It’s now getting to the stage where I’ve almost completed the first round of passes in Nuke. What I mean by that is that I have a version of each scene, some in more need of repair than others, in terms of additional rotoing, lighting and general tidying up. One thing that annoys me on a daily basis is the lack of memory on the computers in Uni that i’m using – not that I can really complain – but what seemed like a lot of memory (100GB!) a while back, is now a case of juggling things between drives to free space on a daily basis. It’s largely down to the amount of images that I have rendered.

Problem Shots

Some of the shots I expected to be simple have turned out to be problematic for various reasons:

  • the last shot at queens view is shaky due to the zoomed in nature of it, and thus the glyphs over the top need to be matched for shakiness. So, I added a tracker and used a transform matchmove node to match the movement. I also had to key frame 2 separate transform nodes as the roto and glyphs scaled and transformed as well:

week 43 image 1

  • In addition, I had to reimport the original footage again, as the colour graded footage I created in After Effects, for some reason is unusable – it jumps randomly from 1 frame to another, so I’ll colour correct it in Nuke
  • a similar problem existed for the drive past scene where the graded footage seemed corrupted and looked interleaved – is there some kind of corporate battle between Nuke and AE to prevent me using both?!


To make the VFX sit in the scene in a more believable fashion, I had rendered out the light line passes, and they have helped. But more is needed! So, for the shots within the church in particular, I have begun rendering out tif’s for purely the glyphs in the scene. The idea is that I’m going to flip them over and blur them to be used as reflections in the floor. This can be done pretty easily by using a transform node and scaling the H axis as -1. Once blurred, the only thing left is to mask out the area furter away from the reflections by using roto techniques and feathering. I’ll add images shortly.


I’d forgotten to mention that last week I had started to incorporate depth passes into the pipeline as well. I’m only using them subtly, as much of the footage is mainly in focus and the demand for depth is minimal. I am aware of overdoing depth, but it can help to slightly blur out the foreground or background of the shot:

week 42 image 6


Here’s a shorthand bullet pointed way to create pretty good flares in Nuke:

week 43 image 2

  • Track footage
  • Create first flare – ‘burst’
  • Merge using plus operation
  • Hold CTRL and LMB drag from tracker x y position to x y position in flare node
  • Presets –
  • many bright – multi tab – asymmetry – repeat controls how many points on the star
  • falloff – how sharp they are
  • Ring color – colour of the flare itself
  • Size mult – size of the flare
  • Create a second flare – ‘streak’ – plug it into the first (drag the arrow from the first into it!)
  • Alt + E to turn off expression links (green lines!)
  • Use ‘bright’ preset
  • Change colour inner ring to blue/white
  • Colour shifts – chroma spread etc control chromatic aberration
  • Size – radius to make inner/outer bigger etc
  • Set anamorph to 7/10 (type in numbers!)
  • Bring down size mult
  • Bring down brightness
  • Add 3rd flare – multi penta (for additional streaks) – this moves with the camera, so don’t need to copy the position
  • Change ring colour and inner colour to blue
  • Go darker on the ring colour to feather out the edges – then bring up outer falloff so it’s feathered
  • Anamorph to around 10
  • Do copy animation expression for position!
  • Add a 4th flare – ‘magenta’ – multi penta again
  • Decrease multiple flares to 4
  • Use random offset to push them closer together
  • Flare tab – up the size – and offset
  • Size in the multi tab can vary the size in all of them
  • Shape – corners 0 (flare tab)
  • Change ring and inner colour to magenta/red
  • Change chroma spread and shift to suit
  • Size of flare doesn’t really change, but brightness does depending on distance
  • Use multiply node to control brightness of all flares


Additional ambient lighting was going to be a problem – I tried doing it in Maya with the proxy collision objects as the surface to light, but it was going to be too time consuming to tidy up the geometry to make it accurate enough. It was only designed, after all, for the particle collsions. So, I had to fake it in Nuke! One solution which seems to work as a kind of ‘flash’ lighting effect, was to use a combination of a radial ramp with a circular section roto’d out. I then keyed in the flashes to coincide with the glyphs:

week 43 image 3