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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®.
So you want to do a morph. The SplineWarp node makes morphing easy. While we're seeing how it's done, we'll also get a good look at the workflow. As before, we hook the purple face up to the source input and the alien face to the destination, because we want to warp the purple face to the alien face. One important tip is when you're going a morph, the images have to be the same resolution. I'll open up the SplineWarp node, and I'll switch between the source picture and the destination picture.
You see, they're both exactly the same resolution. If they're not the same then use a Reformat node to reformat one to the other, do your morph, and when you're done, use the reformat node to put it back to the original resolution. I'll put it back to the source. And because we have static images, we want to turn autokeying off. So, to do that, we'll click on Bezier and then click on the selection tool, so we can turn off Autokey. The reason we want to do that is we have static images, and that means the playhead can be anywhere we want on the timeline and we won't accidentally introduce keyframes.
This makes it a lot easier to avoid accidentally animating your shapes. Okay, let's get started. I'm going to give myself even more screen space. Let's do a morph on the mouth, so I'm going to push him here. By default, the SplineWarp node opens up in source warped, and again this pop-up is duplicated over here, but I like working with it here when I'm working on the screen. So, the first thing we do is switch to source.
That way we're looking at out source image and the shapes we draw are going to be on our source. So, we'll draw a spline around here and close that. And the first thing we want to do is label it, so we're going to call this lips. When you're doing a morph you can have an awful lot of splines on the screen and you've got to be able to know which is which. All right! We have the lip spline on our source. Now, we switch the display to destination, and this is our destination spline. Remember, the source is red and the destination is blue.
So, I need to move this over my destination target. So, I'm going to select them all and use the transform jack, get it initially positioned, scale it down. So as much as you can with the transform jack rather than point twiddling. Notice we have these dash lines here. Let me push in a little bit. The dash lines are telling you where the control points are moving, whereas the little dotted lines are the correspondence points. I'm going to turn the display off for the correspondent points so we can see what we're doing better.
When I deselect, the control points' dotted line go away, but if I pick on a point, select it, its dotted line will show up. So, this is saying this control point will move from here in the source to there in the destination. Okay, let's line up our destination shape. So I'm going to move this over here, bring that over there, put that here, this there like that, okay. I'm not going to spend a lot of time twiddling these shapes, because that's not a very interesting part of the story. The key issue is workflow and technique.
So, we can switch back to the source. Here's our source spline. Look at the destination. Notice that when I switch to the destination, I'm seeing the destination shape and to the source I'm seeing the source shape. If you want to see both on the screen at the same time then click on this button here, the toolbar visibility button. This will turn both of the shapes on at the same time, regardless of which view you're looking at. You can also have individual controls right here, so it's an override. By default, it's going to show you the shape that goes to that view.
Another interesting feature is the warped view. So, this is the source image with the source shape, but if I ask it to show me the source warped, I'm going to see what the source will look like when it's warped to the destination. So, there's my destination spline. Similarly, the destination view can be set for the destination warped, and this is what it's going to look like when the destination image is warped to fit the source image. Okay. Now, let's set up the warp. We're going to animate the warp and the mix fields here, but you'll notice they are ghosted.
They will not light up until you have set the node for morph. Now they're lit up. The first thing we need to do is put the playhead on frame1. I like to use the first frame playhead control. That way I don't overshoot or undershoot my frame1. I always know I am on it. At this point it might be fun to turn off the splines by turning overlays off in the viewer, typing O on the keyboard, because we're going to be morphing. So, for the warp, we'll set a keyframe on frame1 or the beginning of your warp; it doesn't have to be on frame1.
Your warp factory is 0. Okay. Then we jump to the last frame-- I like to use the last frame key--and set the warp to 1. So, as the playhead moves through time, we're going to morph from our source to our destination, and this is just the source layer. If you want to look at the destination layer doing that, you can slide the mix control all the way over here, and now you're seeing 100% of the destination as you scrub the playhead.
But what we want to do is set an animated dissolve. So, I'm going to go to frame 20, because usually you want your dissolve to start partway into the morph, and we'll set the mix keyframe to 0. So, at this point I'm 100% source. Move the playhead to 80, set the mix value to 1. So from 80-100, I'm 100% destination; from 1-20 I'm 100% source; and between that is my dissolve. Okay.
Let's play the morph, and there you have it. Now, we can refine this a little bit. The mouth line right here, if we tighten that up, this would be a more convincing morph. I'll stop the playhead, set the viewer back to source, and again, since I don't have Autokey on, the playhead can be anywhere; I don't have to worry about it. So, I want to add an open spline right here for the middle of the mouth. So, we'll select our Spline tool, select Bezier. But before I can draw, I am going to have to turn the overlays back on, so I can see my splines.
Click and drag, click and drag, click and drag. To terminate the spline, because I want an open spline, I can just switch to another tool. Okay, and now I can reposition it for fine control and get that thing where I want it. Okay, now we'll switch to the destination, and there's my mouth line. Ooh! Before I forgot, I want to rename this mouth. All right! Again, I'll select all of the control points and then the transform, so I can move them into position. Scale them down, rotate them, if necessary. All right! Deselect and we'll push in here, maybe a little too far. And I'm going to reposition the control points in a matching location relative to the source picture.
Okay, got that. Now let's see how our morph looks. I'm going to turn off the overlay by typing O on the keyboard, set the mode back morph, playhead on frame1, and play my morph. Okay. Adding that open spline in the middle of the mouth line, helped lock those two together and gave me a more convincing morph. I'll stop this to turn the discussion to correspondence points.
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