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kleer001

Short and sweet OP centric lessons

Short OP videos, yay or nay?    187 members have voted

  1. 1. Would you watch short (5-10 min) OP centered how-to videos?

    • Yes! Where are they?
    • Yes, even though I'm pretty good I can always be better.
    • No, I know enough already.
    • No, but I know someone who would.

Please sign in or register to vote in this poll.

72 posts in this topic

If Old School started a cult I would join and drink the cool aid that is Houdini. ...Oh, wait...

I'm a novice myself and I agree with previous posters, why a node is used valuable info. For instance, a delete and a blast share some functionality , why do both of them exist?

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Well, here's a first stab at a video I'm willing to share in the vein that I want to produce. The format is a little different. Please, check it out and give me some critical feedback.

Warnings:

It is more of a beginner subject, painting for voronoi fracturing. It's only 4 minutes long. There's no narration (no coughing, sneezing, low volumes, buzzing, or hard to understand accents, just some light jazz), no scripting (except for "$CR < 0.5"), and the compression isn't perfect. But enough with the excuses, here's the juice:

and associated file is attached.

paintVoronoi.hipnc

Edited by kleer001
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Nice and fast!

I think that if it is aimed at beginner to all levels, in tutorials like this one when you're deleting through expressions and so on, it would be interesting to pull over the help and show the variables, where to get them and/or the meaning of them... I know it isn't complicated but if I was someone who never messed around with Houdini and found this I would assume that your knowledge of strange simbols ($CR) is arcane... ;)

I also think that if you want to do the tutorials based on a certain number of useful SOP's and what not, this would have to be fitted into a category (like this one is about Voronoi or the paint SOP? And despite which one it is, it is a more "advanced" use of it or not... Commom practice or...)

Just my 2 cents and again I must stress that it was in fact a short and sweet lesson! And yeah, the compression even at 720 was a bit fuzzy...

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Excellent feedback, thanks J.Santos!

I've added a little annotation to help clear up the expression. But I'm assuming that the student will have enough curiosity to investigate a little. But then again maybe that's not the best way to instruct for everyone.

The compression is still a work in progress. I have a file that looks great, but at 1.5 gigs for 4 minutes that's too much. I'm really surprised that Camtasia doesn't have good default settings for desktop capture. I'm sure there's something on their forums.

Don't worry about the categories, I have that all planned out (There's 55 main SOPs that I want to cover). This one is more of a spontaneous improvisational the-girl-friend-is-out-for-the-night test.

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I like the video. I think the music was annoying. Speech would be better.

The widget that shows keystrokes on the down right was distracting, and not useful.

Also I wouldn't explain every expression every time because then there will be a lot of duplicate information. A separate video for these would be much better if need be.

Hope that helps.

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Thank you.

That was helpful and a great length. I agree with Ryan that speech would be preferred, but if you don't want to that's okay. I just muted the audio and put on something I liked and watched it through. I think you should continue in a similar fashion, I don't think it's necessary to open up help docs to show expressions because it would slow down these videos. If you don't understand something you can check the help documents yourself or ask here instead, but yeah small annotations like "$CR = color red" or something similar could be helpful.

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Thanks for the input guys. I think I got the compression thing down, who would have thought that the default settings would be any good? Here's another one with some fixes. No associated hip file.

Does anyone else find the keystroke widget annoying?

I'm liking this pace. I think I'm going to keep aiming for <5min for all these. And no talking, I'm pretty firm about that, I think it helps keep the visual mode going stronger.

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This music was not bad :) I think if you could show the final result for a couple of seconds in the beginning, that would be very helpful. I find that this helps the viewers think about the next steps instinctively, and have a better understanding of where the author is going. So if the final result is shown interactively, i.e. playing with the sliders, even better IMO.

This would also encourage people to come up with their own solutions prior to watching.

Also not sure if you are planning to store your tutorials on youtube, but if so, 1080p would be pretty cool :)

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Hi again!

Nice tut once again and now very watchable compression wise ;)

Yeap, sometimes the keystroke thing is really distracting... I think that having it on in certain moments or displaying what you're writing in key moments (an expression or something like that) would be good. So instead of a keystroke probably something in edit/post, like a small banner with the said expression or whatever displayed.

I would also like to add to magneto suggestion that somewhere, in the video or the place where you're hosting them, you could post a bit more info about the technique in question. For instance, my industry experience so far has been in 2D (I'm trying to make the leap... ;) ) so it would be interesting to see/to know possible aplicattions of said technique. The paint in Voronoi is easy peasy in terms of understanding and possible uses, this one I must say that it gave me some ideas, like possible patterns for a "disintegration effect" or something but... am I correct? You see what I mean? It's not that it is set in stone and this is the only way to do it approach but rather help the viewer understand what and how...

Going back to expressions, I agree, all the time stoping and showing the help would be counter productive, but one or 2 videos would be ok... again, you could just show where and how to get help about stuff... the help docs, the textport expressions that allow you to search for an expression meaning, the textport "thing" that allows you to see the expressions you can use, for points only, for example and so on...

No talking is your choice, I agree it helps keeping a certain pace but sometimes the banner thing might come in handy... or a black screen beginning of the video where you write what you're going to do and show, like magneto points out, the final result and possible uses... ;)

Cheers! Keep up the very good work!

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I think if you could show the final result for a couple of seconds in the beginning, that would be very helpful.

THIS. 100x this. I really don't like it when people don't show the final result / goal at the beginning AND the end of the video.

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Ok, I've taken your comments into consideration. Please check out my new iteration. Hopefully there will be less frustration.

-> No voice. No music. Resolution is 720 and clear. I play the result at the beginning. There's a short bullet point list of topics (at what I now realize is in scrambled order) at the start.

How else can I improve the presentation of my video? What was it lacking? Was there too much of something? Too little?

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Hi again!

IMHO... I think it is really fast, everything! This is probably just me but I almost felt like I was watching it in high speed. Maybe a bit slower? You probably work that fast or even more but to show/teach someone... it was fast!

Speaking of fast ;) The showing of the end result in the beginning and end (specially at the end part) was way fast...

Also, I've a doubt. I had the impression that you would focus on SOPs that you find useful in everyday life (around 50). So in what category does the last one fit? Because it looks a lot more like a technique then the explanation of the SOP... specially because you end up a lot of the time in DOPs...

This is just me and is just semantics so ignore me if you want.

I like both ideas (the SOP/ OP and the techniques) but maybe you could, on a video channel, divide the lessons, so this one could be something like "pointjitter.." sweet and short explanation/show of the pointjitter options/power and then a couple of videos with techniques that rely on said pointjitter...

Again, it's just me, I would like to see something like this! ;)

Cheers and keep up the awesome videos (I didn't knew you could use pointjitter to do that, but now it seems so logic ;) )

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Hey,

I just wanted to say I think it was a great video and the speed was fine. I like that it was fast paced, I would otherwise have scrubbed through the video anyway or played it at 2x. Since it is a video, people can always rewind and watch certain parts again if they have missed something. I also liked the post-it message at the beginning laying out the different steps.

Nice work!

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I think that's perfect, the speed is just right and I actually enjoy the fact that there's no audio and they're so short, great for watching while I'm on the bus or waiting for something. Keep going!

Edited by JonathanGranskg
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Hi again!

IMHO... I think it is really fast, everything! This is probably just me but I almost felt like I was watching it in high speed. Maybe a bit slower? You probably work that fast or even more but to show/teach someone... it was fast!

Speaking of fast ;) The showing of the end result in the beginning and end (specially at the end part) was way fast...

Also, I've a doubt. I had the impression that you would focus on SOPs that you find useful in everyday life (around 50). So in what category does the last one fit? Because it looks a lot more like a technique then the explanation of the SOP... specially because you end up a lot of the time in DOPs...

This is just me and is just semantics so ignore me if you want.

I like both ideas (the SOP/ OP and the techniques) but maybe you could, on a video channel, divide the lessons, so this one could be something like "pointjitter.." sweet and short explanation/show of the pointjitter options/power and then a couple of videos with techniques that rely on said pointjitter...

These few videos are just for tests. I think I have enough feedback and good responses to go hit the real thing from here.

Yes, they're fast. I will take care to stop for a second on each node I create and each expression, but fast (I think) is good. I don't want to waste your time talking about the weather ;). I think it's a good challenge, and like pclaes said it's easy enough to go back and rewatch it. And philosophically I'm revolting against the hour plus long tutorials that we're all used to. That said it's difficult to teach some topics and the have to be that long. But I don't think they all have to be, especially at the beginning.

Good ideas. That totally where I started. But as I'm making them I'm realizing that it's easiest for me to break up my techniques into smaller bite sized chunks than to start from a SOP and ask "Where do I use this?". I want to do both, believe me. Maybe I'll do one then the other.

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Good ideas. That totally where I started. But as I'm making them I'm realizing that it's easiest for me to break up my techniques into smaller bite sized chunks than to start from a SOP and ask "Where do I use this?". I want to do both, believe me. Maybe I'll do one then the other.

You could also consider putting the sop information in meta data like hash-tags. Just like the houdini help files shows all the examples where a specific node is used - even if that was not the main focus of the example. After a while you have built up a library and people can search through them.

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You could also consider putting the sop information in meta data like hash-tags. Just like the houdini help files shows all the examples where a specific node is used - even if that was not the main focus of the example. After a while you have built up a library and people can search through them.

Such a good idea! I'm sure Sesi won't mind if I crib off their help files. Imitation & flattery and all that. If I get off my butt I might even put together a website that mimes their help, but with my own personal flavor.

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