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Manuel Pardo | VFX Artist | 2023

Manuel Pardo | VFX Artist | 2023

Manuel Pardo Durán
by manupardo on 23 May 2023 for Rookie Awards 2023

These are 4 of the projects I did at my VFX school: Fx Barcelona Film School. It's been 2 hard years learning softwares like Maya and Houdini and this is the result!

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This was my last project with which I learned grooming. It was done in Houdini with Karma XPU.

I had only 3 weeks to learn grooming from scratch and make the project for my masterclass.

The base model is from Sketchfab.
I had to modify the tail to make it thinner so that the hairstyle would fit correctly. I also included vellum on the ears, so they move more realistically.


This was my final Maya project. It was done in 1 month in Maya with Arnold render.

I always loved the scene in this movie and I had the opportunity to do it with cloth simulation, so I got inspired by other fan movies on vimeo and made my own version.

The female model is from 3dscanstore.

The cloth simulation was somewhat difficult to do due to the different bounding boxes that each scene is made up of.

But the real challenge of this project was in optimization. I had to limit the polygons of the model and think of different solutions to simulate each part of the body separately.

Another challenge were make a realistic material for the skin and the simulation, since the proximity to the model encourages it.

And the final challenge was the lighting and shadows who are the ones that give that depth to the female body and that touch of magic to the project.


In this project I learned FLIPS with Houdini and the Solaris workspace. I had 3 weeks to do it for a class project.

Pirates of the Caribbean was a series of movies that I always liked and inspired me in this project.

The ship model is from Sketchfab.

The optimization of the project due to the dimensions of the ship was key to give a result with realistic sea and physics.


In this project I learned POP particles with Houdini and Arnold render, making a procedural tool that controls the dimensions of the portal. I had 3 weeks to do it for a class project.

My principal reference was the portal in Warcraft movie.

I added circles of magic around the portal and animated them to give a sense of weight when the portal is invoked. I also added ray lights to make the effect more realistic.

The challenge in this project was to make a procedural tool that can modify the portal at any time.

And this is the result:

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