How would I recreate the Fire Effect (layer only)?

How would I recreate the Fire Effect (layer only)?   What is behind that?  


  • @Andersen01498 I'm not sure what you mean by "What is behind that?". The effect is a custom effect for HitFilm, not something composed from other layers or effects.

    Talking in terms of design, the effect appears to contain fractal elements, and you could potentially generate a similar looking effect with the fractal noise effect, but you would miss all of the customization options of the fire effect, and also lose a lot of time.

  • @TheBenNorris that's what I meant by what's behind that....I was just curious how someone would reproduce the effect without the effect?  How would someone reproduce this effect in After Effects? This is just me curious on how the effect was done.

  • @Andersen01498

     It’s something that, with enough time and effort, you could probably build something similar using a particle simulator. 

    It’s worth noting that other than a few exceptions, these are your main options from best to worst when it comes to using fire in your videos:

    1. Composite in real assets (easy, fast, relatively cheap, but it looks great)

    2. Use a high quality, specially built fire simulator like the Fire effect or a blender simulation. (Best for things you can’t build with compositing, or for animations)

    3. Use real fire on set (VERY expensive and potentially dangerous- NOT recommended for most productions)

    4. Build it from scratch using a particle sim or other methods.(Particles can be great for smoke and sparks, but not so much for the actual flames. Time consuming and difficult to get passable results)

  • @triforcefx except you forgot about "Option 4a" which is using a particle sim and using a stock fire asset as a texture... Which will give fantastic results. 

    Didn't bring up the particle sim myself because I'm assuming Andersen is on Express. Else he'd use the Fire effect, not look for other ways. 

  • @Andersen01498 ; If you are wanting to see how the pre-made fire effects are created - open up a composite shot, then in Effects search for "fire".  Several examples will pop up, but pick the one called "Oil Fire" and drag that onto to the timeline.

    Go to the Controls panel and open up Emitters.   Those are the same particle emitters found in Effects under Particles & Simulation.  Dig through the Oil Fire emitters and that will show you how to create your own fire effect.  It's just experimentation really.  Diddle with the controls until you get the hang of things.


  • @Triem23

    Ahh fair enough, I guess I’ve just seen so many bad particle sims for fire that I forgot that there’s plenty of good ones too (I honestly haven’t spent a ton of time in particles myself). Though it does affirm the idea that when it comes to fire, you typically want to use real assets where possible, even in a particle sim.

  • Andersen yeah, I'd thought you were on Pro, but I got confused by the question a bit. I'm old, it happens.

    OK, so the inbuilt Fire effect... if @TheBenNorris were to poke into the code or talk to a dev who goes back to the HF 1/2 days he'd be able to super-verify, but, I BELIEVE the Fire effect is combining a modified particle system with some minor displacement and, well, I'm not certain what Burn Direction is actually doing, but it's fun to play with.

    The Fire effect uses up to two other layers. The "Burn Area" defines where fire is spawned, and can be taken from channels of another layer. Relating to the full particle sim, this is somewhat similar to using a Layer Emitter. The "Blocking Area" layer is a simplified matte. The blocking area hides the fire.

    The actual Fire itself has a lot of controls for fine-tuning the look of the fire, but the core textures are the same fire textures you could find in the particle sim.

    The Fire effect itself is a 2D effect. If one were to use the fire effect to try to add flames to a 3D setup one would need a separate Fire effect for each plane of distance, and the Fire effect doesn't scale up as a camera gets closer or farther away.

    @Stargazer54 pointed out things like pulling apart the Oil Fire preset, but those will more show you how to set up the Particle Simulator.

    There's not really anything else in Hitfilm that can "recreate" the Fire effect. It's just different enough from everything else to be unique. There are some techniques for creating fire-type looks with Fractal noise, but they don't usually look realistic as a rising fire. There are things that can be done with the Particle Sim, but you'd be better off just loading an existing preset into the sim and modifying from there. There are the Quick3D effects, but those are basically very-very cut-down and simplified subsets of the particle sim (although you'd be surprised at how often I use the Quick 3D Bonfire!)

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