Dan Englesson

Maya plugin: Hair generation and realtime Hair shading for the Maya Viewport


Course: TNCG13 - VFX tricks of the trade


Simulating hair on characters in the visual effects industry is becoming more and more demanding due to closeup scenes whole characters covered in hair and visual effects hair interaction with humans in real-life shots. Animated movies like Tangled, How to train a dragon and many other blockbuster movie titles where small furry creatures are shown all use some kind of hair simulation to give a more visual appealing appearance to them. Many tool are therefore available at the visual effects companies. Artist often have to be experts on these sort of tools since real- time response of hair simulations are not available. They have to rely on manually placed guide hairs to determine the quality and look of the resulting hairs or by rendering single frames over and over to adjust the style. This report covers some the hair generation and shading methods that can be used in such an real-time tool, and these methods are then implemented in Maya in the viewport for real-time viewing.

Course contents

This course will examine several films to explore the tricks of the trade. We will examine contemporary films, which use techniques that have been taught throughout the programme. The guest lecturers from industry will represent different stages of the SFX production ranging from research and development to compositing of final sequences. The learning outcomes of this course are as follows:

  • Ability to reason and criticize SFX in a Film
  • Ability to link in earlier theoretical learning to real production in Film
  • Ability to work with advanced software tools used in SFX production

Full course information: TNCG13 - VFX tricks of the trade