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THE FAROE ISLANDS & THE WATERFALL
The most complete course about environment creation in Houdini.
 

Have you ever followed a Houdini tutorial and it all made sense, until a day later you are trying to create something else and you feel completely lost? This is a common issue my students used to complain about before attending my courses. We don't create copy machines, we teach. We want you to understand the real concepts behind each decision we make throughout the process of creating an environment. And it is not only about creating it. It is also about scene management, so we can create huge, complex environments with efficiency and control.

Welcome to The Faroe Islands and The Waterfall Course! My name is Diogo Guerreiro and I’m going to be your instructor in this course. The FIWAT is the result of many years of planning, testing, and refining a specific methodology that simplifies the learning process and gives you the instruments to leverage the full potential of Houdini!

 

The purpose of this course is very straightforward: to provide artists with practical knowledge, so they can access and understand all tools related to environment creation and fluid simulations inside Houdini, so they will be free to translate their ideas into real, high standard projects.

 
How is the FIWAT different?
You'll learn many tools that will help you
create the most diverse high-end Environments.
FIWAT is a very special course. There is nothing available to this date as complete and deep into environment creation in Houdini. 17+ hours of valuable content, lots of techniques that were developed by us, and you just won't find it out there.

We created this course following what we believe is the best way to learn Houdini. It is all about solving problems and understanding the concepts behind the tools we have available. We didn't just create a scene for you to copy the parameters. We want you to fly solo after this. We spent a lot of time optimizing our course so you don't waste yours. Every recorded minute is valuable information. When we do a repetitive task, we choose different methods every time so you learn more ways of accomplishing tasks in Houdini. Also, we choose themes that will add a lot to your demo reel.
 
We create our courses with an obsession for quality and with purpose, so you will learn how to become a better CG artist while having fun.

 
 
What exactly is in this course?
This is the most complete and high-end environment course for Houdini available. After this, there is no environment creation that you won't be able to accomplish.
The course is compiled of 81 classes divided into 12 modules. Each class goes from 10 to 20 min average with a total of more than 17 hours of premium content.

Module 1 - Terrain Modeling


In this Module, we will start creating our landscape and we go through some professional techniques for environment creation. You will learn to create vertical cliffs and some negative angles, something that is not possible with the heightfield tool in Houdini. So we will create our own workflow for that. We will also use a more advanced way to optimize the number of polygons on our terrain without losing resolution in the key areas.




Module 2 - Terrain Attributes


Now that you have created the base of our terrain, we will dive deep into VOPs to extract important data that will help us add more cool features to our environment and to create important variations to our textures.




Module 3 - Procedural Textures


We will explore some different possibilities inside Houdini and will create some procedural textures for our terrain, both grass fields, and rocky cliffs. Then we will go to photoshop to learn how to make them tillable.




Module 4 - Texturing


Here we will start to texture our environment using Redshift. We will extract many important attributes to give diversity to our creation, making it more realistic and complex but having total artistic control over it. We will cover a powerful procedural workflow.




Module 5 - Waterfall Creation Flip Simulation


We will start this chapter by going back to our terrain and preparing it for creating our first flip simulation, the waterfall. I will cover many optimizations regarding the colliders, flip source, creating an interesting initial state for the simulation and setting the initial velocity. Then we will go through all the main settings over the DOPs fluid solver. We will make sure to accomplish a large-scale realistic simulation with as minimum resource as possible. After we are happy with our sim, we will cache it to disk. At last, I will show a custom way to mesh your flip sim, with efficiency and precision.




Module 6 - Waterfall Whitewater


We have our flip sim set and running. Now it is time to create the whitewater for that. In this type of waterfall, that falls from a high cliff, the whitewater is even more important than the flip itself. But whitewater is something really heavy for computation. but don´t worry, I will show you many tricks to optimize your scene, in a way that you will have lots of control to create a realistic simulation with as many resources as possible. At the end of this chapter, I will cover the best way to render whitewater in Redshift, a subject very little covered elsewhere.




Module 7 - Ocean Flip Simulation


This is a very exciting chapter. Our environment is getting really complex and full of cool features. We will start by creating the elements for our simulation. Preparing the colliders, the flip tank, and the forces that will affect this simulation. These are also rare concepts and techniques covered in other courses or tutorials. I will show you how to merge, combine, and even more important how different flips can interact with each other. As we did before we will make sure to keep our scene efficient and clean but full of details. We will also cover a special way to mesh our flip sim, which will be essential to create an integration with the ocean grid later on.




Module 8 - Ocean White water


Even though we covered whitewater creation in chapter 6, this is a great opportunity to reveal the concepts and make some adaptations to fit this new type of flip simulation. We will also cover how to render that in Redshift.




Module 9 - Custom Render Workflow


We have our terrain, the waterfall, the waves, the whitewater, and finally the ocean. Now it is time to introduce you to a powerful way of integrating all that. And this, in my opinion, is much better than Houdini's default workflow.




Module 10 - Mist with Axiom Solver


Super exciting chapter. I will show you how you can be creative to accomplish different tasks in Houdini. We will use a free plugin called Axiom Solver to create a mist around our waterfall. The results are really rich and they are so fast to process.




Module 11 - Terrain Adjusts and Scattering


We are far from where we started and close to the end of this journey. We will start reshaping our terrain without messing up with any procedural parameter we created. We will create some lights and moods to define our render path. Then we will go back to texturing and enrich our environment with new masks and variations. Then I will show some very cool scattering techniques that I am confident you will love because they give so much control with not much work. The results are awesome.




Module 12 - Final Comp


Ok, ok, we are almost there. Time to create our final composition. We will cover a reveal (far) shot and a close-up shot. We will also cover how to comp both in Nuke and in Fusion. You will see the importance of rendering different AOVs and layers and also why you should never try to render everything at once.




BONUS


Just a few extras





 
“Is this course right for me?”
The Faroe Islands and The Waterfall course has been designed to give you the tools, the structure, and the methodology to develop and create your own complex environment, combining different simulations, a lot of custom tools to optimize your scene and creativity will be your only limit. However, you'll have to put in the time and work to see the results.

Requirements:

  • Basic understanding of Houdini

  • Basic understanding of Redshift

Here is what you get when you join the FIWAT:
  • Lifetime Access!

  • 17+ Hours of course

  • 12 Modules

  • All course updates are free

  • All project files

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Module 1 - Terrain Modeling


In this Module, we will start creating our landscape and we go through some professional techniques for environment creation. You will learn to create vertical cliffs and some negative angles, something that is not possible with the heightfield tool in Houdini. So we will create our own workflow for that. We will also use a more advanced way to optimize the number of polygons on our terrain without losing resolution in the key areas.




Module 2 - Terrain Attributes


Now that you have created the base of our terrain, we will dive deep into VOPs to extract important data that will help us add more cool features to our environment and to create important variations to our textures.




Module 3 - Procedural Textures


We will explore some different possibilities inside Houdini and will create some procedural textures for our terrain, both grass fields, and rocky cliffs. Then we will go to photoshop to learn how to make them tillable.




Module 4 - Texturing


Here we will start to texture our environment using Redshift. We will extract many important attributes to give diversity to our creation, making it more realistic and complex but having total artistic control over it. We will cover a powerful procedural workflow.




Module 5 - Waterfall Creation Flip Simulation


We will start this chapter by going back to our terrain and preparing it for creating our first flip simulation, the waterfall. I will cover many optimizations regarding the colliders, flip source, creating an interesting initial state for the simulation and setting the initial velocity. Then we will go through all the main settings over the DOPs fluid solver. We will make sure to accomplish a large-scale realistic simulation with as minimum resource as possible. After we are happy with our sim, we will cache it to disk. At last, I will show a custom way to mesh your flip sim, with efficiency and precision.




Module 6 - Waterfall Whitewater


We have our flip sim set and running. Now it is time to create the whitewater for that. In this type of waterfall, that falls from a high cliff, the whitewater is even more important than the flip itself. But whitewater is something really heavy for computation. but don´t worry, I will show you many tricks to optimize your scene, in a way that you will have lots of control to create a realistic simulation with as many resources as possible. At the end of this chapter, I will cover the best way to render whitewater in Redshift, a subject very little covered elsewhere.




Module 7 - Ocean Flip Simulation


This is a very exciting chapter. Our environment is getting really complex and full of cool features. We will start by creating the elements for our simulation. Preparing the colliders, the flip tank, and the forces that will affect this simulation. These are also rare concepts and techniques covered in other courses or tutorials. I will show you how to merge, combine, and even more important how different flips can interact with each other. As we did before we will make sure to keep our scene efficient and clean but full of details. We will also cover a special way to mesh our flip sim, which will be essential to create an integration with the ocean grid later on.




Module 8 - Ocean White water


Even though we covered whitewater creation in chapter 6, this is a great opportunity to reveal the concepts and make some adaptations to fit this new type of flip simulation. We will also cover how to render that in Redshift.




Module 9 - Custom Render Workflow


We have our terrain, the waterfall, the waves, the whitewater, and finally the ocean. Now it is time to introduce you to a powerful way of integrating all that. And this, in my opinion, is much better than Houdini's default workflow.




Module 10 - Mist with Axiom Solver


Super exciting chapter. I will show you how you can be creative to accomplish different tasks in Houdini. We will use a free plugin called Axiom Solver to create a mist around our waterfall. The results are really rich and they are so fast to process.




Module 11 - Terrain Adjusts and Scattering


We are far from where we started and close to the end of this journey. We will start reshaping our terrain without messing up with any procedural parameter we created. We will create some lights and moods to define our render path. Then we will go back to texturing and enrich our environment with new masks and variations. Then I will show some very cool scattering techniques that I am confident you will love because they give so much control with not much work. The results are awesome.




Module 12 - Final Comp


Ok, ok, we are almost there. Time to create our final composition. We will cover a reveal (far) shot and a close-up shot. We will also cover how to comp both in Nuke and in Fusion. You will see the importance of rendering different AOVs and layers and also why you should never try to render everything at once.




BONUS


Just a few extras