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Honda Robots – Made Mean

I was the senior FX TD on this project and was responsible for the flamethrower fx, robot cable sims, paint spray, logo branding and any heat haze effects.

Honda_Lighting_Master30s_v60_H264_FullRes from Hugh Johnson on Vimeo.

In addition to the main 30 second commercial, we also delivered 3 10 second commercials. I was involved in this one where I simmed all of the tyre smoke:

Honda Socials 'Nutjob' from Dave Walker on Vimeo.

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BBC Christmas Ident FX Look Dev

FX Look Development for a specific shot in the BBC Christmas ident involving falling clumpy snow. Using Houdini’s Grain Solver I delivered a proof of concept shot of the wet snow falling on a test object. The simulation was saved as an Alembic file and imported into 3ds Max where I set up the V-Ray shader for rendering realistic snow.

 

Here’s the whole ident with the falling snow shot at 16 seconds in:

BBC – Christmas – Sprout Boy from Factory Studios on Vimeo.

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The Seed and the Moon

I recently finished working on this short film made for the Umpqua Bank in the States.

Using GrowFX, X-Mesh, Forest Pack and V-Ray, I was responsible for the procedural plant growth FX Look Dev, and then a large number of shots in the final short film involving pant growth.

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Flip Fluids: Mud and Water

This is a test to see how 2 liquids of different densities would interact. Each fluid also has separate viscosity settings.

To get this working I created a volume in sops, scattered points inside the volume, and then gave them custom point attributes to describe density, and viscosity. The water and mud were each assigned point groups, and then it was possible to separate them and assign the correct point attributes.

The mud has a varying viscosity from 100 to 1000,000 which creates the clumps within the mud. This is set in an attribute VOP in sops, and is driven by a random noise.

In dops the particles are fed into a Flip Object node, and the initial data input type is set to Particle Field to pick up the points created in sops. I also matched the particle separation value in the Flip Object node to the Points from Volume node used to created the points.

The liquids were meshed in Houdini and exported to Max using alembic.

The scene was rendered with Vray using a single dome light set to image based lighting with an HDR used for lighting and reflections.

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Thinking Particles Breakable Joint Tests

A series of tests varying the breakable velocity value for joints. The strength of the joints is also effected by a distance test to the center of the force that’s used to exploded the boxes. In some of the tests I add a random multiplier to add some variation to the effect.

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Nightclub Visuals

I worked on some nightclub visuals recently, which was a great change from my usual work. This was more a motion graphics type job, and involved a cloth like material streaming off a dancer as they performed traditional Chinese dancing.

I ended up simming about 8000 frames of particles, and then meshed the streams in Frost. Render times were pretty large, as the client required double HD. This is a small sample of the final result. I’ve changed the V-Ray shader in this version, as I wanted to try something else.

This is a render test at the double HD size, there are some Frost meshing issues with this test.

The particle count had to be increased to remove these holes in the mesh, but it was still a problem in the final render. This is partly down to the thin nature of the cloth like structures, as its not possible to increase the thickness of the mesh in Frost without changing the look of the streams. The only way to remove the holes is to massively increase the particle count.


Bluestone 42 Game Graphics

I was asked to provide the graphics for a video game in the TV show Bluestone 42. This is a quick breakdown showing the level building process I went through.

The brief was that I provide realistic current gen game graphics, so it was important for me to keep this in mind while building the level. I kept poly counts reasonably low, and used normal maps for extra detail. V-Ray was used to render the scenes, with cached GI. A game look for the shadows was achieved by using V-Ray shadow maps on a low setting

I delivered 17 shots for the show, based in 3 environments. The desert level shown above, a village level, and finally a recreation of the Bluestone 42 base.

I’ll upload some more videos showing my work on the show when I have a bit more time.

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Coke Building Commercial

Very pleased to have worked on this Coca-Cola ad for Nexus. I was responsible for all the hair and fur in the commercial.

There were 14 separate character hair setups, all sculpted in Hair Farm, and rendered in V-Ray. We were going for a photo real stop motion look, so the hair is designed to look more like nylon dolls hair than human. The scale of the styling and the hair strand thickness were designed to achieve this look. Hair Farm dynamics didn’t work at this small scale, so we used a Hair Farm link mesh, which was then rigged to drive any required motion for the hair. This also suited the hand stop animation feel we’d designed for the characters.


Word of Tanks: Endless War Cinematic

I recently finished working with the fantastic RealtimeUK on the World of Tanks: Endless War Cinematic.

I worked on a few shots, but mainly I worked on the Chi-Ha tank crashing though the bamboo. The bamboo was rigged and animated by hand, while the leaves were particle flow system, driven by a fume grid. The grass was Hair Farm. Here’s a video of that shot with a brighter grade.

An early test of the leaf dynamics:

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Vic and Bob’s Lucky Sexy Winners

I got to work with the awesome Vic and Bob last year, and here’s one of the sketches I made for their show ‘Lucky Sexy Winners’.

In this sketch I produced all the fire and smoke effects, and comped the final shots. In other scenes I exploded both Vic and Bobs heads, made Vic fly with a skipping rope, and removed their lower legs for the Tiny Men sketch.

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