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Creating a ship's wake

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Glenn MooreCreating a ship's wake
by on Oct 31, 2005 at 3:31:45 am

I've looked through the books and the posts here and I'm getting nothing. I have a ship floating in the ocean . What I am missing is the wake created by the propellers and the movement through the water. I tried to put the ship's wake fluid into the ocean but it is a totally differnt color and I see no where to match up those colors. It looks great when I just use the ship's wake fluid by itself. I attach the ship to the wake emitter and animate through the fluid. There are no waves because it's only a small section of the water.

Is there a way to attach this fluid to a lager body? Does anyone know of a tute on this? I could probably use a particle emission to do the same thing right? A white globular mixed with smaller particles (for spray).



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Sean FennellRe: Creating a ship's wake
by on Oct 31, 2005 at 5:14:11 pm

You should be able to attach a wake to the ocean itself instead of to a smaller body of fluid. Use Fluids->Ocean->Create Wake. You may not see it on the normal surface because it cannot represent the displacement but you should be able to see it on the height field used to visualize the ocean surface shape. The color of the wake itself is controllable on the wake object. You can turn foam emmision off and the wake will not produce a different color. Also, with some expression trickery you should be able to emit particles from the wake using the wake foam texture as an emission texture map.

There should also be a quick and dirty wake tutorial in the maya help docs. Just do a search for Ocean Wake.


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Glenn MooreRe: Creating a ship's wake
by on Oct 31, 2005 at 7:24:33 pm

Thanks Sean. I'll try it. I thought I tried that but I didn't think it was working for some reason.

The particles are a must but that dirty word (expressions) will force me to take the long way around, I fear. That's right, I admit it...expressions scare me...my brain has no more room to learn anything else.


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Glenn MooreRe: Creating a ship's wake: Wake Generators - Follow-up Question for Sean
by on Nov 1, 2005 at 4:49:14 pm

So does that mean the displacement will take place during the render even though I can't see it represented during the set up (scrubbing the timeline)? Attaching a wake generator to the bow of my ship that I float in the ocean scene will generate a visible wake? I take render shots of individual frames and see nothing but the ocean and ship...no bow disturbance or wake. I must be missing your point.

There is a Destroyer Fluid sample that appears to do what I'm looking for. That scene has bow displacement and wake. I'm trying to emulate what was done there. It looks like they attached a wake generator to the bow in a larger water body setting that actually shows the wake and bow disturbance while I scrub. I don't understand the difference between that and floating an object in the ocean and attaching a wake generator

I searched for a tute on here and on the Alias site...nothing!!!!



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Sean FennellRe: Creating a ship's wake: Wake Generators - Follow-up Question for Sean
by on Nov 1, 2005 at 5:05:50 pm

As far as I can tell doing small tests here the wake emitter has to be in motion to produce proper wakes. So if your boat is just floating, and not actually moving through the water, the best thing is to position the wake underneath the boat and animate it bobbing up and down.

If you're consistently getting nothing create a new scene and follow these steps and you should get a wake in an ocean surface, but the wake will be very intense due to the default settings:

1. Apply Fluid Effects -> Ocean -> Create Ocean
2. Apply Fluid Effects -> Ocean -> Add Preview Plane
3. Scale preview plane to about 36 units in X and Z
4. Open the preview plane attribute editor and set the resolution to 50
5. Apply Fluid Effects -> Ocean -> Create Wake
6. Keyframe the wake moving in the X direction. I did a value of 0 at frame 1 and a value of 15 at frame 40

That should give you a hefty wake in the ocean surface which you should be able to see using the preview plane.

Another thing to notice is the wake will only be visible within the bounding box of the fluidTexture3D object since wakes are created using a 3d fluid system. So you will probably need to move your fluid texture to where your wake emitter is, and make sure it has a scale and resolution (look in the attribute editor again) that is sufficient to create nice wakes.


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Glenn MooreRe: Creating a ship's wake: Wake Generators - Follow-up Question for Sean
by on Nov 1, 2005 at 9:48:47 pm

I'll try it. Thanks Sean. Yes I was animating the ship. I'll go through your steps and let you know.

Thanks again.


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Glenn MooreRe: Creating a ship's wake: Wake Generators - Follow-up Question for Sean II
by on Nov 2, 2005 at 3:41:44 am

That was exactly it, Sean. I also found that by altering the shape of the wake emitter to a more bullet shape (like the bow of a ship, the foam and the wake take on a more natural look. Also, a little cranking up of the foam helps. Thanks again. I was definitely missing something.


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