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View Full Version : Tanadrine Studios Tutorial Series: Lightwave Render Passes + Blender Compositing



Ryan Roye
06-15-2013, 10:44 PM
This tutorial consists of 2 topics:

1) LIGHTWAVE: How to set up render passes using a free, open source plugin called Passport (http://sourceforge.net/projects/lw-passport/files/PassPort_MC.lsc/download).

2) BLENDER: How to take advantage of Blender's robust compositing toolset to work with your Lightwave render passes.

While this is a basic-level tutorial, I am hoping it serves as a stepping stone for people who need some help with compositing. This tutorial assumes you know about PNG alpha channels.

Enjoy!


http://youtu.be/yVa_Q4plB7Q

NOTES ABOUT PASSPORT:

-The render passes save with the scene. Under the hood I think the .lws files are generated as needed based on the current .LWS's data. You do still have the option to save out the individual pass .LWS files though.

-Sometimes the plugin can misread a scene's objects and give errors. Restarting Lightwave usually fixes this.

As a side note, one can use the Buffer Saver plugin (http://www.lwplugindb.com/plugin/buffer-saver/) to generate things like depth/specular passes pretty easily. This doesn't work with Passport, but I have still found it handy.

Hail
06-16-2013, 03:42 AM
nice tuts chaz
thanks for the tips!:)

vector
06-16-2013, 04:00 AM
Great tutorial! Blender is the biggest LW plugin I found :) :) :)

LW_Will
06-16-2013, 01:57 PM
Great tut, Ryan.

It goes to show how much power you can get from using Blender. The good thing about Blender Composite is that it works (generally) like Nuke, so you aren't learning things that you would have to unlearn (as in AfterFX).

Thanks!

Ryan Roye
06-17-2013, 10:45 AM
Great tut, Ryan.

It goes to show how much power you can get from using Blender. The good thing about Blender Composite is that it works (generally) like Nuke, so you aren't learning things that you would have to unlearn (as in AfterFX).

Thanks!

I did briefly try out after effects CS2 and its layer-based workflow just to take a look around, but I've since felt more comfortable with nodes as it makes more sense in my head. Dealing with a gigantic list of layers stacked on top of eachother can be hard to work with at times as someone demonstrated to me in a video screen sharing session some time back. I doubt I'll get nuke/fusion in the near future due to their extreme costs, but Blender makes a good substitute for those who just want basic compositing functionality. It is definitely slower, but it works and I hear you are guaranteed a 100% refund if you don't like it ;)

...In retrospect, I do find it strange that after effects doesn't have some kind of node view option (that I'm aware of).

cresshead
06-17-2013, 10:56 AM
cool tutorial, thanks for sharing!

nickdigital
06-17-2013, 10:56 AM
...In retrospect, I do find it strange that after effects doesn't have some kind of node view option (that I'm aware of).

I don't think this translates to how AE works. You can open up layer or have multiple windows open to view individual comps.

LW_Will
06-17-2013, 02:47 PM
...In retrospect, I do find it strange that after effects doesn't have some kind of node view option (that I'm aware of).

It does... but it is only a view mode. You can't do anything with the "nodes" other than see them. :shrug: But I think it gives them the check off. ;-)

Phil
06-27-2013, 05:05 AM
As an aside, PassPort Renewed does work with the new 11.x stuff and has an extensive array of settings compared to the previous versions.

http://forums.newtek.com/showthread.php?133227-Passport-Renewed-1-0

There should be no errors in the scene/object handling. You do need to refresh Passport's lists from time to time, but internally everything is based on the object ID in the scene file (not name) so any object replacement, etc. ought to track through the system. Where errors will always occur is if you stack overrides (multiple overrides on a single item). That's not supported.

I'd be very interested to hear any bug reports regarding Passport Renewed.

Ryan Roye
06-27-2013, 07:31 AM
As an aside, PassPort Renewed does work with the new 11.x stuff and has an extensive array of settings compared to the previous versions.

This is awesome!

I noticed after upgrading to Lightwave 11 that while the version of passport I was using works, it only seems to be able to output EXR format images and none of the other image options show like they did in LW 9.6. I gave your version a try and it works great! I'll update the video links to reference your updated version, thank you! I'll be sure to send in any bugs I come across.

Phil
06-27-2013, 08:07 AM
I think your link points to version 1.0. The latest is later in that thread : https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/1592116/PassPort/PassPort_Renewed_1.0.5.zip

Ryan Roye
06-27-2013, 08:31 AM
I think your link points to version 1.0. The latest is later in that thread : https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/1592116/PassPort/PassPort_Renewed_1.0.5.zip

Fixed!

EDIT: Also, I would really like to see this plugin update put into the Lightwave plugin database (http://www.lwplugindb.com). I PM'ed you the e-mail of the site's admin.

Tobian
06-27-2013, 04:48 PM
Very nice tutorial Ryan! :)

chikega
06-28-2013, 10:21 PM
Very nice tutorial! Thank you :)

BigHache
06-29-2013, 08:33 AM
Another thanks for the tut. I had some trouble with the plug-in initially but your video really helped. I'm not patient lately. I just want the (insert any object you want working) to work.

Ryan Roye
06-29-2013, 08:38 AM
Another thanks for the tut. I had some trouble with the plug-in initially but your video really helped. I'm not patient lately. I just want the (insert any object you want working) to work.

I don't blame you... I'm feeling the same way about fiberFX right now. I do know some tutorials are out there for that though... but I don't know if they will be enough to establish a solid workflow with.

So much to learn!


Also, having a bit more up to date version of Lightwave is going to help my tutorials avoid the "this doesn't work the same in LW version X" problem for a while.