Ben's Comp Newsletter: Issue 062


This week's newsletter is a big one! We have an interview with a 2D supervisor, some tips on using expressions & a tool to improve your workflow in Nuke.

Firstly, a bit of housekeeping. If you missed my webinar with Foundry on how to improve your Nuke workflow with python scripting in April, they recently made it available on their YouTube channel, complete with Q&A. You can watch it here!

Before we dive into the newsletter, if you're an artist who is focused on continual growth and career development, and want to gain an edge over your peers, I have an exciting announcement for you...

----   INTRODUCING   ----
Ben's Compositing Mentorship Program

This mentorship is designed and tailored specifically for you! Whether you're a student trying to break into the industry, a professional wanting to develop skills and gain seniority or are an experienced professional looking to take the next step into leadership and supervision roles, this mentorship will help you rapidly develop your career.
Click here to read more.
P.S. I will be limiting numbers to ensure the quality of this mentorship program, so if this is something you are interested in pursuing together, be sure to act quickly so you don't miss out!
Now, onto this week's newsletter.

Interview: Pedro Andrade // 2D Supervisor, DNEG.

"My name’s Pedro Andrade and I’ve been working in VFX for around 10 years and out of a complete accident. I have a background in Mechanical Engineering and I effectively worked as one in different countries until I took a chance and left that field to pursue a career as a Music Producer in London - which I also did for a while. Then, in London in a sort of twist of fate, in a completely unplanned way, I came across with VFX, an industry in which I’ve been working as a 2D supervisor for some time now in companies like Milk VFX, Cinesite and more recently DNEG.."

Additionally, Pedro recently started a new YouTube channel, Comp Lair, which is a weekly live stream where you can learn technical Nuke tips, and hear conversations centred around comp-related topics with other industry experts.

If you would like a suggestion on where to get started, this episode features yours truly as the guest!
Click here to read my interview with Pedro Andrade.


I'm a big fan of the "import once, use many times" strategy of Compositing, as opposed to copy/pasting assets and renders all over your Nuke script. Nuke's superpower lies in its procedural nature, so I believe we should harness that power to it's fullest extent!

There are brilliant tools such as Stamps available to help you manage this workflow, however, Tor Andreassen has taken this idea and spun off a new tool with some important features. fxT_DotLinker aims to solve the same problems as Stamps, however it's super light-weight in comparison, and bulletproof in case an artist without the tool installed needs to open your script!

Check out the demo video for a complete overview of all the features.
Click here to download fxT_DotLinker from Tor's website.

A simple tutorial on using Expressions with Paint Strokes.

An often forgotten feature in Nuke is the "tracker linking dialog", which helps you to link specific vertices in rotoshapes & paint strokes to individual tracking points, or the output of a Tracker node as a whole.

However, how else could we use expressions to control these vertices? I wrote a brief tutorial to explore this.
Click here to read the tutorial.

Siggraph 2020: Technical Papers Preview Trailer.

Every year, papers are written on innovations in computer graphics, and are often featured at Siggraph. If you're not one for wrapping your head around confusing abstracts, this trailer provides a visual representation, highlighting some of the topics of this year's papers.

One of the highlights for me this year is this Consistent Video Depth Estimation paper, which uses Computer Vision (Machine Learning) to generate a flicker-free depth map from a single-source video.
Click here to watch the Siggraph 2020: Technical Papers Preview Trailer.
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If you have any feedback on how this newsletter could provide more value to you or others, or just want to share your creations, please reply to this email -- I'd love to hear it all!
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Thanks to my Patreon Supporters.

This issue of Ben's Comp Newsletter is sponsored by Keegen Douglas.
Aaron Bradford
Adam Kelway
Adrian Winter
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Anton Moss
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Attila Gasparetz
Ben Cecioni
Brent Veal
Christian Morin
Ciaran O Neachtain
Dan McCarthy
David Ventura
Denys Holovyanko
Eduardo Cardoso
Ed Englander
Fredrik Larsson
Gary Kelly
Hugo's Desk
Ian Failes
Igor Majdandzic
Ivan Sorgente
Jan Stripek
Julien Laperdrix
Kris Janssens
Lee Watson
Micheal Liuyu
Michael Loithaler
Mikhail Shilin
Pablo Mereu
Santosh Seshabhattar
Seth Weber
Shih Yi Peng
Stu Maschwitz
Suresh Pandi
Tiscar Coig
Vincent Desgrippes
William Towle
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Thanks for reading!
This newsletter exists to encourage open communication and knowledge-sharing between the global Compositing community. 

My goal is to share the best gizmos, python scripts, workflow tips, and in-depth knowledge on compositing techniques, to help keep your toolset & skillset at the forefront of the VFX industry. I hope this newsletter keeps you prepared technically, creatively & mentally for any shot that passes through your hands.
- Ben McEwan