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Smart Importer script (for importing image sequences)

Posted: Fri Feb 19, 2016 7:19 pm
by stweed
Hey Guys, I'm excited to release a script I made a few months back for importing image sequences automatically (saves me a ton of time when working with CG render passes and such). I'm never planning on selling this script and I'm not a professional coder, so I'm throwing it out there for free and as I update it I'll share with anyone who is interested.

I work on many CG shots a day and as such import a LOT of image sequences. They come in different organizational flavors - sometimes they're in sub-folders, sometimes there are like 12 sequences in one folder, most times just both. As I'm sure all of you know importing a lot of sequences in After Effects is a real pain and sometimes I would miss a pass or two - so I needed something that would make it easier to import hundreds of frames in one go. I tested out Lloyd Alvarez's Immigration script and while it was able to do what I wanted I decided to take a whack at my own script so that I could tailor it to my studio/workflow. I'm not quite done with it but in it's current stage it actually works pretty well, it allows you to select a folder and it will recursively import any image sequences it finds within that and any sub-folders. Already it has saved me a LOT of time!

So at this point I'm happy to release it for free and I welcome anyone else to come up with any improvements. I consider the script far from complete so undoubtedly you'll run into bugs and slows here and there, but I have been using it in production for a little while now and it definitely works. As mentioned I'm not a professional coder and there are a few things about the script that could use some optimization/clean up so if anyone feels like helping me out that would be seriously appreciated!

As a note I've only run this on Windows in CS6. I don't have a Mac so I have no idea what will happen if you try it! (Adobe CC should work fine, but I haven't tested it yet)

To use it just copy-paste the folder URI into the "Path" box and import (it will import into any selected folder in your Project panel). The "Choose Folder" button might be a bit confusing because it wants you to select a file - but don't be fooled, it will select the parent folder of whatever file you choose (my thought was that you could just click the first frame in your main folder and it would import everything in that folder plus all sub-folders). "Skip Existing" basically just looks at whatever folder you have selected and skips all duplicates with it and any sub-folders (if nothing is selected it searches the whole project). I've been able to import thousands of frames at a time (in many different image sequences) and though it can hang for a minute or two it will work. The only thing I've found to crash the script is sometimes when trying to import a sequence that is still rendering, or when importing image sequences with numbers over 4 digits in the name that are not the frame numbers (this is something I run into with VrayExtraTex renders...) and I'm planning to fix that bug soon-ish.

Enjoy!

- Spencer

Re: Smart Importer script (for importing image sequences)

Posted: Thu May 10, 2018 6:50 pm
by NeilAndrew
Hey there!
I'm trying to import .DPX image sequnces. They are 23.976 1920x1080 12bit .DPX files. 

I keep getting the error:
---------------------------
Script Alert
---------------------------
something didn't go as planned.
I forgot what I was doing here...
---------------------------
OK   
---------------------------

No matter if I select one folder with DPX files or a root folder with lots of folders containing DPX files, it just keeps showing that same script alert and I have to end the After Effects task in Task Manager to get the error to stop. 

After Effects CC 2018 
Windows 10 Pro 

Re: Smart Importer script (for importing image sequences)

Posted: Thu May 10, 2018 7:23 pm
by stweed
Hey Neil!

Haha sorry about that, looks like I was mid programming something there and forgot to finish it. I abandoned this particular project when I switched to Adobe CC at the beginning of the year and found that Adobe did some seriously weird stuff with Script UI (and much of my code no longer worked as intended...). I got frustrated and gave up on Extendscript for a while... Anyways that said I'll upload the last version I made shortly, and see if I can't fix your bug while I'm at it.

I did however start a new project which I might be interested in putting online, which similarly solves the problem of importing image sequences. I started programming in Python about a year ago and I am nearly completed on making my own file browser that has the ability to send image sequences (and video/stills for that matter) to After Effects, Nuke and Shotgun RV. At a good point I might upload it to GitHub and see if anyone wants to pick it apart. Anyways if I can remember I'll send you a message if I do!

- Spencer