swirling cloudscape

Hi everyone, I’m brand new to this forum and pretty new to blender as well, but very excited about what the software has to offer. I’m currently trying to tackle a cloudscape. I found a good tutorial covering the basics on blender guru, but my clouds sometimes have black triangles and artifacts in them that look very uncloud-like.

I would love for them to look something like the clouds featured on the sintel blog (the volumetric ones) but again, even if I just use the strait blend file from there I get big black rectangles. Is it just that these are older blender files and techniques or is there some setting I need to turn off or on to get it working?

Lastly (and my chief concern), how do I make the clouds swirl? I don’t want an animated scene, just a still shot, but I need to have them swirling.

i don’t know how to swirl a volumetric cloud, but you can swirl a cloud texture by using the texmesh feature.

Thanks guys. I had actually come across that thread before, but somehow I thought it was just demos of his stuff. I see that he has a few tutorials so I’ll check those out.

To swirl a volumetric cloud, the idea that comes first to my mind would be to use actual vertices (a mesh without faces) as source for the clouds, and deform it by Lattices, Curve modifier, Hooks or Shape Keys… the cloud shape should follow the deformation imho.

This method would allow easier control imho than using a particle system… Just an idea.