Cigarette Smokin’ Babies

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Figure 4. (Click image for larger view.)
He rewinds the animation back to frame 1. With dynamics the animation must play from the beginning of the simulation for the result to be accurate. Scrubbing the animation for a dynamic simulation will get weird results, and quite frankly, he doesn’t want to solicit any more comments from Vicki. Koosh hits play and watches all his particles being blown off the edge of the screen. He checks to see if Vicki saw that and was about to stab him with another verbal shiv. Figure 4.

Obviously, the particles need to be slowly wafting upwards, rising, as does real smoke coming off the emergency cigarette Vicki was so protective of. To do this, he needs to create another field object either to push or pull the particles up. He chooses to create a Radial Field, which he will position above the smoke to draw it in, as opposed to pushing it up. A Radial Field will either radiate particles away from or draw toward itself. This is achieved through the magnitude setting. A negative number will pull radially, while a positive number will push radially. A gravity field could also do the job of pulling the particles up (with a negative magnitude), but the radial field will also draw the particles toward it’s specific position, helping keep the particles in a nice fluid stream as opposed to making them merely lift up. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
Figure 5.
He clicks on Fields>Radial and creates his new field. He moves it so that it is above the frame, and slightly to the left of the emitter’s Z position. This will allow the turbulence to push the smoke toward the right (as in Figure 4), and the radial will suck it back to the left, creating a nice arc of movement.

Adhering to the same theory used in keyframing the magnitude of the turbulence, he sets keys for the radial’s magnitude thusly: -0.5 at frame 100, -0.3 at 145, -0.5 at 260, and –0.3 at 360. This again will help the smoke waft more realistically. Figure 5.

Hitting play, he notices that the particles do not respond to his new field, prompting him to check their connection. He clicks Window>Relationship Editors>Dynamic Relationship to open the Dynamic Relationships Window. Figure 6.

Figure 6. (Click image for larger view.)
Clicking on his particle object on the left will select his particles. Then turning on the Fields button above the right hand panel (which is selected by default) will display all the fields in the scene. The ones highlighted are connected to the chosen particle object. Having forgotten to select his particles before he created the Radial Field, Koosh needs to make the connection here, by simply clicking on the radialField1 object in the right panel. He hits play and notices that his particles are now drawn up, instead of flying out of the frame as before.

Noticing that his reference cigarette has finally burnt down to the filter, Koosh gets up in search of something to burn. He considers Vicki for a brief, but sweet second.

“I need to make fire and smoke!”

“Well, why don’t you burn the end of one of your fingers,” Vicki says to him as she watches a vet staple a dog back together on TV.

“I’ve had enough of you,” he declares, even though he knows he hasn’t and that he never will. “Tell me where your other emergency cigarettes are, or I’ll take the remote away and force you to watch CNN.” He snatches the remote from their hideous, toe-mangling-in-the-dark coffee table.

“What makes you so sure I have more? Now, wouldn’t having another emergency cigarette stash nullify the whole premise of having an emergency cigarette when one quits? Hmm? Wouldn’t I just be another smoker in denial as opposed to have actually quit, if I had another stash?”

“Yes, it would, Smokey Smokerton. Now give me the others or face Wolf Blitzer.” He had the remote in his hand, aimed and at the ready for CNN. She knew not to get between Koosh and his particles. “Need I remind you of the time you rolled up a nicotine patch and tried to smoke it?”

“Oh, all right,” she says reaching behind and under the sofa cushion on the right. They exchange a remote and a crumpled pack of Parliaments as if they were cold war secret agents. She turns back to the Emergency Vets show. “I want one,” she groans quietly, the smell of nicotine in the air driving her to angrily eat another carrot.

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