Intro to Particles/Emitters
Make a folder on the Workspace on the Mac with your username (inside the student folder)
Make a new project and call it ParticleExercises
File menu - Project Menu
Click - NEW and the folder to the right to save your project on the Workspace
For Later: Each time you go back to Maya and open your file make sure you need to SET Project to the correct one.
Your project name will be different from mine.
Setup for Particles
In Window menu- Settings/Preferences - Preferences
Click - Settings
Select Time: NTSC (30 fps)
Select the Time Slider from the menu on the left
Playback speed: Play Every frame
Change Playback start/end to 0 and 1000:
***WARNING: If you do not set the START to 0, it may not compute correctly.
Change to the FX Menu Set
Rules of Physics apply, calculated frame by frame not using keyframes. Particles are designed to be animated using forces like wind and gravity.
Under nParticles menu select the nParticle Tool ☐(Options)
Enter a Particle Name:
Conserve means the amount of momentum of the original particle that is conserved.
1 = all momentum is conserved and fields won't effect the particles
0 = no momentum (velocity) is conserved and fields have maximum effect
3 choices - Particles via clicking, Sketching Particles, or Particle Grid
Number of particles - makes new particles each time you click
Maximum Radius - how far apart they could randomly be placed
Hit Enter when done entering numbers in the window
Start clicking in the Perspective or Orthagonal windows and hit ENTER when done
You will see that each particle group has a nucleus1 attached to it.
Look in the Outliner. The Nucleus is not grouped with the Particles because other particles can use the same nucleus.
The Nucleus solver calculates simulation data for the Nucleus objects that are part of its Nucleus system.
The Nucleus contains settings to control forces (gravity and wind), ground plane attributes, and time and scale attributes.
Sketch Interval - how dense the particles will be
Hit Enter when done
Particle Spacing - how far apart the particles will be in the grid
* Work in the 4 window view mode (space bar to toggle)
Placement: with cursor - place two points and hit Enter for a 2D grid
3D grid: with cursor -
1) place 2 points in the TOP window
2) hit Insert (OR hold down the D key while moving) and move one point down in the FRONT window
3) Hit Insert again to turn off the Insert Mode (if you used the D key, don't do this)
4) Hit ENTER
With text fields - enter the coordinates of the Lower Left Corner and Upper Right Corner
Move mouse into window and hit ENTER
To move a particle (before hitting Enter) use the Insert Key (or hold D key while moving)
To remove a particle or bunch of particles (before hitting Enter) use the Backspace Key
To remove all the particles in the object, after hitting Enter, hit Backspace
Painting on Live Objects
Can place particles on Live objects but they will not move with the object.
Turn off the Live object when done.
1) Make a sphere (Create menu, Polgon or NURBs primitive - Sphere)
2) Scale the sphere up so it is pretty big (hit the R key to scale)
3) Click the horseshoe looking icon to Make the Object Live (make sure the sphere is selected first)
3) In the perspective window use the nParticle Sketch tool to cover the geometry with particles. You may need to adjust the Maximum Radius or Sketch Interval
4) Don't forget to use the Command key to rotate so you can paint all sides.
5) Hit Enter when done
6) Open the Windows - Outliner and delete the sphere. Now you have a ball of particles.
nParticles menu - Create Emitter ☐ (Options)
Emitter Type - try Omni and Directional
Rate (Particles/Sec) (in Basic Emitter Attributes)- determines how many particles get sent out per second
Speed (in Basic Emitter Speed Attributes) - how fast they move
ALWAYS: Click the Rewind button:
Click the Play button:
Emitter/Particle Attributes (in Attribute Editor and some in Channel Box):
In the Outliner or the window: select the emitter or particles
Open the Attribute Window
emitter1 Tab: info on the emitter
nParticleShape1 Tab: attributes that can be keyed
nucleus1 Tab: effect the whole particle set, and all other nParticles attached to this nucleus.
Next Lecture: [Emitters]