Latest Baselight for NUKE ensures perfect colour compliance in VFX

Dedicated 5.0 toolkit for animators and compositors allied to render-free colour

FilmLight, the leading colour science and grading specialist, is introducing a powerful new version of Baselight for NUKE at IBC2017 (Amsterdam, 15 – 19 September, stand 7.F31). The plugin for the leading VFX software from The Foundry has been further enhanced to meet the requirements of creative artists working on collaborative projects.

With Baselight for NUKE, VFX artists quickly see the latest grade within the NUKE environment. The plugin can give access to the full Baselight grading toolkit where necessary, but the real power lies in its ability to recreate precisely the look from a full Baselight suite, so that it appears visually indistinguishable. This is achieved through the use of Baselight’s BLG metadata format, which is used to transfer real-world complex grades including spatial operations such as shapes, and keyframes for grades that change over time.

The new release of Baselight for NUKE, built on the latest functionality from FilmLight’s Baselight 5.0, makes collaborative workflows even more powerful. Baselight for NUKE 5.0 can load even more intricate grades delivered from a full Baselight system – including shots with multiple inputs, mixed formats or even numerous EXR channels. The BLG file now contains format mappings alongside the grade metadata and colour space information, so that even if the full Baselight grade uses material from multiple different sources, Baselight for NUKE will combine the elements using exactly the same grades and transforms.

This means that the individual elements of an animation – rotomattes, relighting and repositioning and so on – can be graded independently in Baselight, with the final grade fully replicated for all elements in NUKE; this would allow, for example, the colourist to set colours using an albedo (flat colour) pass, then overlay it with textures for specular highlights to match complex virtual lighting.

The multiple input functionality together with the new perspective area tracking in Baselight for NUKE also means that sky or screen replacements can be completed simply and seamlessly.

The software is already looking further forward too; Baselight 5.0 supports beta functionality for generating NUKE scripts alongside BLG grade files for EXR input material; the scripts can then be loaded in NUKE so that the multiple inputs and the BLG grade are all located and connected automatically, using the correct format mappings and colour spaces.

“We talk about ‘sanding down the edges of the workflow’,” said Martin Tlaskal, Lead Developer at FilmLight. “Feedback from the NUKE users is that they love the confidence that having Baselight in their workstations brings, and they love the productivity and authenticity they get from quickly matching complex grades without constant round-tripping.

“This new release delivers this for our users and we are delighted to be able to showcase it at IBC. For typical collaborative workflows where the Baselight colourist, Avid editor and NUKE VFX artist are all working off the same centrally located files, this is a huge boost in productivity without adding to the project overhead. Less time spent locating, moving and matching content means more time spent making the pictures perfect.”

FilmLight will be showing its full range of grading and colour management systems on stand 7.F31 at IBC, and will be highlighting the productivity gains of the BLG render-free workflow.

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