Nuke One-on-One Workshop
Who Should Take This Workshop
workshop assumes that you already have a basic understanding
of the concepts of 2D compositing of visual effects using one
of the packages mentioned above and want to learn about Nuke's
powerful capabilities including its 3D compositing workflow.
Compositors should also have at least a basic understanding of
3D vocabulary and core concepts such as XYZ space, 3D geometry,
and surface properties such as diffuse and specular lighting.
This course is also ideal for 3D animators that want to get a
great overview of the Nuke workflow and how it integrates into
a modern 3D production pipeline. Many shops actually require their
3D artists to do “slap comps” in Nuke to make sure
their rendered elements are suitable for the 2D department down
Why Take This Workshop
Nuke’s importance to the VFX industry is how it moves
compositing to the next level as an extension of the 3D department.
This is the current trend in visual effects where more and more
of the shot development is moved from the 3D department to the
2D department where they are faster and cheaper to produce and
revise. This trend will only increase over time, so compositors
who want to stay current will need to learn 3D compositing. The
addition of 3D compositing skills also upgrades the importance
of the compositor in the VFX pipeline with a commensurate increase
in prestige and pay.
Many large VFX studios are also looking at ways to transition
from their in-house legacy software that requires a steep learning
curve to a broader market pool of talented VFX professionals and
are acquiring Nuke site licenses. The latest examples being
ILM, Weta Digital and Framestore. (Read Steve's article: Legacy
To future-proof your career in visual
effects compositing sign up for Steve's One-on-One Nuke workshop
workshop, you will acquire a basic understanding of Nuke and its
many advanced compositing tools, most especially 3D compositing.
Upon completion you will have a full command of the Nuke user interface,
its unique color management system, how to work with Nuke’s
deep channel management system, HDR images, color correction, masking,
keyframe animation, motion blur (2D and 3D), and keying. Workshop
participants turn in their Nuke scripts and get a live review with
Steve via Skype and desktop sharing software.
a grand tour of Nukes excellent user interface (GUI), we will see
how to navigate the viewer and timeline, the node view, the property
panels, and the tool tabs. There will be a sneak peak at the 3D interface,
but the details are saved for the 3D classes. Next is a demonstration
of Nukes workflow - how to load images, build node trees, adjust
node parameters, and render to disk. There are also two handouts
prepared by Steve, his personal Keyboard Shortcuts list plus his
Tool Tabs list of every node and its function - unavailable in any
transformations and animation
The use of Nuke’s powerful
Transform node for 2D images is covered, including motion blur. Following
that is keyframe animation plus how to work with Nuke’s powerful
animation Curve Editor. How to link parameters within and between
nodes is covered including how to add simple math expressions to
your animation. Special attention will be given to Nuke’s management
of project formats (resolution and pixel aspect ratio), which is
unique in the industry.
working with color
An explanation of Nukes 32 bit
floating point color space as well as its approach to color management,
which is, again, unique in the industry. The subject then turns
to the key color correcting nodes - the Grade node, the ColorCorrect
node, and the ColorLookup node. Selecting colors from the screen
with the Eyedropper and the workings of Nuke’s very robust Color Picker
are also covered. Nuke’s Bezier node (the shape drawing node
for masking) is examined in great detail due to its pervasive use
in compositing, including its keyframing capabilities (and limitations)
as well as how to use the Bezier node for masking operations.
Another of Nuke’s unique
design features is its channel management, where up to 1024 channels
of image data are maintained for CGI compositing. How it works
and why it is so cool are revealed along with how it affects proper
node tree structure. We see how to organize and manage multi-pass
CGI composites along with managing your premultiply/unpremultiply
states. The Merge node is next which offers 30 different image-blending
modes from the mundane Over operation to key Photoshop blending
modes such as Overlay.
keying and timing
Bluescreen and greenscreen keying
are, of course, the bread and butter of visual effects compositing
so Nuke’s proprietary IBK keyer and the Primatte keyer are
given close scrutiny along with Nuke’s Keyer node which contains
a list of useful simple keyers you will need to know about. How to
use the HueCorrect node for spill suppression is covered as well
as how to work with the all-important KeyMix node. An introduction
to clip timing is included to address basic timing operations such
as holding a still frame, shifting the timing of a clip, and selected
a frame range within a clip.
This week starts the 3-week program
of 3D compositing. In the Basics we see how to add 3D geometric primitives
(card, cube, cylinder, and sphere) and apply texture maps to them.
Next we add cameras and lights and see how to render 3D objects into
the 2D world where they can join in the composite. This class assumes
the compositor has a very basic understanding of 3D so it does not
teach 3D itself. If you have absolutely no experience with 3D it
is recommended that you become familiar with the basic terminology
and concepts before this class.
3d animation and shaders
Now that we can build 3D scenes and
add cameras and lights, its time to start moving things around with
animation. How to apply 3D transformations to the geometry, keyframe
animation, the use of the Axis node (a null object) including how
to add 3D motion blur. The subject of Shaders is introduced where
ambient, diffuse, and specular materials are applied to 3D geometry
for sophisticated lighting effects.
3d production techniques
In the final week we will pull
it all together to see how to apply the techniques learned above
to execute three classic types of 3D compositing production scenarios
- the classic “Pan and Tile” shot where a panoramic background
plate is re-photographed behind CGI with a moving camera, a 3D compositing
shot where 3D objects are rendered and composited with 2D images,
and an environmental lighting example using spherical High Dynamic
Range (HDR) images to light a scene.
Nuke runs on Windows, Linux, and
Mac platforms. Students can take advantage of Nuke’s FREE Personal
Learning Edition that can be downloaded and used before and after
the class to get a head start or perfect their new found knowledge
here to go to the Nuke page on The Foundry’s website
to download the free Personal Learning Edition. Download
and install apropos your machine type/OS and it will automatically
run in the PLE mode.
By special arrangement with The Foundry, Steve's One-on-One students will receive a fully functional 10 week license for a fee of $75.
so much for teaching this class! I really appreciate
your clear and concise teaching style as it made following
along that much easier. I've gained a solid foundation
of Nuke and feel comfortable enough to start mixing it
into our pipeline. Well worth the money!
Senior VFX Artist
so much for your amazing instruction. The other day, right before
my Nuke license expired on me, I wanted to play around with a
friend's music video and try out some ideas. I suddenly felt
like the Karate Kid... all those mind-numbing hours spent on
tedious, abstract homework suddenly had such clear purpose! I
could do all these tricks and I knew the many steps to make it
look just like I wanted! :)