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Author Steve Wright explores the new features found in the 3D digital compositor Nuke 6. The course introduces the RotoPaint node for drawing and painting effects, the Keylight keyer for creating mattes and composites, and the SplineWarp node for warping images. The course also explains how to merge keys, animate with keyframes, and create image-based blurs. Exercise files accompany the course.
Nuke 6 New Features was created and produced by Steve Wright. We are honored to host his material in the lynda.com Online Training Library®.
The RotoPaint node is unique and it allows you to combine rotos and paint, all in one node. Let's take a quick look at that, and you invoke it with a QuicKey from the keyboard. P right. You'll get up to the Viewer, by typing 1 on the keyboard. So I can draw a Roto shape, there's my shape, and now I can immediately paint. So I'm going to select some paint, and paint on it, plus I can go get the Eraser tool and even erase my Roto shape and erase my paint.
So that's the big innovation with the RotoPaint node is the ability to combine both roto and paint in one node. It also allows you to do multiple shapes. Put a shape here, close that, do another shape over here, close that, and another shape over here, there. So multiple shapes in one node. So let's just take a quick overview of the way the thing is laid out. Over here on the left are the side tool tabs and this is where you'll select your tools.
So this tool here will be your Bezier tool. You have a Bezier, a B-Spline and of course, you have Ellipse and Rectangles already defined. Here is the Brush or Paint tool and the Eraser tool. Here's the Clone and Reveal, here's Blur, Sharpen and Smear, and this has got a Dodge and a Burn. This is the Select tool that allows you to select either shapes or strokes or even Control Points. Down here, this tool is for adding or inserting or editing Control Points but all of these have QuickKeys and you're going to want to learn the QuickKeys and not bother with this menu.
The Top toolbar up here changes context depending on which tool you've selected. I select a shape and I get these options up here and if I switch to a Brush, I'll get these. Now these options up here allow you to preset the properties of the shape or the stroke. For example, I'll go and set the color of this Paint Stroke and then I'll come along and paint my color. Of course, you can edit any of these attributes after the fact, but the top toolbar is designed to allow you to preset any of these parameters before you use it.
So for example, I could take the Hardness to one and now I have a very hard paintbrush. Over here on the right, of course is the Property panel for the RotoPaint node and it's divided into three main sections. This top section up here is a familiar from the old Bezier node and it controls the output for which channels you're going to be putting the mask into, are you going to be doing premultiply or not, and of course selecting the format or the size for your Roto Shapes. This middle section here is the list of all your shapes and strokes.
One of the main things you do with the list is you change the order of events. So now I put this shape on top of the strokes. You also can rename them, you have visibility controls, and some of the other editable attributes are displayed in the list as well. We'll come back and take a close look at all of these of course. Down here at the bottom are the tabs. There are five tabs. This first tab, Common, is of course common to both shapes and strokes. Whichever shape or stroke is selected is being hooked to the Common tab. You can tell, you can see this color tab here which is my stroke but if I switch to the shape, that turns white.
So the current selected shape or stroke is hooked to this Common tab. For shapes, there are two more tabs, Transform and Shape. Strokes use the last two tabs, Stroke and Clone. So we'll come back to these later and take a much closer look. Down here in this section is where we have the Lifetime control that is the duration for all shapes and strokes, whether it's the full length of the shot or just one frame or whatever. That's all down right here.
So there's much commonality between the shapes and the paint dtrokes. If you close the Property panel, then the top and the side toolbars disappear. Open the Property panel and they come back. I'm going to delete the RotoPaint node in order to show you the old Bezier node. The old Bezier node is still in Nuke. In case you have any legacy scripts you want to bring in, they need to be able to call up that old node. However, if you ever get nostalgic for the old Bezier node or you just want to draw a real quick shape and don't want to fire up the whole RotoPaint node, you can invoke the old Bezier node very simply.
Cursor in the node graph, on the keyboard type X, and you'll get this dialog box. Make sure this TCL button is selected, not the Python. Then type the name of Bezier, BEZIER, and say OK. And now, you'll get the old Bezier node that we all know and love. There you go, edit the points, feathered edge, and transformation controls. Now let's take a closer look at how to draw shapes in the new RotoPaint node.
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