Fluid Dynamics and particle effects are the bread and butter to any VFX artist’s toolbelt. These dynamic effects enable the artists to create anything from fire and water, to hurricanes and sand storms. Plugins and software such as Maya, Houdini, RealFlow and FumeFX are all used by FX artists to create these effects.
Here are the showreels of two prominent figures in the VFX industry, Mark Theriault and Allan Mckay. These videos are a good example of what is possible with dynamic and fluid effects.
In our past projects I used one of Maya’s plugins, Bifrost, to simulate a body of water for a river scene and more recently I have used a combination of particle and fluid dynamics to create a swirling portal for a time machine in my 3D environment.