Sapphire Plug-ins for Autodesk: ZapTo

ZapToMask: ZapTo

Generates a forked lightning bolt from a given point to the edges of objects in the ToObj input clip, and renders it over a background input.

Inputs:

ToObj: The edges of objects in this clip are extracted, and the lightning connects to points along these edges facing towards the starting point.

Back: The clip to use as background.

Mask: This input is used to control which edges are used to attract the lightning. Edges found in black areas will not be used. Edges found in white areas will be used as normal. Edges found in grey areas will be scaled down.

Parameters:

Load Preset: Push-button .
Brings up the Preset Browser to browse all available presets for this effect.

Save Preset: Push-button .
Brings up the Preset Save dialog to save a preset for this effect.

Surface Points: Integer,  Default: 10, Range: 1 or greater.
The number of points along the edges to connect the lightning to. These surface points are divided up amongst the shapes in the ToObj input. If the number of requested surface points is equal to the number of separate shapes in the ToObj input, one lightning fork will connect to each.

Start: X & Y,   Default: [0 -0.0031], Range: any.
The starting position of the lightning.

Max Dist: Default: 1, Range: 0 or greater.
The maximum distance of surface points from the Start position. Edges outside this distance are ignored.

Threshold: Default: 0.5, Range: 0 or greater.
The value used to determine the edge locations. Objects darker than this value are ignored. On smooth objects, larger threshold values move the edges inwards to make smaller shapes, and smaller values move the edges outwards. You can use the Show Edges option to view the edge image directly while adjusting this parameter.

Blur To Obj: Default: 0.025, Range: 0 or greater.
Blurs the ToObj input clip before finding the edges. This can help remove noise, and reduce the number of separate shapes. You can use the Show Edges option to view the edge image directly while adjusting this parameter.

Show: Popup menu,  Default: Result .
Selects what the effect will output.
Result: shows the normal lightning result over the background.
Over ToObj: shows the lightning over the ToObj input instead of the Back. This can be useful to view while adjusting the Surface Points, Start, and Max Dist parameters.
Edges: shows the target edge image. This can be useful to view while adjusting the Threshold and Blur To Obj parameters.

Width: Default: 0.07, Range: 0 or greater.
The width of the lightning bolts.

Vary Width: Default: 0, Range: 0 to 1.
The amount of random variation in the width of the bolts along their lengths.

End Pointiness: Default: 0.25, Range: 0 to 1.
Determines how pointed the end of the bolts are. If 0, the entire bolt will have equal width. If 1, the bolts will thin out along their entire length for a pointed end. If it is .5, the bolts will start thinning out half way between the start and end points.

Wiggle Start: Default: 0, Range: 0 or greater.
By default the bolts automatically wiggle over time. This parameter provides a starting offset for these bolt perturbations.

Wiggle Speed: Default: 1, Range: 0 or greater.
The speed at which the bolts are perturbed automatically over time. To animate changes in speed, set this to zero and animate the Wiggle Start parameter instead.

Jitter Frames: Integer,  Default: 0, Range: 0 or greater.
If this is 0, the same random lightning will be used for every frame processed. If it is 1, different random lightning is used for each frame. If it is 2, new random lightning is used for every other frame, and so on.

Rand Seed: Default: 0.123, Range: 0 or greater.
Used to initialize the random number generator. The actual seed value is not significant, but different seeds give different random lightning bolts, and the same value should give a repeatable result.

Brightness: Default: 1, Range: 0 or greater.
Scales the brightness of the lightning bolts.

Color: Default rgb: [1 1 1].
The color of the lightning. If you want to keep the lightning bolt itself bright white, you can still affect the perceived color by adjusting the Glow Color instead.

Wrinkle Amp: Default: 1, Range: 0 or greater.
Scales the amount of wrinkles in the bolts. Decrease for straighter smoother bolts or increase for more kinky bolts.

Branchiness: Default: 1, Range: 0 to 20.
Scales the number of additional bolts that branch from the main bolt. Set this to 0 for basic bolts with no extra branches.

Branch Angle: Default: 65, Range: 0 to 180.
The maximum angle of the random branches relative to the bolt they are branching off of. If this is 0 the branches will be more lined up with the main bolt. With larger values the branches will be more perpendicular to the main bolt.

Branch Length: Default: 0.5, Range: 0 to 3.
The scaled length of the branches relative to the distance between the Start and End points.

Scale Back: Default: 1, Range: 0 or greater.
Scales the brightness of the background before combining with the lightning. If 0, the result will contain only the lightning image over black.

Combine: Popup menu,  Default: Screen .
Determines how the lightning and glow are combined with the Background.
Screen: performs a blend function which can help prevent overly bright results.
Add: causes the lightning to be added to the background. This gives brighter glows over light backgrounds.
Zap Only: displays the lightning over black, ignoring the source image.

Params2:

Start Offset: Default: 0, Range: 0 to 1.
The offset from the start point to begin drawing the bolts. This can be useful for animating a lightning strike.

Length: Default: 1, Range: 0 to 1.
The length of the bolts, beginning at Start Offset. If less than 1, the bolts will not be drawn all the way from start to end. This can be useful for animating a lightning strike.

Bolts: Integer,  Default: 1, Range: 1 to 1000.
The number of independent forked lightning bolts to draw, each connecting the Start position with the edge points.

Glow Parameters:

Glow Bright: Default: 2, Range: 0 or greater.
Scales the brightness of the glow applied to the lightning.

Glow Color: Default rgb: [0.5 0.5 1].
The color of the glow applied to the lightning.

Glow Width: Default: 0.2, Range: 0 or greater.
The width of the glow applied to the lightning.

Glow Width Red: Default: 0.5, Range: 0 or greater.
The relative red width of the glow.

Glow Width Grn: Default: 1, Range: 0 or greater.
The relative green width of the glow.

Glow Width Blue: Default: 1.5, Range: 0 or greater.
The relative blue width of the glow.

Motion Blur Parameters:

Shutter Angle: Default: 0, Range: 0 or greater.
Adjusts the shutter angle for motion blur. This controls the amount of time that the simulated shutter is open, and thus the overall amount of motion blur. A value of 0 disables motion blur. A value of 360 degrees will blur over an entire frame, which is the maximum amount of motion blur possible with a real camera. Values above 360 degrees will produce unrealistic results in which the motion of adjacent frames overlaps.

Samples: Integer,  Default: 16, Range: 2 or greater.
Controls the number of individual renders that are averaged together when applying motion blur. Increasing the number of samples will give smoother results, but will also increase render times. If too few samples are used, there can be visible aliasing or ghosting artifacts. Faster motion will require more samples to avoid artifacts.

Atmosphere Parameters:

Atmosphere Amp: Default: 0, Range: 0 or greater.
Atmosphere gives the effect of the zap shining through a dusty atmosphere and picking up light or getting shadowed. This parameter adjusts the amount, or amplitude, of the atmospheric effect. Zero gives a smooth zap, higher values give more dusty look.

Atmosphere Freq: Default: 1, Range: 0.1 or greater.
Controls the spatial frequency of the atmospheric noise. Turn this up higher to get finer details, turn down for broader overall variation.

Atmosphere Detail: Default: 0.6, Range: 0 to 1.
Controls the amount of fine detail in the atmosphere simulation. Decrease to get smoother atmosphere, increase for a more crunchy or grainy look.

Atmosphere Seed: Default: 0.123, Range: 0 or greater.
Used to initialize the random number generator for the atmospheric noise. The actual seed value is not significant, but different seeds give different results and the same value should give a repeatable result.

Atmosphere Speed: Default: 1, Range: any.
The cloudy noise in the atmosphere evolves over time like real dust clouds; this parameter controls how fast the cloud pattern changes over time. Set to zero for a static pattern.

Blur Mask: Default: 0.05, Range: 0 or greater, Shared .
Blurs the Mask input by this amount before using. This can provide a smoother transition between the masked and unmasked areas.

Invert Mask: Check-box,  Default: off, Shared .
If enabled, inverts the mask input so the effect is applied to areas where the Mask is black instead of white.

Mocha: Default: 0, Range: 0 or greater, Shared .
Brings up the Mocha window for tracking footage and generating masks.

Blur Mocha: Default: 0, Range: 0 or greater, Shared .
Blurs the Mocha Mask by this amount before using. This can be used to soften the edges or quantization artifacts of the mask, and smooth out the time displacements.

Mocha Opacity: Default: 1, Range: 0 to 1, Shared .
Controls the strength of the Mocha mask. Lower values reduce the intensity of the effect.

Invert Mocha: Check-box,  Default: off, Shared .
If enabled, the black and white of the Mocha Mask are inverted before applying the effect.

Show Mocha Only: Check-box,  Default: off, Shared .
Bypass the effect and show the Mocha Mask itself.

Bypass Mocha: Check-box,  Default: off, Shared .
Ignore the Mocha Mask and apply the effect to the entire source clip.

Combine Masks: Popup menu,  Default: Union .
Determines how to combine the Mocha Mask and Input Mask when both are supplied to the effect.
Union: Uses the area covered by both masks together.
Intersect: Uses the area that overlaps between the two masks.
Mocha Only: Ignore the Input Mask and only use the Mocha Mask.
See general info for: Res , On Fields , Redraw , Undo , Load Defaults , Crop , Add Noise , and Use Gamma .


See Also:

Zap
ZapFrom
Sapphire Plug-ins Introduction

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