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How can I create a more transparent, thinner bottom area of smoke, then rising higher to be much thicker and opaque? It will not need to be animated.

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  • $\begingroup$ Perhaps turn on flame and use its material properties to drive opacity? $\endgroup$ – 3pointedit Mar 14 '18 at 4:39
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Use a Gradient texture to control the mix between the smoke density and a transparent shader.

You can use generated coordinates and a mapping node to control the placement. In this case note the rotation on the $Y$ axis.

After the Gradient texture you can use color ramp to control the placement for the transparency.

enter image description here

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    $\begingroup$ Very fancy: mathjax for axis names. $\endgroup$ – batFINGER Mar 14 '18 at 15:00

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