All posts by Jay Versluis

About Jay Versluis

Jay is a medical miracle known as Super Survivor. He runs two YouTube channels, five websites and several podcast feeds. To see what else he's up to, and to support him on his mission to make the world a better place, check out his Patreon Campaign.

How to bring back Selection Toggling in Blender 2.8

I’m so used to pressing A to select or de-select everything in Blender. It’s been so ingrained in my brain that I cannot easily get used to the new default behaviour in Blender 2.8. Thankfully there’s a simple tick box in the Preferences that will bring this option back, so there’s no need for my brain to get confused any more.

Here’s how to do it:

Head over to Edit – Preferences and choose Keymap. Towards the top you’ll find a tick box called Select All Toggles. It’s slightly misleading to read out loud, as it doesn’t mean “select all toggles”; it rather means that the “Select All” function will now “toggle”, as it did in Blender 2.79 and below.

Now the A key will behave in Blender 2.8 as it always has.

Building the “Fluffy Disco Kimokawaii” Animation in Carrara – 3D Shenanigans #21

In this episode I’ll explain how I’ve made the Fluffy Disco animation that I’ve posted last week.

I’ll start by building the animation in DAZ Studio using aniBlocks, then import the file into Carrara and add the hair. Once applied, we’ll drape it and have Carrara simulate the strands as the figure dances.

You can buy Carrara here (it’s often on sale and available for $60 or less).

Here’s the animation I’m referring to in this stream:

Upscaling while preserving details in Photoshop

I’ve received a great tip from Patrick Schoolderman a couple of weeks ago, about how to upscale images in Photoshop with a new algorithm that Adobe call Preserve Details 2.0. I wanted to make a quick note about how to do this and share it with you.

The workflow is as simple as opening your image, then choose Image – Image Size. The big mystery then is to choose the right Resizing Algorithm at the bottom of the dialogue. Rather than Automatic, choose Preserve Details 2.0.

Enabling this feature

Currently (June 2019) this is a “technology preview” feature, which means in order for it to show up in the above dialogue, we need to enable it first. If you don’t see the option, head over to Preferences – Technology Previews and make sure the tick box is checked. Once enabled, restart Photoshop and try again.

While it doesn’t mean we can now shoot 640×360 instead of 4k images, or in other words “turn lead into hold”, this feature can drastically improve image quality when compared to the bicubic method.

It may even help os cut down on render time. I’m thinking of animations that would take much longer to render at higher resolutions, for which an upscale from 720p to 1080p might work well. I’ll do some tests and let you know.

Thank you for bringing this to my attention, Patrick 😉

An Overview of Strand Based Hair in DAZ Studio – 3D Shenanigans #20

On today’s live stream, I’m giving you an overview on how to get started with the new Strand Based Hair feature in DAZ Studio 4.11. It’s only been released to the public yesterday, and we have not many details on how to create handsome looking hair with this tool, but I’ll let you in on what I’ve been able to gather so far, including how dForce fits into the picture.

I’ve made a quick animation with this tool this removing, here’s a standalone version of it.

Step into The Light – 3D Shenanigans #19

On this episode of 3D Shenanigans, I’m creating a character animation in which our protagonist steps out of the dark and is gradually revealed with light. We’ll do the walk, light and camera animation in DAZ Studio, then add my Patreon Freebie fog assets to the scene in Photoshop.

Join me on this creative journey with plenty of user input, and a technical hitch halfway through.

Products I’m using in this demo

Building a Kitchen Comic Scene in DAZ Studio – 3D Shenanigans #18

In this live event I’ll show you how to build the above funny kitchen scene. It’s simple with several subtle nuances, such as lighting and expressions. I’ll explain how to add your characters, pose them, adjust the camera, and add appropriate (comical) expressions. Then we’ll adjust the lights of the set and add our own to add separation between the figures and the background.

It’s got a little bit of everything.

Adjusting Audio Peak Levels in Adobe Premiere Pro

When I delivered my previous audio book to ACX, I remember that one of their requirements was that the audio peak levels should come in at -3dB. I also remember that threw was a super easy way for me to do this in Premiere Pro, the software I use for editing my files. I wanted to do the same thing this week, but I couldn’t for the life of me remember how to dot it!

Consulting this website – as I do from time to time – I couldn’t find a note. Perhaps I didn’t write this vital part down the last time. Let me do it right away, now that I’ve found out how to do it (again).

My first though was that it must be an audio effect we drag onto the timeline in question. But that’s not what I wanted to do. I was happy with the dynamics, I didn’t need to do any compressing or filtering. Instead, it’s as easy as right-clicking on a clip in the timeline and selecting Audio Gain. We can also press the G shortcut to bring up this menu.

This will open a modal dialogue with several options.

The one I needed was Normalize Max Peak to -3dB. This will look through the selected clip(s), find the highest peak, and adjust it to the value of your choice. The All Peaks option below of it would do the same for every single clip on the timeline. While powerful during video editing, it may not be what we want in this case of editing an audio book. It would likely make quieter passages louder at edit points, leading to an uneven listening experience.

To use this technique with various clips, either select all clips before running this command, or create a new sequence from your sequence and run the command on that.

Larry Jordan has written an article that explains more in-depth what this dialogue does. Thank for sharing, Larry!

Animating sunlight (SS Time) in DAZ Studio

I’ve recently explained how to make use of the realistic sun disk in DAZ Studio. I’ve talked about how to make this thing visible and how to set it to mood/effect you want, and I’m pleased with the results. This workflow works great for still images, but for animations, it quickly becomes clear that the SS Time parameter under Render Settings – Environment cannot be keyframed.

Or can it? Looks like it can, thanks to a little helper tool called the Sun Dial. Let me show you how it works.

Continue reading Animating sunlight (SS Time) in DAZ Studio

Urban Future Fly-Through Animation Workflow

I’ve rendered this quick trailer for my 3D Shenanigans Live Stream, using Stonemason’s Urban Future 6 set the other day. I did this really quick, and there are some rough edges to this animation. It only took 8 hours to render the full sequence plus a bit of post production in Premiere.

I thought I’d share my multi-machine workflow and pipeline with you, indulging some tips of what I might do different next time.

Continue reading Urban Future Fly-Through Animation Workflow

Creating a Sunset Portrait in DAZ Studio – 3D Shenanigans #17

In this live event I’ll show you how to create a realistic sunset portrait in DAZ Studio. I’ll explain how to use the Sun and Sky option in the render settings to tweak the time of day, how to make the sun visible and how to move it into position.

Finally we’ll add a character who’s looking at the sunset, dressed in one of Biscuit’s hair and dForce outfits. I’ll even discuss some Tonemapping options to get a handsome looking image without postwork.

Because after all, it’s my birthday today 🙂