Video Training Series for X-Particles

I just wrapped up working with cmiVFX to publish a training series on the powerful particle plugin for Cinema 4D, X-Particles. It’s a 10 part and roughly 4 hour long series of tutorials that can get you familiar with the plugin that is definitely growing as a fan favorite among Cinema 4D users, and opening doors for you to create awesome particle effects in Cinema 4D.

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I have been using X-Particles for awhile now and I love how much more functionality you gain inside Cinema 4D by using it instead of the regular particle system, and I find it at least thousand times easier to use than the clunky, XPresso-based Thinking Particles. I find X-Particles feels almost like an extension of MoGraph, basically instead of Cloners you have Emitters and instead of Effectors you have Modifiers. You’ll notice how fast and stable it is right away, it previews and renders very quickly, allowing you to visually see you particle simulation change on the spot.

In these lessons I hit as many topics as I can on X-Particles as I can in about 4 hours. If you have never used the plugin I’m pretty confident after watching my training you will have a good grasp of how to use X-Particles and what you could potentially create with it. I start out going over most of the terms and tools at the base level of X-Particles, and the last few chapters get into some more advanced setups and projects. The goal as always is to give you enough information for you to be inspired to create designs on your own with the help of this new tool.


Included with the training is a bundle of projects that you can use to follow along and breakdown how you can build these X-Particles designs. I tried to develop some projects that give a good example of how you can combine many of the different tools available to you inside the plugin, with the final result being something that would be far more difficult to create in Cinema 4D without the help of X-Particles.


A demo of X-Particles can be found here. You should be able to follow along with the lessons just fine if you want to learn it before you commit to buying it. I feel like it’s a worthy investment for the price. The plugin is being developed further (Thinking Particles? Not so much) and it will only get more useful with better integration with Cinema 4D as we go forward.

So please head on over to cmiVFX and check out my training series if you are interested in learning some X-Particles.

Musical Particle Streaks

Here’s a sample of some particle streaks that I made in After Effects using Trapcode Particular. They were for Univision’s Upfront presentation in 2011, where the network unveiled new programming and company statistics for the upcoming year. It was like a big interactive Powerpoint presentation, except Pitbull performed. I’ve never made a Powerpoint presentation with Pitbull.

This was the opening sequence of the event, almost like a countdown with musical instruments tuning up before the show was about to start. I didn’t have a whole lot of time to do this, less than I would have liked. Each shot with a musician was to be contained in one of 8 screens spread around the New Amsterdam Theater in New York. The trail was designed to lead the audience across the stage to the next screen, and have the trail die off in the next frame. I couldn’t really show that without the actual set up in the venue, so I just combined them into one video for the post.

Each streak is actually 4 different kinds of emitters: one for the puff of smoke in the beginning, the main fat streak, the other skinny streaks, and the floating dust particles. I probably set a personal record for most particles ever used, they were a bit heavy when rendering in HD.

Snow Globe Animation – Lower Third Countdown

I forgot to post this after the start of the New Year, but it’s a little snow globe countdown animation I did for the show Despierta America. It popped up in the corner every hour or so on the TV broadcast to remind you how soon Christmas was coming. I made 2 versions, one counting down the days until Christmas and one counting down until New year’s Day. I had to come up with something holiday themed, so I designed this snow globe and made it happen. The globe was modeled in Cinema 4D with some reflections and glass materials. I added the numbers inside the globe and made them kind of flow back and forth with a Formula Effector in Mograph, then I randomized it for each number so that they would be slightly different each day.

I brought it into After Effects and first positioned and animated it in the bottom left corner of the screen. Once it was in place I created a little snow storm inside it with Trapcode Particular. I have only seen snow once in my life, so I had to do hours and hours of research to study how exactly now moves to get the best looking effect I possibly could (no I didn’t). The rest of it was adding little glows, flares, snowflakes, and sparkles to make it fun and festive to go with the holiday. I drew a simple zig-zag Christmas tree and traced it on underneath the effects. It’s a simple but effective animation.

The New Year’s one was very similar, but instead of the tree I created a confetti particle system that launched colored confetti all over the corner of the screen.

Univision Promo: Spanish Maja

Here is a new Univision Promo I did with Cinema 4D and After Effects. They needed it done fast earlier this month because they wanted to air this network promo right after the coverage of the World Cup ended, and they were hoping Spain would win and they could air this promo that has an obvious Spanish theme to it. I got it done with a quick turnaround thanks to MoGraph as always. Continue Reading