Trojan Horse was a Unicorn
Emanuele Niri describes how the amazing opening and closing titles for ‘Trojan horse was a Unicorn’ were made using RealFlow. THU is a unique four-day Digital Art Rave.
About the company
The fluid job was carried out on behalf of Juice.pl based in Warsaw, Poland. It is a visual creative studio with four branches worldwide specializing in CG, VFX Post production, animation, rendering, compositing and sound design.
The main goal of the simulation part was focused on the creation of a dynamic energy fluid in order to convey a sense of sparkling light upon darkness. Therefore making it flow across the various elements in the scene to give the impression of bringing the apparent state of death back to life once again. A short timing production of eight weeks overall out of which only four were spent on the fluid side alone presented a hard task due to the number of shots. The team was composed of Juice.pl’s in house artists. The producer Natalia Lasota was in charge, alongside a network of external freelance artists under the brilliant art direction of Michał Misiński. A pressure we were up against was a tight deadline which sometimes forced me to compromise aspects of the simulations.
RealFlow was used to meet our requirements in various ways. The new Spline tools available in RF2015 were of great help and extensively used alongside the new VDB meshing which helped me a lot when it came to blending more emitters into one.
I generally drew lots of curves and constrained them to geometry within Maya then exported them to RF2015 to create Spline driven forces, which in turn enabled me to keep the streams flowing seamlessly across the surfaces.
The hardest part was to keep the fluid attached to the surface of the animated characters while retaining a natural flowing feel and the required speed of the streams and in this respect the new Spline tool inside RF2015 was really spot-on.
Rendering was carried out by Juice.pl using V-Ray and of course the Maxwell preview within RF2015 was used to visualize most RnD stuff that preceded the work.
I have used RealFlow for the past seven years on almost every work that is particles or instance related. I mostly use RealFlow for liquids and viscous fluids of any kind, though I also like it to sketch out quick ideas that could be further developed for different purposes and in most cases it always turns out to be the right choice.
I guess nowadays RealFlow is fully adaptable to almost any pipeline and it is like one of those ingredients you can’t miss in a good kitchen. I will most certainly use RealFlow again, and I wish a bright future for it to be as great as its present and past time and time again.
The 3D platforms we used were Maya and Houdini. I operate with Windows 7 64-bit. The hardware at my disposal is: 2x Xeon x5650 @2.67ghz, 48gb ram.
The greatest benefit of RealFlow is that it is simple and intuitive at first sight and a truly responsive group of developers and friends are always there to help you.
Special thanks to the whole team at Juice for the opportunity they gave me to be part of it and particularly Michał Misiński, Łukasz Dziedziński and Jakub Knapik for coordinating the huge amount of work smoothly and patiently.
Thanks also to Igor Žanić and his alchemies whose help on one shot came from outside as an unexpected one off magical touch.