Project Ideas

Web based asset database

Sketchfab is an online model viewer / download tool that allows the user to view in 3D rendered models in a web page. This project takes a similar idea however it will read a local database and allow the users to view the content of the database of models then interact with the selected ones.

Ideally there should be a web front end to allow the upload of models to the database (use a local sqlite database for ease), then select the models from this list.

I would suggest using a docker / podman image to build the system with a local sqlite database similar to the clutterbase project we will develop in the lab.

2D image reference database

pureRef is a tool to allow users to organize and arrange images to create mood boards and search for reference images. This project should allow the creation on webbased mood boards / image libraries which can be search and sorted by keyword. I would suggest using a simple database to store the images and some form of schema to collate these into the overall mood / reference images.

Layout and other tools should be added if there is time. I would suggest using a docker / podman image to generate the web server / database system with locally mounted storage for the image data.

Code Generator

Most API’s require a lot of boiler plate code for plugin development. On top of this there are many different types of plugin all requiring different setups.

Generate a GUI based system that presents different plugin / api options for the user and generates a base working project. You should try and target both C++ and Python projects and the project should be extensible enough to allow more options.

Better Maya Code editor

We all know the maya code editor is rubbish, and most external editors are not much better relying on the command port to run things. Create an integrated editor for maya python / mel which allows modern IDE features like syntax highlighting and code completion for example it is likely this will be written in C++ as a plugin using Qt for the GUI.

Unreal Pipelines

At present a number of our unreal project use a very manual approach to exporting and formatting data from Maya / Houdini to Unreal. develop a set of working practices and automated tools to make this easier. This could include the use of metahumans as well as other assets.

Renderfarm tools

At present our renderfarm tools use the Qube python api and Python 2.7 we need to update the tool and setup to use python3 and the lates Maya / Houdini API’s. In addition to this we need to add better validation of scene files and data uploaded to the farm to ensure that all files needed for rendering are present.

A physically based lens distortion node for nuke.

Each pixel will have a scaled convolve matrix based on its depth. The depth is normalised 0-1, 0 being next to the lens, 1 being infinite distance. Ideally we should be able to control the bokeh and other abberations. Bokeh should also manage swirly bokeh as seen on a petzval lens. This has a radial distortion applied to the convolve matrix.

Nuke current node: zdefocus Industry strandard plugin: [pgbokeh]) Input RGB + z + Convolve, output RGB. A library of possible psf’s would be nice so you can choose one, otherwise a custom image input for the convolve.

An Asset pipeline

Develop an asset pipeline using existing tools such as zou watchtower or other tools. You will need to design, document and deploy this (I would suggest linux only for ease). and demonstrate that it can be used by artists.