In previous Fluid colors part, I mentioned that FFX source can have a map. But did you know it can have a vertex color map and basically take real color from the source object?

Let’s take a look at different methods how to use vertex color for coloring FumeFX fluids in 3ds max.


1. Vertex color from object

Objects imported from other software’s can have color information, if not, it can be added by MCG, Data Channels modifier in 3dsmax 2017 or simple 3dsmax Vertex Paint modifier.

vertex color fumefx

The trick is to choose vertex color map in FFX Object Source. Also, choose right map channel. By default, it should be 0.
In that way, FumeFX will take object vertex color as a color source for fluid.

fluids color 3dsmax maya

2. Vertex color from frost

Exact same way, as previous can be used with thinkbox meshing plugin Frost.

vertex color particles fumefx
vertex color pflow frost

Frost by default takes color data from source particles. If the source doesn’t have any colors, we can add needed one with magma modifier from Krakatoa.


3. Vertex color from particles [mesher]

Until FumeFX v4, PFlow colors can’t be used to make fluid colors, but we can make some hacks with additional objects, like Mesher (from compound objects).

Here is how it works:
We make particle system, which have simple color gradient (by Age), but it doesn’t allow to add any maps here:


Maps can be added on FFX Object Src. So let’s add Mesher compound object, choose our PFlow particles. In FumeFX add FFX Object Source, pick Mesher and then we can have add map here.

P.S. untick all channels creation (fuel, temperature, smoke, velocity) in FFX Objects src. We need it only for assigning a color from the map!

And here is a result:

vertex color 3dsmax mesher
Colored Smoke

4. Vertex color from particles [pflow]

FumeFX v4 finally can read PFlow data channels properly. It just needs to be exposed as Script Vector.

Simple Data Operator setup:
Pick Geometry with applied texture -> Acquire closest point -> Acquire color -> Send data to script vector.
Additionally, same color data is sent to vertex color, just to see a result in particles render or viewport.

vertex color particles pflow

In FFX Particle Source under Color channel, in AFC Controller choose Particle Flow Vector Input type. It will take data from Script vector which was outputted in PFlow Data Operator.

And enjoy beautifully colored fluid.

vertex color particles pflow fumefx
Colored Smoke

5. Vertex color from particles [tp]

How to color FumeFX fluid with Thinking Particles was showed in the previous part. Jump to Fluids colors part 1.


All max files can be downloaded in link to dropbox below.


4 Responses to “Fluid colors | part 2”

  1. Tim, Reply

    Amazing stuff, thank you!

  2. mickatt, Reply

    Awesome!! Thanks a lot for sharing

  3. Nikolay Nikiforov, Reply

    Awesome! Thanks!

  4. bisrat, Reply


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