FFX.

And don't get me started about combing...

MAUROCOR
10-27-2015, 07:54 AM
Nice examples :i_agree:.
I've not played with FFX for too long, maybe I'll see if anything has changed in 2015.3

Rob and Lino told Fiber FX will have an update in LW 2016, probally because the new render system. But they didnīt tell if it will be the same OR if it had big changes. To make it better, I mean. Letīs see...

- - - Updated - - -

MAUROCOR
10-27-2015, 07:55 AM
The second picture is what I've been trying to get out of FFX for 3 major and 8 minor versions. Short, dense, fine fur appears to be beyond FFX's capabilities at the moment. It's easy enough to get out of Sasquatch, but not FFX.

And don't get me started about combing...

I know. It is very dificult to get this kind of fur using Fiber FX. I have been asking them for a Surface Combing for so long time, just like Sasquatch does SO WELL, but or they can not reproduce that or they donīt care. Who knows???

Kryslin
10-27-2015, 08:26 AM
Bias combing, a la sasquatch, is actually fairly simple; Take the surface normal, and a vector from your surface through the current spot. Project a perpendicular vector to the normal from the two, add them, then normalize. I know this because I have an effective lscript to generate the bias map required. However, this should be something that is a part of FiberFX, and not a third party solution.

Attempts to do this nodally have been mediocre at best. I have the make a perpendicular vector compound node, but I can't get the same results that I do from the bias map...

I think it may have to do with copyright/patent/license issues more than an inability to do it themselves.

Schwyhart
10-27-2015, 08:53 AM
Sasquatch is still alive? When I went to their website, I assumed it was a dead product because the website looks so old.

prometheus
10-27-2015, 12:58 PM
Sasquatch is still alive? When I went to their website, I assumed it was a dead product because the website looks so old.

not sure if he removed something from the ordering page..donīt seem to lead anywhere, otherwise you could go to the contact tab and request something..maybe he still have other plugins active.
Something seem to have gone sour though...sasquatch lite which was free and bundled with lightwave native versions up to at least 9.6 ..it is no longer available for lightwave 11.6.3 and 2015 unfortunatly..a bit sad.
the ligthwave team opted to include fiberfx from another third party developer..which could have conflicted with the work worley did on sasquatch, one can only speculate.
and fprime no longer developed probably becuase of vpr...exactly why is uncertain.

If you got 9.6 ...sasquatch lite can be used with that anyway..but it is of little help for others not owning 9.6

hrgiger
10-27-2015, 03:19 PM
Seems to be that Worley is out of the LW plugin business. Shame really.

prometheus
10-27-2015, 04:05 PM
Seems to be that Worley is out of the LW plugin business. Shame really.

Out of curiosity, anyone knowing what he is doing know? developing other stuff or simply taking another turn than programming in life?

Michael

Dodgy
10-27-2015, 05:26 PM
I have the latest Sas that works, and these are the results I get when using the same lighting set up and similar settings for both FFX and Sas. 130587130588

hrgiger
10-27-2015, 05:43 PM
Rob and Lino told Fiber FX will have an update in LW 2016, probally because the new render system. But they didnīt tell if it will be the same OR if it had big changes. To make it better, I mean. Letīs see...

- - - Updated - - -

Well the one improvement I could think of right away would be that if they have made the FFX volumetric renderer with the new volumetrics, at least it should be physically accurate to how it responds to lighting which would be a step up for ffx.

FFX has been rather disappointing overall so I'm really hoping they have made improvements.

MAUROCOR
10-27-2015, 06:11 PM
...at least it should be physically accurate to how it responds to lighting which would be a step up for ffx.



That would be great.
Actually I think FiberFX already is better than Sasquatch regarding LIGHTING. But there are many other points to consider. I think they should review everything about FFX.

lino.grandi
10-28-2015, 05:29 AM
Not sure I'll be able to make a post about Fibers within this week. But really can't wait to show you some cool fur/fibers renders.

DogBoy
10-28-2015, 05:47 AM
Not sure I'll be able to make a post about Fibers within this week. But really can't wait to show you some cool fur/fibers renders.

Cool! i can't wait to see what you folks have got planned for fur/fibers

MAUROCOR
10-28-2015, 06:13 AM
Not sure I'll be able to make a post about Fibers within this week. But really can't wait to show you some cool fur/fibers renders.

It is not a problem, Lino! I think we can wait.

But please take a look at the Kryslin post about BIAS COMBING. It would be an incredible addition in FiberFX that would help us a lot.

50one
10-28-2015, 06:42 AM
Not sure I'll be able to make a post about Fibers within this week. But really can't wait to show you some cool fur/fibers renders.

RULE #32 Lino, Rule #32.

Fsoto
10-28-2015, 10:52 AM
Looking forward to FX update in 2016! Thanks Lino.

prometheus
10-28-2015, 10:59 AM
would be nice nice to see some new fiberfx furry stuff, and say...chewie...we are home, or laugh it up fuzzball :)

leandropedrouzo
10-28-2015, 12:06 PM
My 2 cents:
It is really necessary to have some combing tool; I personally like this two systems:
1 - Sasquatch surface combing
2 - Shave and haircut (you make a rough combing with just a few strokes and then you hit a button and it will comb the whole object or the selected part following your lead and perfectly matched to your surface)

And also some nice styling is necessary. I don't get very reallistic clumps in FFx, and sometimes it's hard to get rid of the pattern efect with short fur.
I also volunteer to help Lino and the team reagarding the hair feature.

Greenlaw
10-28-2015, 04:40 PM
Stop it Lino! I do not want to see a new fiber system until I have finished my short film. If you show me something better, I will be tempted to switch over in mid-production and that would be super annoying to my producer.

(Just kidding. I can't wait to see what's in store. Plus, I've been told that I better be finished before 2016 or no upgrade for me.) :D

G.

Kryslin
10-28-2015, 10:59 PM
With a few tweaks, I do have a fairly useful, if kinda clunky, tool for quickly generating bias maps for FiberFX. Select the geometry, select a point, run tool. after 5 or 6 passes, with different points and polygons selected, you can get some good, quick results. I suspect it's as good as it's going to get until I figure out some of the more complicated lscript controls...

MAUROCOR
10-29-2015, 09:41 AM
With a few tweaks, I do have a fairly useful, if kinda clunky, tool for quickly generating bias maps for FiberFX. Select the geometry, select a point, run tool. after 5 or 6 passes, with different points and polygons selected, you can get some good, quick results. I suspect it's as good as it's going to get until I figure out some of the more complicated lscript controls...

Is this a plugin?

Kryslin
10-29-2015, 09:58 AM
It's a modeler lScript, so it's a plugin, kind of. And, like I said, it's kind of clunky. If I feel it's good enough, I might let it out into the wild.

MAUROCOR
10-29-2015, 10:32 AM
If I feel it's good enough, I might let it out into the wild.

That would be really nice from you!

DogBoy
10-29-2015, 11:16 AM
Yeah, it sounds very useful

Kryslin
10-30-2015, 10:39 AM
I'm tidying up the quick combing tool right now, along with it's companion "Show Bias" (displays the altered vertex normals as lines in a background layer). I've a couple of images to show what it's capable of, just so people don't think I'm blowing smoke...
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v636/Kryslin/Renders/th_ffxquickcomb1_zpsi767xnsb.jpg (http://smg.photobucket.com/user/Kryslin/media/Renders/ffxquickcomb1_zpsi767xnsb.jpg.html) http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v636/Kryslin/Renders/th_ffxquickcomb2_zpsffyyhr1j.jpg (http://smg.photobucket.com/user/Kryslin/media/Renders/ffxquickcomb2_zpsffyyhr1j.jpg.html)
(Lightwave 2015.3 x64, 2m50s @ 800 x 600)

All this is simple vector addition between a vertex normal and a perpendicular vector; the trick is generating that perpendicluar vector in the right fashion.

I'm concentrating on the face/head area mainly because that's where a lack of combing show up; There are 7 passes applied; one from the tip of the nose, one each for the upper and lower eyelids, and one for each ear. I'm aware of the awkward fur around the inside corners of the ears, and around the outside edge. I'll probably need to come up with a way to blend sections of the bias map, so the pass areas aren't so obvious.

I suspect there is a better way to generate the perpendicular, so I'll be looking into that for the next version.

I'll continue this down in the 3rd party/scripting area...

DogBoy
10-30-2015, 11:19 AM
I've a couple of images to show what it's capable of, just so people don't think I'm blowing smoke...

Never thought you did.


I'll continue this down in the 3rd party/scripting area...

look forward to seeing more.

silviotoledo
10-30-2015, 08:26 PM
Not sure I'll be able to make a post about Fibers within this week. But really can't wait to show you some cool fur/fibers renders.



For me, the main problem with fiber Fx for short fur is the transition between fur area and non fur area wich is great in sasquatch but so fake in FFX. Can't you add a ONE CLICK button SOFT TRANSITION?

Greenlaw
10-31-2015, 03:08 AM
For me, the main problem with fiber Fx for short fur is the transition between fur area and non fur area wich is great in sasquatch but so fake in FFX. Can't you add a ONE CLICK button SOFT TRANSITION?

You can do this now using a gradient texture map or with Edit Guides combing. I used the former method to transition from very short hair on the sideburns and the back of the neck of Dante for the DmC theatrical trailer a few years ago and it worked very well. Actually, Dante's hair was two layers--the first layer was was the long bits modeled using FiberFX Strand Modeler and the short 'undercoat' was done using the gradient textures to control growth on the surface. I didn't use Edit Guides for Dante because the tool wasn't reliable back then.

That was about three or four years ago and I was using LightWave 11.0. I haven't really used FiberFX for human characters since that time so I got curious enough to spend an hour or two tonight using 2015.3 for a quick test. I have to say, this really was not that hard to do--in fact, using FiberFX nowadays is a whole lot easier than it was back in the 11.0 days when the vmap was embedded in the scene file rather than the object like it is now.

Anyway, here's are the results of tonights 'quick and dirty' testing...

First I wanted to check if gradient textures still worked well for controling fiber fall off and density. Here's the texture map I painted in Photoshop. I didn't want to spend a lot of time on this test so it's just a basic planar projection, no uv mapping.

130644 130645

Here's what the texture did after loading it to the Size property. Otherwise, I used only FiberFX's default settings:

130646 130647

As you can see here, the transition from short to long works reasonably well with minimal effort.

This trick is only useful for that short 'undercoat' though. It's really tricky to style hair using only the basic FiberFX property settings and you really should be using a guides modeling tool like Edit Guides, FiberFX Strand Modeler, the standard Modeler tools, or ZBrush FiberMesh to generate styled hair guides.

In my next post, I'll show the result of using Layout's Edit Guides in 2015.3.

(To be continued....)

Greenlaw
10-31-2015, 03:33 AM
(...continued from previous post.)

Normally, I would do something like this using FiberMesh but IMO, Edit Guides is actually pretty decent. Like FiberMesh, it takes a bit of practice to develop the skill for it. In fact, many of the brushing skills I developed from using FiberMesh also apply in using Edit Guides. I should point out, I didn't learn FiberMesh overnight--it took a few days before I even felt comfortable enough to tackle the Brudders characters with it three years ago. Back then I also created Edit Guides versions of the characters and it only took me about 20 - 30 minutes to comb the cats' fur--it took me a whole lot longer to comb their fur using FiberMesh. (The reason I switched to FiberMesh is documented in the Production Log linked below.)

But that was back in 2013. Let's see how well Edit Guides works in 2015.

To start off, I defined the polygons on the scalp where I wanted the hair to grow. I should have defined the eyebrows at this time too but forgot. No biggie, it's just a test.

130652

Next, I brought the head into Layout and applied FiberFX. Here it is with the un-styled default settings.

130651

Now Edit Guides after about five minutes of styling.

130650 130648

I started with the guides about 2 to inches long and used the Scale brush to make the top bits longer and the beard region shorter. Push was used to comb the general direction of hair guides and Single was used to position specific strands of long hair in the front and sides.

Here's the work-in-progress after maybe another 10 minutes.

130649

On trick I learned from using FiberMesh is that you should comb out the hair, straight and away from the scalp, and then comb it down and towards the direction it should flow. It's helpful if you rotate the object as you comb it. If the hair gets matted down, comb it out again. This is just as true when using Edit Guides. BTW, if you over comb the hair, Edit Guide's Straight brush tool is also very useful for lifting the hair.

(To be continued...)

Greenlaw
10-31-2015, 04:06 AM
(...continued from previous post.)

And here's a test render with a single Dome light. Render time using my tablet computer was about a minute for a 720p image. I think this is not bad for a 'quick and dirty test'. Certainly this hair example can use more work before it can be called 'finished' but this was only meant to be a quick test.

130653

What I changed in the FiberFX settings panel was the Fiber Width to 30% (although I think I went too far in thinning it) and I added a fractal pattern to the Spec channel. Otherwise, this was rendered using the default settings.

I think if I was doing this for real, and I was not going to use FiberMesh, I would still combine the two techniques described in these posts--that is, Edit Guides for the long bits and surface and textures for the shorter bits.

Oh, I almost forgot to mention something important: if you want to use Edit Guides be sure the set your Edges high enough before activating Edit Guides. The guides are generated based on this setting and you cannot change it after you start styling. For this hair style, I had it set to 5 segments, which seemed about right.

And of course, don't forget to save your object after using Edit Guides. When you use Edit Guides, the tool creates a vmap that defines the style of the hair and, just like a changed surface property, you must save the object if you wish to keep the changes.

Now, please understand that I'm not posting this because I don't think a better styling system isn't needed--like everybody else, I would love to have more control over the combing and styling. ZBrush FiberMesh is pretty good but it does come with caveats that can make Edit Guides preferable in many situations. (Again, see the Production Log for details.)

But who knows how long it will be before we see a new hair styling system for LightWave. We know 2016 will have some cool stuff but a new hair styling system is probably further down the road? I don't know...I hate to speculate.

In the meantime, I really don't think Edit Guides is as bad as some users in these forums have been saying. This evening I was able to jump in and out of Edit Guides dozens of times and Layout did not crash once. I have to confess, the stability of FiberFX in 2015.3 surprised even me. :)

G.

MAUROCOR
10-31-2015, 06:46 AM
(...continued from previous post.)

And here's a test render with a single Dome light. Render time using my tablet computer was about a minute for a 720p image. I think this is not bad for a 'quick and dirty test'. Certainly this hair example can use more work before it can be called 'finished' but this was only meant to be a quick test.

130653

What I changed in the FiberFX settings panel was the Fiber Width to 30% (although I think I went too far in thinning it) and I added a fractal pattern to the Spec channel. Otherwise, this was rendered using the default settings.

I think if I was doing this for real, and I was not going to use FiberMesh, I would still combine the two techniques described in these posts--that is, Edit Guides for the long bits and surface and textures for the shorter bits.

Oh, I almost forgot to mention something important: if you want to use Edit Guides be sure the set your Edges high enough before activating Edit Guides. The guides are generated based on this setting and you cannot change it after you start styling. For this hair style, I had it set to 5 segments, which seemed about right.

And of course, don't forget to save your object after using Edit Guides. When you use Edit Guides, the tool creates a vmap that defines the style of the hair and, just like a changed surface property, you must save the object if you wish to keep the changes.

Now, please understand that I'm not posting this because I don't think a better styling system isn't needed--like everybody else, I would love to have more control over the combing and styling. ZBrush FiberMesh is pretty good but it does come with caveats that can make Edit Guides preferable in many situations. (Again, see the Production Log for details.)

But who knows how long it will be before we see a new hair styling system for LightWave. We know 2016 will have some cool stuff but a new hair styling system is probably further down the road? I don't know...I hate to speculate.

In the meantime, I really don't think Edit Guides is as bad as some users in these forums have been saying. This evening I was able to jump in and out of Edit Guides dozens of times and Layout did not crash once. I have to confess, the stability of FiberFX in 2015.3 surprised even me. :)

G.

Sorry to say but your entire process take a LOT of time to be done and I donīt think the final result is good enough to me. I know it is a test but what I am trying to say is if you want to get your work to a HIGH LEVEL it would take much more than this.
And I donīt think the FFX Edit Guides is bad but unfortunately is not complete for what I need. People who worked hard using SASQUATCH know there are incredible tools to comb just with some few clicks. Excellent to comb short fur animals.
That is the reazon I am insisting so hard on this.
If Lightwave is aimed to be a competitive software it will be necessary to make better tools for FIBER FX. For now, it is ok, but is it at the same level of other softwares? Or the fact LW is cheaper than others should make us conformed about it? If that is the case, please let me know.

silviotoledo
10-31-2015, 09:11 AM
130656130657130658130659130660


FFX is so far from ORNATRIX or SHAVE AND HAIRCUT in terms of quality of fibers for hair, modeling possibilities, dynamics and specially for combination and transition with short hair.
It's easy to see the difference between results.

https://vimeo.com/13762453

We need a little more effort on FFX.

hrgiger
10-31-2015, 10:40 AM
Sorry to say but your entire process take a LOT of time to be done and I donīt think the final result is good enough to me. I know it is a test but what I am trying to say is if you want to get your work to a HIGH LEVEL it would take much more than this.
And I donīt think the FFX Edit Guides is bad but unfortunately is not complete for what I need. People who worked hard using SASQUATCH know there are incredible tools to comb just with some few clicks. Excellent to comb short fur animals.
That is the reazon I am insisting so hard on this.
If Lightwave is aimed to be a competitive software it will be necessary to make better tools for FIBER FX. For now, it is ok, but is it at the same level of other softwares? Or the fact LW is cheaper than others should make us conformed about it? If that is the case, please let me know.

Mauro, do you use zbrush? Just wondered how you felt about grooming tools there for fibers, its what I use.

DogBoy
10-31-2015, 11:49 AM
I decided to give FFX 2015 a whirl this week and came out with these. It needs wrk, but it isn't too bad IMO.

MAUROCOR
10-31-2015, 12:12 PM
Mauro, do you use zbrush? Just wondered how you felt about grooming tools there for fibers, its what I use.

Yes I do! ZBrush has very nice grooming tools, really nice and I have seen excellent works created with it. I myself used it to create long hair.
But regarding FiberFX what I am asking for is a way to comb hair in a more precise and easy way. I am using as an example the SASQUATCH smart combing tool.

Take a look at this and tell me what you thing about. Would you like to have such tool in FFX?

http://www.worley.com/Media/videos/quicktips/flash/SasSmartcombing2/SasSmartcombing2.html

MAUROCOR
10-31-2015, 12:16 PM
I decided to give FFX 2015 a whirl this week and came out with these. It needs wrk, but it isn't too bad IMO.

That is right, it is not so bad. Nice model, BTW!

But letīs compare with that one. (I am not considering nothing than hair)

http://forums.newtek.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=130663&d=1446313770 http://forums.newtek.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=130659&d=1446304019

DogBoy
10-31-2015, 12:33 PM
:D good point, but i said it needs work ;)

MAUROCOR
10-31-2015, 12:48 PM
:D good point, but i said it needs work ;)

I am not telling you your work is not good, I am just comparing the quality of the hair. Actually the comb of your character is really nice.

DogBoy
10-31-2015, 12:49 PM
Take a look at this and tell me what you thing about. Would you like to have such tool in FFX?

http://www.worley.com/Media/videos/quicktips/flash/SasSmartcombing2/SasSmartcombing2.html

Yes, we really could do with that ease of use.

djwaterman
10-31-2015, 12:50 PM
Lino did say he wanted to show some of the stuff with FFX, I mean at the very least you might expect the surfacing to be physically based now, which would help because currently the FFX surfaces aren't at all, so photo realistic hair can't be created no matter how good you might style it. I think at the moment it is only good for non photo real images.

DogBoy
10-31-2015, 01:02 PM
I am not telling you your work is not good, I am just comparing the quality of the hair.

I know, the issue for me is that FFX is a moving target. If you don't touch it for a while, it has a relearning curve. This was me getting my feet wet again.

What I'm really hoping for is that with 2016 having PBR, then FiberFX gets a better shading model to more closely match real hair. We'll have to see.

jeric_synergy
10-31-2015, 01:16 PM
I for one am grateful to Greenlaw for taking all that time to show what CAN be done with FiberFX.

His expertise is always welcome and informative.

Kryslin
10-31-2015, 01:58 PM
Perhaps they've implemented the shading model Renderman/RIS is using... Marschner(sp?) or somesuch.

The point is, I think we all agree that FFX needs some better, native grooming and combing tools - both in quickly generating a bias map (a la Sasquatch's bias and smart combing), and styling (a la edit guides, Zbrush's fibermesh, and even 3DS Max's hair combing tools).

Heck, they could include in edit guides the ability to make a quick bias map, since they have "Surface Hug" as a styling option; Just specify a surface to brush away from, and press "OK". You could go in and tweak with the normal styling tools afterwards.

My biggest gripe with Edit Guides is with large numbers of fibers being styled - as in an entire pelt for a critter (~15K polygons). FFX occasionally maxes out all cores for several seconds, freezing lightwave... and crashing, on the rare occassion. Since this is being done within layout, you can't select a part, or a arbitrary selection of polygons, and just style them.

Hopefully, with 2016 (or later) we'll be able to do that.

Dodgy
10-31-2015, 09:37 PM
You know you can generate a bias map with the FFX modeler tool don't you?

Kryslin
10-31-2015, 11:47 PM
Yes, I do know, and it works great on small selections. However, when you've got an entire pelt loaded up, it becomes nearly unworkable. And, I just realized... it now works on selections (for some reason, I thought it didn't, at some point... I feel stoopid). However, this is about getting good enough results quickly. (And I managed to crash modeler on a second try with FiberFX... Hmmm.)

*edit* : There is definitely an issue with FiberFX's modeling half. It does not like it when you want to groom things in segments. You might get 1 or 2 portions done, then crash. I'll see if I can't duplicate it again, and submit a report.

MAUROCOR
11-01-2015, 05:41 AM
I think some of you misunderstood what I was talking about here.
I never wanted to belittle the work of the 3DLW Group of anybody here, please. Actually I always say that I really appreciate all efforts and hard work that these extremelly talented guys do. The same to everybody that helps in this forum with tutorials and precious tips. That is what make you guys great!
But as may some of you know I have personal interest in characters. Lightwave is getting better on this front and the LW3DGroup are working hard to bring us better ways to create/develop/rig and animate characters. And now it seems that we will have an incredible brand new render system (to render our characters). What is the next step to have the full pack? Some nice and easy and beautiful fiber system that allow us to create wonderful fur/hair/feather to our characters.
Is FiberFX great? Of course it is. But it can be better. Having nice and easy to use combing tools.
All I am asking is to LW3DGroup some special attention on this, please.

And I rest my case!

DogBoy
11-01-2015, 07:11 AM
You know you can generate a bias map with the FFX modeler tool don't you?
Yeah, I know. I haven't used it for a bit but it (used to be that it?) only really worked with polygons. If you made the mistake of using Sub-Ds, FFX would freeze the model on start of the tool and then reset the mesh once you were done, thus killing the map. It wasn't documented at the time. Has that changed?
That said if you willing to spend the time setting up the guides first, you can have very precise control of bias in Modeler.


I think some of you misunderstood what I was talking about here. Is FiberFX great? Of course it is. But it can be better. Having nice and easy to use combing tools.
All I am asking is to LW3DGroup some special attention on this, please.
No one thinks you are knocking it. Greenlaw explained how he combs, and I was gonna pipe on mine (but if you thought Greenlaws was longwinded, I'll not bore you with mine. let's say I'm a control freak, do all my guides in Modeler and never touch the FFX modeling tools (thank god FFX can use curves these days :D ).
But we all agree that FFX could be a little more user friendly, or clearer to use.

Kryslin
11-01-2015, 09:45 AM
Yeah, I know. I haven't used it for a bit but it (used to be that it?) only really worked with polygons. If you made the mistake of using Sub-Ds, FFX would freeze the model on start of the tool and then reset the mesh once you were done, thus killing the map. It wasn't documented at the time. Has that changed?

This is what was happening to me while trying to use FFX to make a bias map in modeler last night; I'd set up a part, get the fibers going the way I want, save, get another part done, save, start the third part, and suddenly, FFX in modeler shows all the fibers, and proceeds to crash.

Greenlaw
11-01-2015, 11:08 PM
Is FiberFX great? Of course it is. But it can be better. Having nice and easy to use combing tools. All I am asking is to LW3DGroup some special attention on this, please.

Sure. FiberFX is already very useful for real-world production work--I've used it personally on big and small budget productions myself, and I've have been involved in a few productions where other artists have also used with good results. And I certainly agree with you that FiberFX styling tools can be better, and I think LW3DG really needs to focus on that for 2016 and beyond.

For example, Edit Guides has no equivalent for 'cutting' like FiberMesh does. When I created Sister's hair for my Brudders music video three years ago, having a 'cutting' tool was essential for trimming the length evenly (especially the bangs)--this same hair style would be difficult to do using only Edit Guides. (Technically speaking, FiberMesh doesn't really 'cut' hair guides either, rather it shrinks the tips evenly, but the effect of the tool is more like 'cutting' than anything available in Edit Guides. However, note that this can do funny things with dynamics, so you're probably going to have to clean up some of the FiberMesh tips in Modeler anyway.)

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That said, combing the short fur for the cats was pretty easy to do with Edit Guides even three years ago. (Yes, I eventually wound up using FiberMesh for the cats, but if Edit Guides had worked just a little bit better for network rendering three years ago, I probably would have gone with the Edit Guides version.)

IMO, Edit Guides is a pretty darn good tool for certain hairstyles and fur but, I agree, to "take it to the next level", Edit Guides does need more options for working with group selections and details.

For example, what I find super useful with FiberMesh is the ability to set up Polygroups so I can isolate the parts of a hairstyle I want to work on. (As in the above pics.) Edit Guides really needs something like this because, with the current tool, it's a little too easy to select fibers you don't want to edit and mess things up (thank goodness it at least supports multiple Undos).

(Okay, technically speaking, you can kinda do this now using multiple layers of FiberFX but the flow of sculpting process is constantly disrupted when you have to keep jumping in and out of Edit Guides to change the combination of layers you want to work with. Also, when working with multiple layers, I find I have to keep selecting the Style vmap in the object, even though there is only one Style vmap and it appears to be already selected (that's probably a bug.) By contrast, this kind of editing is a whole lot easier to manage with PolyGroups in ZBrush. That is, assuming you have ZBrush and you've taken the time to learn how to use FiberMesh.)

As for Sasquatch, this plugin did not have any kind of direct styling tools, certainly nothing on the level of Edit Guides. It did have that nifty AutoComb feature where you can have fibers automatically flow 'intelligently' from a defined point. This feature worked well in a pinch but it wasn't necessarily realistic either. Sas did allow you to style the AutoComb results but this involved positioning nulls around your character as effectors to influence the direction of fibers. That worked okay it but is wasn't exactly easy, and it did not give you explicit control over individual guides the way Edit Guides does.

This doesn't mean I think Sasquatch's AutoComb wasn't good--in fact, I used the hell out of it for many creatures in video game commercials and trailers for about over a decade. But it was also cringe-making if I was asked to make specific changes to the fur because this often meant I was gong to have to override what AutoComb was doing and manually plot hundreds of guides in Modeler to address these changes. I really do not want to go back to those days...I'll take Edit Guides over that! :p

Here are some super old Sasquatch auto-combing examples I did for a couple of commercials (early-to-mid 2000's I think?). I was able to get away with a lot by using AutoComb here because these were cartoony characters but some of the fur effects, like the long spikey bits in the Yucktopus and purple gorilla thingie's fur, had to be modeled and plotted by hand in Modeler. Nowadays, combing these characters with Edit Guides would be almost trivial and the overall flow of the fur would be a little nicer--perhaps more 'realistic' if you will. And using the Single mode in Edit Guides, I would even be able to draw out the individual guides I needed for the long hairs in the coat of these two characters. There was no way to do this using Sasquatch alone. So, while Sasquatch did have some nice features like Auto Comb that I would love to see equivalents for in FiberFX, I can tell you from experience that Sas was not capable of some of the claims made earlier in this thread.

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Just to be clear, I am not being dismissive of Sasquatch--it was a great tool in its day and I used it frequently. And I don't think FiberFX is the best thing ever either--it's a powerful feature in LightWave as it exists now but in the Styling department, it still has a bit of growing up to do.

That said, I think FiberFX will get there eventually. This tool has seen steady improvement since it was introduced and most significantly after LightWave version 11.5. And if Edit Guides in 2015.3 is not going to cut it (so to speak) in certain situations, there exists a strong third party alternative in FiberMesh.

Anyway, I don't think I'm going to change any minds and it's really not my job to do so, so I'll stop here. My posts are getting so long-winded even I'm tired of reading them. :)

G.

MAUROCOR
11-02-2015, 04:19 AM
Greenlaw, I will not quote your thread because it is too long, but I think lile you, Edit Guide is a very good tool that should be improved (soon).

About SAS combing tools, I had the oposite experience. I really could do nice work using it. The bad thing is that is an old tool with no updates. The fact that you have to use spotlights is old. The way fur/hair react to the light is not realistic.

I have some works that I did using SAS too.

But I am tired of all this talk. Letīs see what they have to us.

DogBoy
11-02-2015, 05:37 AM
Sure. FiberFX is already very useful for real-world production work--I've used it personally on big and small budget productions myself, and I've have been involved in a few productions where other artists have also used with good results. And I certainly agree with you that FiberFX styling tools can be better, and I think LW3DG really needs to focus on that for 2016 and beyond.
I agree. I've used it on several projects, and though there were some teething issues, it got us through. My main issue has been slightly obscure documentation and the occasional "non-LW" behaviour (I'll refrain from going off on one over the whole Density clamp thang).


This doesn't mean I think Sasquatch's AutoComb wasn't good--in fact, I used the hell out of it for many creatures in video game commercials and trailers for about over a decade. But it was also cringe-making if I was asked to make specific changes to the fur because this often meant I was gong to have to override what AutoComb was doing and manually plot hundreds of guides in Modeler to address these changes. I really do not want to go back to those days...I'll take Edit Guides over that! :p
Autocomb got you 70% there quickly (let's be frank, that isn't what an otter looks like). FFX has a hell of a lot of better tools, but its' workflows can be long-winded; you can quickly get most of your fur pointing the correct way in Modeler, but when you want to finesse it, you come out of FFX, edit the guides and then go back in to FFX to do the full body guides or bias map. Though it is very adaptable this 2 stage approach seems ... wasteful, and gives the impression that FFX tools can't do the job (which they can, mostly).


That said, I think FiberFX will get there eventually. This tool has seen steady improvement since it was introduced and most significantly after LightWave version 11.5. And if Edit Guides in 2015.3 is not going to cut it (so to speak) in certain situations, there exists a strong third party alternative in FiberMesh.
I think FFX is mostly there. What is weird for me is that it, in some ways, shows the issue with LW; It's tools are spread all over the place. This means that it is very adaptable to different peoples workflows, but at the cost of learning time.

Greenlaw
11-02-2015, 08:36 AM
Wow! That's super beautiful work! Thanks for sharing those pics.


But I am tired of all this talk. Letīs see what they have to us.

I agree. I just want to see what's next. :)

sudac20
11-02-2015, 08:21 PM
I have the latest Sas that works, and these are the results I get when using the same lighting set up and similar settings for both FFX and Sas. 130587130588

What is the version of Sas that you got to work? I keep getting crashes & rendering issues. Thanks

Kryslin
11-03-2015, 12:18 AM
There are two versions that work with 2015.3...

If you still have your dongle, 1.85 works just fine. It might be a bit hard to install with 11.5 or better, though.
If you don't have your dongle, the download available from Worley from their page works (Sasquatch11.5.zip).

MAUROCOR
11-03-2015, 03:42 AM
This is what was happening to me while trying to use FFX to make a bias map in modeler last night; I'd set up a part, get the fibers going the way I want, save, get another part done, save, start the third part, and suddenly, FFX in modeler shows all the fibers, and proceeds to crash.

You see? FiberFX has been always an issue in LW. That is why they need to put some love on it.

MAUROCOR
11-03-2015, 03:44 AM
But we all agree that FFX could be a little more user friendly, or clearer to use.

That is what I am talking about!

stiff paper
11-03-2015, 05:09 AM
Greenlaw!

Thank you for yet more interesting stuff about FiberFX.

I might even consider letting you off that promise you made to make a tutorial...

Mwuah ha ha haaah... (evil laughter fades into distance...)

DogBoy
11-03-2015, 06:33 AM
You see? FiberFX has been always an issue in LW. That is why they need to put some love on it.

To be fair, they have put a lot of love into it already. Looking at it now, Jon has added feature after feature since its' inclusion.

MAUROCOR
11-03-2015, 06:49 AM
To be fair, they have put a lot of love into it already. Looking at it now, Jon has added feature after feature since its' inclusion.

I know, but even after so many fixes and new features it continues unstable and crashing all the time. I am talking because I am experiencing this right now! I have the model opened and with FFX applied to it in Layout. Every minor change I do in the model in Modeler it crashes Layout.

I think we have to be realistic about that. As I told before I am not trying to belittle the hard work of the dev guys, but maybe FiberFX deserve another approach? Or a really deep review, I donīt know.
Letīs see what they have done in LW 2016. Maybe with this new architecture it will be better?!?

Greenlaw
11-03-2015, 08:17 AM
I might even consider letting you off that promise you made to make a tutorial...

Mwuah ha ha haaah... (evil laughter fades into distance...)

I only need my days to be twice as long to make time for it. :D

G.

jeric_synergy
11-03-2015, 09:16 AM
Every minor change I do in the model in Modeler it crashes Layout.
How could such obvious workflow issues persist SO long?

It must be that the dev doesn't work in this manner, so never sees this result. Someone needs to educate him.

DogBoy
11-03-2015, 09:52 AM
Every minor change I do in the model in Modeler it crashes Layout.
I'm not having quite those issues, but it is crash prone when going through the Hub.


I think we have to be realistic about that. As I told before I am not trying to belittle the hard work of the dev guys, but maybe FiberFX deserve another approach? Or a really deep review, I donīt know.
Letīs see what they have done in LW 2016. Maybe with this new architecture it will be better?!?
I know you aren't belittling anyone, I just feel Jon gets it pretty rough from the majority of users on this forum.
Fingers crossed for future updates.

Kryslin
11-03-2015, 09:53 AM
I only need my days to be twice as long to make time for it. :D

G.
Or, we make it a paid gig. :)

Anyway, I agree that FFX has come a long way from 9.5; Edit guides no longer crashes every 10 minutes / operations (though it does saturate all 8 threads on my workstation for 2-3 seconds, usually while changing brush sizes or modes). I've not crashed the fiber renderer itself in a long time (FFX in modeler, that needs some love, though). The results I've been getting are more and more consistent (though FFX clumps have a tendency to wander off edges - I've got some fiber clumps being generated in space, not attached to the mesh in anyway... May have been a subdivision order issue) with every version.

Since the combing stuff seems to be located in Edit Guides, perhaps adding a tab for sasquatch like bias combing (given a surface to brush away from, world -y, and a way to mix them, and how flat you want the fur to lay against the mesh) would be do-able? Then you could switch to the edit guides tab afterwards and tweak to your heart's content. A good, quick start, which might be good enough on it's own. If Lightwave is about getting things done quickly, this should be looked at (or I should take up C coding with the next SDK and do it myself...)

Greenlaw
11-03-2015, 10:21 AM
I'm not having quite those issues, but it is crash prone when going through the Hub.


I know you aren't belittling anyone, I just feel Jon gets it pretty rough from the majority of users on this forum.
Fingers crossed for future updates.
I'm in agreement. I don't get many crashes in LightWave either and I use the Hub all the time. However, when I do get crashes, it's usually because I have VPR active and I'm making model changes. I think this is because VPR is trying to keep up with the updates but model changes while it's trying to render is probably like pulling the rug from under Layout.

It's probably the same when FiberFX is displaying hundreds of fibers in OpenGL and you suddenly change the model. Just a thought but it might help to disable the OGL preview before editing the model. (FYI, this goes for Instancer too. I find the tool can get unsteady with sudden model changes, especially when there are many instances with parented elements, either VPR or OGL. If I disable the previews or set them to points or boxes, or just disable Instancer by checking it off, Layout doesn't seem to mind the sudden model changes at all.)

I don't know if Jon is still the only programmer working on FiberFX but, yes, whoever is working on this tool (or any part of LightWave for that matter) probably finds encouragement more motivating than persistent criticism.

Man, if I had to personally put up with some of the comments I read in these forums, I'd have quit a long time ago and found something more fun to do. :)

G.

thekho
11-03-2015, 12:56 PM
Anyone remember this plugin's a called 'Hairspray' by Steve Hurley? If he can restore this one, it should be great and could be useful for FiberFX. Same goes to his another cool plugin's 'PatchIt', remember?

hrgiger
11-03-2015, 01:50 PM
I'm less concerned with the styling tools and more concerned about the look of FFX fibers and just hope that its easier to attain believable results for new renderer.

sudac20
11-03-2015, 02:40 PM
There are two versions that work with 2015.3...

If you still have your dongle, 1.85 works just fine. It might be a bit hard to install with 11.5 or better, though.
If you don't have your dongle, the download available from Worley from their page works (Sasquatch11.5.zip).

I have 1.85 but I get this "artifacting" with the alpha, it also appears rather unstable... constant random crashes when rendering a sequence?

Greenlaw
11-03-2015, 03:19 PM
That's 'normal' if you're using Perspective Camera. Sasquatch is only fully compatible with Classic Camera. Try switching to Classic and render again--the alpha should now look correct.

This was one of many reasons I pushed the Box to switch to FiberFX when we were creating the Devil May Cry theatrical cinematic--it was too much of a hassle to work with multiple camera types on a job. Other issues: Sas is trickier to light since it's not CS compatible, and because it only uses Shadow Mapping it may flicker in some situations. For years, I always had to create a separate scene lighting to optimize speed and quality specifically for Sasquatch renders, and I just got really tired of that. If you're using sRGB Color Space, FiberFX accepts any standard lighting very nicely, which in 2015 now includes multi-sample lights.

It's also easier to break out a hair pass with FiberFX. (Like Sasquatch, it requires a few workarounds but it's still easier. TBH though, I don't bother breaking out hair/fur anymore.)

The biggest thing that made me turn away from Sasquatch was the lack of Motion Vector support. We had to employ any one of a half dozen tricks to simulate a reasonably accurate post render motion blur effect for Sasquatch. With FiberFX, the data is just there and it works. (That is, in 11.5.3 and 2015.x. Motion Vectors for FiberFX was broken during the 11.6 cycle.)

G.

Greenlaw
11-03-2015, 03:23 PM
Sorry, double-post.

sudac20
11-03-2015, 03:46 PM
Thanks for the feedback:)

Greenlaw
11-03-2015, 06:53 PM
Awesome character by the way. :)

DrStrik9
11-04-2015, 09:11 PM
This just showed up on Facebook ...

https://blog.lightwave3d.com/2015/11/fiberfx/

vonpietro
11-04-2015, 10:42 PM
you guys have really pushed the fur stuff - i'm amazed you got such high quality out of FF and sas!!


Sas i used for grass on the movie sin city - it worked really well.

Kryslin
11-04-2015, 11:26 PM
So does anyone have a line on a database of hair diameters for various critters? Sounds like we might need some. :)

hrgiger
11-05-2015, 06:20 AM
Well hopefully it works in micrometers. 1 micrometer is .001 millimeter and a human hair anyway is about 100 micrometers.

chikega
11-05-2015, 08:49 AM
The new hair shader looks promising :)

MAUROCOR
11-05-2015, 11:45 AM
The new hair shader looks promising :)

Agreed! Letīs see if there is some improvement in editing guides/combing.

Greenlaw
11-05-2015, 01:29 PM
you guys have really pushed the fur stuff - i'm amazed you got such high quality out of FF and sas!!


Sas i used for grass on the movie sin city - it worked really well.

Yes, I have to confess that was one area where Sas worked better--it's difficult to cover a super large surface, like terrain, with FiberFX. You're much better off using Instancer, which can look more realistic for grass than either Sas or FiberFX anyway since you can use actual grass geometry and textures. The one drawback with Instancer is that you won't get the dynamics Sas had--there are a dozen ways to fake windy field of grass without Sasquatch but it's really not the same thing.

G.

sudac20
11-08-2015, 09:10 AM
Any word on dynamics and forces or how the hair works on deforming bodies (hairy creatures or bearded characters that that talk,walk...)??? I hope it is suitable for animation not just still frames.

Greenlaw
11-08-2015, 10:59 AM
Just a guess but it will probably be the same in 2016 (or whatever they're going to call it) as it is now. I believe the brief FiberFX dynamics demo Lino presented the other day was more or less same technique I showed earlier in the Blog thread using Polygonize Mixed with Bullet Deformable applied. The technique works pretty well in 2015.3 and you get collision with the fibers too, unlike Sasquatch dynamics.

FWIW, I've been using Bullet for FiberFX on animated characters for a couple of years now. It's pretty easy to set up and use if you use Edit Guides or Strandmaker--both tools generate the necessary weight maps for Bullet. It gets a little tricker if you're creating your hair/fur using a third party tool like FiberMesh but it's still not too difficult to setup if you use DraingBGVMap or Weighter 2.0 to transfer the required data from your character mesh.

Of course LW3DG may surprise us with a new dynamics system but I seriously doubt that's coming when there are more pressing things to address, plus Bullet is working quite well in 2015.3 already.

G.

vncnt
11-09-2015, 11:12 PM
not sure if he removed something from the ordering page..donīt seem to lead anywhere, otherwise you could go to the contact tab and request something..maybe he still have other plugins active.
Something seem to have gone sour though...sasquatch lite which was free and bundled with lightwave native versions up to at least 9.6 ..it is no longer available for lightwave 11.6.3 and 2015 unfortunatly..a bit sad.
the ligthwave team opted to include fiberfx from another third party developer..which could have conflicted with the work worley did on sasquatch, one can only speculate.
and fprime no longer developed probably becuase of vpr...exactly why is uncertain.

If you got 9.6 ...sasquatch lite can be used with that anyway..but it is of little help for others not owning 9.6
The zip file (paid version) from his download page is working fine in 2015.3. Actually, it's very fast and short fur looks already nice within 5 minutes. I think I'll use it my next project. Didn't use it for a long time. Hope that 2016 will still support Sasquatch pixelfilter.