Knitting Animation in C4D + Octane Tutorial

We are sharing on 3DArt this interesting tutorial on how to create the animated “knitted fabric” effect with threads simulating the growth of a seam on a 3D shoe model. This video tutorial, created in Cinema 4D and rendered with Octane, is released by thepixellab.

The “knitted fabric” effect in motion graphics is a technique used to simulate the appearance and behavior of knitted fabric in digital animations. This effect can be used to create textures, patterns, and animations that resemble real knitted fabric, such as sweaters, scarves, gloves, etc.

Below are the steps the author followed to create the knitting effect:

Step 1: Preparing the Vertex Map

We will work on the upper part of a soccer shoe. Insert a vertex map and apply a Vertex tag in Cinema 4D (C4D). Click on “Use Fields” to open the fields of this map and delete the freeze. Add a spherical field which will be the starting point of our growth animation. Position the spherical field on the toe of the shoe and make it smaller. Then, add another freeze from the white dropdown menu, change the spherical field to “Add,” and set the growth mode to “Grow,” reducing the radius to about 0.5.

Step 2: Creating the Organic Growth Effect

Add a Shader field, change the transfer mode to Overlay, and introduce noise to achieve a more organic effect. Select the “Fire” noise type and set the global scale to 200, creating a more jagged edge.

Step 3: Using the Vertex Map for the Reveal

Now we want the shoe to reveal itself using the vertex map. We use Octane, but this technique also works with other rendering engines. In Octane, there is a vertex map that we can use to control the opacity. Drag our newly created vertex map into the appropriate slot and connect it to the material’s opacity. Fire up Octane to see the reveal effect on the shoe.

Step 4: Creating the Stitching Effect

Add a Torus to the scene, reducing the ring radius to 0.1 and the pipe radius to 0.001 to make it very small. Use Octane Scatter (or Cinema 4D’s cloner) to distribute the torus on the shoe’s surface. Change the orientation to -X to get the desired direction. Add a Random Effector to introduce variations in the scale along the Y-axis.

Step 5: Isolating the Stitching with the Vertex Map

We want the stitching to be isolated to the vertex map. Go to the distribution tab in Octane Scatter and drag the vertex map. To achieve a growing stitching effect, duplicate the original vertex map and apply a curve to narrow it down. This allows us to have a line that moves across the shoe, simulating growing stitching.

Update Octane Scatter with the new vertex map and start a render to see the final result. With some work on lights and textures, we will achieve a really impressive stitching effect.

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