jack and the beanstalk

Last December my friend Jeremy Woodward proposed we revive the puppet theater I built and have a family Pantomime at the neighborhood social all in West Barrington. Settling on Jack and the Beanstalk (because everybody knew it) – the brothers and sisters an in-laws started working on making it happen. My son made a great LED lighting grid. The Hlynskys spent a day making sets and characters. the Wordwards produced music with the a ukelele band. Here are some process snaps.

swirlys particles

Here a small animation of a dot sliding on the x axis is attached to a particle. (particle playground) Rotation is controlled by a second layer using the ephemeral controls. Echo effect is added in an adjustment layer to get the repeats.

Same thing with more particles and wide time and vector blur

Note: These take forever to render.

wagon wheel effect

here an object with spokes is rotated and made into a movie that plays at 60 FPS without interlacing. The movie is then brought into After Effects and rendered by re-time sampling the movie at different frame rates. It is a little weird to stream this over the internet because the internet speed will drop frames – I am also not certain if when uploaded to Vimeo if the 60 FPS original was cut to 30 fps via the upload transcoder. Yikes – never certain of truth 24 frames per second any more.

cross hatch shading – projection

The shader network starts with a light info node. This simply returns the value of the “light” as it hits the object. Higher number in the bright area lower number in the dark.  This number 1-0 is fed into a the position of a two color ramp shader. Where 1 moves the a black input to the top of the ramp and 0 moves it to the bottom. .5 splits the ramp half white half black. The light output is also patched into a set range node. This node splits the input into three  (xyz) values. The x value is altered… 1 = 90 0 = 0 and connected to the tile rotation.  The y value is passed to the Repeat U and V. This makes thinner lines in the light areas and fat lines in the dark areas.

The Ramp is connected to the transparency of a lambert. Changing the color of the lambert will change the color of the lines.

The shading network is duplicated + a shading map and connected to a layered shader. shading map at the bottom.

A variation of this uses the sampler info to alter the rotation of the texture map.


A little test done before IO figured out how to connect the rotation. This is projection mapped and I am a bit disturbed by the way the lines don’t move with the animal – the animal passes through the lines.

woodblocky scratchy shader

Been trying to build a surface shader that looks a bit like a wood block or engraving without resorting to reflections. Here the light info is fed into the thickness of the procedural grid texture. U or V should be turned off. It is also multiplied and input into the rotation of the projection mapped grid texture. Pretty simple really…. Lighting is important because the light is what modulates the patchiness and the line with.
Light is used to modulate the width of the toon line and of course paint effects are attached for activity. The light makes the toon line thinner so the shadows have more active and looser lines. Its fast and OK.

I got tangled up in making hair. NCloth on the hat.


here is a good explanation of cross hatch shading network – Cross Hatch Shader

Duncan Brinsmead’s approach to Cross Hatch Shading