Since the kinect for the xbox 360 was released, i have always thought of it as a gimik, but after talking to Georg i have found that it can be used in a vast variety of ways, and is a viable tool for the work we are doing as it allows for uses from motion tracking to 3d scanning.

I hope to get my little brothers kinect in the next few weeks as the games for it our truely awefull.

Here are some cool things i have found incorporating it.

<p><a href=”″>Kinect – 3D body tracking with physics</a> from <a href=”″>Tharsis-Software</a&gt; on <a href=””>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

This is awesome, the way the physics are worked out form the motion tracking is amazing.

<p><a href=”″>Kinect + XNA</a> from <a href=””>ARBUZZ</a&gt; on <a href=””>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

Although the motion tracking is a bit glitchy, i still think that it is pretty cool and it will be interesting how they use and develop this in the future.

It’s Snowing

So i have made a start on the snow scene that jenny wanted. My instructions for this scene was that it should be heavy snow with gusts of wind in it. I also need to produce a playblast from inside the room looking out the window, the door will then blow open by a gust of wind with snow coming in.

I decided to start with the basics; making the snow particles fall like snow. To do this i started with a plane and then made it emit particles, using a surface emitter. At the moment the particles emit but are sticking to the surface. To fix this i added a gravity field to the particles and changed the magnitude to about 8. I then changed some of the particle attributes, changing the emitter rate to 500 particles per second.

I noticed the particles were falling in straight lines so i added a turbulence filed to it and turned the magnitude right up, which gives a more random look to the particles.

Now i have them falling correctly i will try add some wind in the scene, to do this i added an air field to the particles then changed the direction to blow through the particles, pushing them off to one side. I also had to increase the max distance of the field so the particles would be effected for longer. I keyed the magnitude of the air field to represent a gust of wind.

Now i have this working i have added in 2 more air fields so that the wind can be controlled from three directions at once, this should make it more life like.

Although the gusts of wind are working i feel that it looks slightly odd as all the particles move in one direction creating an empty space, which doesn’t happen in real life. To solve this i created a new plane emitting particles and added similar fields to it (except from air as i don’t want these particles to blow). I changed the size of the particles to make them smaller and i turned up the number of particles being emitted. This should give it a denser look but will allow for some snow to be effected by the air field and some not.

I am now going to make the snow blow through the door. First off i need to add some animation to the door. I then animated the magnitude of the air field directed towards the door (it took me a couple of tries to get the snow to come through the door

Now i need to work on the frost air gusting through the door in which i will use maya fluids for it.

A New Term

It feels good to be getting back into the swing of things, we have just started a new term at uni so I thought I would update you on the work I have been doing and on my up and coming work.

First of all, I am working on a project called The Little Helper, which is Jenny’s major project. I have been asked to create all the dynamics needed for the animation, this includes:

-Making the spider webs (so they move with the wind and interact with the characters)

-Creating the dust for the environments, to sit on objects and to displace should any object hit the ground.

-Making the title of the film (The Little Helper) text  from particles sitting on the spider web, which will then displace or blow away as the spider walks over it.

-Making some glue for the spiders leg to get stuck in.

-Creating a snow scene

I have made a start on some of this, but I am going to have to wait for a lot of it until the animation in the scenes have been completed.

What i have so far.

I have made the spider-web using an alpha matte, I tried various ways of making them, i tried modelling the web. However i found you have the most control using a plane with an alpha matte especially as I will be changing the mesh to an nCloth so I can make it move naturally.

Once I had the web moving properly i did some tests of simple objects hitting it to see how it would react.


These seem to move ok, but i will have to wait to have the animation before i fine tune it.

I have also made a start on the text, although at the moment it is just an image not a simulation as again I need the animation.

I am also working on Craig’s project, in which i am modeling the characters at the moment and i am going to start rigging them as soon as they are ready; and Simon’s project where i will be creating water to flow out the windows of his projection.

Stay Tuned for updates.