Has anyone made the Northern lights (aurora borealis) before in Flame?

I am trying to recreate the Northern lights (aurora borealis) phenomenon.

I am looking into creating an element that i can use in a few shots.

Has anyone tackled this type of thing before and can offer some tips or tricks?
Thanks in advance

I have done it recently in Nuke with HIGX Point Render and a little while ago in Blender.
I can share a Blender setup if you are up for it.

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Thanks @milanesa

That is generous but I am either going to tackle it in Flame or offload to one of our Houdini FX wizards but I am feeling confident that i can come up with something but this is before I have even started :thinking:

How did you go about it in Nuke and Blender?


basically (both Nuke and Blender) the main aurora shapes come from a 2d texture on the X/Z plane. Then you can somehow extrude the texture along the Y axis. Blender was using volumes, Nuke is done by extruding random points coming from the texture. Then you can recolor the extruded pixels along the Y axis to achieve the desired look. You may need to do several passes to achieve the different textural qualities and colors of the auroras.
Keeping it camera base helps with setting up different angles.


Wait a minute. Good old Ivar had an unpublished matchbox for that.

crok_aurora_CFX.glsl.zip (2.6 KB)


@Sinan @milanesa @Peter

You guys are all friggin awesome. I am going to try all of these.

Tomorrow I will be throwing mud at the wall

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also found a good looking one in shadertoy.

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Aurora Borealis? At this time of year? At this time of day? In this part of the country? Localized entirely within your kitchen???


I have a collection of live-action green laser elements I’ve used for this if you’d like. Not the heftiest dropbox since they’re all 8-bit. It’s the poor man’s solution but you know, just toss a little abberation and glow on it and it’ll look sufficiently movie.

Many moons ago I used it for a dumb album visualizer job, you can see that here: Porter Robinson & Madeon - Shelter (Official Audio) - YouTube

I’ve definitely done this before and entirely in Flame. The hard part I found was trying to make something that looks totally fake in real life pass for real when we all know it’s fake.


That just happens to be the exact shader that Ivar ported to Flame in Sinan’s link above.

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Main aspect of my last job involving auroras, was the desire of Director and VFX Supe of art directing them.

That looks really nice. Certainly in the zone. The only thing that puts me off is if I needed to swing the angle to give perspective.

Thanks for all of these suggesting and tips @here . Time to get crafting :hugs:

Found this in Action / Presets / Particles / Space


This is cool. Am I nuts though? I don’t see this in the regular login matchbox distribution. Makes me think there are some more magic nuggets Ivar left us that I have not seen.

Probably. I had asked on Facebook Logik for an aurora solution back when and he’d sent it over messenger of all places.


Can we upload/submit this to the Logik matchbox collection?
I can vouch that it works brilliantly on both Mac and Linux.

Doesn’t steal memory like some other Autodesk manufactured ones :wink:

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