Create awesome volumetric spheres in Blender - Part 1 | Roger Bootsma | Skillshare

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Create awesome volumetric spheres in Blender - Part 1

teacher avatar Roger Bootsma, Blender instructor & stuff

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

5 Lessons (51m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Lecture 1 - Volumetrics Cycles what is Volumetrics - Density vs Emission

    • 3. Lecture 2 - Volumetrics Cycles Creating your first Volumetric Spheres

    • 4. Lecture 3 - Volumetrics Cycles Creating your second Volumetric Sphere

    • 5. Lecture 4 - Volumetrics Cycles Applying procedural textures to volumetric

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About This Class

Hello, welcome to this course,

In this course you will learn how to create amazing volumetric effects in Blender with the cycles render engine. Volumetric effects are a bit overlooked in blender since it is mostly used for smoke, fire, clouds, and mist effects. However there is a lot more you can do with this shader by combining procedural textures in blender. We are not going to make use of any texture maps whatsoever. Our effects in this course will be completely procedural.

You will also discover that the skills and techniques learned in this course will be a great help in creating beautiful volumetric effects which you can use in a wide variety of projects, such as science fiction, fantasy and abstract artworks and animations.

This course includes over 7 hours of video showing every step of the creation process for the Blender logo animation and the energy dimension animation that you see in the beginning of the intro lecture. So whether you’re interested in following the course all the way through or using this as a production guide for your own projects, this course is packed with information and a bunch of tips to create awesome volumetric sphere effects in blender cycles.   

If you are not a beginner and want to jump to the more advanced stuff you can click either link below:

Part 2:

Part 3:

So i hope i have gotten you excited for this course and i can't wait to see what my fellow blender artists will create with the skills learned in this course.

Meet Your Teacher

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Roger Bootsma

Blender instructor & stuff


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1. Introduction: Hello. My name is Roger and I am the creator. Off the scores. In this course, I will be teaching you how to create the C G I effects that you just solved using lender as the main and only two. To achieve this. To create these effects, we will be using blender cycles. Volumetric Shane Er's The Shade Er's are completely procedural, so no texture maps whatsoever are needed. Also, these effects render relatively fast to follow, along with this course, a basic knowledge of blender. It's required if you are, however, completely new, that you should be able to follow along after watching some basic tutorials online. For example, on you too, you will discover that the skills and techniques learned in this course will be a great help in creating beautiful volumetric effects, which you can use in their white variety of projects, such a science fiction fantasy and abstract our works and animations. Also in the future, I will be updating discourse with some new projects to teach your new cool effects using lender cycles for your metrics. Haider's all the projects files are available for download after each lecture so that you can check your progress drove the projects. I hope that you enjoyed the short introduction video and that I have gotten you excited to dive into the scores to expand your skill set as a blender artist. 2. Lecture 1 - Volumetrics Cycles what is Volumetrics - Density vs Emission: in this video, I am going to give a brief overview off the different volumetric shade er's First, I am going to activate the screen caused keys so that you can see which keys I am pressing throughout the course. We are not going to need that evolved. Q. So we can to lead this object with the X key instead off the cube we're going to use. This is San Object, which happens to be a monkey hat. Now we are going to give Suzanne a subdivision modifier. Note that you can also leave the modifier un applied. If you wish to change the settings later on. By enabling shoot shading, we make our monkey more shiny in the Properties panel. I am just going to collapse some types for better readability. Then, with Suzanne selected, I am going to change the that location toe one so that she rests on the grid. Now we're going to duplicate Suzanne to move it to another layer. Now we duplicate Suzanne again and move her to Layer three. Now we select the camera and some them and move them to another layer as well. Now we set our few port toe another layer toe. Add a plane object then we skilled plane with DSG. Now we're going to create on on the window with the note editor in the note editor we are going to create and at it are shader and procedural textures. Now we go back to our first layer to give a volumetric shader to our first Suzanne. We add in the beginning to divulge Shader Fire, the Properties editor. This will assign a simple gray diffuse shader to our object to make more space on our screen. I am going to collapse the toolbar with a T hockey. But before that, we are just going to check how to Suzanne looks like with the devote shader material, we can select the layers marked in a darker shade. Then we can change the few porter ender settings to cycles below you. Then see the cycles pre few render in real time. You can change the amount of render samples in the properties. Render panel when you're increased. The pre few render samples your people pre few render will have less noise but takes longer to render. I noticed that the preview rendering refreshes after each change in the few port here you can see the amount of symbols I have my cheap EU rendering enabled for faster rendering. Now we will start working on the Shader in the note editor. In this course, we will only work on the shade er's in the note Editor in the note editor. You can also add new notes with the keys shift A and we choose the volume Scatter shader Note. We can connect the shade er's with the material output fire the green connectors Now did a few shader We are not going to need so we can just disconnect it from the material output. You will notice the immediate change in the few port render. You can modify the window border for the few port rendering with shift plus being key. We can also change the color off the shader but notice that the RTB value gets reversed but we can just leave it to it's default color for now. But feel free to experiment in this course. We are actually not going to use the volume scatter shader. But I wanted to show you anyway because it is a fall, you metric shader. Now we are going toe our second layer where our second Suzanne is positioned. With this Suzanne on the second layer selected, we will add a new material from within the properties editor automatically with the creation off the material. The basic Defu Shader note and the material output note are added in a note editor. We didn't delete the diffuse note and add the volume absorption note. Then we can connect the volume absorption Note with the volume socket off the material output note and check out the brief you render here you can see the render samples progress . You can also rotate well cycles. Few board rendering is enabled, but be aware that it doesn't renders the whole window. You can change the density to increase the thickness off the volume absorption Shader With the volume absorption Shader, you will notice that the light does not bounce off. The monkey s seen with the volume scatter Shader. So basically this volume Shader absorbs the light depending on the density value I had find shoot to play around with the volume scatter and absorption shader. However, for this course and its projects, we're not going to use Thies to shade er's for their scores we are going toe work with the volume emission Shader The Shader will also be used in all the project that we are going to do now We're going to add a new material to the monkey on the third layer and the lead Devote a few shader in a note editor with the excuse We will done at the emission share and connect a soccer with the surface output which we are actually not going to use. But I want to show you the difference with the surface and defaulting material out boot with our mission Shader here you can see that the surface is committing the light off course. You can change the colors and emissions trend to increase the light emitted from Suzanne. When we switch the connector toe the volume on boot, you can see the immediate change. You cannot see that the light is emitted from the volume of the object and not from the surface. If you increase the strength too much, you will of course not notice any difference between the volume and the surface output. Now we're going to select all there's after having rearranged the monkeys so that we can easily see the difference between the different fall your metric shade er's. We can then select a different render border with the hot dish shift B. Now you can see the differences in the fully metric sh aiders more easily you can degrees or increase the amount of pre few. Render samples according to your needs. With the first monkey selected, we can increase density to more clearly see how light behaves hitting the object. We can do the same for the second monkey with the volume absorption Shader. You can even select objects while being in cycles. Preview Render moat You can see here that the volume scattered shader off the first monkey bounces off light and scattered stayed in different directions. The second monkey with the volume absorption Shader only absorb slide and does not bounds bank any light Now we can experiment a little bit with the fall you scepter shader First we can snap the treaty cursor to our first monkey with the shift s key, Then we can add a point light inside the monkey. Now we can play with the strength off the lamp emission and with a density off the volume scatter shader to see how the shader behaves off course with more elements in the scene such as lights and objects. The pre few render time will increase. Therefore, I decrease the size of my pre few render border here. I quickly switched a wire frame if you to see and select my point lamp began. You can also change the color or mission strength after lamb in the note editor as well. Here I just copied a selected land with the shift deaky and move it on the other side. Inside the brain off our monkey we can change the color so that our monkey gets a police Bring now I will hide the monkey with the H key And with two land selected, I moved them to their separate layer. You can one hide object with the old H key Here I am just playing with the density to see how the density is blocking the light off the point lambs. If we now select our second monkey hat on the second layer with the volume absorption Shader, you will see that the light does not bounce inside the monkey hat. Wait! The third monkey had selected and moved over to the lambs. We can see that the light off the lambs does not affect the Shader. Since it has a mission Shader itself, I urge you to experiment with the follow scatter and absorption Shader to see what effects you can achieve. A combination of these two Shader are also used to create smoke and fire effects. But however, we are not going to cover that in this course. In the next lecture, I will teach you how to create your first Volumetrics rear using the emission Shader in the volume coupled Thanks for watching and see you in the next video. 3. Lecture 2 - Volumetrics Cycles Creating your first Volumetric Spheres: in this video, we're going to create our first simple full your metrics fair. We are going to move our default Q on the side, or you can delete it with the X key. Instead, we will add an Aiko swear, but it may also be a UV spare. We can increase the subdivision 23 but it is not crucial to do so. Now we can drag out a new treaty. Few port window. We can collect the tool shelf in a right few port with the tea hot key after we can change the left few port window to the Note editor window. With the end hockey, we can hide the properties panel in the note editor. We can add the basic the vote material fire the properties panel, which would be the basic the vault shader. You can see the corresponding notes being added in the note editor as well. Now we can already switch the few porta rendering type to the cycles render engine. We can also change the background color to black, fire the world settings in the properties panel. Then we can delete the Fuge Shader in the node Editor, since there is no shader attached to the material output. Note. The object will appear as not existing. In the beginning, there is no need to analyze what you were adding and connecting It is better to first create the shader and then analyse and experiment with the notes to begin. We can add the emission shader. You can change the area off the border, render with control be so that you can save on some render time. I recommend increasing the window space off your note editor, since we will be adding a lot of notes, then we can add the colorant note and make the connections as demonstrated. One quick tip is to wait with fiddling with the nose just yet. Wait with until we finish the shader first. Then we add a for annoying Dexter note. After adding the Dexter note, you can see to change right away. Then we can add the Grady in texture. Day structure will be important to rob all of the projects. Drought. This course we will mostly set the Grady in type off our radiant note to quadratic spare. This is needed to create the fading square effect. You can already see the spirit, Kal transition. However, it is not yet centered, which we will do later with another note. Now we will add the mapping note not entirely crucial for the Shader, but I advise you to make a habit off heading it. The last notes that we're going to add is the texture. Co ordinate. Note. This note is always the beginning. Note or the end note, depending on your perspective, after adding the texture. Cordant note. You can connect the object socket with the mapping note. This way, the shader will be positions at the center off the object. No, we have added alternated notes. Now it's time to make some small adjustment to some nodes to create the blue sphere that was shown in the beginning. The first adjustment that we can make is to change the scale off the foreign oId texture to 0.2. You will notice that the rings disappear to make place for just a single fade out effect. We can change the color to blue because I like the color blue. You change the position off the left hand. No, in the color. Graham to 0.3 This is needed to give the Etch A better fate Transition toe black. We can change the emission strenght to increase the light intention to. We can change the cholera, um, settings to ease. Also, we can increase the emission strength even more. You can play around with the emissions, trying to get a desire to intensity. You can also move the right handle off the colorant Noto. Adjust the fading off your sphere. The best way to get the hang off the note and it's settings is to play around and see the results in real time with the cycle few port rendering. You can also change the color off the sphere in the cholera, Um, by clicking on the color when having the right handle selected with the color wheel, you can choose from the complete color ballot here. You can clearly see that the shader does not originate from the objects polygons, but it originates from inside the object from its volume. You can also experiment a bit with the Grady in texture. Note to see what each setting those two are shader. This will increase your understanding of what each setting does with just a spirit Kal setting the fading. It's a bit rougher than with quadratic sphere playing around with both the spherical and quadratic spherical. In combination with the emissions trend, we'll enable you to tweak your fading quite a bit. Well, that was it for this video. In the next one, we will be making a different volumetric sphere, which is slightly more complicated to construct. Thank you for watching. 4. Lecture 3 - Volumetrics Cycles Creating your second Volumetric Sphere: in this video we are going to create above shown for fall you metrics fair. We already added a new I go sphere on lier to off previous planned file from the last video This folder metrics fear will be slightly more complex than the previous one. We also added to devote if you shader we can go and deleted a few Shader since we are not going to need it Instead, we can add the emission Shader and make the connection with the sockets as shown Now we can add a colorant note and put the shedding on these. We can make a little bit more space Since we are going to add a lot of nodes, we can duplicate the colorant known with shift deaky and move it on the side. Then we can add a mat. Note this note. We will use a lot in this course. We can also set the Met note on multiply and connect The sockets has shown I suggest you not to analyze too much off what is going on with all the knowns. Otherwise it gets complicated for the mind. Later you can experiment and tweak to see what everything does we can make the soccer connections as shown in the video. Now we can add a foreign oy texture note and get it behind the left. Cholera Um note. Then we can add the Grady INT note, which is one of the most important notes throughout the course since it will get off element. Volumetrics were this round fading effect. Then we can add are mapping note and place it behind the Grady in texture. Note. We can also to placate the mapping note with shifty and place it a little further. Then we can also add the texture. Coordinate note, which is s you know, or not yet no one of the more important notes. We can also connect the object soccer to the mapping notes. We can also connect the texture, coordinate notes, object, sock it to the second mapping note as well as connect the other place to nodes socket as well as shown. We can also put the Grady in texture. Note on Quadra tricks Fear instead, off leaner. After connecting the foreign or Dexter to the cholera am note. We can see a change in the pre few render for Illinois in combination with the radiant notes creates this effect. Then we can add the last two nodes, which are the noise and break texture notes. It actually does not seem logical to use these notes, but somehow, after a lot of experimentation, it seemed I needed these textures to create the desired effect. Throughout this course, you may probably not understand by certain notes are used in certain places. Don't worry. Neither do I. Because I got there by weeks off experimentation with the notes to create the cool stuff, and after creating it, I had no idea how I got there. After connecting notes as shown, you will see in the pre few render some cool effects. Actually, the first time I see this effect, whenever you come across something cool during your experimentation, please save a separate instance off your blend file. So when you discover something cool to experiment rate, save your plans file with a different name, so you can experiment it with it later by playing with the notes and it's settings. However, in discourse, I am going to show you how to create fixed projects so the experimentation part will be your own home assignment. Now you can change the settings in the notes as I am showing you in the video for the last important sucking connection, we're going to connect a foreign oy text you know to the brick texture notes, after which you can see the change in the few pork. After changing the scale of the foreign I Dexter it seems as if the spirit disappeared. But this is not the case. We can slide the cholera am handle slightly more to the left and increase the multiply value off the mat. Note by a lot A. Waller. You can see we are getting the effect that we set out to create notice that even a small setting can turn the tide. If you start tweaking the skill value off the foreign oy texture note, you will see that you can make this rear increase and decrees in size. You can also animate this value to make the sphere grow. You can create another window as shown and set it to the timeline editor. We can degrees the value so that the sphere is not visible anymore. Then we can press the I key with the cursor on the scale value to create a key frame. We can create another key frame with a higher skill value. Old frame. 50. No, If you played animation, you will see in the pre few. Render that the sphere appears in a growing style. If creating the animation went a bit too fast, don't worry. This is just for demonstration. We will call for the animation off the family you later on a lot as well after the leading the key frames with the old I ke, we can collapse the timeline window so that we can tweet the notes. Values some more by adjusting the scale family was in the noise texture. Note. You can create some additional cool effects by moving the values in the mapping note. Like the location or rotation, you can give the block spear some dynamic motion. You can also animate these values so that you can give your fall your mental experience A on limited variety of different animated effects. As you can see, you can go quite crazy with the different values to create really funky stuff. Now we can make our sphere perfectly round again by setting the noise scale value to zero. Then we can also select the first layer where the sphere still there that we created in our previous video. Now the two spheres or measures are overlapping, which creates some artefacts just scale or move slightly, one of them to make it go away. Here you can see how the Volumetrics fears look like in combination. There is actually quite a lot of transparency in them. We can also see how the spirits look like in combination with a solid object with a normal , diffuse shader. As you can see, it combines rather well and vendors quite fast as well. Let's give you a glossy shader fire the properties panel. We can change the roughness value to make our glossy shader reflective or less reflective. These swears could already be used in a wide variety off projects such as a halo around a planet, a energy shield around a spaceship or a Scifi city. Off course. You can change the color off this rears as well. With the cholera, um, nodes. This concludes this lecture. I hope you liked it and learn something new from it. In the next lecture, we're going to dive more, introducing procedural textures with the fall your metrics fears. See you in the next video 5. Lecture 4 - Volumetrics Cycles Applying procedural textures to volumetric: in this video, I am going to show you how to create the folder Metrics were shown above. Also, I'm going to show you how to enemy the flaming effects on top off the spare, we can start by moving the developed cube on the side or deleting it so we can end a Nike. Oh, spare or au fie spare does not matter. In this case, we can put the shading on smooth. Although it does not really matter with volumetric shade Er's. Now we can end to devote a few shader to get started. Fear the properties panel. Then we can slide open another window and set it to the node editor. We can collect the property shelf on the right With the N key, we can do the same for the tool shelf with the tiki. We can increase the note editor window space and enable to blend your cycles few port rendering. We can change our world background color toe black so that we can better see the Volumetrics fear that we're going to create in our projects. It's always helpful to increase the note at the window space and two degrees the size off the few port render border with shift Beaky This way your GP. You will not have such a hard time rendering in real time. We can delete the fuse note and at the emission note with the shift a key and connect the soccer's. Then we can end a cholera, um, note and the math note right after. For now, I suggest you to just focus on reading the notes later on. You can analyze why we did it by experimentation. Now we are adding the brick texture note and connect the sockets to the mat. Note. As shown, you can always check out the real time changes in the few port render. Now we can ads first affair, annoy and after a noise texture note and make the socket connections as shown. You can check out a few port vendor to check the real time changes. As we add the different notes, we can duplicate the math note and move it next to the fern I note and connect the two of them. Now we can add the note, which is usually on the far left off the no tree, which is the texture. Coordinate nodes, the texture. Coordinate notice used the center coordinates off your textures. Several options are available, but throughout this scores we will only be using generated and objects. We will also be adding the mapping notes. The significance off this note will be extensively shown in this course. We can duplicate the mapping note with the shift tiki four times to place and connect them as shown. We can also duplicate the mat note next to our foreign or annoyed and blaze it accordingly and make the connection. We can set this Matt No to minimum, and the second highlighted Matt Node toe multiply. Next is the Grady in texture knowns. You might want to get used to this note, since it is a important texture note. Throughout this course, we can duplicate the highlight of noise, texture, note and place. It has shown we can also to placate the Grady in texture note and place it next to the mat notes. We can put all the mapping notes settings on texture instead of point. Now we can connect the texture in coordinates. No, its object soccer toe all the four mapping nodes when keeping shift pressed with the left mouse button, you can cut through a note wire to create a connector with a connector. You can clean up your wires so that things don't end up looking like spaghetti. We can connect the sockets and shown off this grainy it note and said it to productive sphere. We can also connect the suckers for the other Grady int note, but this time said it to ease. You can make the last number off socket connections as shown now we have set up all the notes and connections, however, are shader does not look like much. But don't worry. The magic is in the settings, which we are going to adjust now. The first thing is that we can set the multiply failure off this Matt note to 5000 and set the colorant note above it. Toby spine. We can also adjust the colors of the handles as shown used the plus sign to add a handle on the cholera. Um, also check the red marker to know when I impressing the left mouse button. As you can see, we have by accident created some funky effects. Different interesting effects might happen. My accidents a lot when you are playing around with notes so experimentation and adding Rendon textures and connect into different notes are encouraged. But do safe your file as a separate file when you discovered something cool. Now I am going to change some values to create the shader as advertised. So please also change the values in your file with help off the highlights. - Now , in order to align our camera properly, we need to first go into front fume with Nam Pet one key while having our cursor on the treaty. Few port window, then with the key control old number at zero, we align our camera few toe our current few board few. We can select our slayer object and rotate it 45 degrees clockwise. You can keep the control key pressed while rotating with the R key This way it rotates with five degree increments. We can change the location X value off this mapping note to move to Grady in east effect upwards. We can change the color a bit off the right handle off our cholera, um, and change the mortar size off the big texture to 0.3 Now we have our nice glowy sphere with a special effect which we will animate later on. We can change the exa scale toe to toe stretch the noise texture a bit to make the effect a bit more flaming, like we can collapse this mapping note by pressing the small arrow icon. By increasing or decreasing the note values pointed towards, you can create some dynamic moving effects. With these, you can also try the rotation family right next to it as well. No, I will show you how to enemy these failures. Let's first create another window and said it at the time line editor. Now I will show you how to animate these values. Let's put both values to zero and put a key frame with the I key on boat off them when having our cursor hovering on the value. Then we can put our current frame on 100 changed, appointed to failures and at key frames with the I key for both. So when we played animation with the play button, you can see our blob moving. I am just going to adjust the speed off the moving blob by changing this value and key frame it again. Also, what we can do is to change the interpolation off her animation for this week and open a new window and said it to the graph editor. With this note selected, we get Select all the handles in the Grab editor with the A key and press T in pop up menu , we can choose the linear interpolation. This will make sure the speed off the animation is the same throughout the frames. So when we played animation, it does not speed up in the beginning and slow down. In the end, I have just quickly moved the less key frame for Frame 100 to frame 250 to make the animation longer and increase the animated failure to match the original speed. We can select this note and also change the animation interpolation to linear like the other mapping notes. Now, when we blame back to animation, all the animation speeds off the effects are constant or linear. Also, it looks pretty cool. You can experiment with the values to change the look a bit. - This is also a pretty nice look for are severe. When we played animation, we get something pretty unique hair. I actually did not see this before. Recording this video So, as you can see by changing one failure a little, you already changed the look off the shader. So I urge you to experiment by changing values, hair and there and see what it does to your shader. Also, don't forget to change the colors to great different moods. I hope you enjoyed and learned from this video. And I see you in the next lecture where we will start our first project off creating the blender local animation from start to finish.