Question on setting up particle hair

So i found someone who modeled some fantastic looking hair, but it was in Maya. He appeared to use a method like particles with each strand appearing as a plane with a hair texture on it.

Although, what i don’t understand is; when he combed the hair, the mesh kind of followed along with it. Kind of like a lattice modifier or as if each hair particle was a curve, and the object was following it.

I’ve always been horrible at understanding particle anything in blender. So i hope i’m illustrating this well.

Here’s the video, and i’m wondering about is around 3 minutes and 30 seconds into the video.

Overall question, can i make a plane texture follow the curve of a hair particle?

Thanks in advance!

You can make a plane follow a curve, but I’m not sure if you can have a group of planes all follow the nearest of a group of curves, which seems at first glance to be what he’s doing.

Is there a reason you’d prefer to use planes over just a hair particle system?

I had just been having alot of trouble getting regular particle hair to look right.
The hairs themselves looked so fake and plastic like, and not at all even very thick. and trying to style them was becoming very difficult aswell. it seemed like all the particle edit tools were just so sensitive like the tool to make the hair longer in a certain area where i would click for just a moment and it would add several inches to the hair.

I was amid searching for other things on particle hair when i found that video and thought it looked like a nice and easy route.
So i haven’t totally given up on just regular particle hair yet.

I’ve always been really bad with anything particle related. i just can’t always wrap my brain around it.

Perhaps if i give the original plane some vertex groups, i could use the particle system to just duplicate them everywhere all over areas of the head and apply them as an object (i think there’s a way to do that…) and then use proportional editing to fix them afterwards.
If i continued with this route of course.


If you’re looking for a resource, by far the best hair tutorial I’ve seen is on Blender Cookie. It is a Citizen tutorial, so it’s not free, but it was really helpful for me, and produces some great results. It’s done specifically for longer hair, but they cover enough to apply the principles to shorter hair, as well.

Thank you very much for that.
I really wanna get into blendercookie membership again soon, but i’m waiting till i have more time off from work (to get a little more bang for my buck ya’know?) i have a few tutorials lined up that i can’t wait to watch when i do that :stuck_out_tongue:

In the mean time… i went ahead and tried to do what the video shows manually. I made the hair, got the picture of it, applied it as a texture on a plane, and then went and scattered it all over a mesh that was generally representing where the hairs goes. I tried to keep a real like pattern to it on how hair works and here is what i came up with.

I think i may need to go back and change the texture a bit to make it way less shiny, and keep the hairs closer together perhaps…
And i will always need to make better clothes for the character so ignore that part. they are old clothes from before i knew much about texturing.

Normal mapping also didn’t make much of a change, but i could easily animate this hair with shapekeys and drivers.

(After those changes were made)

Nice work!

You can make a mesh follow the hair particles by using a “particle instance” modifier on the mesh, but as far as I know, the particles will always point in the same direction (x, y, or z axis)…