Why is XParticles such a successful plugin ?

It’s been many months since Xparticles was released to the public, it grew to be the MoGraph community’s best buddy when it comes to particles. So I have asked myself this question “Why is XParticles such a successful plugin ?

The funny thing is, I simply found the answer today while walking to the office. But before answering the question, I want to have a look back at the CG/ C4D community and some of it’s trends. 

Particles, these wonderful small little pixels that enhanced so many VFX shots. Imagine the mummy without a sandstorm or Avatar without the small little critters flying through the rich environment of this exotic planet. Or what would a water simulation would look like without the foamy crown on its waves. I think you get the point here, particles are beautiful and useful. They enhance the visual appearance of a shot.

When i first started playing around with particles within CINEMA 4D i had two choices .

1.) The standard particle system
image

and

2.)Thinking Particles…. 
image

So i started to play around with the standard particle system and sooner or later i hit the wall every 3D artist hits. You want to do something out of the box and you’re limited to the tools of the fast and easy solution. Next up you’ll start having a closer look at Thinking Particles and maybe, if you’re like me, you’ll hit the wall after opening the XPresso editor. Cryptic names like TPBlurp, MatrixMulVector or Vector2Reals will most definitely keep you away from experimenting.

So here’s the two path’s you could choose from:
1.) Learn all that stuff, do your math and become a rocket scientist
OR
2.) stick to the standard stuff and be the “lone one" watching all others playing outside with the cool fancy toys.

So back to the question: Why is XParticles such a success ?

Answer: Because it speaks another language than ThinkingParticles.
That’s it ! It speaks our language. An easy to understand and straight forward style.  It’s been designed to speak a Designers language. Designers don’t code (well, a lot nowadays do) they explore. We explore possibilities. Using a system like XParticles has an open, easy to read and understand language, a visual language. It is using the interaction methods well known to most CINEMA 4D users such as Drag&Drop, Point&Click, Hierachies, Linkfields, etc… All these things are non cryptic, they are WYSIWYG. If you drag an Object as child under a deformer, nothing will happen, right ?!  It’s a simple logic that’s been designed to be used by thousands of C4D artists out there. And Xparticles is making use of it and seemingly blends into the CINEMA4D workflow.

BUT ! Nothing is for free !!!!

Even XParticles comes with complexity ! As soon as you start doing bigger setups they mostly get out of control as well. The main issue here is how CINEMA 4D is working and dealing with data. XParticles is like MoGraph just for particles. So you will assign tons of things to objects and then you need to remember where all these things went because there is no visual reference anymore (like a Cloner + 12 Effectors + XPresso Tag = lost !). The brilliant thing they’ve introduced is the Question and Answer system to make it even more obvious to the user. Brilliant !!

But still i think, XParticles is doing it the right way. It uses what already exists and makes it much more powerful to the users. It also does a lot of the heavy lifting for you and offers very complex things as a tool (spawn). I’m huge fan and i am so happy that someone understands me needs AND speaks my language ;-)

I wished more plugin developers would try to make their applications speak the same language.

And as i just saw Mike Batchelor just announced XP3.0 Beta Phase on Twitter.

I hope you found this articles as nice to read as i had fun writing ist. If so, why not follow me on Twitter and leave a comment here on Tumblr….

cheers
David aka. neosushi68

[EDIT] Now this is the reason i believe in those guys. Look at the feature review of XP3 and you can tell they know their customers and the market ! XP3 Feature Preview

CINEMA 4D Advanced Production Techniques 2

@C4DAPT is:

C4DAPT is a unique live event featuring a selection of Cinema4D experts from top VFX/motion studios as well as specialized freelancers sharing invaluable high end knowledge and insider tips.

During a 2 day intensive seminar attendees will be taken on a tour de force covering a wide range of advanced production proven techniques from real cases in compact lectures. This is an exceptional chance to learn from the best in the industry.

Check out the Trailer:

C4DAPT2 from Pingo van der Brinkloev on Vimeo.

After watching the trailer i was totally pumped. The Who-Is-Who of leading CINEMA 4D Artists/Studios will talk about industry insights, techniques and workflows. All i can say is, if you got the time and 700.- € + VAT (19%), you should no longer hesitate and grab yourself one of the rare seats and get inspired.

Many of the speakers i know in person. All of them are not only talented, they are super nice as well and maybe you’ll find yourself having a beer or two with them somewhere in Berlin. So go and visit C4DAPT2 right now and make sure you won’t miss this opportunity.

Here some additonal links:

CINEMA 4D Advanced Production Techniques Website
 C4DAPT First session available ondeman on Vimeo

Enjoy you session and let me know on Twitter, Tumblr or via email how it went for you.

cheers,

David aka. neosushi68

Everyday I’m shuff….

Hello everybody,
Today I’d like to write down my thoughts on the #everyday exercise that some of you’re practicing. I love it. It’s like a daily surprise. Like a shared thought of an artist and like watching a kid grow. If you take a look back in those galleries you can clearly see the quality improvement over the months.
My main motivation behind peeping out people’s progress is their creativity that some pieces bring to daylight. It’s purely inspirational. I believe it’s the short amount of time. The little pressure that comes up that won’t let you think to much. You let your gut’s decide what’s best during the creative process. So if you want to improve, learn new techniques and produce imagery your grandchildren will love to watch, I’ll guess you want to start today !!


There of my fav Everyday Artists

Patrick R. Gschwind
http://everydayswiss.tumblr.com

Rich Nosworthy
http://everydayallweekallyear.tumblr.com

Mike Winkelmann (Beeple)
http://www.beeple-crap.com/everydays.php

Let me know what’s your thoughts on everyday art in the comments or twitter.

You Love Gadgets ? I Love Vessyl !

Aaahhh long time no post. Had to get rid off the spider webs on my tumblr…*cough*.

Today i want to write a little article about tech gadgets that may or may not change the way we consume food, or in this case liquids of any kinds. I just preordered a wonderfully designed “Cup” ! Yes you read tight a Cup. To me it’s one of it’s kind. Not only i think it’s insanely beautiful. No i think it’s the smartest cup ever made by humans for humans and i really can’t wait to hold it in my hands.

The Vessyl

VESSYL AUTOMATICALLY KNOWS AND TRACKS
WHAT YOU’RE DRINKING IN REAL-TIME

So this how it looks and what it does. It automatically recognizes any liquid you pour in it and within no time (realtime) it’ll tell you wether it’s beer, wine, soda, water or coffee…But it also let’s you know how much caffeine is in your coffee…and that’s simply wow. There’ll be a app that goes along with the Vessyl that’ll automatically track your drinking habits and keep track of everything you drank. For me, as i’m a steady-to-less-drinker, could help to life a way healthier life :)

I believe that this “Smart-Cup” is just the beginning of NextGen-Gadgets. So if you’re a freak like me and love tech, plus a healthy lifestyle why not check out their website and see for yourself.

Vessyl Website

P
S: If you preorder now you will only pay 99$ instead of 199$ it’ll cost in retail !!!

CINEMA 4D Release 15 announced !

image

CINEMA 4D R15


Oh what a happy day today. Today we at MAXON Computer are proud to announce CINEMA 4D R15 (release fifteen) Yeah you heard right 15. Another great release I’m totally proud of. There are tons of great tools and workflow improvements based upon your valuable and meaningful input. So thanks to all your emails, tweets, facebook posts, etc. We’re always listening.

Modeling
Bevel, yes we finally listened and overhauled the way you bevel and brought it to a new level. Not only technical wise, but also usability wise. We carefully listened to all of your requests and condensed the essence for a perfect workflow out of it. I hope you all enjoy it as much as i did.
I truly believe that our new bevel tools are the best you can currently get in any package (i do :) )

Rendering
Because of the fact that there are so many small to middle sized teams, MAXON Computer also rethought the way how network rendering works. Add a machine, authorize a machine, render ! That’s all you really have to do. Three simple steps to the “Single Frame Distributed Rendering”. Oh yes, single frame rendering is part of the all new Team Render as well. You’ll love it, i have no doubts about that :)
A new and improved algorithm for faster approximation of Global Illumination and improved Ambient Occlusion will also benefit from network distribution.

Kerning
And to all my typography buddies (including me) we finally have the ability to kern our text in 3D / 2D space in an amazing easy to use interactive way. See my sample image below, couldn’t resist :) Yes Kerning made it’s way into CINEMA 4D R15 and boy I’m happy about that.

image

If you’re a Sculptor i think these new features will help you to speed up your work: Amplify Brush, Advanced Masking / Mirroring and Duplication tools, sculpt lines, etc. etc.

Texture Manager
Nobody likes to search for missing textures or wants to replace global links with local ones. It’s simply not as funny as one would imagine it. Therefore MAXON introduced the all new Texture Manager with CINEMA 4D R15Take control over your complex scenes, because time is way to valuable to waste

Camera Crane
I made an example which is already online since some time now to simple test the smoothness only a camera crane can give you while animating….well…a camera. Check out my music video “Slow” to see it in action. Slow - Music Video

Of course there are many many more feature that went into this release. You can read all about them if you visit this Link

One more thing I’d really want to let you all know is about how much love and dedication to details went into making CINEMA4D R15. The entire MAXON team is proud to help the best customers / community and artists in the world to enhance their experience with the application we all love. And of course to make F#$* awesome Shit !!!!

Sincerely
neosushi68 aka. David Drayton

Additional CINEMA4D R15 Resources:
C4DLive R15 Cover & Live Streaming Sessions
MoStyle TV R15 Cover
3DFluff R15 Cover
WeArePitchBlack
CGTalk official R15 Announcement
C4DCafe
Einmalich.com R15 Cover
CINEMA4D R15 Timesavers
Marjin3D on Vimeo R15 videos

Bandcamp Weekly № 08 – No Fakin’ The Cupcakin’

80 minutes of the best of Bandcamp including beautiful busted soul by Firehorse, Son Lux, and our artist of the week Incredible Polo. Atmospheric electronics of The Cutler and Natasha Kmeto warm proceedings, Bosq and Karthala 72 turn the heat to tropical, and K-Maxx goes cupcakin’.

"Slow" Experimental Music Video


It’s been a long time since i’ve done some Cinema 4D work. I made it mainly to free my mind from all of the UX Design work at  MAXON. I hope you enjoy it and i’d love to hear what you think about it in the comments, facebook or twitter :)

Link: "Slow" on vimeo

Music by
: Atu [Track: Slow / Album: Picture on Silence]
More about this wonderfull aritst can be found here: picturesonsilence.com/

99frames 2012 - The Final Movie is online

It’s finally done. All of you have done a fantastic job in participating with such super high quality entries.

Without any further due…enjoy the movie !

https://vimeo.com/64883605

Edit by: Nico Bolocha -@neekoe / https://vimeo.com/neekoe 

Music by: Wesley Slover - @SonoSanctus / https://vimeo.com/sonosanctus 

Loved by: David Drayton - @neosushi68 / http://neosushi68.tumblr.com

I will anounce the winners of this 99frames project next week on my Blog - http://99frames.tumblr.com