Topic: The VFX Social Thread

I was thinking about the social threads on TFN earlier today, and I was curious if that would be stupid here.

Let's find out!

I'm picturing this as being like the water cooler gathering spot we all share in a bizarre meta-studio somewhere. I'm not sure if this'll prove totally redundant what with the chat box serving a similar purpose, but maybe this is where slightly-longer stuff might go.

*kicks snowball*

So, any of you AE folks thinkin' about switching over to Nuke? Anybody back from the other side? How's that transition?

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: The VFX Social Thread

We used it in film school, for compositing I'd switch back in a heartbeat. Never used it for motion graphics, but I imagine After Effects, for all Adobe's shittiness, is still the king there.

Problem is, hoooooooooooooooboyo that price tag if you want to /actually/ do anything with it.

My movies: ZangrethorDigital.ca
Let's plays: youtube.com/bigdamnartist
Other movie thing I do: youtube.com/BullskitComedy

Re: The VFX Social Thread

I've been putting Nuke off for years — now years and years and years — and I can't really justify myself. I mean, 'I've been spending my time on other things' and 'not-knowing-Nuke hasn't prevented me from paying rent' are justifications, but if the criteria is 'taking one's career seriously,' then I absolutely cannot justify myself.

Here's a prompt we can play with for a bit, because I'm curious about people's opinions on it. I dunno, this might be too much work for people.

Let's sort our tool-based experiences on a few criteria, and watch the data swirl.

Make a list of all the 'serious' software you know how to use.

(You can steal this pre-formatted bbCode from the following blank post.)

Sort by hours-of-use, most to least

A. After Effects
B. Photoshop
C. Lightwave
D. Premiere
E. Audition
F. Mocha
G. Boujou

The letters you use are permanent; for me, "A" will always attend "After Effects."

Sort by feel-at-homeness, most to least

A. After Effects
B. Photoshop
F. Mocha
D. Premiere
C. Lightwave
E. Audition
G. Boujou

Sort by sum history of annoyance with product, least to most

E. Audition
F. Mocha
D. Premiere
G. Boujou
A. After Effects
C. Lightwave
B. Photoshop

Sort by preference for interacting with the software [interface, layout, etc.], most to least

E. Audition
B. Photoshop
D. Premiere
A. After Effects
F. Mocha
C. Lightwave
G. Boujou

Sort by sum history of gee-whiz delightful moments with product, most to least

A. After Effects
G. Boujou
C. Lightwave
E. Audition
B. Photoshop
D. Premiere
F. Mocha

I had seven pieces of software, which means there were always seven software packages 'jockeying for my favor' on each of the five lists, right? Each one wanted to be first, yet each time someone came in seventh, etc..

Take 'who came in first' from all five lists, and put those letters together on the first line of a new list; then take 'who came in second' from all five lists, and put those letters together on the second line of a new list, etc..

All the first-placers on the first row; all the second-placers on the second row; etc.

100. AAEEA
090. BBFBG
080. CFDDC
070. DDGAE
060. ECAFB
050. FECCD
040. GGBGF
030.
020.
010.
000.

The numbers are "points," and now we score the letters based on this list. A letter gets 100 points each time it appears on the 100-point line; it gets 90 points each time it appears on the 90-point line; etc.. Add 'em up.

(Here's me calculating 'A': "Hey Google, what's 100 plus 100 plus 100 plus 70 plus 60?")

Adding up points

530 A. After Effects
370 B. Photoshop
320 C. Lightwave
350 D. Premiere
380 E. Audition
320 F. Mocha
280 G. Boujou

Finally, put them in point-order, lose the letters, and discover your apparent favorite children.

Putting in point-order

430 - After Effects
380 - Audition
370 - Photoshop
350 - Premiere
320 - Lightwave
320 - Mocha
280 - Boujou

I cannot believe Audition beat Photoshop, for me. Photoshop is my longest-used software; been poking around in there since 2000 or so. I'm also surprised to see Premiere above Lightwave. Shit's crazy.

Anyway, if anybody else feels like killin' time and crunchin' numbers, I'm curious to see how it shakes out.

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: The VFX Social Thread

Sort by hours-of-use, most to least

A.
B.
C.

Sort by feel-at-homeness, most to least

A.
B.
C.

Sort by sum history of annoyance with product, least to most

A.
B.
C.

Sort by preference for interacting with the software [interface, layout, etc.], most to least

A.
B.
C.

Sort by sum history of gee-whiz delightful moments with product, most to least

A.
B.
C.


All the first-placers on the first row; all the second-placers on the second row; etc.

100.
090.
080.
070.
060.
050.
040.
030.
020.
010.
000.

Adding up points

[###] A.
[###] B.
[###] C.


Putting in point-order

-
-
-

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: The VFX Social Thread

I am fascinated by how often Audition is at the top of your preference lists. Whenever I get time to actually sit down and do this, it will without fail be near the bottom. Atrocious design, atrocious workflow, godawful navigation. I once lost an entire days worth of edits on files because it was working with temp files without telling me, and then promptly deleted them all after I closed. You can brute force it to do what you want, but I would never even dare put it higher than 3rd or 4th worst bit of software I use on a regular basis.

My movies: ZangrethorDigital.ca
Let's plays: youtube.com/bigdamnartist
Other movie thing I do: youtube.com/BullskitComedy

Re: The VFX Social Thread

I'm not crazy about the workflow either, tbh — and I'm certainly not in love with Audition, but it's always been fairly easy for me to intuit, and that's a big part of what I hope for in UX.

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: The VFX Social Thread

Hesitated about putting Lightroom in, because it's "serious" for photography, but doesn't require a lot of knowledge. It's 25% image skills, 75% organizing skills really.

Sort by hours-of-use, most to least

A. After Effects
B. Nuke
C. Photoshop
D. Lightroom
E. Maya
F. Premiere

Sort by feel-at-homeness, most to least

B. Nuke
C. Photoshop
A. After Effects
D. Lightroom
E. Premiere
F. Maya

Sort by sum history of annoyance with product, least to most

B. Nuke
D. Lightroom
F. Premiere
E. Photoshop
C. Maya
A. AFTER EFFECTS GODDAMMIT

Sort by preference for interacting with the software [interface, layout, etc.], most to least

B. Nuke
D. Lightroom
F. Premiere
C. Photoshop
A. After Effects
E. Maya

Sort by sum history of gee-whiz delightful moments with product, most to least

B. Nuke
C. Photoshop
A. After Effects
D. Lightroom
F. Premiere
E. Maya


All the first-placers on the first row; all the second-placers on the second row; etc.

100. ABBBB
090. BCDDC
080. CAFFA
070. DDECD
060. EFCAF
050. FEAEE
040.
030.
020.
010.
000.

Adding up points

[370] A.
[490] B.
[390] C.
[390] D.
[280] E.
[330] F.


Putting in point-order

- Nuke
- Photoshop
- Lightroom
- After Effects
- Premiere
- Maya

Turns out I'd rather use Lightroom than After Effects, but again, this feels biased, and Lightroom I don't use that much, so I haven't had as much time to hate it as I have with AE. And since it performs much simpler tasks, it's less prone to creating frustration.

My take on Nuke vs AE is always the same. Which one is the better choice for your project depends on a lot of criteria: how much heavy VFX work is needed, of which quality, the time you need to spend on it, etc. Using Nuke for the TV show I work on would be like taking a Panzer to go out for groceries. But I really do love using that Panzer.

In any case, Teague, Nuke is available free for non-commercial uses, with a few limitations you'll hardly even notice. Frustrated? Just try it for an hour, see how that node-based system feels. The first minute my VFX teacher showed me how it worked, I fell instantly in love and completely forgot about AE. There's some danger to this.

Last edited by Saniss (2017-12-05 10:26:10)

Sébastien Fraud
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"We're gonna build a great green screen, and make the traditional matte painters pay for it"
Saniss for President 2016 - "Make VFX great again"

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Re: The VFX Social Thread

I actually learned Digital Fusion back at DAVE in 2006, and also Lightwave has a node editor, some I'm already familiar with the node workflow and truly have no excuse.

Follow-up question: you have Nuke at the top of your interface list; is that all nodes, or, what else went into that ranking?

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: The VFX Social Thread

Nodes, clear and friendly interface, fast and smooth, very very rare bugs, the ability to put keys and expressions on anything. You see it, you edit it. No arbitrary choice made by the guy who made the effect. Lots of customization capabilities on the interface itself, too. You make the software what you want it to be.

Overall, Nuke's interface tells you it wants to work with you, not against you.

Last edited by Saniss (2017-12-05 17:03:06)

Sébastien Fraud
Facebook | Twitter | 500px
"We're gonna build a great green screen, and make the traditional matte painters pay for it"
Saniss for President 2016 - "Make VFX great again"

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Re: The VFX Social Thread

This looks fun. I haven't used quite as much software as most of you (I'll be throwing GoldWave and Audacity on there methinks) but I'll have to give it a go when I can (set construction the next few nights so I'll be away from the computer).

Boter, formerly of TF.N as Boter and DarthArjuna. I like making movies and playing games, in one order or another.

Re: The VFX Social Thread

Alright, starting to draft this. Not fully VFX, but just, "What software have I used in a professional or prosumer capacity?:

Sort by hours-of-use, most to least

A. Premiere
B. After Effects
C. GoldWave
D. Encore
E. Photoshop
F. Illustrator
G. Audacity
H. Lightroom

Sort by feel-at-homeness, most to least Probably just a marker of how long I've been using some of these. Towards the bottom are ones that if I'm not doing a specific task I've done many times before (making DVD art for work with specific templates), I'm lost.

B. After Effects
A. Premiere
D. Encore
C. GoldWave
G. Audacity
H. Lightroom
F. Illustrator
E. Photoshop

Sort by sum history of annoyance with product, least to most Similar to the previous list; if it doesn't annoy me I feel more at home with it, I guess.

A. Premiere
B. After Effects
C. GoldWave
G. Audacity
D. Encore
H. Lightroom
E. Photoshop
F. Illustrator

Sort by preference for interacting with the software [interface, layout, etc.], most to least

A. Premiere
B. After Effects
C. GoldWave
H. Lightroom
D. Encore
G. Audacity
E. Photoshop
F. Illustrator

Sort by sum history of gee-whiz delightful moments with product, most to least

B. After Effects
A. Premiere
C. GoldWave
D. Encore
E. Photoshop
F. Illustrator
H. Lightroom
G. Audacity


All the first-placers on the first row; all the second-placers on the second row; etc.

100. ABAAB
090. BABBA
080. CDCCC
070. DCGHD
060. EGDDE
050. FHHGF
040. GFEEH
030. HEFFG
020.
010.
000.

Adding up points

[480] A. Premiere
[470] B. After Effects
[310] C. GoldWave
[340] D. Encore
[230] E. Photoshop
[200] F. Illustrator
[270] G. Audacity
[240] H. Lightroom


Putting in point-order

- A. Premiere
- B. After Effects
- D. Encore
- C. GoldWave
- G. Audacity
- H. Lightroom
- E. Photoshop
- F. Illustrator

None of this was really surprising to me. I'm in Premiere daily and if something does frustrate me it's because they changed something in an update, and I work around it. After Effects I've been in for longer (I was the nutter that used it as an NLE because I couldn't afford an additional piece of software for the longest time) so also learned my way around really well and have no problems with, though I don't demand of it what you guys do.

Little surprised to see Encore in 3rd, but it does exactly what I need it to (aside from kicking me out to Photoshop for menu design).

I think Audacity is more full-featured than GoldWave but I used GW first so I feel more at home with it.

And then, hey, I don't do stuff with still images so of course I'm not as comfortable with the last three. I can do basic photo edits with Lightroom when asked to but it does some things very oddly when coming from other pieces of software. And finally aside from working with templates for disc production I couldn't Photoshop (or Illustrator) my way out of a paper bag without extensive help; given half a chance I'll use AE in place of Photoshop, even for still images.

(Teague, After Effects scored higher than 500 for you, when there's a 500 point max on this. Carry an extra 1?)

Boter, formerly of TF.N as Boter and DarthArjuna. I like making movies and playing games, in one order or another.

Re: The VFX Social Thread

Boter wrote:

(Teague, After Effects scored higher than 500 for you, when there's a 500 point max on this. Carry an extra 1?)

holden

Good catch; fixed.

I haven't used Encore in a million years — I'd forgotten about it, actually — but now I seem to recall having an okay grasp of the program and being able to get the results I wanted from it. Man. I'm gonna go see what Encore's been up to lately.

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: The VFX Social Thread

Nothing, they stopped development after CS6. For the longest time I kept us on Premiere CS6 at the office for cross-communication between the two, but it didn't always work 100% and this year we updated to CC 2017 (today, CC 2018) and just export stuff that I bring into Encore and it works fine.

I still actually prefer Premiere CS6, which I have at home, for some small things like track height adjustment, behavior of track select tool, that sort of thing, though I wish it had the Lumetri Color effect.

Boter, formerly of TF.N as Boter and DarthArjuna. I like making movies and playing games, in one order or another.

Re: The VFX Social Thread

Ugh I just remembered that SpeedGrade was a thing. Hated the one time I tried to use it, absolutely awful experience all around. Lumetri Color in Premiere CC does everything I need for adjustment and has plenty of tools for grades as well, though I haven't worked enough with color correction to want to do much with it.

Boter, formerly of TF.N as Boter and DarthArjuna. I like making movies and playing games, in one order or another.

Re: The VFX Social Thread

I've been more shitty at Adobe about software versions than I currently am about AE and Premiere, but I've also certainly been less shitty about them. The way tabs work in AE at the moment drives me insane.

And, yeah — I keep a copy of Photoshop 7 around, 'cuz nothing I do in Photoshop benefits from the newer builds.

I still use CC most of the time, it should be said.

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: The VFX Social Thread

I keep relearning that my CS6 Encore will crash if I zoom the timeline in juuuust past the point of each frame being 10 pixels across on the time ruler. What a minefield if you want to be precise about editing a chapter point.

(UTC-06:00) Central Time (US & Canada)

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Re: The VFX Social Thread

I only dick around in this world in my spare time so not super versed at living with software packages on daily basis. Proviso out of the way. If I were to gage (a la Saniss style) software in order of how much work I've lost through it's temperamentalness, then I'd have to put Maya at the top of the list. It's twice a year major update thing usually ends up bricking projects or flat out refusing to even open the program. Random crashes seem to be common place with that thing. It's why I end up doing dumb shit like involuntarily trying to Ctrl+S most everything whether you can or not. The amount of times a day I get asked if I want to save a webpage is becoming annoying - *sigh*. The love/hate relationship with it goes on. Mudbox would place second (most people I guess use zBrush nower days). It's hit and miss sometimes when trying to convert high poly count meshes to texture maps. AE would be in the middle and Photoshop at the bottom.

I had the non-commercial version of Nuke installed on my computer for about a year and never opened it once. Too scared to. It frightens me so. One day I'll open it...

Teague wrote:

And, yeah — I keep a copy of Photoshop 7 around, 'cuz nothing I do in Photoshop benefits from the newer builds.

I could totally live with CS3 (might be CS2 I'm thinking of) and be happy.

Hurroo

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Re: The VFX Social Thread

The amount of times a day I get asked if I want to save a webpage is becoming annoying - *sigh*.

Oh man, this is heartbreaking. Look what they've done to you.

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: The VFX Social Thread

I'm late to this conversation, and I don't have the time to go through everybody's responses. But I did notice, Teague, that you were talking about how you've put off learning to use NUKE. I'm kind of in the same boat. NUKE and I are that couple that's never an item, just hooks up when I'm in town and then doesn't talk until the next time.

I've "known how to use NUKE" for years. Since v05 I think. Or early 6. I took me a long time to get used to the node-based workflow, but once I did it clicked. The problem with NUKE is that, while it's more efficient for larger projects, it's also more complicated and needs to be diligently managed. There's a lot of knobs and levers, and since you're, quite literally, building a python script, everything is manual. And with so much going on in even a simple comp, I find that it only takes one node to be piped in a bit wrong for everything to go kaput, then you spend an hour or more just trying to figure out why your comp is broken.

There's a simple remedy for this issue. It's called "Use it all the damn time". But I never really have a justification to use NUKE all the damn time. So I'll pull it off the shelf for a project and dust it off every now and again, then curse wildly as I'm trying to remember where the premult is supposed to go in the pipeline. I'll get my project done, put it back on the shelf, and wonder why I didn't just use AE.

I'll admit that, once you learn the NUKE interface, things that you once needed to find a clever workaround for in AE due to its limited features now became very straightforward and easy. The NukeX cameratracker is great. Even their 2D tracker leaves AE's in the dust.

I never mastered chromakey in Nuke because there's about 50 different ways to do it, but I've gotten better results faster using the IBK keyer.

Bottom line, I have a lot of friends who struggled with NUKE, then got jobs at Encore VFX or someplace similar where they were forced to use it all day every day and became experts inside of a month.

"I solemnly swear I am up to no good." - Han Solo, Terminator 2: With a Vengeance

Re: The VFX Social Thread

*reads comment while nodding, has no response, posts in third person*

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: The VFX Social Thread

I'm not a VFX guy, but I thought Teague's thing was cool so I'm interrupting y'all to do my own version. So here's some programming languages I've used. (Yes, I know SQL isn't really a programming language, but I use it enough and it is technically Turing complete, so I put it on (Also, I'm treating all versions of SQL as one thing for convenience, I know they're different))

Sort by hours-of-use, most to least

A. Java
B. SQL
C. C#
D. C
E. C++
F. Assembly
G. Python
H. PHP

Sort by feel-at-homeness, most to least

A. Java
C. C#
B. SQL
E. C++
F. Assembly
D. C
H. PHP
G. Python

Sort by sum history of annoyance with product, least to most

F. Assembly
B. SQL
C. C#
A. Java
E. C++
H. PHP
G. Python
D. C

Sort by preference for interacting with the software [interface, layout, etc.], most to least

B. SQL
C. C#
A. Java
E. C++
H. PHP
G. Python
D. C
F. Assembly

Sort by sum history of gee-whiz delightful moments with product, most to least

F. Assembly
B. SQL
C. C#
A. Java
D. C
E. C++
H. PHP
G. Python


All the first-placers on the first row; all the second-placers on the second row; etc.

100. AAFBF
090. BCBCB
080. CBCAC
070. DEAEA
060. EFEHD
050. FDHGE
040. GHGDH
030. HGDFG

Adding up points

[420] A. Java
[450] B. C#
[420] C. SQL
[250] D. C++
[310] E. Assembly
[340] F. C
[190] G. PHP
[220] H. Python


Putting in point-order

-C. C#
-A. Java
-B. SQL
-D. C
-F. Assembly
-E. C++
-G. Python
-H. PHP

C# coming out on top doesn't really surprise me, I've always slightly preferred it over Java. C being as high as it is amazes me, every time I've used it has mostly been an exercise in frustration. I'm also amused by how Assembly bounces around the list. Screw actually making anything in Assembly, but when you actually do it feels amazing. Also, you can't get mad at it because it's literally doing exactly what you told it to do.

Welp, there's my opinion on some programing languages. Carry on as you were.

"ShadowDuelist is a god."
        -Teague Chrystie

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Re: The VFX Social Thread

http://media3.giphy.com/media/13GKP7xGjce5oI/giphy.gif

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: The VFX Social Thread

Teague wrote:

Sort by hours-of-use, most to least

A. After Effects
B. Premiere
C. Logic Pro X
D. Illustrator
E. DaVinci
F. Photoshop

Sort by feel-at-homeness, most to least

A. After Effects
C. Logic Pro X
B. Premiere
F. Photoshop
D. Illustrator
E. DaVinci

Sort by sum history of annoyance with product, least to most

C. Logic Pro X
B. Premiere
F. Photoshop
D. Illustrator
E. DaVinci
A. After Effects

Sort by preference for interacting with the software [interface, layout, etc.], most to least

A. After Effects
C. Logic Pro X
B. Premiere
D. Illustrator
F. Photoshop
E. DaVinci

Sort by sum history of gee-whiz delightful moments with product, most to least

C. Logic Pro X
B. Premiere
A. After Effects
F. Photoshop
D. Illustrator
E. DaVinci


All the first-placers on the first row; all the second-placers on the second row; etc.

100. AACAC
090. BCBCB
080. CBFBA
070. DFDDF
060. EDEFD
050. FEAEE

Adding up points

[###] A. 430
[###] B. 430
[###] C. 460
[###] D. 330
[###] E. 270
[###] F. 250


Putting in point-order


460 - Logic Pro X
430 - Premiere
430 - After Effects
330 - Illustrator
270 - DaVinci
250 - Photoshop

I mean, it kinda makes sense.
I've been leaning more and more towards making music, and I feel right at home in Logic Pro X. After Effects and Premiere have always worked in tandem for me, so it makes perfect sense they would be tied at second. Illustrator doesn't surprise me either, as a lot of work I do is logo works and posters, so yeah.
The fact that somehow DaVinci made it over Photoshop baffles me, but I tend to use AE as most people use Photoshop anyways, so yeah, not completely bonkers.

Last edited by Tomahawk (2017-12-08 20:19:42)

Tomahawk Ellingsen

www.extendededition.net