Imitate LUMO / Roger system lights and shadows in TVPaint

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UsaMiKo
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Imitate LUMO / Roger system lights and shadows in TVPaint

Post by UsaMiKo » 31 Jul 2017, 05:09

I realize that there are a lot of veteran animators on this site, so I thought if anyone could comment on these things it would be some of you.


Space Jam and Looney Tunes: Back in Action were not good movies, but they had pretty good animation. And the thing I'm always noticing on animations like this is the coloring and the lighting:

Image

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hMAhX8hEAEQ

For the longest time I wondered what kind of technique they were using to achieve this. And then I ran across this post.

http://duocartoonist.tumblr.com/post/14 ... 0s-cartoon

Turns out the name of the software was "Lumo", but I can't find anything else about it outside of that blogpost. (I also can't find anything else about some process called "carding"?) There were a bunch of live action/cartoon hybrids back in the day that had this shading look, like this test footage of a bunked Uli Meyer movie: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UJHilBd6HS4) so it must have been a pretty widely used program. You can even see a bit of it for a split second in this making of video at 5:57 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SA4rCbkY-84 . I think something like this is also called a "normal map" at times.

Achieving this look today probably wouldn't be too hard. You could do it in TVPaint if you manipulated the FX Stack right, Toon Boom has a whole feature for stuff like this, and those Duo Cartoonist people who dug Lumo up are making their own software called Roger (it actually looks pretty good! I'd say check it out!), but it feels so weird that such an interesting piece of animation history has kind of disappeared. Has anyone out there ever worked with Lumo or heard of it? Was there some other kind of software that achieved this look in the 90's/ early 2000's? If anyone has any anecdotes, I'd love to hear them!

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D.T. Nethery
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Re: Have any of you ever heard of/worked with LUMO?

Post by D.T. Nethery » 31 Jul 2017, 13:12

I had not heard of Lumo before, however , keep in mind that from 1987 - 2004 I lived and worked in a bubble inside Disney Feature Animation . We had our CAPS system and there was other stuff being done by computers , but if Lumo was around in the animation industry in the 1990's I never heard of it.
I also can't find anything else about some process called "carding"?
I have never heard of a process known as "carding" either.

I'm sure they did not use this Lumo system on Space Jam or that Uli Meyer duck project . Those projects were done with conventional tones and highlights drawings (similar to Roger Rabbit) . See here:

http://www.filmscouts.com/scripts/slide ... eCode=2206

Space Jam was 1996 . Uli's duck project was soon after . On Looney Tunes Back in Action (2003) , they might have used the software for the tones . The paper about Lumo written by the inventor, Scott Johnston , has a copyright date of 2002.

https://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&pid= ... DY0NTk2YjY

Scott was an effects supervisor of Back in Action . So that makes sense if they used it on that project.

You could do it in TVPaint if you manipulated the FX Stack right,
Yes. Here's a quicky . I still think drawn tones and highlights look better for the most part. You can control them better. But the computer "toon shading" works for some situations.
Sometimes it works best to do the flat colors with CTG , then extract each color area to it's own layer , so you can adjust the toonshading direction and intensity for different parts of the character , instead of just one overall application of the effect to the whole character. The eye highlights and nose highlight are drawn on their own layer, not toon shaded, but some gaussian blur applied .
Screen Shot 2017-07-31 at 8.59.20 AM.jpg
Screen Shot 2017-07-31 at 9.08.16 AM.jpg
color and tone layer only.png
This is very soft , no definite shadows, just an overall soft "airbrushy" tone. Additional tones and highlights layers over this soft tone could make this look better.
Cat soft toonshading with TVPaint.png
(The line drawing of the cat character is not drawn by me. It's from the paper about Lumo by Scott Johnston.
*EDIT: And in fact, as Scott mentions in his post later on in this thread, the drawing is actually by Eric Goldberg. )


.
Last edited by D.T. Nethery on 13 Aug 2017, 21:00, edited 1 time in total.
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Elodie
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Re: Have any of you ever heard of/worked with LUMO?

Post by Elodie » 31 Jul 2017, 14:54

hmm, I know some guy named Scott Johnston working in animation industry in California. Perhaps it's him.

Anyway, based on David's post, you can evn go further with TVPaint with a few additional manipulations, you will achieve something even closer to the films you mentioned earlier :

Step 1 : get lines good lines quality, if possible, without too much aaliasing. If necessary, you can use the FX Color > Hsitogram > alpha tab.
01_lines.png
01_lines.png (55.65 KiB) Viewed 1909 times
Step 2 : use CTG layer to quickly fill the whole character
02_ctg.png
02_ctg.png (58.05 KiB) Viewed 1909 times
Step 3 : change layer blending mode for line and use "erase" mode
03_erase mode.png
03_erase mode.png (39.16 KiB) Viewed 1909 times
Step 4 : create new layer. Use FX Color > Image source (Display mode) + FX > Stylize > Toon Shading (check shadow only)
04_toon shading-shadow-FXStack.png
04_toon shading-shadow-FXStack.png (64.84 KiB) Viewed 1909 times
04_toon shading-shadow.png
Step 5 : create new layer. Use FX Color > Image source (Display mode) + FX > Stylize > Toon Shading (check shadow only and change color for white)
05_toon shading-light-FXStack.png
05_toon shading-light-FXStack.png (63.42 KiB) Viewed 1909 times
05_toon shading-light.png
Step 6 : change again Layer blending mode for line layer and use "color" mode. Then, use CTG layer to paint your character.
06_result.png

I also attached a video where I play with lights and shadows simultaneously.
playing with shadows.mov
(8.41 MiB) Downloaded 50 times
(I used "not David Nethery's drawing" :mrgreen: )
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D.T. Nethery
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Re: Have any of you ever heard of/worked with LUMO?

Post by D.T. Nethery » 31 Jul 2017, 14:59

Elodie wrote:
31 Jul 2017, 14:54
hmm, I know some guy named Scott Johnston working in animation industry in California. Perhaps it's him.
Yes . Scott worked at Disney and he was a Production Coordinator and Visual Effects Supervisor on "Looney Tunes: Back in Action" among other non-Disney animated films.

Elodie wrote:
31 Jul 2017, 14:54
Anyway, based on David's post, you can evn go further with TVPaint with a few additional manipulations, you will achieve something even closer to the films you mentioned earlier :
Wonderful tutorial, Elodie ! Thank you.
(I used "not David Nethery's drawing" :mrgreen: )
Here's the clean one I used (copied from Scott Johnston's paper on his Lumo system) , in case UsaMiKo or anyone else wants
to play around with it following your tutorial .
Cat_01.png
(drawing will need Scan Cleaner B & W FX applied after importing it to TVPaint,
before starting the procedure shown above by Elodie.)
Last edited by D.T. Nethery on 31 Jul 2017, 15:26, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Have any of you ever heard of/worked with LUMO?

Post by Elodie » 31 Jul 2017, 15:24

Oh yeah, thank you !

I actually used yours from screenshots above and played with scan cleaner to keep the lines only :roll:

(I was too lazy too draw it myself)
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Re: Have any of you ever heard of/worked with LUMO?

Post by Elodie » 01 Aug 2017, 07:27

I pushed tests further and used some new FX that will be available in next update and tried to imitate this result :

Image
applejack002.png
colours
applejack002.png (68.21 KiB) Viewed 1863 times
applejack003.png
drop shadow FX with colour layer as a mask
applejack003.png (83.82 KiB) Viewed 1863 times
applejack004.png
new FX to be released in version 11.0.7
applejack005.png
Toon shading FX with white colour
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Re: Have any of you ever heard of/worked with LUMO?

Post by schwarzgrau » 01 Aug 2017, 13:09

There was some excellent (and free) plugin from Stefan Minning for After Effects, but I can't remember the name anymore.



However, even if this isn't the most beautiful example, it shows you can get a pretty similar effect using his (also free) plugins Generator and Normality to achieve the same effect. For lighting you can use the comp-lights in After Effects, which makes it pretty flexible.


A maybe similar After Effects plugins seems to be Shade from RE:vision FX, but I never tried it, since it's about $ 90.


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D.T. Nethery
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Re: Have any of you ever heard of/worked with LUMO?

Post by D.T. Nethery » 01 Aug 2017, 13:37

Elodie wrote:
01 Aug 2017, 07:27
I pushed tests further and used some new FX that will be available in next update and tried to imitate this result :
Very interesting . Thanks for the ideas.


The last image is titled:
drop shadow FX with colour layer as a mask
I had never thought of using the Drop Shadow from the Stylize FX with the colour layer used as a mask. Although, from the results I'm not entirely sure how you did it . Is the colour layer acting as a mask by selecting that layer as Image Source in the FX Stack ? If you get time to show a more detailed tutorial (like the earlier one with the screen captures of the FX stack settings) I hope you will post more .

To me the main test for any of these methods of making shadows/tones is to successfully apply it to a character animating , when the character moves and changes direction during the scene . (not always positioned on the same angle). What works on a still image is one thing , but it gets much more complicated when trying to make it work for animation.

But even for still images , these are useful techniques.
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Animationriver
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Re: Have any of you ever heard of/worked with LUMO?

Post by Animationriver » 01 Aug 2017, 18:42

Elodie wrote:
31 Jul 2017, 14:54
hmm, I know some guy named Scott Johnston working in animation industry in California. Perhaps it's him.

Anyway, based on David's post, you can evn go further with TVPaint with a few additional manipulations, you will achieve something even closer to the films you mentioned earlier :

Step 1 : get lines good lines quality, if possible, without too much aaliasing. If necessary, you can use the FX Color > Hsitogram > alpha tab.

01_lines.png

Step 2 : use CTG layer to quickly fill the whole character

02_ctg.png

Step 3 : change layer blending mode for line and use "erase" mode

03_erase mode.png

Step 4 : create new layer. Use FX Color > Image source (Display mode) + FX > Stylize > Toon Shading (check shadow only)

04_toon shading-shadow-FXStack.png
04_toon shading-shadow.png

Step 5 : create new layer. Use FX Color > Image source (Display mode) + FX > Stylize > Toon Shading (check shadow only and change color for white)

05_toon shading-light-FXStack.png
05_toon shading-light.png

Step 6 : change again Layer blending mode for line layer and use "color" mode. Then, use CTG layer to paint your character.

06_result.png


I also attached a video where I play with lights and shadows simultaneously.
playing with shadows.mov

(I used "not David Nethery's drawing" :mrgreen: )
Very good in one picture. But it's not enough if there are a lot of pictures. For animation it is very difficult to do so that the shadow does not knock. Think of a tool stronger! Please.

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Elodie
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Re: Have any of you ever heard of/worked with LUMO?

Post by Elodie » 02 Aug 2017, 04:29

Very good in one picture. But it's not enough if there are a lot of pictures. For animation it is very difficult to do so that the shadow does not knock. Think of a tool stronger! Please.
FX can be applied on image sequences. So what I explained works for a whole animation.
I had never thought of using the Drop Shadow from the Stylize FX with the colour layer used as a mask.
Me neither until yesterday ! I had this idea after watching "Roger System" process : when I looked at the second picture, I realize it looked like a drop shadow, applied within the character's shape.

I will record a short video as soon as I arrive in the office.
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Re: Have any of you ever heard of/worked with LUMO?

Post by Elodie » 02 Aug 2017, 06:21

So, this is the video how to inlay "drop shadow" FX :
Inlay drop shadow FX.mp4
(8.18 MiB) Downloaded 40 times
And here is a video that shows the new FX "Highlights" (sneak peek ;))
Highlight FX.mp4
(42.81 MiB) Downloaded 46 times
Keep in mind that FX is not available yet, you must wait 11.0.7 release

Shouldn't I move that topic to "technical support" and rename it ?
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daninski
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Re: Have any of you ever heard of/worked with LUMO?

Post by daninski » 02 Aug 2017, 07:01

Wow! Lots of things to try in my next project!

Thanks all!
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daninski
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Re: Have any of you ever heard of/worked with LUMO?

Post by daninski » 02 Aug 2017, 12:07

Btw, normal mapping is used in cgi for fake lighting bumps and stuff that aren't in the poly model.
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D.T. Nethery
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Re: Have any of you ever heard of/worked with LUMO?

Post by D.T. Nethery » 02 Aug 2017, 13:09

Elodie wrote:
02 Aug 2017, 06:21

Shouldn't I move that topic to "technical support" and rename it ?
This does seem to have gone well beyond an "Off-Topic" discussion of an old software (Lumo) and is now specific to TVPaint's functions, so it seems it
should be moved to Tech Support so it is more likely to be seen . (I seldom look at the the "Off-Topic" section , I just happened to look at it and the topic
on Lumo caught my eye , but in most cases I'd have never seen this) .
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Re: Imitate LUMO / Roger system lights and shadows in TVPaint

Post by Elodie » 02 Aug 2017, 13:22

Yeah, I thought the same ! I moved the topic and renamed it.
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