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Lev
Pierre's Cloud Carpet
by
on Jun 10, 2007 at 12:18:02 pm

Hi everyone,

I'm quite baffled by this an was wondering if someone could shed some light on the carpet of clouds by Pierre Michel in the trapcode gallery. Is the entire carpet truly particular? I watched the clip and it's a camera tilt and then a dive bomb through the cloud layer. Now if the dive through had particular to give the area where the hole is some depth I could understand that. I would be guessing that the carpet of clouds is a still image...

...but, I have been told a few times now that it's entirely particular (probably because people read it on the trapcode site). This doesn't mention which part is particular though. Now, I have not played with this myself as I only have limited experience with Maya's cloud system. But this layer of clouds is so realistic that I'm quite amazed and just wanted to confirm the entire cloud layer is particular.

Any insight anyone has on this would be greatly appreciated.

Lev



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Peder Norrby
Re: Pierre's Cloud Carpet
on Jun 10, 2007 at 1:50:09 pm

Well, naturally, only Pierre himself could tell you how he did it.
FWIW, Here is an AE project for flying through clouds, not the same but in the same subject:
http://www.trapcode.com/info_cloudflight.html

Peder Norrby / Trapcode


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Peder Norrby
Re: Pierre's Cloud Carpet
on Jun 10, 2007 at 1:58:17 pm

looking at Pierre's clip I think you are right, the carpet is a huge still (or a spherical environment map that includes the sky) and then Trapcode Particular is used to add some extra spice and feeling of 3D depth.

Peder Norrby / Trapcode


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Lev
Re: Pierre's Cloud Carpet
by
on Jun 11, 2007 at 12:38:32 pm

Yeah I thought of emailing him, but decided I'd ask here as daily users of particular would be able to take a shot at whether this is even possible. Your product looks fantastic, Peder, but having seen the "so so" results of a few high end cloud sims I would have been incredibly shocked if this was a plug-in generated cloud carpet.

Let's go with the photo idea - it makes everything balance again. :)




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QueJet
Re: Pierre's Cloud Carpet
on Jun 11, 2007 at 4:59:35 pm

Peder created a particle simulator. not a cloud simulator. Because clouds are made of particles doesn't mean a particle simulator is how you simulate clouds (how rare!).

the trick is how to make a good looking cloud field that you can move around? The answer is probably using pictures of clouds as a basis for particles. turbulence field to effect size and you MIGHT get usable results if you keep the angle of the camera appropriate. Pierre more then likely did his cloud field based on animating a liquefy effect on a simple high res picture. Particles are visibly used however when the camera goes through the clouds, smoke particles moving left and right with low transparency give the clouds detail that normally wouldn't be there. the camera zoomed in (scaling up is bad).

Most of the other particle effects are simple yet good looking. motion blur, plastic wrap, tint. Do almost anything...

I'm curious to get my hands on that picture though, see how he set it up like he did. Where on earth would you get such a high quality source?

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Peder Norrby
it is particular for the cloud carpet!
on Jun 13, 2007 at 2:10:25 am

I just heard back from Pierre and it turns out he did use Trapcode Particular to create the cloud carpet. Basically he rotoed out a few clouds from a reference picture and emitted them (custom particles) in a big box emitter. I'll get back soon with a more comprehensive explanation.

Peder Norrby / Trapcode


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QueJet
Re: it is particular for the cloud carpet!
on Jun 13, 2007 at 4:31:29 am

ok so my liquify guess was wrong, i can already see how to do this. making custom particles out of whole clouds, giving them a nice slow velocity so they don't seem unrealistic and making sure the velocity is perpendicular to the camera will result in that kind of effect. Though that will take at least 10 or so frames of the particle inorder to prevent the duplicating look. I can set up an example if anyone requests.

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Lev
Re: it is particular for the cloud carpet!
by
on Jun 13, 2007 at 7:27:04 am

Peder, thanks for following that up!

In a way I'm sad as only one of my friends suggested that and the rest of us leaned towards still image/matte painting with only the hole filled with particles. He wins the beer :(

This is truly a good example of using particular creatively.




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Peder Norrby
mini-tutorial on clouds
on Jun 13, 2007 at 8:34:30 am

Here is a mini tutorial by Piere Michel:
http://www.trapcode.com/PierreMichelParticular.html

Peder Norrby / Trapcode


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