VFX in Houdini


Master the magic of natural phenomena!

The safest way of approaching one of the industry’s most daunting software, VFX in Houdini offers a basic overview of the methodology and tools used to create top dynamic effects as it is done in a genuine professional production environment. Designed to prepare students to create a full-CG VFX shot for both film and gaming, it covers all typical CG tasks necessary to complete a standard VFX render, as well as a level in Unreal Engine. Through the development of the scene, the students learn how to navigate through the complexity of Houdini’s node-based workflow. The course culminates in a class-based project, allowing students to get a first taste of working within a professional creative team.

Week 1
• Introduction, reference study, – Houdini interface basics, simple shot setup. Becoming familiar with interface, importing objects, animating them, animating camera
• Simple shot layout and first render – Continuation of previous class. Setting up everything for first draft render.

Week 2
• SOP modeling – In this class students will use SOP operators to model architectural elements in non destructive manner, which is also applicable in procedural generation for game development.
• SOP modeling II – Creating organic environment elements. Using curves, point VOP nodes and ramps to control shapes.

Week 3
• modeling III – Packaging asset as Houdini digital assets. Scattering assets in the scene, controlling distribution, orientation via attributes.
• SOP modeling IV – Making our environment richer, packing everything in smart and memory efficient manner.

Week 4
• SOP fx I – Doing simple effects like laser beams, hitting spaceships and environments. Lightning effects, from interaction of ships and environment.
• SOP fx II – In this class we will set up portal effect using simple VOP operators. Goal of this class is to show you how math can be used to design memory efficient effects.

Week 5
• Particles I – Creating particle sparks, snow, rain. Rendering particles as points, volumes, sprites.
• Particles II – Using particles to create swarms of spaceships. Adding particles to our portal.

Week 6
• Rigid bodies I – Rigid body simulations for debris hits, collapsing walls.
• Rigid bodies II – Rigid body simulations for spaceships destruction, combining animation with rigid bodies.

Week 7
• Pyro I – Off the shelf pyro, that will be used for ship explosions. Creating several variations and caching them. Instancing explosions.
• Pyro II – Adding pyro effects to our portal, integrating particles and pyro.

Week 8
• FLIP simulations I – Using flip simulations to create waterfall for our shot. Caching our first flip. Whitewater setup.
• FLIP simulations II – Waterfall refining. Whitewater refining, caching. Render setup.

Week 9
• Rigid bodies III – Bridge collapse, use of constraints.
• Rigid bodies IV – Bridge collapse refining, integrating with pyro, particles.

Week 10
• Ocean spectrum – Adding water elements to the scene. Use of ocean spectrum.
• FLIP Flat Tank simulation – Water – collapsing bridge interaction. Using FLIP Flat Tank to create collapsing bridge interaction with water.

Week 11
• Materials and lights – Setting up procedural material assignments. Use of 3D textures. Separating different elements as render layers.
• Render review and compositing.

Week 12
• Export to Unreal as static geometry. Use of Houdini Engine inside Unreal.
• Export of FX to Unreal via SideFX Labs tools.

Upon completion of the course students will receive the Crater Training Center Certificate.

Bogdan Amidžić
Digital Effects Supervisor @ Crater Studio

A rare breed of artist and programmer, Bogdan is a VFX Supervisor at Crater Studio with more than 12 years of experience in VFX production of feature films, commercials, and music videos. Always driven by the thrill of new challenges, he combines his love for scripting (MEL, Python, VEX) and illustration/ concept art to provide creative solutions and overcome insurmountable obstacles. Working many years as compositing artist, in the past few years, he has mostly been involved with 3D VFX in Maya and Houdini. Eager to share his vast knowledge with friends and colleagues, Bogdan teaches Digital Compositing and VFX in Houdini courses at Crater Training Center.

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1380 EUR price category 1*
2070 EUR price category 2*
VAT included.
 * View pricing & payment options

Start date
Check out the course calendar

13 weeks (120 classes) 

basic computer skills
3D Essentials*
* or equivalent computer skills

Intership available

In the classroom / Online


Students works