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Getting Started With Look Development in Houdini

Texturing & Shading Using Maya, Substance, Houdini & Redshift With Brent Le Blanc


Houdini is fast becoming one of the most essential tools for the entire pipeline in film and feature animation production. This workshop covers the essential skills to get started with texturing and shading using the industry-standard tools Maya, Substance Painter, Substance Designer, and Houdini with Redshift. Brent Le Blanc, a Texturing & Shading Artist with over 10 years of experience in film and feature animation, guides you through the complete process of look development in this 2-hour workshop.

Brent begins with creating a reusable look development kit that will be helpful with all your future projects to easily access HDRIs, Cameras, and Macbeth Chart. He then details the UV stage in Maya, which he’s found to hold a level of importance that is often overlooked. Substance Designer is also introduced, revealing how it can create powerful custom tools that can be used in Substance Painter for smart material creation before Brent demonstrates texturing in Substance Painter, sharing his industry-proven, non-destructive methods for quickly polishing assets with highly modular materials.

Scene assembly follows as the next stage of the workshop, where Brent uncovers how to use the different contexts inside Houdini that are essential for look development. The final segment finishes out with light creation and various other essential tips and tricks for rendering in Houdini using Redshift.

This workshop offers techniques that have been learned over 10 years working as a professional texturing and shading artist with an emphasis on procedural and non-destructive workflows. Included with the workshop are various project files, including the featured Chest model HI and LO, Painter file, and Designer tool, to help get you started.

Duration: 2h 20m

Format: HD 1920x1080

Brent Le Blanc

Look Development Artist

Brent Le Blanc is an Ohio-born Senior Surfacing Artist with over 10 years of experience in VFX and Animation. He practices making CG art with a strong emphasis on proceduralism and environments. Brent started his career at Digital Domain Media Group in VFX and later transitioned to the Look Development department. He then moved to Materials at Blue Sky Studios and recently finished The Croods: A New Age at DreamWorks Feature Animation in the Surfacing Department. He has taught Texturing at the University of Connecticut and currently teaches texturing at Gnomon School in Los Angeles.

  • Brent is an outstanding artist and fantastic colleague. His love for creating shaders always showed in the beautiful work he added to our films. And he generously shared his skills and insights with everyone around him. All around A+ human being.

    - Baaron Schulte
    Materials Lead, Blue Sky Studios

  • When I started back as a matte painter at DreamWorks, the department had been using Houdini for a few years. I had to learn it in a hurry. Brent was my go-to guy for answering questions and steering me in the right direction. With his help, I was up and running in Houdini in no time.

    - Brian LaFrance
    Senior Matte Painter, DreamWorks Feature Animation