Quick VDB Clouds

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After being asked how to create clouds for rendering in Octane (or any other Engine that supports VDBs) we dove into that topic a bit and the quickest way we found was to use the cloud tools that Houdini provides.

So here’s our rather quick take on ceating not only standard clouds but also turning any 3D model into a cloud (Amélie anyone?) and rendering the resulting VDBs in Octane inside Cinema 4D.

Download Project File (.hipnc)

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6 Comments

  1. Very useful lesson, thank you!
    Earlier tried to do clouds in Maya, but there it took more effort than in Houdini ((

  2. Alex Czetwertynski says

    Hi, I tried this technique but with Arnold in C4d. When I import the VDB and look at the IPR, the VDB is extremely blocky. The Arnold Volume object seems less comprehensive than Octane, but it seems like it should be possible to get a smooth cloud in there?
    Thanks!

    • Arnold is showing you blocks because you need to tell it which channels to apply the shading to.

      You need to apply a volume collector to the cloud. Inside the volume collector, set your Scattering Source to ‘Channel’ and then type ‘density’ to specify the channel. Set Attenuation Source to ‘Scattering’ and you should be good to go.

  3. Very useful tutorial! I’ve made clouds in the past using Maya as well and *WOW* was it tons more work and looks way worse than this Houdini working method!

    Thanks so much for this lesson! Will definitely be watching your tutorials a lot!

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