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Posted by Marius Oberholster on Thursday, August 24, 2017 Under: WIP
Hey all!
This week's vlog!


GOD is super!

  - Massive Speed boost
   This is one has me a little frazzled to be honest, hahaha. Blender has the weirdest issues sometimes. When I work in the compositor. The 2D compositing takes a second, if not less. With the 3D node in the project, it takes approx 48 seconds to convert the final 2D composite to 3D with the depth map. That means, a 2:29 render, takes 3:18 to complete. If I make a clean project with only the 3D node and I use image sequences for the final composite and depth maps, it takes just under 7 seconds to do the conversion!! WHAT IN THE WORLD!!!!!!!! Why so much time wasted?!?!?!?! hahahaha.
   I do know that Blender's compositor is very non-destructive, so my guess is that it applies the 3D node to everything that comes before the composite, meaning a second per node used inside the group node (just a guess). I am so stunned! No way am I doing the 3D with the 2D. I will render out the depth map with the final and then convert after, because that will be a massive massive massive speed boost. A roughly 7x speed boost for the compositing!!!!!
   Take it from me - if you have a similar case where your group node is the final step, test it separately! GOD is so awesome for showing me this! I can just scream I am so excited!!!!

 - More speed-ups
   Unfortunately, not at this point. I tried switching from RayTrace to approximate, but the second you add the elements that make it Exodus, the render time skyrockets again. In other words, if you're happy with a poor quality render, then you can easily get below a minute for the rendering alone. If you want to do quality work, it takes about 2,5 mins per frame. I do believe there are yet more enhancements, but I don't know what exactly. I have to say though, that despite the 2.5min limit, I have also experienced render times (including compositing), barely peaking over 1min, so I think for Blender Render, it is a pretty top speed for general production (unless you have much much much faster hardware).

 - A Different Option
   In the storyboards I felt led to make the next confrontation occur from the viewpoint of a boat, because that was what fit, but honestly, after reading it again this week, I'm really not sure. Not because it's not possible, but I do believe there is another possibility. Let's view the segment again:

"Get thee unto Pharaoh in the morning; lo, he goeth out unto the water; and thou shalt stand by the river's brink against he come; and the rod which was turned to a serpent shalt thou take in thine hand."
Exodus 7:15, KJV.

It's just vague enough, but to me it seems to suggest HE wasn't on the water, but just coming to the water (they didn't have indoor plumbing like we do - to bathe inside). The piece says "out unto", so he was inside coming outside and going unto the water. I really am shocked that I missed that in the storyboards. I am super thankful that HE corrected me in time, but I am honest when I tell you that I had total peace about doing the whole boat thing... Weird. Anyway, thankful is not the word! :D
Besides, I think this is funnier and cooler anyway! GOD is awesome!!

 - Creative choices
   This week opened with one of the easiest shots of the video - Moses and Aaron walking out. By easy, don't misunderstand what I mean. When I say easy, I mean comparatively, because it still took a lot of time to set-up and make sure everything was right before rendering. What made it so much easier was the fact that Moses and Aaron already had walk cycles. All I needed to do was turn them around and walk them out with Pharaoh in the right pose. I did make some modifications to Aaron's, because he had these weird jerks in his walk. He would complete a cycle then take a dip for a frame and then come back up. Stranger was the reaction when I tried fixing it! Wow! It was just drama upon drama with the scene's animation. Thankfully, I didn't have to do it from scratch, because it went a lot faster this way - it really did!

   The creative choice came in with how they walked out. GOD led me two ways on this second:
- Darkening the background
- Defocusing the background

These meant that the focus would fall on Moses and Aaron as the focus of GOD's Words, though more Moses, since he is the one being addressed - you notice watching it that your eyes are also drawn to Moses.
Before these though, HE told me that this was supposed to be a slow motion shot, but that it was supposed to look like a slow motion shot. That meant a creative choice had to be made to show it was slow motion instead of it being slow motion - lazy man's motion blur to the rescue! hahaha. This is one of the few instances where I would actually recommend you go for it! One of the few cases where it actually made sense! haha.

 - NLA Workings
   I am still learning about the NLA and it's inner workings (you know, what works and what doesn't) and GOD showed me the most amazing tip I can share with you guys - always make sure that what you want to fade between actions, exists in both actions!
I can't stress this point enough. If you want to use actions like video strips, you have to make sure that there is something for the NLA to latch onto. For example, let's take the walk cycle. When someone is walking, you usually leave the head where it's at and you just continue with the legs, the arms, etc. Now, you want to fade to a strip that only has the head turning. The walking will not fade out this way. You have to have at least a single keyframe in the head turning action, so the NLA has something to fade to. The same works for from. Everything that has to be faded, has to exists in the next strip.

 - Eevee and NPR
   I had a talk with someone this week that has a bit more insider info than I do, and they said that Blender Render is going to get scrapped completely and for quite a few good reasons - many of which are the reasons that the whole Eevee thing got started and also probably why the shadows of the two look so similar at this point, hahaha.
   Anyhow, I felt led to try toon shading in it again this week and I am telling you, it felt like I spent a year on it! I wanted to delete the build multiple times, but there was one time in particular GOD told me to not give up and try again and finally got it! I am so thankful I did not give up and that is what I share with you guys in the video. GOD led me to a workable final result for Eevee, but this does mean challenges for other objects and that we definitely need a much much better shadow system in Eevee (which will come, I mean it is still under development). So, check out the video here - you'll see that NPR is very much possible in a PBR environment. I just want there to be a proper toon shader... :)

 - Expressive Elements
   One of the coolest things in anime, and I can't really add it here. Because I work with a more realistic style and more serious material, I can't add those anger x's and other cool effects, because they are too comedic. I have never seen them used in a dramatic way and I personally don't have peace about adding them in Exodus (I tried with Pharaoh though...). Some traditional elements just don't fit the production and that's fine. I just want to use it at some point, because they are truly hysterical! haha.
   Some of my favorites of all time so far are the anger X and the arrow of criticism. Though I've only seen the latter in one anime, I have seen the X or upside down Y in pretty much every anime that has a sense of humor, that I watched (not as many as it sounds, haha). I guess it fits more into a silliness kind of genre, where the goal is to give people a good chuckle about what's going on.
   If that is the kind of project you have, I invite you to check out my tutorial on expressive elements for anime! :D


GOD is so wonderful!

 - Defocus Tutorial
   Finally, GOD allowed me so graciously to make another tutorial this week! I get to share the new Defocus node with you, by showing you how to put it together. Don't let this be a monkey-see monkey-do kinda thing, but really make it something more than just defocus. For example, like I said earlier, this week I needed to add some brightness controls for the back- and foregrounds to make sure the focus was where it needed to be. Be creative with it and play with it - it's one of the best and coolest ways to learn!! :D


GOD is so awesome!

Anyhow, that is it for this week's post!

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  eevee engine  npr  toon shader  progress  surprise  pharaoh 

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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