Cigarette Smokin’ Babies

Page 7 of 7

Once the Hardware Render Buffer has opened, it will default to the perspective window. Koosh repositions his camera slightly to get the desired angle in the regular perspective window, and those changes are reflected right away in the hardware buffer.

In the hardware buffer window, clicking Render>Attributes is where the attributes that govern rendered image resolution, filename, frame range, etc. are. This window is to the hardware render buffer what the Render Globals is to Maya’s software renderer. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
Figure 11. (Click image for larger view.)
Under the heading “Multi-Pass Render Options,” Koosh needs to turn Multi-Pass Rendering on and choose a fairly high number like the max of 36. Also, he sets an Edge Smoothing Value of 20 and a Motion Blur of 6. Without Multi-Pass Rendering turned on, the particles will render out as simple points. Figure 11.

However, with that option turned on, and the values entered as above, the smoke will soften out and blur to create a much better effect than a bunch of dots.

Clicking Render>Render Sequence will render the entire sequence specified in the hardware render attributes window (Koosh has chosen frames 1-340), while clicking the middle clapboard icon button will render the current frame.

Final image (Click for larger view.)
“Are you done making babies smoke?” Vicki asks from the couch, still glued to the Emergency Vets show.

“Uh, yeah, I just need to render it out, pull it into After Effects, blur it a bit and then comp it in the plates. And boom! Smoking babies,” he replies.

“Cause everyone’s happier when they’re smoking.”

“Or drinking.”

“Especially babies.”

“Amen, sister!”

Noticing that the hardware buffer is not rendering right (it’s giving him black frames), Koosh clicks in the main Maya window Solvers>Create Particle Disk Cache to run the particle simulation and save it to disk as a file. This usually helps out weird problems in the hardware renderer.

A brief lull falls on them while Koosh watches his render. He’s tempted to surf the web while it processes, but he knows doing that would disrupt the render. Hardware renders get messed up if a window or screen saver comes on over them. So Koosh splits his time between watching the render and throwing little bits of crumpled paper at Vicki.

“So you gonna tell me why you need a smoking baby in a commercial?” she finally asks, flicking little pieces of paper off her sweater.


“I hate you.”


Dariush Derakhshani is an Animator at Sight Effects in Venice, CA He describes himself thusly: "30. Nicely bald. Fear of commitment. Mostly malaisey. Enlarged nasal turbinates. Taste for irony and digestive biscuits with chocolate. Has no idea how he got here, no idea of where there is to go. Animator. Teacher. A few awards and a couple degrees. Happy little man at Sight Effects in Venice, CA. Flat feet." He can be reached at [email protected].

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