Paths

Maya: Dynamics Core Skills

Authors: Pankaj Malik, Todd Palamar, Peter Gend, Dan LeFebvre

This skill path is designed to take you from the end of the Maya: Core Skills skill path into a tightly... Read more

Beginner

The courses in this section will expose you to the fundamentals of Maya’s dynamics systems including particles, volumetric fluids, and Bifrost.

1

Maya nParticle Fundamentals

by Peter Gend

Dec 2, 2016 / 6h 47m

Beginner • 6h 47m

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Description

The nParticle System is an easy to use simulation system that can prove to be a very valuable asset to you. This course, Maya nParticle Fundamentals, will introduce you to the basic functions and tools you'll find when working within the nParticles toolset. First, you'll learn about working with Emitters, Particle Nodes, Fields, Colliders, and the Nucleus Solver. Next, you'll explore multiple particle types including point, ball, cloud, and water particles. Multiple rendering methods will be discussed including using Arnold and the Maya Hardware Renderer. Finally, after the basics have been covered, you will produce a project to showcase everything you've learned about the nParticle pipeline. By the end of this course, you'll know how to use Maya's nParticle System to create a huge variety of simulations. Software required: Autodesk Maya 2017.

Table of contents
  1. Course Overview
    1m 57s
  2. Introduction to nParticles
    1h 14m 21s
  3. Working with Point Particles
    1h 12m 33s
  4. Working with Ball Particles
    59m 52s
  5. Working with Cloud Particles
    40m 38s
  6. Working with Liquid Particles
    38m 33s
  7. Creating an Energy Blast Effect Using Maya nParticles - Part 1
    1h 2m 33s
  8. Creating an Energy Blast Effect Using Maya nParticles - Part 2
    57m 27s
2

Maya Fluid Fundamentals

by Pankaj Malik

Jan 10, 2017 / 4h 52m

Beginner • 4h 52m

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Description

Have you ever had a wish to master the art of fluid dynamics of Maya? If so, this course is a perfect choice for you to began with. In this course, Maya Fluid Fundamentals, you'll learn the basics of Maya fluids and will collect the knowledge to create stunning visual effects. First, you'll learn the most basic and effective techniques of understanding the concepts of fluid dynamics in Maya. Next, you'll explore all the important fluid content details with detailed explanations to attributes and will explore the techniques of creating stunning fire, wispy-smoke, large-dense-smoke, and explosions. Finally, when you have understood the concepts of fluid containers and emitters, it's time to use them for production. When you are finished with this course, you'll have finally collected the confidence to proceed towards the art of creating your own fluid effects. Software required: Maya 2017.

Table of contents
  1. Course Overview
    1m 13s
  2. Understanding the Concepts of Fluid Dynamics
    50m 14s
  3. Creating Fluid Emitters
    1h 3m 16s
  4. Understanding the Fluid Containers with Respect to Density
    35m 2s
  5. Studying Velocity and Turbulence
    26m 53s
  6. Understanding the Temperature
    29m 32s
  7. Understanding the Fuel
    34m 54s
  8. Creating the Cache of Fluid
    19m 53s
  9. Rendering the Fluids
    31m 22s
3

Introduction to Bifrost in Maya

by Dan LeFebvre

Mar 8, 2016 / 2h 12m

Beginner • 2h 12m

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Description

Bifrost is the name of Maya's integrated FLIP fluid solver. It's great for users who want to create large scale fluid simulations without having to leave Maya's interface for a third-party tool. With this course, you'll learn some of the key workflows and fundamentals of Bifrost. Then, you'll take that knowledge to build a simulation you might find in a typical production pipeline. Software required: Maya 2016, SP5.

Table of contents
  1. Course Overview
    1m 31s
  2. Understanding How Bifrost Works
    34m 19s
  3. Fundamentals of Bifrost
    59m 41s
  4. Using Bifrost in a Pipeline
    36m 51s

Intermediate

Once you have a solid understanding of the concepts covered in the first section, the courses at the intermediate level will help to push your skills even further by combining multiple solvers into one project, and exploring more complex uses for Maya’s dynamic systems.

4

Maya Dynamics: nParticles and Expressions

by Pankaj Malik

Apr 6, 2017 / 7h 33m

Beginner • 7h 33m

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Description

Have you ever wish to create effects of rain-dripping, smoke and dust, sand particle, and destruction of object through simulation in Maya? If so, this is the perfect course for you. In this course, Maya Dynamics: nParticles and Expressions, you'll learn nParticles and expressions for various effects and no prior knowledge is required. First, you'll discover how to block out particle emitters, nParticles, and external fields. Next, you'll learn the MEL expressions to modify and customize the nParticle and also able to create your own expressions and additional particle attributes. Finally, you'll explore various effects like rain-dripping, sand-particle, smoke, dust, and destruction with nParticles. When you are finished with this course, you'll have your own renders and a solid understanding of nParticles and expressions, which will further help you in creating complex particles effects. Software required: Autodesk Maya 2017.

Table of contents
  1. Course Overview
    1m 23s
  2. Basics of nDynamics and nParticles Emitters
    1h 6m 51s
  3. Understanding the Concept of Fields
    1h 9m 36s
  4. Using MEL Expressions to Expand nParticle's Functionality
    1h 11m 29s
  5. Simulate a Rain Dripping Effect
    1h 5m 2s
  6. Simulate a Smoke and Dust Using Sprite Particles
    48m 26s
  7. Simulate a Destruction Effect Using nParticle Instancer and MEL Expressions
    1h 8m 24s
  8. Simulate a Dry Sand Effect Using nParticles and nConstraints
    40m 13s
  9. Render the Dry Sand Particle Effect with Arnold Engine
    22m 19s
5

Maya Dynamics: Using Particles to Create Magical Smoke

by Pankaj Malik

Oct 27, 2016 / 2h 45m

Intermediate • 2h 45m

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Description

Have you ever wondered how to simulate the magical smoke in tales of 'Arabian Nights'? This course, Maya Dynamics: Using Particles to Create Magical Smoke, is all about learning and mastering the techniques of how to simulate the complex behavior of Magical Smoke. First, you will discover the most effective methods to block out the particle system and fluid containers. Next, you will improve fluid container settings to create the complex smoke simulations. Finally, you will learn the art of rendering fluids in Arnold, which is a next generation rendering engine now available with Maya as the default renderer. When you are finished with this course, you will be familiar with new ways of controlling the complex fluid system. Software required: Maya 2017 and After Effects CS-6.

Table of contents
  1. Course Overview
    1m 31s
  2. Creating Particles and Fluid Containers
    1h 45s
  3. Rendering the Fluid Container of Smoke with Arnold
    48m 2s
  4. Blocking out the Dragon's Smoke container
    25m 21s
  5. Rendering the Dragon's Smoke
    29m 58s
6

Maya Dynamics: Bifrost for Small-scale Simulations

by Peter Gend

Dec 2, 2016 / 3h 6m

Intermediate • 3h 6m

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Description

Though Bifrost is traditionally used for large-scale simulations, you can gain a powerful tool if you adjust this system to suit your needs. In this course, Maya Dynamics: Bifrost for Small Scale Simulations, you will first take a look at how you can work with gravity, liquid density, surface tension, and viscosity to change the typical large-scale behaviors of Bifrost liquids. Next, you will explore how you can change or turn off many of the adaptivities that traditionally make Bifrost a very fast and powerful large-scale simulator, but may cause quality issues with small-scale simulations. You will finish the course out by lighting and rendering out fluid in Arnold in Maya 2017. By the end of this course, you'll have good foundational knowledge of adapting Bifrost to suit your needs for small-scale simulations. Software required: Autodesk Maya 2017.

Table of contents
  1. Course Overview
    1m 53s
  2. Introduction, Information About Bifrost, and Preparing Your Assets
    30m 30s
  3. Setting up the Basic Structure of the Simulation
    37m 1s
  4. Setting up the Scale, Quality, and Adaptivity
    43m 58s
  5. Caching out the Simulation, Meshing the Particles, and Exporting the Alembic Cache
    34m 21s
  6. Lighting, Shading, and Rendering
    38m 26s
7

Maya Dynamics: nHair, Xgen, and Interactive Grooming

by Peter Gend

Feb 28, 2017 / 5h 18m

Beginner • 5h 18m

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Description

Creation of hair in CGI, once a difficult and time consuming task, is becoming far more accessible and easier to create with every release of Maya. This course, Maya Dynamics: nHair, Xgen, and Interactive Grooming, will introduce users to the most important basic functions and workflows found within Maya 2017 to create Hair. First, you will begin learning about the nHair toolset. This will include several methods of hair creation as well as setting up dynamics for hair. Following this, you will be given a crash course in creating hair in Xgen. This will include working with groomable splines for short hair, as well as hair splines for longer hair. Finally, you will be introduced to the amazing new interactive grooming feature in Maya 2017, a feature that is sure to become the future of hair creation in Maya. By the end of this course, you'll know multiple methods, as well as the pros and cons of each of these methods, to create hair inside of Maya 2017. Software required: Autodesk Maya 2017.

Table of contents
  1. Course Overview
    1m 50s
  2. Introduction to nHair - Part 01
    1h 2m 16s
  3. Introduction to nHair - Part 02
    1h 4m 5s
  4. Introduction to Xgen - Short Hair & Fur
    59m 17s
  5. Introduction to Xgen - Long Hair
    56m 2s
  6. Introduction to Interactive Grooming Splines
    1h 15m 3s

Advanced

In this section you will have the chance to explore Maya’s ocean system, learn about data management for a large scale volumetric fluid simulation, and get your first taste of character effects using Bifrost and XGen.

8

Maya Dynamics: BOSS Ocean Simulations

by Peter Gend

Mar 31, 2017 / 3h 29m

Intermediate • 3h 29m

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Description

Creating CGI oceans is becoming far more accessible and easier with every release of Maya. In this course, Maya Dynamics: BOSS Ocean Simulations, you'll learn how to create realistic ocean surfaces with spectral waves, ripples, and wakes. First, you'll be introduced to how the BOSS system works. Next, you'll explore all of the ins and outs of the spectral wave solvers. Then, you'll discover how to layer multiple solvers together. Finally, you'll learn how to export your ocean simulation in several formats and how to create an ocean shader and render in Arnold in Maya 2017. By the end of this course, you'll have a better understanding of the BOSS system in Maya 2017. Software required: Autodesk Maya 2017.

Table of contents
  1. Course Overview
    1m 54s
  2. Introduction & Project Overview
    12m 58s
  3. Working with the BOSS Editor
    28m 46s
  4. Working with the Spectral Wave Solver
    46m 5s
  5. Creating an Ocean Simulation in BOSS
    1h 1m 44s
  6. Setting up and Rendering an Ocean in Arnold
    57m 45s
9

Simulating a Large Dust Storm in Maya

by Pankaj Malik

Feb 10, 2016 / 1h 43m

Advanced • 1h 43m

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Description

In this Maya course, we will simulate a large dust storm with the help of Maya Fluids. Throughout these lessons, we will explore the attributes and an easy to follow method of simulating a computationally large effect. We will be covering in depth and detail the entire process of simulating a dust storm, wind motions, and finally turbulence of electric wires attached to poles. By the end of this course, you will have improved your knowledge of Maya fluids and have a better understanding for solving tricky simulations. Software required: Maya 2016.

Table of contents
  1. Introduction and Project Overview
    54s
  2. Simulating a Large Dust Storm in Maya
    1h 42m 18s
10

Maya Character and Environment FX with Bifrost and XGen

by Todd Palamar

Mar 8, 2017 / 2h 11m

Intermediate • 2h 11m

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Description

Go on the journey of learning environment and character creation. In this course, Maya Character and Environment FX with Bifrost and XGen, you'll learn techniques for building trees with Paint Fx, populating terrain with XGen and creating a creature using a liquid simulation. First, you'll discover how to build a tree from scratch with Paint FX. Next, you'll explore how to use expressions with XGen. Then, you'll create a dripping mud monster using the Bifrost liquid simulation. Finally, you'll learn how to render fog and using Arnold shaders. By the end of this course, you'll know how to build a forest of your own and bring it alive with mud and water. Software required: Maya 2017.

Table of contents
  1. Course Overview
    1m 22s
  2. Project Overview: The Thing from the Swamp
    53m 35s
  3. Populating the Swamp
    30m 10s
  4. Building a Mud Monster
    21m 3s
  5. Putting It All Together
    25m 20s

What you will learn

  • Fundamentals of nParticles
  • Fundamentals of Maya voxel based fluids
  • Fundamentals of nHair and xGen
  • Fundamentals of Bifrost and BOSS
  • Fundamentals of scripting MEL expressions for dynamics

Pre-requisites

A good understanding of Maya’s workflow is required. We recommend starting with the Maya: Core Skills path You’ll get the most out of this path when you’re familiar with Maya, but still need to enhance your skills in the areas of particles, fluids, and rigid bodies.

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