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Flair Globals

Table of contents
  1. Engine
    1. Style
    2. Quality
    3. World Scale
    4. Color Depth
    5. Separate Stylization
    6. Velocity PV
    7. Effect Focal Range
  2. Style
  3. Canvas
    1. Canvas Synthesis
    2. Canvas Distortion
    3. Canvas Blend
    4. Canvas Light Dir.
    5. Canvas Light Tilt
    6. Canvas Position X
    7. Canvas Position Y
    8. Advection
      1. Canvas Advection
      2. Canvas Regeneration
    9. Main Canvas
      1. Canvas Texture
      2. Canvas Color
      3. Canvas Scale
      4. Canvas Rotation
      5. Canvas Roughness
      6. Canvas Shading
      7. Canvas Tile
      8. Canvas Tile Blend
    10. Alternate Canvas

The Flair Globals node gets selected when clicking on the GLOB icon in the Flair shelf and looks somewhat similar to the figure below—depending on the active styke. This node contains every global parameter available in the active style and each value is usually applied over the entire image.

It is imperative to understand what each attribute does and how it affects the style, but it is also fun to simply experiment with them and make happy accidents. The attributes in the style configuration node are separated into three groups: Engine, Style and Canvas.

Style globals node
The globals node showing all the watercolor style attributes.

Engine

Engine attributes remain the same across styles and contain attributes directly related to the Flair engine. These attributes can change the fidelity and performance of the stylization.

Style

Defines the style that Flair is currently running in.

  • Graph - The Flair Graph style (customizable)
  • Watercolor - The watercolor style (default)
  • Cutout - 3D Cutout style
  • Hatching - Hatching and stippling style
  • Frayed - Frayed edges style
  • Cat - Cat style
  • Sketch - Sketch and outlines style

Quality

Defines the quality of rendering.

  • Half - Renders at half the resolution, performing faster with slower computers, at the cost of pixelation.
  • Standard - Render at the normal resolution, without any bells and whistles.
  • FXAA - Render at the normal resolution with Fast Approximate Anti-Aliasing, giving results with less jaggies (staircase effect).
  • 4x SSAA - Render at 4 times the normal resolution, to later bring it back to the normal resolution with Super Sampling Anti-Aliasing. You have much more detail and less jaggies (staircase effect).
  • TAA - Renders many images at normal resolution with Temporal Anti-Aliasing to perform progressive, super-sampled results. You will have more detail and NO jaggies (staircase effect). Enabling TAA will also show a TAA Samples attribute directly underneath. Within this attribute, you can define the amount of image samples that the TAA quality uses to create the final result.

Anti-aliasing makes edges appear smoother and less pixelated, you can find more about what aliasing is here.

Close-up without antialiasing Close-up with antialiasing
Close-up of image at Standard quality and with FXAA quality.

World Scale

Defines how many Maya units is considered one “meter” in the virtual world. Since most projects work with assets at different scales, setting up the World Scale right will help the style behave correctly.

Example: if your character is supposed to be one meter high in his world, but is actually 5 units high in Maya, the World Scale attribute should be set to 5.

Color Depth

Defines the color depth of most render targets. This generally translates to: higher is better. However, slower systems should consider using 8bit targets if the performance is too slow, provided you can sacrifice some color fidelity.

Separate Stylization

The option to save the stylization (art-direction) of the scene concurrently in a separate file.

  • No - The stylization will only be saved with the scene
  • Yes, only save - The stylization will be saved with the scene and in a *.style file next to it (default)
  • Yes, save and replace - The stylization will only be saved in a *.style file and be automatically applied upon opening the scene

When applying VertexFX onto referenced assets, Flair will automatically ask if you wish to only save the stylization in a separate file, instead of in the Maya scene (“Yes, save and replace” option). This is recommended, because if the stylization is saved with the Maya scene, the file size will be orders of magnitude bigger than it should be and may not open anymore.

Velocity PV

Enables the calculation of motion vectors of each object in the scene (per vertex). This helps certain effects to remain motion coherent and avoid the shower door effect.

Visualization of motion coherence.

Velocity PV does NOT work with subdivided previews (3 on the keyboard), as vertices won’t be in the same place. Consider subdividing the required objects with normal geometry instead.

Effect Focal Range

Creates the effect focal range locators in the scene. These locators allow you to define the center of interest and an effect factor at the front and back. Based on these factors, effects that support this (i.e., watercolor bleeding) will be reduced or increased at different distances from the effect focal point.

These locators can also be constrained/parented to a camera to have the front and back factors relative to the distance to the camera.


Style

Style attributes contain the attributes of the currently loaded style. In the case of the figure above: watercolor.

These attributes allow to globally control the parameters the style and are documented below.

When using a custom Graph style, the style attributes will auto-populate depending on the Globals defined in the graph.


Canvas

Canvas attributes contain the attributes of the texture where paint is applied on, be it paper or canvas. Altering these attributes will affect all effects that depend on the canvas for its style.

Canvas Synthesis

Defines if an infinite canvas should be created from the given texture. Infinite canvases are completely seamless and can be generated from any heightmap texture within the textures folder of Flair.

Canvas Distortion

Defines the global amount of distortion caused by the Canvas Roughness.

Canvas Blend

Defines the blending between the Canvas Texture (Main Canvas group) and the Canvas Texture Alt (Alternate Canvas group), allowing you to combine profile properties of different canvases.

Blending between the Canvas Texture (default) and the Canvas Texture Alt (canvas).

Canvas Light Dir.

Defines the side where the external light is shining from. 0 degrees is from the bottom, 90 degrees is from the left, 180 degrees from the top and 270 degrees is from the right.

Canvas Light Dir between 0 and 359.0.

The effect of this attribute can only be seen if Canvas Shading is more than 0.

Canvas Light Tilt

Defines the tilt angle of the external light in relation to the canvas, 90 degrees is perpendicular to the canvas.

Canvas Light Tilt between 30.0 and 60.0.

The effect of this attribute can only be seen if Canvas Shading is more than 0.

Canvas Position X

Defines how much the canvas should be panned horizontally.

Canvas Position Y

Defines how much the canvas should be panned vertically.


Advection

Advection attaches the canvas to the underlaying animation, reducing the shower door effect commonly known in non-photorealistic rendering when the canvas appears to float above the animation.
This group is closed by default, but can be opened by clicking on it.

Canvas Advection

Enables/Disables canvas advection in the scene.

Big amounts of motion will distort canvas-based effects. It is recommended to refresh the canvas with the Canvas Tile attribute once in a while to reset the texture or use Canvas Advection with Canvas Regeneration to attach the texture to the underlaying motion.

Canvas Regeneration

Defines the speed of regeneration in seconds for distorted canvases.

Advection can only be seen if the VelocityPV attribute is checked and the animation is playing.


Main Canvas

Contains the attributes that define the main canvas texture of the style.

Canvas Texture

Defines the main texture that is going to be used as the canvas. Flair comes with more than 10 different canvas heightmaps to choose from. You can load any heightmap, as long as they are in the textures folder within Flair.

The Canvas Synthesis attribute will automatically make an infinite canvas of any heightmap texture. Feel free to add your own textures and experiment with different canvas blends.

Canvas Color

Defines the color of the canvas.

Canvas Scale

Defines the linear scale of the canvas texture.

Canvas Rotation

Defines the rotation in degrees of the canvas texture. The center of the viewport is used as the rotation pivot.

Canvas Roughness

Defines the global roughness of the canvas.

Roughness between 0 and 5.0.

Canvas Roughness will affect ALL canvas-based effects.

Canvas Shading

Defines the amount of external diffuse shading of the canvas.

Canvas Shading between 1.0 and 0.

The shading is caused by the Canvas Light Dir and Canvas Light Tilt attributes.

Canvas Tile

Loads a new canvas tile at every round number i.e., 1.0, 2.0, 3.0.

Switching between Canvas Tile 1.0 and Canvas Tile 2.0, without Canvas Tile Blend.

Loading a new Canvas Tile will present a new texture pattern and reset every canvas-dependent effect.

Canvas Tile Blend

Enables to smoothly blend two canvas tiles. That means that the Canvas Tile attribute will smoothly blend the tiles e.g., a Canvas Tile attribute of 1.5 will be a blend of the tile at 1.0 and the tile at 2.0.

Blending between Canvas Tile 1.0 and Canvas Tile 2.0.

Alternate Canvas

Contains the attributes that control the alternate canvas texture of the style, for styles that make use of two canvas textures. Control of this canvas is independent from the main canvas. This group is closed by default, but can be opened by clicking on it.
The attributes are the same as the main canvas: see above for the corresponding documentation.

The alternate canvas is used if the Canvas Blend option is not 0 or in in styles that depend on more than one canvas e.g., Cutout.