You are here: User Guide > Nuke


Each chapter in this section explains in detail a key feature of Nuke. You can use the section to familiarize yourself with the features you are particularly interested in, or to get answers to specific problems that arise during compositing. For information on the features in NukeX, see NukeX.

Organization of the Section

These are the topics covered by this section:

Reformatting Elements, describes how you can reformat images through scaling, cropping, and pixel aspect adjustments. This chapter also covers working with bounding boxes.

Channels, shows you how to manage image data using Nuke’s unique 1023-channel workflow.

Merging Images, teaches you how to layer background and foreground elements together, create contact sheets, and copy rectangles from one image to another.

Keying with Primatte, teaches you to use the blue/greenscreen keyer Primatte in Nuke.

Keying with Keylight, teaches you to use the keyer tool Keylight in Nuke.

Keying with Ultimatte, shows you to use the Ultimatte keyer in Nuke.

Using RotoPaint, shows how to use Nuke’s RotoPaint node.

Tracking and Stabilizing , shows how to generate and edit 2D tracking data for purposes of removing unwanted motion or applying it to other elements.

Transforming Elements, covers the tools for changing the size, location, and orientation of an image, including how to translate, scale, rotate, and skew elements in 2D and 3D space. This chapter also describes adding motion blur.

Warping Images, teaches you to use the GridWarp and SplineWarp nodes to warp and morph images.

Temporal Operations, explains how to apply time-based effects like clip retiming and motion blur. This chapter also explains how to perform editorial tasks, such as trimming and slipping.

Working with Color, explains a broad sampling of Nuke’s many color correction tools.

Filtering and Spatial Effects, deals with applying filters, such as convolves and blurs.

Creating Effects, describes how you can create effects, such as star filter effects, on your images.

Analyzing and Matching Clips, explains how to use the CurveTool node to analyze and match image sequences.

3D Compositing, teaches you how to create and manipulate 3D scenes composed of objects, materials, lights, and cameras.

Stereoscopic Projects, describes how to composite stereoscopic material in Nuke.

Deep Compositing, goes through using the deep compositing node set in Nuke.

Working with File Metadata describes how to use Nuke's MetaData nodes to work with information embedded in images.

Audio in Nuke, covers using audio clips in Nuke.

Previews and Rendering teaches you how to write out image sequences from scripts in order to preview results or create final elements.

Organizing Scripts is designed to help you organize your Nuke scripts in a clear and meaningful way.

Customizing the Interface, discusses the available layouts and preference settings that you can use to make behavior and display adjustments to the interface.

Configuring Nuke, explains how to set up Nuke for multiple artists working on the same project.

Expressions, explains how to apply expressions or scripting commands to Nuke parameters.

The Script Editor and Python takes you through using Nuke’s Script Editor for executing Python commands.


Reformatting Elements

Reformatting Images

Adjusting the Bounding Box


Understanding Channels

Creating Channels and Channel Sets

Calling Channels

Linking Channels Using the Link Menu

Tracing Channels

Renaming Channels

Removing Channels and Channel Sets

Swapping Channels

Merging Images

Layering Images Together with the Merge Node

Generating Contact Sheets

Copying a Rectangle from one Image to Another

Keying with Primatte

Connecting the Primatte Node

Primatte Basic Operation Tutorial

Sampling Tools

Replacing Spill

Primatte Controls

The Primatte Algorithm

Contact Details

Keying with Keylight

Basic Keying

Advanced Keying

Screen Processing

Keying with Ultimatte

Connecting the Ultimatte Node

Sampling the Screen Color

Using Overlay Tools and Screen Correct

Adjusting the Density of the Matte

Adjusting Spill Controls

Retaining Shadows and Removing Noise

Adjusting Color Controls

Adjusting Film Controls

Choosing an Output Mode

Using RotoPaint

Roto or RotoPaint?

RotoPaint Quick Start

Connecting the RotoPaint Node

Working with the Toolbars

Working with the Stroke/Shape List

Drawing Paint Strokes

Drawing Shapes

Setting Default RotoPaint Tools and Settings

Selecting the Output Format and Channels

Selecting Existing Strokes/Shapes for Editing

Editing Existing Stroke/Shape Attributes

Editing Existing Stroke/Shape Timing

Editing Existing Stroke/Shape Stack Order

Editing Existing Stroke/Shape Splines

Animating Strokes/Shapes

Adding Motion Blur

Viewing Points in the Curve Editor and the Dope Sheet

Copying, Pasting, and Cutting Stroke Positions

Copying, Pasting, and Cutting Point Positions

RotoPaint and Stereoscopic Projects

Where Are the Bezier and Paint Nodes?

Tracking and Stabilizing

Connecting the Tracker Node

Adding Track Anchors

Tracking Preferences and Viewer Tools

Automatic vs. Keyframe Tracking

Automatic Tracking

Keyframe Tracking

Applying Tracking Data

Transforming Elements

Transforming in 2D

Applying Core Transformations in 2.5D

Adding Motion Blur

Replicating the Input Image Across the Output

Warping Images



Transforming and Animating Warps and Morphs

Temporal Operations

Distorting Time

Applying the TimeBlur Filter

Editing Clips

Working with Color

Using Scopes

Using the Pixel Analyzer

Making Tonal Adjustments

Making Hue, Saturation, and Value Adjustments

Masking Color Corrections

Applying Grain

Applying Mathematical Operations to Channels

Transforming the Color Space

Filtering and Spatial Effects

Applying Convolves

Simulating Depth-of-Field Blurring

Creating Effects

Background Reflections on Foreground Elements

Creating Star Filter Effects on Image Highlights

Creating Text Overlays

Analyzing and Matching Clips

Cropping Black Edges

Analyzing the Intensity of a Frame Sequence

Removing Flicker

Analyzing Exposure Differences

Tracking the Brightest and Darkest Pixels

3D Compositing


Setting Up a Scene

Using the 3D Viewer

3D Scene Geometry

Materials and Textures



Transforming Objects

Adding Motion Blur to the 3D Scene

Exporting Geometry, Cameras, Lights, Axes, or Point Clouds

Rendering a 3D Scene

Stereoscopic Projects

Setting Up Views for the Script

Loading Multi-View Images

Displaying Views in the Viewer

Selecting Which Views to Apply Changes To

Performing Different Actions on Different Views

Reproducing Changes Made to One View

Swapping Views

Converting Images into Anaglyph

Changing Convergence

Previewing and Rendering Stereoscopic Images

Rendering Stereoscopic Images

Deep Compositing

Reading in Deep Footage

Creating Deep Data

Viewing Depth Information in the Deep Graph

Merging Deep Images

Creating Holdouts

Creating 2D and 3D Elements from Deep Images

Modifying Deep Data

Cropping, Reformatting and Transforming Deep Images

Sampling Deep Images

Writing Deep Data

Working with File Metadata

Metadata in Nuke

Viewing Metadata

Comparing Metadata Between Inputs

Modifying Metadata

Copying Metadata from One Input to Another and Filtering Metadata

Adding a Timecode to Metadata

Rendering Metadata

Accessing Metadata via TCL Expressions

Accessing Metadata via Python

Audio in Nuke

Reading In Audio Files

Creating and Editing Audio Curves

Flipbooking the Audio Track

Previews and Rendering

Previewing Output

Rendering Output

Organizing Scripts

Displaying Script Information

File Name Search and Replace

Grouping Nodes in the Node Graph

Adding Notes to the Node Graph

Using the Precomp Node

Customizing the Interface

Interface Layouts

Setting Interface Preferences

The Available Preference Settings

Configuring Nuke

What Is a Terminal and How Do I Use One?

Command Line Operations

Environment Variables

Loading Gizmos, NDK Plug-ins, and Python and TCL Scripts

Loading OFX Plug-ins

Defining Common Favorite Directories

Handling File Paths Cross Platform

Setting Default Values for Controls

Defining Custom Menus and Toolbars

Defining Common Image Formats

Gizmos, Custom Plug-ins, and Generic TCL Scripts

Template Scripts

Defining Common Preferences

Altering a Script’s Lookup Tables (LUTs)

Creating Custom Viewer Processes


Linking Expressions

Adding Mathematical Functions to Expressions

To Convert Expressions Between Scripting Languages

The Script Editor and Python

Using the Script Editor

Automating Procedures

Nuke as a Python Module

Getting Help