UE4 – Bump Map

Software:
Unreal Engine 4.21

To use a ‘Bump Texture’ in UE4, or in more geeky terms, derive Normal data from a supplied height map, use the NormalFromHeightMap Node.

Notes:

  1. The height map textured is supplied via Texture Object node and not Texture Sample, and is connected to the NormalFromHeightMap‘s Height Map input.
  2. A numeric vale is connected to the NormalFromHeightMap‘s Normal Map Intensity input to control the intensity of the resulting Normals/Bump.

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Blender – Checker Deselect

Software:
Blender 2.79

Fast way to select every other element is to select a sequence like an edge loop or ring and than choose:

Select > Checker Deselect

This can be very helpful when needing to reduce the resolution of parts within a mesh.

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After Effects – Camera Lens Blur effect

Software:
After Effects CC 2019

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Adobe After Effects has a very effective Camera Lens Blur effect that is capable of efficiently faking DOF (Depth Of Field) and Bokeh visual effects for 3D rendered images and animations, and also animate a fake “Focus-Pull”.

The effect will work best on 32 bit float EXR files, and requires a Z depth render element (pass/AOV) to be rendered with the main RGB image, and supplied as the Blur Map layer.

Tip:
If necessary, color correct the Z depth image so that the Black to White range will reflect the wanted focus range, and that the closest depth will be Black, blending into White at the furthest depth.

Example of a Z Depth image:Buddha_Z0.jpg

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Radius:
Controls the blurriness

Shape:
Choose the lens iris shape (number of blades) to design the Bokeh effect

Blur Map:
Defines a black & White Depth Layer (Z Depth) where black is the closes point to the camera and white is the furthest.

Blur Focal Distance:
Values of 0.0 to 1.0 will have the black through grey to white areas of the Blur Map remain at focus (sharp)

Highlight > Gain:
Intensify the highlights to create a more dominant Bokeh effect

 

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Related:
DOF in Arnold for Maya

Blender Python – Make an unselectable object local so it can be selected..

Software:
Blender 2.79

If you happen to link an external object that was made unselectable in the original blend file, You will have no interactive way to make it selectable again, or local, or even delete it from the current blend file.

The good news is that it can easily be done by a very short Python script:

import bpy

obj = bpy.data.objects['the_untouchable_object']
obj.make_local()

It should also be very easy script a loop that will find all those linked objects,
I will post an example when I’ll have a minute to breathe… 😀

Notepad++ – Show White Space and TAB

Software:
Notepad++ 7.5.9

A lot of Python debugging frustration can be avoided by activating the ‘Show White Space and TAB’ option from the View > Show Symbol menu.

This view option displays yellow dots for White Spaces and yellow arrows for TAB indents in the script, and can save precious time locating places where the indentation is wrong.

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Blender – Select Pattern

Software:
Blender 2.79

Use the Select Pattern tool to select multiple objects with name similarities.

  1. In the 3D View in Object mode choose Select > Select Pattern…
  2. In the Select Pattern dialog, type a part of a name with an Asterisk to define wild cards.
    For example *car* will select all objects who’s names contain the string ‘car’,
    And car* will select all objects who’s names begin with the string ‘car’.

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DJV Player

Software:
DJV View 1.2.3

A highly effective and useful open source frame sequence player, indispensable in an animation studio.

DJV allows smooth cached playback of float EXR file sequences (and many other formats) at a variaty of frame-rates, image / pixel diagnostic tools, view EXR layers, quick mp4 export, and more.

Download DJV here:
http://djv.sourceforge.net/

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