Introduction to SOPs Vid Notes

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What you are going to create[edit]

In this Tutorial you will first create a sphere with noise attached, You will then add a material to the sphere and composite it over a gradient and attach a fake shadow.

Inserting Geometry, Cameras and Lighting into a Project[edit]

  • Open TouchDesigner and click the X at the top of the palette browser on the left quarter of the screen.
  • Select the current nodes in the network by right clicking and dragging and then right clicking and selecting delete, or alternatively hit the delete key.
  • Double click the network editor and the OP Create Dialog should appear (alternatively press the <tab> key). Under the COMP tab hold down shift and select a Geometry COMP, Light COMP, Camera COMP and then switch to the TOP tab and select a Render TOP. You should now have 4 nodes: geo1, cam1, light1 and render1 with dotted lines pointing from the first 3 to the Render TOP. These dotted lines indicate that the Render TOP is referencing those nodes for its own parameters.

Removing the default geometry and replacing it with your own[edit]

  • Double click the Geometry COMP and delete the Torus SOP inside. (Right Click > Delete)
  • Double click the network and again whilst holding shift lay down a Sphere SOP followed by a Noise SOP.
  • Under the Spheres parameters set the Primitive Type parameter to NURBS.
  • The two rightmost of the four circle icons underneath the viewer on the Noise SOP will set the particles to display and render (hover over the icons for a hint at what that icon represents). Select both of these parameters so they are highlighted.
  • Zoom out using your scroll wheel until back to the original project1 level or select project1 from the path bar at the top of the network editor.

Adding a material to the geometry[edit]

  • Double click the network and select from the MAT tab a Phong MAT. Place it above the Geometry COMP.
  • Select the Phong MAT and drag it onto the Geometry COMP. A small dotted straight line should appear between the two to indicate that the material is applied. Your geometry should now also be much darker and shinier in the Render TOP viewer.
  • Click the Phong MAT and under its parameters set the Diffuse parameters values to 0.075, 0.075 and 0.075 for Red, Green and Blue. This should create a very dark grey.
  • Set the Specular to 1, 1 and 1 for R, G and B and then set the Shininess Parameter to 24.

Modifying the Camera COMP and Light COMPs positions[edit]

  • Select the Camera COMP and set its Translate Z Parameter to 20 rather than the default (5).
  • Select the Light COMP and set the Translate Parameter to x: -50 y: 50 and z: 0. In the Render TOP viewer the sphere should now be smaller and in the center with the lighting shining from above.

Adding a Ramp TOP background and compositing the geometry over it[edit]

  • Double click the network and under the TOP tab select a Ramp TOP.
  • Under the Common tab in the Ramp TOPs parameters set the Custom Resolution to 1280x720
  • In the Ramp TOPs parameters click two new points on the Ramp Bar and place them very close to one another a third of the way up the screen.
  • Set the Value slider for each point by clicking the point you want to edit and then dragging the value slider. Create a ramp which looks like a floor, and wall behind with the floor meeting the wall a third of the way up.

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Insert a fake shadow effect using a Ramp TOP and Transform TOPs[edit]

  • Create a new Ramp TOP between the Render TOP and first Ramp TOP.
  • Again set the Ramp TOPs resolution to 1280x768 under the Common tab in the parameters.
  • Switching back to the Ramp tab, set the Type to Circular, Phase to 0.8 and the Period to 0.4.
  • Add a new point to the middle of the Ramp Bar.
  • Set all of the 3 Ramp Bar values to 0 and the middle and far right Ramp Bars Alphas to 0.
  • You should now have a black spot with fading edges and a checkerboard background. If the spot is too big for the viewer you can drag the middle value in the Ramp Bar to the left to choke the ramp.
  • Right click the Ramp TOPs output and whilst holding shift select a Transform TOP, a Blur TOP and letting go of shift select a Level TOP.
  • Select the Transform TOP and set its Translate parameter to x: 0 and y: -0.25.
  • Select the Scale parameter and set x: 0.4 and y: 0.08.
  • Switch to the Blur TOP and set the Pre-Shrink parameter to 5 and the Filter Size to 16.
  • Select the Level TOP and under to Post tab set the Opacity parameter to 0.3.
  • Finally wire the Level TOPs output into the Composite TOPs input, you will notice that there is no difference in the Composite TOPs viewer. This is due to how the Composite TOP layers its inputs. Inputs placed after one another are placed behind the previous layer.
  • Select the Composite TOP and you will see in the parameters an Input OP parameter. Click the up arrow icon next to the Level TOP in the list.
  • In the Composite TOPs viewer the shadow should now be visible beneath the morphing Sphere.

Set the Project up to be displayed in Perform Mode[edit]

  • Right click the Composite TOP and select an Out TOP from the TOP tab.
  • Zoom out of the network until you see project1 or click the / in the Path Bar above the Network Editor.
  • Select project1 and under the Layout tab in project1's parameters set the Width to 1280 and the Height to 720.
  • Click the ^ at the top left of the screen above the Network Editor to switch to Perform Mode. You can press the Escape Key to then close Perform Mode.