Updated Arnold Shader and Tracking

They say three times is a charm. I re-shot the footage a third time and finally was able to pull a halfway decent track. I struggled with my original two tracks for many, many embarrassing hours. They drab colors along with my inability to understand how to frame track-able backgrounds worked really well together. It's all a learning experience, so they say. Lets start with some good news. The photo below is an updated render of the VTOL with Arnold shaders. It is starting to look much better but still needs work.

The next group of photos follow the usual setup. Notice this time I managed to frame lots of detail to help Nuke better track the shot.

The next group of photos are a short series of screen captures that show the track and the point cloud.

Now that I have imported everything into Maya there is a large mess to unwrap. Any progress is good progress. I clearly screwed up scaling along with the xyz axis.

Footage and Preliminary Tracking

I shot footage on the top of an open parking garage. I used two different lenses, 35mm 1.8, and a 10-16mm 2.8. The wider lens seems to have a lot of distortion or possibly a rolling shutter issue. I brought the wider footage into Nuke and started tracking the shot. The project presents many new difficulties to overcome. Accounting for size and spacing is very different. In my situation i will be landing or having a space shuttle/craft from the rooftop.

The next images are the clean plate, white balance, gray ball, and HDRi.

Early Nuke tracks as I attempt to build a point cloud to bring into Maya

Putting it all Together


I am far from happy with my results so far. The project needs a lot of work and the clock is ticking. The above images include CG representation of the sphere and cube, this helps me align the cameras and match the sunlight and shadows within Maya. The cube is for perspective and alignment while the sphere is to see the specular diffusion cast from the software lights. Below are some test renders within Maya, They include the sky dome, spotlight, dragon, and a ground projection of the environment.


These are some of my original test renders and variations of the shader as I explore Arnold and fine tune the lighting. The render layers include Sky dome, direct sun, object occlusion, ground shadow, and ground occlusion. The next step is to bring them into Nuke and see how they look stacked up.

Nuke is a cruel mistress. Compositing is fun but a new mountain to tackle. I have included some early srcreen grabs of the layers within Nuke. I am in the process of sett