Houdini, Creative Direction, 3D

About Project

Agency: Okalpha

Creative Direction: Okalpha

Concept, Production: Okalpha

As we grow our Houdini capabilities, we wanted to achieve macro level realism on what is usually a simple interaction.


Self initiated projects have always been an Achilles heel for the studio. With Stamp, we were pulled into the black hole of proximity to the subject. But, with a two part goal of simulation and rendering accuracy being our main focuses, we added even more pain by building a system that could render any logo mark you threw at it.


The look and movement of cooling wax was a major challenge, primarily its imperfections. Reference was key to deciding our approach as we decided to move away from a still image brief, to a motion piece.

The simulation needed enough density to achieve the sharpness necessary for the logo mark, but maintain the cooling softness of the expelled wax. We also needed accurate UV sets that maintained the projection orientation of the stamp object itself, with no room for shifting due to our macro framing.

Material wise, we leaned on subtle noises and the UV sets pulled out of Houdini. Since the hero wax bubbles were topology based, our final network was a simple one, with traditional key-framing defining the shift in roughness as the wax cooled. All hail sub-surface scattering.

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