Ben's Comp Newsletter: Issue 069


Please enjoy this week's newsletter -- I hope you learn something new!

Interview: Jedediah Smith, VFX Supervisor.

"Jedediah Smith has been burning it at both ends in VFX for 10 years. He's worked as a Compositor, a VFX Supervisor and many roles in between. Self-taught since his origins in the wilderness of Alaska, he has a massive fascination for the intersection of art and technology. Playing with code, fiddling with cameras, building nodes to create pretty pictures... That's the best quality time."

In this interview, Jedediah dives right into some fascinating lessons from his career, and talks extensively about his experience with colour science (including plenty of resources for you to learn more, yourself!)
Click here to read my interview with Jedediah Smith.
P.S. Jedediah released a video on his YouTube channel titled "The Math of Color Grading in Nuke" last week, which is an important watch for any Compositor.

As the title suggests, this demo explains what all of Nuke's common colour grading tools are actually doing to your images, showing the mathematical functions themselves, as well as visual representations of said functions graphed in Nuke.

When you understand the technical aspects under the hood of the tools you're using, you will naturally create better images, more efficiently!


A brilliant lesson on TimeBlur, and it's many creative uses.

In Issue 061 of this newsletter, I shared a brief article Chris Fryer wrote titled Experiments with TimeBlur, which scratched the surface on how you can utilize the TimeBlur node to gain access to subframe values and do some interesting things...

Chris recently released a more in-depth video tutorial on the TimeBlur node, which has opened my eyes to the many possibilities of working temporally! He shows examples of getting better results from the ScanlineRender node in specific circumstances, adding detailed motion-blur from ST-map-warped frames, and even a creative way of linking up a curve from a ColorLookup node to animate & blur an object. Super cool stuff!

Click here to watch Chris' TimeBlur tutorial.

P.S. If you enjoy this, check out Chris' followup tutorial: Decimal TimeOffset | Subframes Revisited, which shows off this gizmo that enables you to view a slice of time at a specified subframe.

Disjoint-over and Conjoint-over, explained.

Nuke's merge node has 30 operations, and finding a Compositor who has utilized them all would be a difficult task. However, in this brief tutorial, I want to shed some light on two merge operations that are incredibly useful, and don't get as much love as they should.
Click here to read, "Disjoint-over and Conjoint-over, explained."


Following on from the above interview with Jedediah talking colourspaces and colour science, I wanted to share this talk from Alex Fry, presented at Siggraph in 2015, on how Animal Logic took advantage of an ACES workflow to help create The Lego Movie.

Whenever someone tells me they don't understand ACES or why it's useful, this is the video I point them towards. It offers an easily-digestible & visual example of the challenges ACES helps to solve in a modern VFX production pipeline.
Click here to watch Alex Fry's "ACES in VFX" talk.
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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
Alicia Aguilera
Aman Arora
Andras Pflum
Anton Moss
Antonio Gabarrón
Attila Gasparetz
Ben Cecioni
Brent Veal
Brett Harding
Brian Thompson
Christian Bechmann
Christian Morin
Ciaran O Neachtain
Conrad Olson
Daniel Cuevas
Danny Lee
Dan McCarthy
David Ventura
David Wahlberg
Denys Holovyanko
Eduardo Cardoso
Ed Englander
Ewoud Heidanus
Fredrik Larsson
Gael Lendoiro
Guillaume Charron
Hugo's Desk
Ian Failes
Igor Gama
Igor Majdandzic
Ivan Sorgente
Jan Stripek
Joel Delle-Vergin
Joshua Gluck
Julien Laperdrix
Kris Janssens
Lee Watson
Markus Gratl
Matthias Bäuerle
Micheal Liuyu
Michael Loithaler
Mikhail Shilin
Philip Edward Alexy
Rafael Perez
Romain Brachet
Seth Weber
Shane Dooley
Shih Yi Peng
Suresh Pandi
Tiscar Coig
Tz-Chun Chang
Vincent Desgrippes
William Towle
+ 2 Anonymous others...

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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