After Effects Beam

Nuke is great, but it doesn’t always have what you want. For those coming from After Effects to Nuke, this is one of the tools you may be missing, the Beam. Simply specify a start and end position, animate the time and watch it shoot across your screen. The handy benefit of it over say, a roto paint, is that it can easily fake 3D movement at the press of a button. I made the tool to have the exact same settings as the AE version, so hopefully there should be no confusion.

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After Effects Beam

Lens Distortion the quick way

The Lens Distortion node in Nuke can be quite heavy as it comes with a host of features which although useful, are often unneeded. If you want a quick and dirty lens distortion, then here is a convenient alternative. Nothing flashy, just a slider for the amount and a choice between barrel or pincushion. Simple.

LensDistortionImage

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Lens Distortion the quick way

Quick referencing layer sheets

It’s common enough that I find myself trying to fix a render issue and not knowing whether I’ve been given a mask or separate pass that would help. When this happens I find myself trudging back up through the tree looking for my read to check it’s layer contact sheet and see what I’ve got to work with. Apparently I wasn’t the only one bothered by this as someone asked me to make a script to make it easier. So, this is a very simple function that will allow you to quickly cycle through all LayerContactSheets in the tree.

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Quick referencing layer sheets

Colour Keying with Expressions

I love the expression node. It’s powerful, it’s quick and it’s easy to use. One of the useful things you can do with it is create your own little colour keyer. Yes, there are a number of keying options, and yes, this is effectively just the Quick Key. This is more of an experiment in learning the mechanics behind one of the most important techniques in compositing.

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Colour Keying with Expressions

Custom Relighting with Blink Script

This is more of an exercise in learning the limitations of blink script than a functional tool, although it does have some useful alterations and allows for a lot of customisation. The end result is a way of using Point Position and Normals renders to relight an image with a choice of point or spotlight. Directional is easily achieved using these same methods but is not currently part of the script. It will likely be added in future updates.

RelightImage

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Custom Relighting with Blink Script

Upload Presets

This script is slightly flawed, but due to the way the Foundry handles certain naming structures, there isn’t a perfect solution just yet, but watch this space.

The script allows you to have two user preset files, one local, and one on a server (or any other location). The two have distinct differences, in that the ‘server’ files presets do not have the [User] tag that the local ones do. They also cannot be deleted without manually deleting the lines from the ‘server’ file, useful for preventing someone accidentally erasing all your hard work. Finally, the ‘server’ file will have a comment line for each preset stating when it was added to the file and by which user, so you can keep track of who’s been changing what. So, let’s look at how it works.

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Upload Presets

Camera from EXR

Alright, this is one that a couple of people have done for other programs that use an upwards Y-axis (Maya, SoftImage etc.), but this works for an upwards Z-axis for programs such as 3ds max, Blender etc.

The extra feature this offers is that it prevents camera rotations from flipping over, eg, instead of going from 359 to 1, it will now go from 359 to 361. This makes a significant difference if you plan on using the camera for motion blur, as otherwise you will get a frame of extreme rotational blur. So, that’s what it does, let’s see how it works.

 

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Camera from EXR