Disney's Practical Guide to Snow Simulation

  • Published: 08 August 2016
  • What is simulation? Originally, animated movies were created using traditional hand-drawn animation techniques. Teams of animators would draw all characters and the surroundings frame by frame which would be assembled to compose the final film. But there is only so much a person can draw! Things like water, smoke and fire have extreme amounts of richness and degrees of freedom to their composition and movement, which makes them nearly impossible to animate “by hand” in any reasonable amount of time. That is where technology and physically-based algorithms come in: environmental effects like water, smoke and fire are governed by physical equations, so why not let computers do all the heavy computation to solve those equations. The programs that do this computation are called simulators.
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Comments • 315

  • Immortal Jelly
    Immortal Jelly  3 months back

    Disney doesn't have animators, it has magicians

    • Cringer Irgendwas
      Cringer Irgendwas  4 months back

      0:41, what the fuck was that?

        GAMEISTIC  6 months back

        can you make a video on how game art works?

        • Paul D
          Paul D  7 months back

          gosh whenever I watch these videos I half think it's satire because of all the complex topics discussed in such a light and casual manner.

          • DISnut
            DISnut  8 months back

            Can you imagine the animated cast of Frozen watching this, and Elsa's all like, "Pfft! I'll show you a snow simulation," and then does that gesture that conjures up a brief flurry.

            • Iron Tiger
              Iron Tiger  9 months back

              Do you wanna simulate a snowman?

              • Marcel Avila🔥
                Marcel Avila🔥  9 months back


                • SquareoftheLightOnes
                  SquareoftheLightOnes  9 months back

                  Comments! Quickly! I don't have time to watch the video. Tell me if this is an actual tutorial video by disney or another "look at how much money we have" showcase of their 3D software.

                  • SirenHound
                    SirenHound  9 months back

                    I think it's about time Disney upgraded the sound equipment for it's animation educational department. Don't tell me the Mouse's pockets are empty?

                    • Kevin Lorengel
                      Kevin Lorengel  9 months back

                      Watching this video made me consider switching from blender to houdini

                      • Mark Swierszcz
                        Mark Swierszcz  9 months back

                        Love the record scratch and music. Hopefully we can see more of these.

                        • Royce
                          Royce  9 months back

                          Hmm.. You opened the video showing all 2d elementals but then never discussed or mentioned how the original 2d animators DID have to draw each individual snowflake, water drop, and flame tendril, frame-by-frame. One of the most grueling and amazing animation positions to ever exist, it would have been nice to recognize the extensive studies that these 2d special effects artists had to do to manually simulate natural particle movement through forces. Mad props to Joseph Gilland and all the amazing 2d special effects animators! <3

                          • pettywise
                            pettywise  8 months back

                            Royce right? Half a century of hard working artists doing those things just to be brushed off because “now we have processors to do that” and I get that, but like.. it kinda feels like Disney is ashamed of the past and how much work was done by talented people

                        • KantraScepter
                          KantraScepter  9 months back

                          why do you talk like that

                          • Johan Berg
                            Johan Berg  9 months back

                            Never before have I been so creeped out by a voice talking about snow

                            • Mark G
                              Mark G  9 months back

                              How do you match the images to the sound?

                              Can you do a video about it or do you have one already?

                              • Laldinthara Khiangte
                                Laldinthara Khiangte  9 months back

                                My pc is burning

                                • Danny Morales
                                  Danny Morales  9 months back

                                  As an animator I approve.

                                  • 3ds max
                                    3ds max  9 months back

                                    No....I don't remember our castle wall............

                                    • Dioscoro Federico
                                      Dioscoro Federico  9 months back

                                      wow I like this format, so nostalgic, I remember the days where Goofy(was it goofy?) was teaching how to ride a bike

                                      • Mardia Espinosa
                                        Mardia Espinosa  9 months back

                                        Please do more of this, they are beautiful and explanes in a simple way, very complicated things <3

                                        • Vivek Dash
                                          Vivek Dash  9 months back

                                          Why is Disney letting it's secrets reveal to all people ... is the world really going to end very soon ?

                                          • Richard Gavin
                                            Richard Gavin  10 months back

                                            Do you wannna build a snooowmannn.....come on lets go and simm (the sound of disney fx artist slowly loosing her mindsstaring at snow sims for 2 years)

                                            • Alexander Shuaibu
                                              Alexander Shuaibu  10 months back

                                              So... No Disney software link in the description? 😄

                                              • BvousBrainSystems
                                                BvousBrainSystems  9 months back

                                                Disney may have custom in-house software (such as Hyperion for rendering); but in general, I'd bet that Maya must be heavily involved in at least modelling and animation, and Houdini for the snow simulations shown in the video. These are available to the general public, just sign in for an educational version. Although files created with the educational version of Maya has a pop-up message every time you open and save it, that gets irritating.
                                                Also, trust me when I say that these are not for the gifted amateur. I can barely use Maya after dozens of hours of classes, I can't imagine what it's like to learn it on your own, and I don't even want to think about Houdini.

                                            • Tay
                                              Tay  10 months back

                                              Why are these vids called "practical guides?" They're just theoretical explanations... (and advertisements). nothing practical at all.

                                              • SporkNotFork
                                                SporkNotFork  9 months back

                                                I wouldn’t call it “theoretical”, seeing this is how it is done. It is an example of the practical way they create and use particle effects. Evidently, you aren’t 100% sure what practical even means. That’s okay though, I’ll help define it for you! “An idea, plan, or method likely to succeed or be effective in real circumstances”. Ah, you see! This is exactly what was explained in the video! Rather than animators drawing each individual particle like they did in the past, they use a practical solution to save time and provide much more convincing effects. If you need a refresher on the definition of theoretical as well, here you go, “concerned with or involving the theory of a subject or area of study rather than its practical application”. This means that a theory is an idea that is yet to be proven. Obviously, since animators use this method and it has been put to use time and time again, it is no longer considered theoretical. Hopefully this helped you realize the importance of animation with practicality, and the difference between theory and practice.

                                              • sasukeuchiha998
                                                sasukeuchiha998  9 months back

                                                Think of it as a way to tell people that going back to hand drawn is ludicrous when computers are so much better.

                                            • andarted
                                              andarted  10 months back

                                              Oh no, the snowflakes have taken over Disney!

                                              • Praecantetia
                                                Praecantetia  10 months back

                                                Wonderful? Honestly the only wonderful scene was when she made an ice palace with all the light bouncing in the ice

                                                • Praecantetia
                                                  Praecantetia  10 months back


                                                  • H D
                                                    H D  10 months back

                                                    Too bad you can't simulate better stories & characters for Star Wars :P

                                                    • Tatum
                                                      Tatum  1 years back

                                                      So how does one become an animator? Id love to be one but I have no idea where or how to start!

                                                      • Chelsea
                                                        Chelsea  1 years back

                                                        I want to be an animator but sounds like you need to be a programmer or an engineer to create any of those things... Do i have a future *sigh

                                                        • New World Order
                                                          New World Order  2 years back

                                                          I wonder when this is gonna be on my head

                                                          • david esktorp
                                                            david esktorp  2 years back

                                                            useless information

                                                            • chase like the bank
                                                              chase like the bank  2 years back

                                                              Not technical enough

                                                              • Ambur Reagan
                                                                Ambur Reagan  2 years back

                                                                This is just so cool!

                                                                • Krakeon
                                                                  Krakeon  2 years back

                                                                  The narrator sounds like the narrator from tutor4u

                                                                  • Michael Motion
                                                                    Michael Motion  2 years back

                                                                    Why not love both styles?
                                                                    3d fits better on some movies while 2d fits better on some other movies.

                                                                    Imagine frozen in 2d, doesn't look that good, does it?

                                                                    • TheLingo56
                                                                      TheLingo56  8 months back

                                                                      I'd imagine it would look great if it had the time put into it.

                                                                      Problem is recently 2D animated movies haven't sold as well as 3D, so all the animation studios were essentially forced to make 3D because the market gave the impression that they don't want 2D.

                                                                      Whether that was because the modern movie audience doesn't like 2D, because the movies were badly marketed, or that too many 2D movies were just unlucky and didn't turn out good is up for debate. Unfortunately it's lead to no 2D movies.

                                                                  • BellahManalo
                                                                    BellahManalo  2 years back


                                                                    • Gonedridge
                                                                      Gonedridge  2 years back

                                                                      It never snows in Orange Juice Land, if you just had simple particles, i would've believed it was snow 100%. I never knew of these properties of snow, living in Florida.

                                                                      • Anetheon
                                                                        Anetheon  2 years back

                                                                        Really amazing stuff

                                                                        • ash watson
                                                                          ash watson  2 years back

                                                                          intro music pls

                                                                          • Ava Skoog
                                                                            Ava Skoog  2 years back

                                                                            Lol, why is this narrated in a way that feels and sounds exactly like the DNA video in Jurassic Park, all old-fashioned and kind of condescending?

                                                                            • GHgiant
                                                                              GHgiant  2 years back

                                                                              Collab with Turn 10 and playground games to make a forza edition of frozen!

                                                                              • GoodDay
                                                                                GoodDay  2 years back

                                                                                You should make these solvers available to the public.

                                                                                • Zelda_Smile
                                                                                  Zelda_Smile  2 years back


                                                                                  • Andreas Reif
                                                                                    Andreas Reif  2 years back

                                                                                    Is this the voice of Andre Stojka...?

                                                                                    • 天使愛芭蕾
                                                                                      天使愛芭蕾  2 years back

                                                                                      the www.??????

                                                                                      • Marienkarpfen
                                                                                        Marienkarpfen  2 years back

                                                                                        Can you also generate a Houdini or Maya tutorial on how to model particles and interact?

                                                                                        • Trajectory Zero
                                                                                          Trajectory Zero  2 years back

                                                                                          Yeaaap...this is why Blender is so awesome...