Today I’m rebooting an oldie—we’re going to run a short script to show how Python is a friggin’ delight in Blender. I have with me a boring old kitchen that I want to add a bunch of little lights to.Continue reading “Python: How to Start Scripting in Blender”
Today I’m stretching my use of the word “code” to include memory hacks.
There exists a memory technique called the Roman Room, or Method of Loci, in which you associate information you want to remember with specific places in a house or building you know. For anyone who has better recall on spacial data or visual imagery, it’s ideal. That’s me in a nutshell.
It’s not difficult to load Python scripts into Blender’s text editor, but there’s something reassuring about just getting them to populate in the space bar menu.
How do you get Blender to do that, you ask?
You make your script into an add-on.
I have an obsession with timelines, which honestly may be bordering on manic and unhealthy. A 3D timeline has been on my back-burner for months because while I have written a function that auto-creates materials in Python, I had not yet mastered the art of applying image textures to those materials.
That’s today’s project.
This is my first and possibly only foray into the madness that is constructing a YouTube video. I’ve been watching the Vlog Brothers for years, and I’ve never appreciated the effort that goes into it. Pick a topic, write a script, animate the graphics, trim clips, find background music, and also, cut around all your foul language because YouTube does not take kindly to that.
I did that after doing a lot of other research on the basics of YouTube for a non-YouTuber.
So, as a supplement to this VBA video tutorial, I’ve condensed my background research for anyone out there who might also be considering a jump from WordPress to YouTube.
The human mouth is kind of a bastard. Animating it frame-by-frame requires a patience that I just don’t have. Blender has shape keys that can help you mold lips into different configurations for each sound, but you still have to set keyframes to match up with a particular word at each and every frame.
Or you can be lazy. Like me.
Like most freelancers out there, I don’t have spare cash for subscription fees. Approximately 99.9% of my disposable income goes toward coffee, booze, and books. Side-note: If you haven’t read Stiff by Mary Roach, you should. Informative but also surprisingly lighthearted.
Back to the point. Graphic design, photo editing, 3D modeling, GIS packages—the serious stuff can swallow your wallet whole. Luckily, the internet is a magical place, full of open-source alternatives to help level the playing field. Here’s my top picks.
After a long vacation, a wedding, a bad flu, and a whole mess of planes, trains, and automobiles, I’m back to talk about textures. I love playing with transparency in scenes, but scripting transclucency is a bit unusual in Processing. The normal Processing canvas doesn’t support an alpha channel, so it requires something called PGraphics().
Animated textures in Blender is a thing! Immediately after finding that out, I set out to script a grid crawler texture in Processing. Because no one in their right mind would want to draw that by hand.
A Bit Of Everything has a post with the logic for a static grid, but somehow getting an animated version ate 3 hours of my life. All in all, it took about 12 tries. What I love about Processing is that even bad guesses can have pleasing results.
Scenes with custom textures always seem to turn out better for me, but they’re hellish to make. I’ve spent hours in GIMP hand-drawing patterns, carefully testing out layers to get effects. It’s a hassle.
However, I’m learning to automate more of that sort of thing with Processing. What’s really nice about that is you can get a texture that changes subtly every time you run the script if you use the Random function to assign coordinates, weights, and transparency values.