DeSharpen for Fusion

I've been dealing with some greenscreen footage at work from a client that doesn't often use visual effects. They had the in-camera sharpening filter turned all the way up, which creates a harsh black line around the subject, as seen to the left.

This artifact naturally causes problems when keying, so it needs to be smoothed out in order to get the best results. While it is generally impossible to perfectly remove such filtering once it's been done, it is sometimes possible to reduce it to the point where it no longer breaks the key.

For this technique, we'll investigate a common method of sharpening called the Unsharp Mask.Continue reading →

Redshift Camera Metadata in Fusion

Springboarding from Vito's excellent tutorial Exchange Cameras perfectly using the power of Meta-Data, which uses V-Ray, I developed a similar method for Redshift. Redshift's metadata format differs significantly from V-Ray's. First, it's not in an easily-accessed table format; instead, Redshift writes the transform matrix into a comma-separated list. Second, the rotation order of Redshift's matrix is ZXY instead of XYZ. These two issues prevent us from directly using the method Vito shows. Oh, and there's one further problem: The 3DS Max Redshift plugin doesn't yet write metadata to the image, so this won't work there. I have verified it in both Houdini and Maya, though, and I'm reasonably sure it will also work for Cinema4D.  In this article, we'll build a Fuse that reformats the metadata into something easier to apply to a Camera3D node. Take warning, though: There be trig ahead!

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Morality and Investing

Over the past few years I have been very blessed by an income that greatly exceeds my expenses. While I am still not out of the woods with regard to debt—my student loan still exceeds $60,000—the economy has been in a state where it is more efficient to invest my excess than to pay down the debt. I currently have four investment vehicles, and I'd like to take some time to explain each one and consider not only the financial pros and cons, but also the ethical impact of my decisions.Continue reading →

Combining Normal Maps

My buddy Vito asked for some help with combining normal maps with bump maps in Fusion. He's been using a method that's pretty common but mathematically flawed: Apply the bump to the base normals using Overlay mode. While this Looks About Right most of the time, he wanted to improve his workflow. To be honest, the problem was a little bit over my head, but being unable to resist the technical challenge, I dove in.Continue reading →

First Impressions of Fusion in Resolve 15

Blackmagic Design released the first public beta of Resolve 15, to which they've added a Fusion tab so that VFX work can be done without ever leaving the editing environment. Obviously, that's going to put Fusion in front of thousands more eyes, and given that I'm writing a book about it, that seems like good news to me! So it behooves me to try it out as early as possible.

Now, given that I'm a reasonably advanced user of Fusion, it's to be expected that I'll hate a lot about trying to use it in the context of Resolve. I really have no interest in being an editor, so my inclination is to resist wrapping my software inside an editing program. Keep that in mind if I get overly negative. I'm sure for editors who want to dabble their toes in effects, it's the Best Thing Evar.Continue reading →

It's a Great Time to be a Fusioneer!

Over the past three months or so, there have been quite a few very encouraging and exciting developments in the Fusion community. Just in case any of them have been overlooked, I thought I'd take a few minutes out of your day to tell you about them.


The first thing I'd like to point out is the release of Reactor, a package manager for Fusion. Reactor makes it dead easy to find, download and install new tools. My own Glitch Tools are available there, as are several other offerings from Muse VFX.Continue reading →

Blackmagic Fusion: Reflections

Commenter Steven Newby asked for a deeper look at the Reflect node because the existing tutorials he could find on YouTube apparently only examined reflections on a sphere. In this article, we'll take a detailed look at Reflect3D and how to use it to best effect.

Regrettably, I'll need to use Fusion 8 for this demonstration because I'm on a loaner PC that can't run Fusion 9. I therefore won't be able to provide screenshots for the use of the new spherical camera, but hopefully my description will suffice. To get started grab this coffee cup geometry, which may be familiar from the 3d workspace chapter of the upcoming book. Import the cup and saucer into the scene using the File > Import > FBX Scene… command.

The default settings are fine, so just click OK to get five new nodes in your Flow: Two Blinn materials, two FBX nodes, and Merge3D that weds the geometry together. The scale of the geometry is a little big, so in the Merge3D, switch to the Transform tab and reduce the scale to 0.1. If you like, you can also move the Y Offset control to put the bottom of the saucer at 0. Both of those things are optional, but I find it more comfortable to work that way.

I'm not concerned with integrating the cup with a photograph this time; instead, let's see if we can't make a really nice product photo image like you might see in a catalog. We'll go for a super shiny and clean look.

Continue reading →

Multi Merge Fuse for Blackmagic Fusion

MultiMerge can perform a Merge with up to 64 Inputs. Every time a new Input is connected, a new one is created. The composite is created iteratively, so each additional image is Merged with the results of the previous Merge operations. At present, every layer gets the same Apply Mode and Operator, and the Transform controls are not exposed. UPDATE: There is now a Blend control per layer, and the connected Inputs are displayed in the Control Panel for better clarity.

Changelog:

  • Version 1.1, 2017-09-19: Added a control panel link field and independent Blend sliders for each input. Removed the CloneInput() line so the tool now works identically across Fu 7, 8, and 9.
  • Version 1.0, 2017-09-18: Initial Release.

Known Issues:

Control Panel inputs do not automatically update when a new Input is added. Deselecting and reselecting the node causes the new controls to appear.

Held Out mode doesn't work and throws an error in the console.

For the Future:

Add an Apply Mode/Operator control and a Blend control for each layer.
Implement Transform controls—I'm not sure exactly how these should work. On-screen widgets only apply to the highest-numbered input, perhaps?
Implement Depth Merge (low priority)

Download it here: MT_MultiMerge.fuse

Many thanks to Stefan Ihringer and Isaac Guenard for providing some (most) of the code on which this tool was built. Also to the community at We Suck Less for helpful tips.