Author Archives: callanw

Nuke 7 arrives

Nuke 7 is here, It looks amazing. If I drop everything I could play with it right now….

It’s pretty tempting.


  • Unlimited trackers
  • Auto updating while correcting tracks
  • Enhanced 2d – 3d point cloud
  • Oh My, A 3D modelling toolkit! it looks very nice indeed.

Much more, just check out more intro videos here


The re-lighting intro looks fantastic.




Project wrap up and Showreel launch

Wrapped up 3 projects this week which you can see below.

The big one being my showreel is up! This is comprised of work done over 2012, nothing from 2011 made the cut unfortuantly. As fond as I am of the final project from last year.

School isn’t out for me just yet but i’m definetly not stressed about project deadlines!

My Resume has also been updated to reflect recent work at ACMI and other minor additions, you can view it on the about page here

I’ve got alot of plans for small projects in the up coming months, and I may even brush the dust of unity, I’m eager to have a play with the playmaker plugin.

Show reel is live.


Escort Cinematic (my parts) are live


Acmi advert is live

Acmi advert

Another project down!

I kept this one short and sweet, focusing on the technique for the “flying paint”

This was achieved in the end by utalising Nuke’s 3D space and bringing in data from Maya and 3D coat to set the scene. A simple roto on the material in nuke for the masking of the paint and boom, effect in place!

The sky was also mapped in using Nuke 3D enviroment to lock it nicely onto the camera move.


Escort Cinematic

It’s done!

Well my parts anyways, the other full CGI elements are in the render que but I’ll share my parts early.

I might do a break down for some of the shots in this soon as well.



Big thanks to Steph K for acting in this one for me, awesome job.

ACMI advert Start

ACMI – Australian centre for the moving image, I’ve been looking forward to doing this project for a few reasons:


  • Different style of effects
  • Tighten my workflow with 3D assets between Nuke and Maya


I got to excited by this to post about it properly before starting, I’m actually nearing completion as of now (renders waiting patiently in back burner)


I’ve already enjoyed testing things, The biggest is a slight camera aperture mis-match between Maya and Nuke. Pretty sure I’ve got the cause nailed down – I’ll test it more later on. I’ve focused things on creating assets in Maya and rendering parts of it out in Nuke where it makes sense, mostly with an animated “paint” trail that flies through the air.


Weekly update

Busy week.


Nuke Masterclass with Dave King at the academy of interactive entertainment, it was a blast.

I’ve been using Nuke for my latest projects and after this I feel I have a much more solid understanding of what’s happening under the hood my two favourites including:

  • Data flow down the B-pipe
  • channel manipulation

Mainly it’s how to handle data through out the node graph, it’s always good to see other people workflows – look at your own and realise not all node layouts are created equal.

Cheers Dave I enjoyed the class!


The escort Cinematic is pretty much finished on my part, just waiting for material from my counter parts before the final cut is done.


I wanted to do an advert based around the ACMI Centre  in federation square (I miss working there and any excuse to drop in is welcome)  the advert will let me try out some techniques with 3D between Nuke and Maya

  • Nuke 3d space
  • Cameras between applications
  • animations between applications
  • other fun things

I’m fairly well through this as well, i’ll be uploading both this and the escort video next week!

Paused Follow up

I attended two events at this years paused festival. Wow, some of the content out there that students are producing both blows my away and humbles me… examples of both crazy complex works and the haunting beauty of a minimalist styled short film.


While so many of the short films where a pleasure to view A Fox Tale really blew me away I loved everything about it.

Check it out!


Official website


I won’t go into much detail about it, more can be found in this article by 3D world magazine


Moving onto today in addition to seeing some amazing things studios around the world are working on, I got a chance to chat to Chris Betteridge and Hamish Macdonald from Iloura’s advertising branch. Great bunch of guys and I found another who shares my enthusiasm for nuke scripting and doesn’t glaze up when python scripting is mentioned.

The guys went through two case studies they worked on, including the Birds Eye advert check it out here

While I’m pretty solid with pipelines it’s always interesting to see how individual studios approach a project and handle it from start to finish.


Thanks for coming to paused fest it was really enlightening.

Check out Illoura advertising 

Paused Fest

Busy this weekend? I’ll be heading to a few events at Pause Fest.


The chance to talk to industry folk is always good, getting away from the computer once in awhile is also a plus.

While the benefits of networking should be apparent to all I’m often surprised at the lack of enthusiasm shown by some of my peers. Come on guys let’s get out there and meet some fun new people in the industry… these are people with similar interests who would love to talk polygons with you!



Star Citizen – pledge time

I used to play EVE, I didn’t leave because I didn’t like the game, much more because I loved it way to much.

If EVE lacked one thing for me it was using tactical skill (reflexes and actually manoeuvring my ship) I’ve had this brough to my attention and I’ve got to say it looks fantastic.

I won’t say to much about this one, there are plenty of articles on this already, i’ll just say that for me this will easily be worth backing.

kickstarter here finishing November 19th

main website here


Pulses and nodes – it’s exciting!

nodes are always fun


The above image is not what creates the below footage… but it is the first shot for the escort cinematic!

My proof of concept for getting the pulses working went exactly as I thought it would (cue the warm fuzzy feeling) so I can now pulse circuits to my hearts content.

The below example uses only 1 render pass (1 frame – different bits) to allow me to create the pulses in Nuke., which affords me all the control of post.





I’m also tempted to throw a video up of my script orderly random python script in action rather than just post the code.


Strike that, the example is up now!




Nuke scripting – let’s get ordely random

#update – here is an example of the script in effect


I needed a function for my upcoming Escort cinematic in Nuke, it didn’t exist out of the box (not that I found anyway).

I needed to be able to create a dynamic random character output from the text node (yay for broken robot HUD’s):

  • Random numbers/integers
  • Random characters
  • The ability to disable these at a given time/frame
  • the ability to choose how many values to display (avoid repeating the statement repeatedly)
I’ve got a background in programming (semester at UTAS) but haven’t delved into python to often, my love affair with nuke might change this.
I got my code working and now for the next step… getting nuke to load this automatically so I need not worry about pasting it in through the script editor. Easy? well yes and no, I have trouble with all the tutorial material being for Macs, but I digress.

So I’ve modified/created my file (relax not the main one… the user one)

After breaking down a little I caved and watched the intro to external .py scripts here And pow, new functionality added!


I’m loving the ability to code straight into nuke, the amount of functionality is staggering and I am excited by the things I want to do, yeah this code is pretty simple but I get exactly the control I wanted out of it.

If I get round to doing tutorials (max/maya/nuke) I’ll definitely include a scripting component.

#sorry for the formatting being butchered.


import nuke
#startFrame = frame to lock number
#staticInt = number to show after start frame
#digitsAmountStartdigitsAmountEnd = define the range of digits to show, allows
#big number to be shown easily
def randIntLimit(startFrame, staticInt, digitsAmountStart, digitsAmountEnd):
import random
randint = “0”
if startFrame > nuke.frame():
for i in range(digitsAmountStart, digitsAmountEnd):
randint += str(random.randrange(0,10))
randint = staticInt
return randint

def randCharLimit(startFrame, staticChar, digitsAmountStart, digitsAmountEnd):
import random
ch = “”
if startFrame > nuke.frame():
for i in range(digitsAmountStart, digitsAmountEnd):
rand = random.randint(0,35)
if rand < 10:
ch += str(rand)
ch += chr(rand + 55)
ch = staticChar

return ch



Animation progress

Animation – I cold say a lot about it. I enjoy animating, I’m not the best by far but I can happily say I am improving.

I would like to share my improvements with you!


Check out the difference between these three clips


11 sec club entry (we all start some place) – April 2011


Final AIE project 2011


AIE character animation early 2012

Escort cinematic – start project

I am pretty excited about this project not only because it stars my close friend Steph K (get excited for her upcoming website)  but because I get to combine 3d and live footage, something I’m really enjoying the process of.


This project consists of

  • Live action elements – nuke
  • 3D elements – maya
  • 2D elements – controlled in nuke
Software being used (so far)
  • Maya
  • Nuke
  • adobe photoshop
  • 3D coat
  • adobe premiere
  • Mudbox


Shooting was done at the AIE Melbourne campus and Steph looked amazing as she always does.


Steph K – looking great


The cool thing about using Steph as my “Lux” character is that Steph is working on the escort game where she designed and modelled the main character “Lux”.

And now she can really personify that character!



I am hopeless at putting together costumes, thankfully Steph and Jonathan are brilliant at it


And a taster of the 3D that’s going in, game asset and current version of high poly version.

High poly versions done by me, based from game mesh – attributed to the Escort game team.

Epsilon rig done by Vitali


Meet epsilon, he fixes generators

This is the generator that epsilon fixes.

Game Masters – Game Over

Game over :

It’s been four months of fun, I’ve met so many new people.

Laughed, played and learnt a lot… I also know that being in a full on customer service role and being on the floor almost daily has helped me understand people and myself. Which might sound an odd thing to say after enjoying the odd round of Dance Central (it’s really great)

So Long ACMI, for now.


Picture Copyright Robert Shea


Vshorts – It was an amazing event and I’m so glad I took part in it. Now I know I have been saying I’d put my V-Short up on the net… But in taking to colleagues and having experienced the night I’ve come to realise something. These “V shorts” are made by the staff Community of ACMI and as such it is a private affair, so while I’m proud of my cheesy little film, private it stays. (and I’m pretty glad the v-short I was featured in is staying private as well, no-one wants to see those dance moves)


But I did get a wicked “cut price VFX” award – cheers guys

Whats news – 31st Oct

Busy week, I’ll be posting proper project updates later this week with lovely pictures and such

  • Game masters finished
  • Escort Cinematic is well under way
  • I found out about an amazing looking game really, check it out.
  • Disney bought Lucas Arts – I’m excited and scared about this but we all love Disney right?


What is escort and why am I doing a cinematic? Well it’s not just me, like all great things it takes a great team to make most cool things.

Introducing “Lux”

Jonathan and “Lux”

V Short

So Acmi VSO’s and volunteers where invited to create a short film which will be shown in acmi’s cinema on the 28th Oct, the last day of game masters!


I’ll post the final video after the premiere, choc full of lovely cheesy effects!

In the meantime here are some work in progress shots. Finished this just before the website rebuild, so all updates are condensed into one gallery.

Filming was done in the Acmi studio 2, starring Anita Sanderson one of our lovely security personal.

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