Meet Ariana! She works with instructor Shawn as part of Game-U’s New York Accelerate program. Ariana loves 3D modeling and animation, so she and Shawn spend a lot of time in the modeling and animation software Blender, where Ariana can learn how to create all sorts of objects (or people!) in motion.
After watching another student work with physics-based animations, Ariana asked Shawn to show her how to create a similar scene with her lava lamp, a model from an earlier lesson. Using the cell fracture add-on, she broke up the lamp’s green, glassy middle into shards, leaving them deactivated – or “not shattered” – until struck by a rigidbody. Rigidbodies essentially turn an object hard, so that it doesn’t deform under stress. Ariana made use of rigidbodies for each shard, to better simulate breaking glass, and modeled a new rigid object to trigger the animation. With the groundwork complete, she transitioned into adding movement!
Using a hand-created animation, Ariana arranged for her projectile to fly into the lava lamp from screen right. The collision results in the shattering of the rigidbodies that compose the lamp’s center. That’s where the magic of a physics simulation takes over! Blender calculates rigidbody trajectories and speeds based on the scene’s physics settings. Glass explodes from the lava lamp and tumbles to the floor. Ariana even added her own personal touch by hiding models of Blender’s monkey mascot, Susanne, among the shards. Watch closely to see the flying monkeys burst out of the breaking lamp!
Excellent work, Ariana! Your mastery of Blender, 3D modeling, and animation grows each week. We’re so proud of you, and so excited to watch your progress! Thanks for sharing this animation with us. Stay in touch as you continue to explore new projects!