Ben's Comp Newsletter: Issue 027


I'm always on the lookout for cool tools, and it just so happens that quite a few have surfaced recently! A few readers like yourself have reached out to share some of their favourites, which I'd love to share with you!


Erwan Leroy recently reached out to share something amazing. He tipped me off about SPIN VFX releasing their production gizmo & tool library online, for free, for everyone to use and benefit from! This is super cool of SPIN VFX to do, and I wish more VFX studios would follow suit.

There are plenty of useful gizmos in this package, including
  • Erode_Fine, which erodes an image with subpixel accuracy, as opposed to Nuke's default Erode node which can only erode full pixels 
  • Morph_Dissolve, which allows you to morph between two moving plates automatically
Check them out!
Click here to download SPIN VFX's gizmos from Github.

Level Up Your Python Game

Speaking of Erwan Leroy, he wrote an article titled "Level Up Your Python Game" in September of last year. A trend I've noticed among Compositors is they all want to dabble in Python -- this is what Issue 013 of Ben's Comp Newsletter is all about!

Erwan's article is a natural extension beyond the basics. It covers the importance of following the rules, naming conventions, version controlling, documentation & UI/UX, to name a few things.

Click here to read Erwan's article.

Smart Rescue

This tool, created by Cragl VFX tools, is useful for troubleshooting problems with your Nuke scripts, including corrupt ones that won't open anymore. Smart Rescue will create copies of your original Nuke script for every step that you enable and process, so you're always keeping a paper trail and never diagnosing issues destructively.

I recommend reading through the extensive documentation to learn more about what this handy utility does, and how it achieves these things. It's certainly part of my repertoire, in case the unthinkable happens. Get ready to say goodbye to lost work forever!

Thanks to Lars Wemmje for the tip.
Click here to watch the demo video, and download Smart Rescue.

Macro, Slow Motion Eyeballs

One of the more challenging tasks in VFX is making a CG characters' eyes look life-like. Humans have become so accustomed to looking into each others' eyes, that it's hard to fool them with a mere "close-enough" CG representation.

The Slow Mo Guys are the connoisseurs of the internet's finest slow-motion videography. In their newly-released video, they showcase extreme close-up shots of their eyeballs, showing all sorts of things from the layers in our iris', pupils dilating, etc.

What an incredible reference for our ongoing VFX work!
Click here to watch a Pupil Constricting in Slow Motion.

Did you find this newsletter informative?

Have you created, or do you know of any outstanding Gizmos, Python Scripts or Tutorials that you would like to share with the global Compositing community? Please send me an email, and I will do my best to include it in a future issue of this newsletter.

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