Resources for VSFX
705 Programming Concepts for Visual Effects
Updated on May 21 2013
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Assignments are available online
- Please review these notes
regularly during the course of this quarter.
|Python (Intro) Exercises - various python exercise
involving turtle graphics, basic programming concepts
- building geometry through scripting of simple objects
- Repurposing Motion Capture data
- In Class Quiz
|Two OOP Exercises
with Inheritance in Python
Please note there will be no late/resubmit
due Friday 11:59pm
|Participation (may include
websites, in class exercises, professional behavior)
In keeping with
creating a studio environment you will be expected to show your
work in progress in a "dailies" fashion when appropriate.
What this course involves:
Programming Concepts and Linux
introduction. Core ideas: variables, truth statements, control
flow, function/procedures, object oriented and structure
Python and MEL will be the focus.
Overview of the course, syllabus. Discussion of programming
1. Get used to IDLE, python and the turtle by
creating a triangle. Then try putting the code to draw a
triangle into a function.
2. Practice loops by drawing multiple triangles, with or without
3. Try drawing your initials or your name using
the simple commands you have learned (the intention here was for
you to use turtle commands).
If you working on loops, try printing "Hello
Sunflower" 10 times. Then try printing out Hello Hello Hello
Sunflower Sunflower Sunflower. Do these using a for loop. then
try getting the same result using a while loop.
Don't forget to go thru the step by step
examples for the drawing of a square. Try it with a triangle.
Introduction to Python
and turtle graphics. Continued in class assignment to create
Quilt exercise assigned.
- You should be working on your initials and
work through the above homework before moving on to your
- If you are getting comfortable with the
fundamental concepts of
variables/selection/repetition/functions I would encourage you
to read Chapters
1-3 in Think Python online book. (Note that the turtle
in Chapter 4 is not the same as the one we are using.) Once
you feel you are understanding these concepts ... Start on
your quilt project.
Studio time for Python exercises.
Review of concepts discussed in our overview. Discussion of the
logCabin pattern given in Exercise 1 related to planning out your
Discussion of Linux.
Discussion of nested loops and modulus in relation to the quilting
- If you haven't finished your quilt, work on
it on the weekend (remember to use functions, nested loops and
if it helps, import your files to keep things modular and
- Look over student
examples for inspiration for the MEL exercise
Class 5: Studio
time for Python exercise.
- Hint: use row, col, modulus (%) in your
nested loop to find the pattern.
- Check out kuler.adobe.com for
working with color palettes (Thanks Liz!) Click on to manipulate the
colors and find the hex code.
Class 6: Introduction to MEL.
- Python Exercises due. Presentation
- MEL scripting assignment assigned.
Discussion of MEL.
Class 8: Review of MEL assignment.
- spiral staircase specs
- Try the above yourself - here's what it
looks like in mel
and if you really get stuck, here's
the code (try it yourself first). The stairs part is
relatively easy, the railing a bit more work - on Monday we
will discuss this further.
Review of spiral staircase in class assignment.
Homework - work on your Mel exercise
Mel Exercise Due. Presentations.
Jumping back into Python, lists, strings, files.
Class 12: Presentations
Homework - work on the exercises assigned in class in
preparation for the data parsing exercise.
Class 13: Discussion of Python in
Houdini and Maya.
Homework - work on your Python Data
Class 14: Python
assignment studio time.
Class 15: Python assignment review. Project
Introduction to Python
classes and object oriented programming.
Studio session devoted to individual project
OOP discussion and Python in class assignment.
Class 18: Studio session devoted
to OOP Exercise - Basic
Studio session devoted to OOP Exercise - Advanced
Class 20: Presentations