Sunday, December 20th, 2020 Posted by Jim Thacker

Master Houdini particle effects

The Gnomon Workshop has released Introduction to Particle FX in Houdini: Vol. 1, a detailed starter guide to SideFX’s VFX-industry-standard 3D software recorded by FX TD Alessandro Cangelosi.

The workshop, which comprises over seven hours of video training, is the first in a new series of tutorials introducing new users to Houdini’s powerful effects tools.

Get started with Houdini’s powerful particle effects tools
The workshop sets out how to create a Houdini particle system: both from scratch, and taking advantage of the readymade Shelf presets that Houdini provides.

Cangelosi begins by providing an overview of how Houdini works, explaining how to manage different types of operators, including DOPs, SOPs, VOPs and POPs – Particle OPerators.

He goes on to discuss particle emission rules; how to create particles using meshes, scatters and volumes; controlling particle colors; particle caching; collisions with 3D objects, and basic bounce and drag forces.

The training also explores how to use Houdini’s Mantra renderer to render particle effects, explaining how to shade particle systems for rendering, and how render instancing works.

To round off the workshop, Cangelosi explores how to create a CG nebula effect from scratch, using volume velocity advection with a simple VOP.

During the course of the final project, he provides helpful tips for creating advection effects using Houdini’s Pyro FX toolset, and for particle rendering for gaseous fluid effects.

Viewers can download the Houdini project files for each chapter alongside the videos.

About the artist
Alessandro Cangelosi is a leading freelance lighting and FX TD, whose resume includes movies like Suspira and Independence Day: Resurgence and games trailers for Wolfenstein: The New Order and Dead Rising 3.

He has also worked on commercials and documentaries, and developed plugins and custom tools for 3ds Max. Alessandro is CEO and head of learning at Italy’s Proteus VFX School.

Pricing and availability
Introduction to Particle FX in Houdini: Vol. 1 is available via a subscription to The Gnomon Workshop, providing access to over 300 tutorials. Subscriptions cost $49/month or $490/year. Free trials are available.

Read more about Introduction to Particle FX in Houdini: Vol. 1 on The Gnomon Workshop’s website

Full disclosure: CG Channel is owned by Gnomon.