Making Of,Pipeline,Production

Victor hair simulation!

8 May, 2015 |  19 Comments | by Ton Roosendaal

And here’s another shot with hair simulation. Mathieu mastered Blender forcefields!
In this shot you see Victor enjoying the storm he summoned.

19 Responses

  1. Tom Telos says:

    Yes: that hair is good.

    Almost too toonish a face for hair that good.

    [Thinking of Spielberg’s Tintin, for example.]

    • pgtart says:

      Well maybe we get Mocap in Blender too, if the full movie spins off.

      I think its the way he’s animated, if he didnt open his eyes that wide; the face might look more realistic. Well its artistic freedom how they would like to make something.

      i guess the movie will be some mix of super realistic effects, and common cartoon effects. To endup in an area where its more then stop motion movie, and less then real. Its will be a different real then all other animations i’ve seen so far i think.
      Its to be seen how the full movie will be. In the end i think these differences in realism isnt a big problem, a month ago i saw sponge bob movie, it hasn’t balanced that at all, while its still funny if you like that type of humor.

      • Mathieu always wanted to lean towards realism a lot – as in convincing real imagery and acting – but yet with ‘traditional’ animated characters in a fantasy world. Tough stuff to do! Stop motion is a fun reference, hadn’t seen it this way.
        Tintin is not a very good reference though; they swapped animation techniques for mocap. That made it uncanny at times.

        • Tom Telos says:

          Tough stuff; amen.

          But, in Viktor’s case, I see a few art adjustments
          that might not be so tough:

          1.- Make his eyes a tad smaller: easy!

          2.- Make his body less stick-figure thin.

          3.- Make his skin less baby smooth.
          I.e. add a bit of bump- normal- or displacement mapping;
          Cycles is great with that!

        • PGTART says:

          I think the uncanny effect in TinTin was caused by head / figure dimension seizes. If i remind correctly they used mocap and actors, but also techniques in which a CG head was projected over a real figure with head. So you get normal people with taler heads. Commic figures are like that, but i think it was a bit to much.

          Mocap itself wouldnt be realy hard to solve i think, basicly a rigify model with limited joints would require a small bit of logic to try to fit into a posure. I explained a few times to some people in BA on how to program something like that, got the recipi in my head, but lack the rigify / blender knowledge, for my work i’m into robotics and camera recognition. (so far it didnt spin of at BA).

      • Tom Telos says:

        Consider Victor’s face:
        if you take away the beard, you are left with a cartoon of
        an eight-year-old boy.
        That makes it hard for me to take the story seriously.

        Contrast Sintel’s Shaman: there you had an adult man,
        who looked like he could actually be wise!

        Blender is moving forward, beautifully;
        why backtrack on realism when showcasing what Blender can do?

    • Andreas says:

      Well, I don’t think that realistic looking hair and cartoonish characters are a contradiction. On the contrary, I believe it works perfectly well together. In my humble opinion Pixar’s “Brave” is the proof for this.

      As for the animation: It look gorgeous! Yet, I have the subtle feeling that the hair is a bit to stiff, but I may be wrong here. Maybe you should shoot some reference footage. ;-)

  2. Kevin says:

    I like it. I think the design of the face (eyes, nose, skin tone) works well together the more “real” hair. All-in-all it’s psedu real – not meant to be real or cartoony. To me it’s this is a very appealing style.

    I’m not a fan of the lips on Victor, but that’s just a personal preference/opinion. Nothing “wrong” with how they are done.

    I’m loving seeing the progress over the last two weeks, on both the film and the 2.75 development. Keep it up. Great job!

  3. Antonio says:

    I like it, congratulations because hair simulation is a pain in the ass. But in my humble opinion the mustache area needs more density and maybe a bit thick. The mouth looks like a separated piece of the face.

    Besides, eyelash in that shot does not looks very nice. It seems there is not a natural distribution of the hair in that area.

    As I said that is my humble opinion and I am saying that only to try to help you, you are doing an amazing job in this project :)

  4. john fraser says:

    i sort of wonder why so many blender foundation animations involve rafts of people with haggard eyes, slightly crazed expressions, broken minds or personalities, or a combination of the three. even project peach, which touted that it would be a cute story about fuzzy animals, was about a tormented idiot extracting surprisingly elaborate revenge on a bunch of pointlessly cruel people.

    i read somewhere that this latest animation involves a suicide attempt or two. i’m not proposing a change to anything in project gooseberry, especially not this late in the game. it’s just i’ve been thinking something for a while now and i’ve finally decided to try and express it.

    Elephant’s Dream: loss, denial, mental disability, loneliness
    Big Buck Bunny: aimless cruelty, revenge, mental disability, bathroom humour
    Sintel: loss, denial, tragic irony, loneliness (possibly mental disability)
    Tears of Steel: loss, revenge, mental disability, loneliness

    it just seems like—outside of their properties as tech demos and torch-bearers for the open source software movement—that blender animations have been kind of unrewarding to watch apart from sintel, i think, which actually was pretty good, if depressing.

    i understand that i MAY be wrong. I’m just one person who appears to think this, and i am aware i can be sort of limited in the kinds of stories i will tolerate. IT COULD JUST BE that i am complaining because the blender foundation is JUST as limited as me, but in a way that i don’t personally like—which would make this complaint a) entitlement and b) a matter of taste only. i am aware that this is possible and i really hope that’s not what i’m doing.

    however i still wonder if there is something fundamentally missing from most of your productions. it seems almost as if cynicism and pessimism are being mistakenly used in place of a diverse portrait of people and an understanding of the human condition. (although once again sintel managed to partially subvert that)

    • Tom Telos says:

      Great insight!

      To me, the most interesting plot so far
      –because I had to see the movie twice to understand it–
      was Tears of Steel.
      That one is, so far, the only one to step away from simplified cartoons.

    • huhu says:

      Your vision is indeed your own… Take BBB, true there is “revenge” but what Coyote and The Road Runner is but revenge ? Same for Tom and Jerry and most of the cartoons. Then maybe you don’t like those either but if you remove revenge or similar notion in cartoons you and up with mind-numbing stuff we make 5 year old watch.
      Then I agree the humor in BBB was really lame, but it’s very difficult to get good ideas for humor and then expressed them in animation. If you are capable of making shorts like Pixar’s For the Birds or Lifted, then I’m sure the institute would love to hire you for the next open project but I’m afraid those people with such good ideas are hard to find.
      Then “mental disability”… honestly I don’t know any cartoon where the characters are not disturbed. Coyote , Donald Duck, Tom and Jerry, … they’re all psycho and that’s what funny

      • John Fraser says:

        I considered mentioning the tom & jerry cartoons and the wile e. coyote cartoons, actually, but my post was starting to get too long so I left it out.

        I think the fundamental difference between these sorts of things is that the bad guys’ fates are usually self-inflicted, because they won’t give up. And I can’t speak for EVERY one of the characters, but usually they’re driven by some kind of integral motive. The Coyote and the Cats (Tom, and also Sylvester in his pursuit of Tweety-bird) are just hungry! It’s usually understandable in a way. Elmer Fudd just wants to be a sportsman. Etc. Etc.

        The three stooges, even, are intensely violent, but in SOME WAYS it evens out, because they still stick together in the end, when it comes to anyone else—and usually when moe slaps curly or when larry and curly hypnotize moe into knocking his head against the floor it is in return for some kind of perceived slight (whether or not it was an accident).

        I suppose bbb felt off to me because the bullies were randomly cruel with no especial motivation—and their retribution was a carefully planned ‘sting’ by a character who had up until now—well the mental disability thing here is more that donald duck and coyote and those guys are not actually retarded, they are just over-the-top aggressive or grandiose or simply over-persistant personalities. they’re exaggerated more than anything else.

        i guess the ‘mental disability’ here seemed odd because the rabbit just seemed to me, for want of a better word, to be slow in the head, which made his bullying feel less than funny and made his elaborate rambo-style revenge kind of unexpected and a little jarring.

    • You forget both Caminandes shorts! But also the poor Llama goes through loss, despair, cruelty and some depression. He keeps smiling though!

      Anyway, although it’s fun way to summarize our films, it’s quite arbitrary though. You can make similar lists of Pixar movies and call these about loss and loneliness and cruelty (Toy Story, Finding Nemo, Wall-E, Up, Brave).

      From my perspective, each of the shorts we made had a very unique and distinct signature, a unique film independently made by a writer/director and by a team. We’re building an incredible and diverse catalog here.

      I wonder what kind of short films (5-12 minutes) you would make as director? Name a couple of examples (links on youtube) of shorts which you think should be an example for us next time?

      • John Fraser says:

        I was going to hold off replying until I found a big list of very impressive shorts, and had assembled all my best arguments and reasons. But I guess I’m not actually the best debater—I use a lot of words, but that might be a bad thing.

        So this’ll be shorter, I think, than it would’ve been.

        I think the pixar ones are different from these, just because finding nemo is also about a devoted father who will go to the ends of the ocean for his kid, but needs—above everything—to learn to let his kid stand on his own.

        wall-e is about a robot who learns how to be human, and brings this knowledge back to the human race.

        UP is about a guy who learns to let go and live in the moment, and in doing so manages to be a lot happier.

        i don’t know if i can explain how sintel, elephant’s dream and BBB feel different.

        after wasting her whole life, the girl kills her childhood friend and leaves.

        an insane man attacks someone who threatens to destroy the world in his head. i said some stuff about BBB here, if it’s of any value to you. this is about 7 minutes. it’s a music video that Hayao Miyazaki made in the mid 90s. i’ve never actually watched a lot of anime but this is possibly one of the best animated things i’ve ever seen from either hemisphere.

      • John Fraser says:

        i’d like to say, btw, that i really appreciate how well you took this.

        i understand i’m just some stranger coming out of the internet to tell you, ostensibly, that “everything you made is incorrect because it’s not this way that I like better”

        i don’t mean it to be that way—and in spite of what i said, i do not think the blender foundation movies are completely awful or anything, I’m just trying to make my point clearly and definitely. i am really grateful that you have even taken the time to engage in a conversation with me.

      • John Fraser says:

        I made another reply, btw, but it doesn’t seem to have come through yet. It may be in the moderation cue still.

  5. Blender Forever says:

    Wow! The hairsim just works great together with Victors animation! I also like the glossyness around his eyes when he closes them – it’s almost like tears caused by the wind or from joy or whatever!

  6. Jerry Miller says:

    I’m working on an animation that I wish to have hair simulations as well but I am having some pretty early issues with hair dynamics.

    I have the hair styled and simply wish to animate it interacting with the character model– without going through the mesh or losing its shape when the character moves.

    Could I get someone to give me a rundown of how to create hair simulations that are realistic such as this?

    I can be reached faster through Facebook but I will check my email for help. Thanks! and seriously though, I loved Cosmos Laundromat, cant wait to see more.

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