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Published: November 5, 2010 for Houdini 11
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The creation of 3D animation and visual effects involves a number of stages which come together to create a complete artistic vision. Throughout this process, 3D artists like yourself explore and refine ideas in order to meet the creative needs of the project while hitting many tight deadlines.

With Houdini, you have access to a node-based procedural workflow which makes it easier to manage and control the underlying flow of data which defines how your models, materials, animation and visual effects are working. This control makes it easier to step in and make changes where needed as the nodes update to show the new results. This frees you up to explore and prototype ideas early in production then come back and refine and scale the solution to create final shots.

As you work through these lessons, you will see how Houdini’s procedural approach has been designed from the ground up to support artists and technical directors working in production. It’s procedural architecture makes it easier for you to create directable CG shots, explore multiple iterations and hit deadlines no matter how tight they are. And most importantly, you will accomplish all of this using a friendly set of tools which are easy to access.

What you will learn from this Guide...

In this user guide, you will learn how to navigate Houdini’s user interface and work with its node-based workflow to create 3D animations and visual effects. You will be amazed how much you can accomplish and how quickly you will acquire new skills.

If you already work with 3D animation or VFX software then learning Houdini will be a simple transfer of your existing skills. You will learn how to interactively build-up shots using the scene view and shelf tools then work with the resulting nodes and networks to benefit from Houdini’s procedural nature.

If you are new to the 3D world then Houdini is a great package to start with. This book does go at a healthy pace therefore you should also read about general CG concepts to help you keep up. In the end, you will achieve a deeper understanding of how CG works which will benefit you throughout your career.

Video Overview:

Go Procedural User Guide: Introduction from Go Procedural on Vimeo.

Note: This video can be downloaded from Vimeo...