Learn to Make Realistic Rain Effects in DaVinci Resolve 17

DaVinci Resolve 11/04/2022 4 min read

Rain while filming is not ideal, even when that is what you want. Working with expensive cameras when it’s wet is not great and planning to film in the rain is really rather hard to predict, just look at the weather forecast to see how difficult that is! So what’s the solution if you need a rainy day in your film or video. The solution is to create your own rain effects in DaVinci Resolve and we will show you three great methods to create rain or raindrop effects.

Part 1: Make it Rain with Particles in DaVinci Resolve 17

Using particles to create rain in DaVinci Resolve is the most difficult of the 3 methods we will show you but also the most customizable to match your scene. It is important to use this on a scene that helps to sell the effect, e.g. don’t use it on a clip of a bright sunny day with no clouds. We used this clip of someone with an umbrella on a beach, called On The Beach In The Rain. Here are the steps you need to follow to create the effect.

  1. Place your footage on the timeline and add a Fusion composition on top of it.
  2. Select the Fusion composition and go to the Fusion page.
  3. Add a Background node to set the size of the composition to the size of the timeline.
  4. Add a pEmitter and pRender node and merge them over the Background node.
  5. Pre-generate 100 frames in the pRender node.
  6. Set the Region in pEmitter to a Rectangle and change the Width and Height to extend beyond the frame.
  7. Change the pEmitter Style to Bitmap.
  8. Create a raindrop using a Polygon. Increase the border width and soft edge to give it body and reduce to level to blend it then connect it to pEmitter node.
  9. Increase the Velocity in pEmitter to get the raindrops moving and change the Angle to -90 degrees, or any other downward angle to get the drops to fall.
  10. Increase the number to 100 to have more raindrops and increase the lifespan so they don’t fade away too quickly.
  11. Lastly, add a pTurbulance node and increase the X strength to create some variation in movement.
  12. Finally, drop the Alpha on the Background node to 0 to make it transparent.

You can now see your result on the edit page. Done!

Pro Tip: To increase the effectiveness of the effect you can enable motion blur in the pRender node. Just be careful as this can be very taxing on even high end computer systems but it does make for a better effect.

Part 2: Create a Cool Raindrop Effects with Overlays in DaVinci Resolve 17

Option 1: Overlay Macro

To simulate raindrops on a window Motion Array has this amazing Rain Drops macro for DaVinci Resolve. It’s easy to use to create a realistic effect of raindrops running down a window. As with the previous effect, you need to choose the right footage to go with it. In this case, it needs to look like it is shot from out of a window and ideally it needs to be a wet rainy day. The shot we chose is another one from the Motion Array library: Night Traffic After Rain In Hong Kong. It looks like it could have been shot from an apartment window.  Just follow these steps to create the raindrop effect.

  1. Download and install the raindrops macro following the provided instructions in the template. You can also check out the Motion Array Tutorials video on installing DaVinci Resolve macros.
  2. Add your footage to the timeline, click on your clip and go to the Fusion page.
  3. In Fusion, in the Effects tab find the macro under Fusion templates and add it to your MediaIn node.
  4. With the raindrops node selected you can now adjust settings in the Effects tab.
  5. Make sure the Width and Height match your project settings, then proceed to try out and test all the parameters.
  6. You can adjust almost everything from the Size and number of particles, Background or Foreground blur, and Angle of the particles to the Amount of light on the raindrops and how it interacts with them (light power and light grain). Use these settings to achieve the look you want. Easy as that!

Note: Particle effects like this one can be very intensive on your computer’s resources so be aware that even high-end systems may struggle with rending this macro.

Option 2: Rain Overlay

This is the simplest way to create a realistic rain effect but the least customizable. By using a premade overlay like one from this rain pack from Motion Array, Rain & Snow Overlay Pack, you can very quickly add rain to any scene. As before, choose footage that looks like it is raining to help sell the effect like this clip from Motion Array: Woman With Umbrella On A Rainy Day.

  1. Place your footage on the timeline.
  2. Place the overlay on top of your footage and select it.
  3. In the Inspector change the Composite mode to Screen and reduce the Opacity for a nice blend!

That’s it, nice and easy but you are not able to customize the raindrops so you need to try different overlays to find the look that you want.

Depending on how fast or detailed you need to add rain to your scene, these 3 ways to create rain effects in DaVinci Resolve 17 using particles, macros, or overlays should do the trick. Each method has its advantages and disadvantages so have a look at which method will help you achieve the results you need and use that one. Motion Array can provide all the assets you need for your DaVinci Resolve edits.