Hello, I’m Ilia Zaslavsky, technical 3D/VFX artist from Israel and author of AppLink for Fusion 6. I am working on my reel and doing freelance projects, while dreaming about technical artist / Junior TD position (or internship) in serious production house or studio, local or overseas :) My passion is VFX industry and technology behind it, i love technically challenging tasks such as scripting, rigging, hair/cloth fx, fluids and particles, shading/rendering and compositing of course. Links to my resume and online profiles, please don’t hesitate to contact me:
My current job is freelancing for a Pilgway Studio, developers of 3D painting and sculpting application 3D-Coat, my task is to create connector plugins called AppLinks for a different 3D apps, to make workflow between 3D-Coat and other apps as easy and as efficient as possible. What especially interesting imo, the idea was to support not only 3D apps, but to try and make AppLink connectors for compositing apps, and after some research we’ve decided to start with eyeon fusion, because of its fantastic, second to none 3D toolset, which opens new horizons and makes possible to take some of the tasks traditionally tied to dedicated 3D software into fusion, where it can be worked out much faster, in very interactive way. For me it was very interesting and challenging task, because of its “uniqueness” - although such a connectors for 3D apps isn’t something unusual, integration of 3D painting app with major compositing software is much more unique. So, I’ve gladly accepted this task and started 3D-Coat AppLink for Fusion 6 project.
AppLink was created using Python scripting language, which is (finally!!!) built into Fusion 6. There is a few ways to use python in fusion, I’ve decided to go with built-in Python 3.1 version, which does not require end-user to install any additional python files. AppLink idea is simple but powerful enough - both 3D-Coat and Fusion reads/writes text files with names and path of the geometry files and textures it needs to output or load in specific location, how to use those files etc.
In fusion, you start with Shape 3D or FBX Import node active, then run 3DC AppLink from “Script” menu and choose “Export to 3D-Coat” checkbox:
In the next dialog choose path and name for the output .OBJ file:
Select 3D-Coat Identifier (what you’re going to do with exported .OBJ file in 3D- Coat):
Finally, you can choose options to skip import and/or export dialogs later in 3D-Coat and pre-select all or some of the options available in those dialogs (it’s optional, you can cancel this window and select needed options later in 3D-Coat):
Hit OK (or cancel) in the last dialog window and you’ll see “Render Completed” message, FBX Exporter node will be created, .OBJ file exported and text file needed for 3D-Coat created in “Exchange” folder.
Now start 3D-Coat (if it is not already started), import dialog will pop automatically (if you chose to skip 3D-Coat Import dialog in the AppLink window earlier in Fusion, you wont see this window and your mesh will be opened in 3D-Coat straight away). Choose needed options and hit OK:
You will see your mesh in 3D-Coat, so you can use your creativity and 3D-Coat’s rich toolset to edit and paint it to your heart content:
When done, hit File -> Open in Original App:
Then choose needed options (again, if you chose to skip 3D-Coat Export dialog in the AppLink window earlier in Fusion, you wont see this window and your mesh will be exported using pre-selected options):
In Fusion choose “Import from 3D-Coat” checkbox in AppLink dialog and hit OK:
A network of nodes will be created:
Edited mesh will be imported back to the fusion, with all textures you’ve created in 3D- Coat assigned to the correct inputs of the Blinn material node, which is assigned to the edited 3D geometry. BumpMap and 3D displacement nodes will be created and assigned to the mesh as well if you choose to export those maps from 3D-Coat:
That’s it, you can render the scene in fusion now, using it’s awesome 3D renderers (software, OGL or renderman), you can edit your textures and materials using any tool from fusion’s rich 2D toolbox etc, possibilities are endless - sky is the limit for creative person using latest and greatest tech available in our ever growing, very technologically advanced and creative industry, both Fusion 6 and 3D-Coat 3.5 are great examples of state of the art technology that opens new horizons for us all, artists who use it in our day-to-day work.
Video of the AppLink for Fusion demonstration:http://vimeo.com/17644024
Download AppLink for Fusion:http://www.multiupload.com/9ZAV87ADE5
I want to thank eyeon software crew for their support and for the chance to make this interview for eyeon Newsletter, thanks to the readers as well, Happy Xmas and Happy New Year all!
Ilia Zaslavsky (firstname.lastname@example.org)