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Magicians get owned

Posted by Marius Oberholster on Thursday, August 10, 2017 Under: WIP
Hey all!
This week's vlog!


GOD is so wonderful!!! Just wow!!

 - Keeping track
   I don't recall ever having spoken of organization as it relates to a project like this, but GOD has certainly shown me that my organizational skills for media need some sharpening. It's not always just about naming things (though that is extremely important to make sure you don't waste time looking for things), but it is also about the discipline to keep your hard drive clean and garbage free. In other words - don't hold onto info and files you don't need. This takes a very very purposeful and very scheduled approach or you will not stick with it (speaking from experience here).
   There is a major point that I would like to make with this though and that is that I have struggled tremendously to keep track of the renderings and the proxy folders as it relates to the magicians and their shots of the serpents and so on. I've found myself using the same Blend file for multiple shots and them having to be re-timed and so on, it just absolutely causes hiccups, but, despite that, GOD has also helped me get back on track and I am currently making use of more subfolders. For example, I am using the same folder and project for the shots of the cobras getting eaten - one file. That means that in that folder, I will have about 8 subfolders. 4 x 2D and 4 x 3D, 2 per snake basically. This can also be subfoldered for shot 1 - 2 - 3 and 4.
   Personally, I think it's important not to be so rigidly tied to one form of organizing, that you're not open to a different one, should the project require it. The level of organization I had for Genesis 1 was absolutely horrible. If I go back into it for an old model or something, it is a nightmare to find something. Esther 6 was a HUGE improvement, but still confusing. Exodus 7-12, again, major improvements, but still, some drastic improvement needed, haha. I want it to be so well organized that if someone I worked with wanted a specific shot, they wouldn't need a guide, hahaha. That is excellent organization and I'm aiming for it!

 - Progress feels ambiguous at times
   Last week, GOD helped me animate and render around 38 or so seconds. That is a lot, but the problem is that it is not final footage. Nope! It was all footage that needed to be molded and welded to produce single and/or transitional shots. This meant that you would spend in the region of 3-4 renders for the exact same frame over many frames. Then, you also have to cut things out to make the edit better. So you often find yourself taking 270 steps forward and 122 back, hahahaha. Just wanted to go for bigger numbers to show that progress is still made, but it feels very ambiguous, like running up the down escalator, haha. You'll get there, but it just takes very long and there is no up escalator, haha.
   Not to be negative about it in any way though, because progress is progress. Regardless of how many frames you end up chucking, you have to make sure that there is meat to edit with. Transitions take frames. Great shots often mean more animation than what will be seen. Faster render times, mean spending a bit more time on a final shot (and camera angles) to make sure that everything that won't make a difference is removed. You could say that it becomes ambiguous as you spend a lot of time saving time, haha, but I've seen huge savings in this regard.
   With the shot for Pharaoh's face where the magicians appear, the first frame took over 5mins, just because the cloud was still turned on. The cloud was behind the camera and made no visual difference to the final result, yet took 5x longer than it needed to, just because unneeded stuff was still in the scene. Take it from me - spend the time optimizing, it will save you a lot of time in the end. If you don't need 25 characters for the final shot (meaning their presence has no visual effect on the outcome at all), then they are really just dead weight (they make no difference, yet are being calculated anyway) and wasting space (literally clogging up memory, which for GPUs can mean being render or not). Optimize! :D

 - The magicians get beat, but it's very personal
   Obviously, we all know that GOD did not let HIMSELF get outdone by demons, so the dino ate the snakes, but it's quite a different thing to see it take place on-screen. Now, you guys do get to see it from the perspective I am being led to make it, but I still find it quite a unique experience to be able to see it and to really think about what it must've been like.
   Having dug into these situations and original language, I do believe GOD has given me a deeper understanding than most about how it must've been and quite frankly, it means I get overwhelmed every time I consider their actual move out of Egypt. I told my mom a few weeks ago that I honestly do believe that there were people there that it felt surreal to. Egypt was all they knew - were they really gonna move the next day, were they really gonna be let go. Life as an object is very different to life with GOD and I do think things like this don't really dawn on you until that actually start taking place (for me anyway). I've noticed that it's very different knowing about something and being very personally acquainted with it. When those feelings and things come in, it's a whole different story. It's like the difference between going through something and praying for someone going through something - you're not in there with them, compassionate definitely, but also very removed. This makes the situation different for someone just watching and someone making. The person making is much more acquainted with the material and makes decisions based on the research that was done and then hands off a finished item. There are a lot of things that show, that don't stand out, but build the whole, that make it up. This means that for Moses and Aaron, the magicians getting their butts whooped in these plagues, must've been absolutely HUGE for them as well as the magicians who may have thought they had no equal! If you think of something you went through - you know it's very different having gone through and just knowing about someone going through it.

 - Defocus Node
   Haha, yes, again. When GOD is on me about something, it has to be done and it has to be done well! So, this week, I spent a colossal amount of time on the new defocus node. It was a very very big deal to move from a test scene to a practical test scene. Difference? Well, a basic test scene would be extremely generic - not something you would really encounter in "the real world." This requires a different test - a practicality test. This sort of test reveals all manner of issues with the material. For example - in the test scene, I had objects that were outlined. This meant that the object were technically bigger than the actual depth map showed. This had to be corrected. The roll from fore- to background was only faded, it did not actually, dynamically, blur for each level - that had to be fixed as well. In essence you could say that the node was completely redone based on the same principles, yet greatly improved.
   My only personal snag with the node is its speed. It is, imo, waaay too slow. For the amount of work that it has to do (repairing and blurring a lot at various and relative levels), it makes sense, but for it to really render at a fantastic speed, it needs more work. GOD did give me a great way to optimize it this week by using a built screen capture of the entire node. This meant that I could use Inkscape to follow all the wires and look for doubles to remove. Only found a handful that could be removed or changed, but it's speed is it's speed atm. GOD will provide though! :D
   You can check the video for the improvements and changes.
   The biggest question is what this has to do with Exodus. Quite frankly, a lot, because it is a filming tool - one that, at least for anime, sets it apart. Obviously, mine is not full-on anime, as my characters are more anatomically correct and less stylized, but I am going for very similar feelings. This means that if I want to go for something that anime got right in a very big way, it better look stunning, haha. For the first shots defocus got used in, it turned out well enough for those shots' requirements, but for clear shots, this thing had to get overhauled and it sure did - just like I told you guys last week that I felt GOD give me the insight on how to improve it!
   I would luv to do a tutorial on it, but haven't yet gotten peace on it - if you subscribe and I do get the release from GOD to do one, then you'd be notified.

 - Major irony - 3D editing
   In last week's video, I showed you guys a few tips on editing for 3D. Those things had soft edges. This week, however, was a little different. With one of the shots where the magicians tape the sticks, I had to shift the stripes! If they are flat on the viewing plane, they can really mess with the final result. You don't have to radically shift them - just enough that they don't cause visual tension for the viewer (ie, two things to focus on). The fuzzier the edges, the less it matters - the sharper the edges, the more it matters. Always, always, always take this into consideration. I expected it to just work, because it was the same on the left side too. It was not a good result. Don't fall for it like I did, haha.
   A good tip is looking at the effect itself. Whatever the main focus of the scene is, check it's difference spacing and do the opposite - what non-focus things will be doing - usually the background of some sort.
   Also, when working with 3D, you're direction are sort of reversed, making it very difficult to gauge things - this is where compositor editing works best! If you can, use the compositor so you can have real-time feedback!

 - Interpolation isn't so obvious
   With one of last week's shots - the magicians' overall moves - I had another shot that was moving too fast, haha, so it was off to interpolation land with the 'so-called' most accurate option I could find - only this was by my assumption. It has 3 search size settings. 1, 2 and 4. One is accurate to a pixel, one half a pixel and one a quarter of a pixel. You'd think going for the finest would be great, but here's the issue - on the website they warn that this can be potentially a problem with large areas. Meaning, you'd be better off with whole pixel accuracy as opposed to quarter pixel accuracy - tested and sure enough! Thankfully, they did have the warning on their page, so I'm glad I could retry it. This also means that I removed the motion blur that was going to be there as well. The results are far better than what I expected them to be! May it be the last shot requiring interpolation! haha.

 - PS
I made more wallpapers if you guys are interested. Haha, who am I kidding, of course you are! haha. Check out the Facebook Page for the special album! :D

Anyhow, that is it for this week's post - a lot got done this week, so I am just so thankful for everyone who reads, comments and watches! Thank you!

Biggest thanx to GOD for helping me with this. Without HIM, none of this would be possible! :D

Know JESUS yet? GOD is reaching out to you through these videos. HE loves you more than you can imagine and wants you to know HIM. Not because HE's lonely, but because HE loves you and paid a heavy price to enable you to go to Heaven, where HE is. See, we all have sinned in some way shape or form. That makes us guilty before GOD. If you have ever said that you hated someone, in GOD's standard, you have committed murder (James 4). If you've ever looked on a person with lustful thinking, you've already committed fornication with them in your heart and you are then guilty of sexual impurity. If you were to face GOD on judgement day, saying: "I was a good person" will be a void argument, just like it would be before a human judge. GOD knew that we would have to pay that penalty and that we could not pay it, even if we tried, but sent JESUS to pay the price for us. Your sins were put on HIM and the forgiveness that is there for you was by no means cheap - the cross was not padded and comfortable, neither was the death.
But, HE was raised up on the third day (after being crucified) and finished the work so that we may enter through HIM paying the penalty we were supposed to pay, but it is only valid for you, if you accept it and live for HIM.
If that is you today, please, follow this prayer:
"JESUS, I believe that YOU are real and I believe YOU died for me and was raised on the third day for me. Please forgive me for my many sins. I make YOU the LORD of my life, full time and to fill me with YOUR HOLY SPIRIT. Teach me how to live for YOU, help me become what YOU have made me to be, in JESUS' Name! Amen!"

To find out more, you can check out this link:
http://www.crossallegiance.org/knowJesus.html
It gives you access to free Bible translations, free teaching videos and more. Remember, this is a decision with eternal consequence, choose life, choose JESUS. :D

Have a great one!!!

Thank YOU!!!!!!

In : WIP 


Tags: god  jesus  holy spirit  blender  anime  exodus  7-12  kjv  progress  wip  defocus  magicians  enchantment  interpolations  snakes  eaten  flight 

About Me


Marius Oberholster Hey all! I've been doing CG work full-time since 2011. GOD has been with me, supported me and taught me all the way. HE tells us to do all things as unto the LORD and that is my goal. I do whatever I believe the HOLY SPIRIT is leading me to do and it's not always easy, but it's always worth it to be obedient! JESUS is awesome!! If you don't know HIM yet, follow the link above!

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