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Field of spheres or other shape

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Brian MurphyField of spheres or other shape
by on Feb 14, 2012 at 6:35:56 pm

Hey guys,

We do MOA medical Animations that show scenes inside the body reacting with medications, viruses, etc. Generally the visual scope is pretty small but there are times where the client desires huge environments where the camera is up close to a surface representing a cell. This surface would be made of hundreds, perhaps thousands of spheres or small marshmallow-like shapes and I would be using a WIND deformer to give the overall surface an organic motion. Thing is, To have a huge field of spheres (or any shape) taxes C4D. Is there a way that is more proper to be pulling this visual off?

Should I be using clones? Up til now, I have made the huge surface of spheres and connect/deleted them into one mesh. Obviously, the poly count grows enormously, even if I am trying to keep them low-poly.

Any advice? Am I way off on this approach?


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Brian JonesRe: Field of spheres or other shape
by on Feb 14, 2012 at 9:06:20 pm

Doing it as clones would likely be a lot easier to set up and rendering as instances would use a lot less memory, not likely to actually ender faster though.

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Richard DunstanRe: Field of spheres or other shape
by on Feb 15, 2012 at 2:30:29 pm

Using a cloner object would be the way to go, I would set the cloner mode to object and use a plane as the object, keep it set to clone the vertex and add as many segments to the plane as needed, you can then take a displace deformer and use that to organically animate the whole lot. and like Brian said, use the render instances, if you're just using spheres take the segments way down, as long as render perfect is checked off you won't need all the excess polys.

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Adam TrachtenbergRe: Field of spheres or other shape
by on Feb 15, 2012 at 4:45:20 pm

I would create a Matrix Object in grid mode, or object mode and place the matrix particles to taste. Then apply the wind deformer to the matrix object. Then put your sphere in a cloner set to use the same number of clones as the matrix object has particles. Use an inheritance effector to move the spheres onto the matrix object particles (check "morph motion object" box). Finally, check the render instance box for the cloner.

Reason for doing it that way? Using render isntances will speed up the viewport considerably and use less ram when rendering. But the wind deformer won't work properly when applied directly to the cloner if use render instances. Also, since you are deforming the matrix object, the sphere's themselves won't get deformed -- just the pattern of spheres.


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Brian MurphyRe: Field of spheres or other shape
by on Feb 15, 2012 at 6:09:24 pm

Thanks all for your input - every answer helped!


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