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Thread: Express

  1. #1

    Express

    Started this in 8.5 just before I got 9 about a year ago. The HVs were taking too long to render on an the old machine back then.

    Hoping the way it's intended to come together will now materializes. It will be trimmed and the HVs can be upgraded plus the new photorealistic motion blur will look better, but still a lot of other things need to be done to bring it up to standard.

    Any CCs or ideas very welcome.

    Animation (9MG):

    Express

  2. #2
    ZBrusher! CMT's Avatar
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    Pretty cool! I like the slick look of the train and the camera angles.
    Christopher Tackett
    www.loadedbrush.com

  3. #3
    Registered User StevieB's Avatar
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    Same here! And that camera angle vs. rotation of the train you have going on the last part really stood out (in a good way ), great work!

  4. #4

    Thanks!

    CMT & StevieB:

    Thank you both for the compliments and encouragement!

  5. #5
    Having a bit trouble working at this size. First the computer would crash on render until I put the segment memory up to 64 from 32. Wonder how many people are doing this size nowadays in Lightwave?

    Now the ground mist has partially gone away or something (?) and the HVs are taking long enough to render on an 8 core with 4GB, about 15 to 30 mins.

    Anyway, this part, where the train goes by, is the crux of the animation so must bring in more HVs (dust etc.) and interaction, just hope the render times don't go through the roof. Wonder is 'pixie dust' any good? Have never tried it.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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  6. #6
    Registered User StevieB's Avatar
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    I wish I knew more about HV's so I could help you but I myself am still working on learning Character Animation and Arch Viz so I have had little time/reason to start experimenting with them. Sorry

  7. #7
    Something sticks to my eye: The fin on the front of the train really needs more subdivision, it's really jagged, otherwise a beautiful design ..

    For the HVs, try searching for 'Particles' here.. not too expereinced with this. Pixie dust should be better for the sparks I think ..
    Model: MacBook Pro 10.6.4 - 2.66 GHz - 4GB - NVD GF GT 330M
    Render: Win7 64 - Core 2 Quad Q9550 2.83GHz - 8GB

  8. #8
    StevieB and archijam : Thanks for the writing!

    Sub divided, smoothed out that bit on the engine.

    Can't work out what has happened to the ground fog. Same file, it shows up in 8.3(?)

    Having trouble with getting the HV Sprites in 9.3.1, they just don't seem to have the depth of earlier versions, either go too threadbare and thin, or else, when beefed up, they become very solid. There was a change in this version and others have noticed this as well:

    http://www.newtek.com/forums/showthread.php?t=86066

    Posted a 3 sec animation (1.6Mb) full size, the H264 compression is pretty amazing though a bit of banding in sky as this is not the very highest quality.

    Train Full Size
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  9. #9
    Robert Ireland bobakabob's Avatar
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    Powerful composition and great modelling! Looks akin to the style of the Iron Giant!
    Art and photography Flickr site
    Animation, facial rigging, modelling ArtStation
    Assorted animations Robert Ireland

  10. #10
    Profesor Pixel Poo Mr Rid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Glendalough View Post
    Having a bit trouble working at this size. First the computer would crash on render until I put the segment memory up to 64 from 32. Wonder how many people are doing this size nowadays in Lightwave?

    Now the ground mist has partially gone away or something (?) and the HVs are taking long enough to render on an 8 core with 4GB, about 15 to 30 mins.

    Anyway, this part, where the train goes by, is the crux of the animation so must bring in more HVs (dust etc.) and interaction, just hope the render times don't go through the roof. Wonder is 'pixie dust' any good? Have never tried it.
    I always render smokey voxels at half the res of the rest of the frame. The higher res you go with voxels the hairier and sharper they look
    which doesnt help smoke/steam, and of course you can cut render time to 1/4( the difference between 640x and 1280x is 4 times as much area to render). Render half res and scale it in comp and the scale interpolation will inherently soften smoke.

    To thicken sprites, you might try a gradient in the opacity based on texture density (or texture value), and or in the luminosity to simulate shaded areas. I would also suggest enveloping the dissolve as well as size over the first frames of birth so they dont appear to pop on suddenly.

    More particles or a larger size and probably a higher amp hypertexture at the beginning can minimize the HV puffball syndrome. Velocity Translate can also help hide the puffballs as the hypertexture moves thru the particle according to the direction it is traveling.

    Sometimes a Speed gradient in the size or velocity can thin/stretch and thicken/shorten particles appropriate to behavior.

    A little vortex wind can help break up the motion of the particles in an organic way.
    "O K, so what's the speed of dark?"

    Demo reel 2017
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yOOixvRhcs4

  11. #11
    Profesor Pixel Poo Mr Rid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Rid View Post
    I...I would also suggest enveloping the dissolve as well as size over the first frames of birth so they dont appear to pop on suddenly..
    I didnt state that well. I meant to use a gradient in the dissolve so voxels ease in, not to use the actual envelope graph.
    "O K, so what's the speed of dark?"

    Demo reel 2017
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yOOixvRhcs4

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by bobakabob View Post
    Powerful composition and great modelling! Looks akin to the style of the Iron Giant!
    Thanks! The Iron Giant looks pretty interesting, must have a look at it.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Rid View Post
    I always render smokey voxels at half the res of the rest of the frame. The higher res you go with voxels the hairier and sharper they look
    which doesnt help smoke/steam, and of course you can cut render time to 1/4( the difference between 640x and 1280x is 4 times as much area to render). Render half res and scale it in comp and the scale interpolation will inherently soften smoke.

    To thicken sprites, you might try a gradient in the opacity based on texture density (or texture value), and or in the luminosity to simulate shaded areas. I would also suggest enveloping the dissolve as well as size over the first frames of birth so they dont appear to pop on suddenly.

    More particles or a larger size and probably a higher amp hypertexture at the beginning can minimize the HV puffball syndrome. Velocity Translate can also help hide the puffballs as the hypertexture moves thru the particle according to the direction it is traveling.

    Sometimes a Speed gradient in the size or velocity can thin/stretch and thicken/shorten particles appropriate to behavior.

    A little vortex wind can help break up the motion of the particles in an organic way.
    Thanks for all the tips!

    The comping idea sounds good but may not work too well in this case. Am using radiosity, and reflections from the HVs are being cast over the objects, adding to the render times of course. Know what you mean about the voxels looking hairy and too sharp.

    Am working on the dissolving in to avoid the popping with the sprites, have set most gradients to particle age. Think the Density is set to fade out to avoid the popping at the end. Get the Density and Opacity confused. Think the Opacity is like transparency and Density a sort of volume weight thing (?) .

    Wondering if I should try some different textures or would this make little difference with Sprites? Have got to go over all the docs again carefully.

    Am testing at the moment by removing all the objects and turning off radiosity so I can get a fairly quick render as you need the whole sequence (180 frames) to see what is happening. Don't really know if there is much point in using Viper as accuracy seems to be in question with a lot of people (?)

    Am using Velocity Translate. Must try the vortex wind when the voxels get a bit more sorted out. Thanks again for writing.

  14. #14
    Profesor Pixel Poo Mr Rid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Glendalough View Post
    ...
    The comping idea sounds good but may not work too well in this case. Am using radiosity, and reflections from the HVs are being cast over the objects, adding to the render times of course.
    The idea would be to make the emitters in the train layer 'Unseen By Camera' so they still trace. Then in your separate voxel layer, make all the objects Matte so the sprites are isolated- also enable Flare2Alpha under Image Filter Processing for your sprites to render alphas.

    But yeah, radiosity with HV is what is greatly increasing the render time. I dont know that it is necessary to enable volumetrics in the radiosity. But I suggest making Rays Per Eval 36, and see how it looks with Interpolated enabled to drop the render time down. I dont go above Ray Recursion of 2 for reflections. LW defaults to 16 which is twice as high as I have ever needed for even dense refraction.

    Not sure why your sprites are so bright when it doesnt seem like any illumination source is motivating it(?). But you could just stick a linear or other light in the middle of the sprites (set to exclude the sprites) to sim the same effect of the sprites softly lighting the surrounding without volumetric radiosity.
    "O K, so what's the speed of dark?"

    Demo reel 2017
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yOOixvRhcs4

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Rid View Post
    The idea would be to make the emitters in the train layer 'Unseen By Camera' so they still trace. Then in your separate voxel layer, make all the objects Matte so the sprites are isolated- also enable Flare2Alpha under Image Filter Processing for your sprites to render alphas.
    ...
    Not sure why your sprites are so bright when it doesnt seem like any illumination source is motivating it(?). ...
    Wow, thats pretty smart about making the emitters 'Unseen by Camera', wouldn't have thought of that for a while! Think I'll experiment with this on the next project which will have no end of HVs.

    For the moment this is coming together somewhat, it finally twigged about the sprites being too bright. Had the luminosity too high (as to organize lighting just for the sprites for this night scene, which is of an ambient type in real life, would have been way too complicated and render intensive on top of everything else).

    Will post something soon when it goes on a bit further. Am using all objects silhouetted or Matte so it renders quickly and can gauge some idea on proportion. Have to get some new group of emitters going at the exact second the train passes, to push a whole lot of particles across the track in a swirling and eddying motion (dust and stray smoke).

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