New course: Intermediate Nuke, Part 1

Building on the introductory NUK151 and NUK152 courses, this intermediate course takes a close look at more advanced tools inside of Nuke such as planar tracking, optical flow, and smart vectors. To provide students with high-quality and real-world material, this course footage sources heavily on the upcoming documentary/biopic Breezy, directed by Dominic Stroehle.

Christoph Zapletal is a freelance Flame and Nuke artist and has been working in the industry for close to 25 years, working on both commercial and feature projects. Beyond that he is a frequent contributor to Digital Production Magazine as well as an instructor at the HFF in Munich, Germany.

Class Listing

Class 1: Planar Tracking Basics

A less-than-ideal placed sign needs to be removed. Using Nuke’s built-in planar tracking, we remove both motion and perspective to achieve ideal conditions for retouching. After that, we talk strategies for realistic-looking cloning and avoiding patterns.

Class 2: Bus Shot

An ad replacement on a bus forces us to deal with occlusions from our planar track. We also finesse our track with manual adjustments before we get to properly integrate our new advertisement.

Class 3: Glass Removal – Part 1

Once more planar tracking helps us in stabilising two plates that need to be combined. But the bigger issue is a huge bottle covering up our image. We roundtrip to Photoshop for some A.I. Assistance before heading back for our first slap comp of this difficult shot.

Class 4: Glass Removal – Part 2

Based on the Slapcomp we begin to strategize on how to approach the shot. After assessing the possibilities we have, we delve into optical flow to retime parts of the image. Building on that, we discuss clever roto and patch up areas that are still obstructed by the glass.

Class 5: Glass Removal – Part 3

We use the spline warper and some color correction to patch up our image. After that we build up a “poor man’s rig” to rebuild the arm of the grandmother.

Class 6: Managing your script

With the script of our previous class as a base, we get to navigating larger scripts, clean node layouts, creating your own custom toolsets, and relative file paths for more flexible scripts.

Class 7: Tech Check, Feedback and Improving your Nuke Experience

Before the glass removal shot can be published for review, we need to do some quality control. After that, we incorporate client feedback and finish the shot for good. To close out, we discuss some tools that can greatly enhance your Nuke experience.

Class 8: Smart Vectors and Frequency Separation

Moving on to a classical beauty shot. After discussing the fundamentals, we use a little-known feature to stabilize our image using smart vectors. That stabilized image then gets frequency separation treatment so that we can manipulate color and detail independent of each other.

Class 9: Using Optical Flow for Retouch

In the last shot of this course we remove blinking eyes from a performance. After exploring various angles of attack we land on the Kronos node. Feeding it with only two still images we actually force it to generate all the frames we need to remove the blinking.