Composite nodes onto movie sequence

I know how to use composite nodes for a render output, so that if I start up the default scene (the cube), click “do composite” and then render, a gamma node (for example) actually works with the render.

If I use the Sequence editor, I can’t seem to get the nodes to affect the output film… not even with bot “do sequence” and “do composite” buttons selected… it is as if “do composite” had not been selected.

How do I enable composite node filters so they work on output from sequence editor?

Here is a thread that discusses this issue:

Thanks, though I already read that thread, which is partly why I started my own one.

Fweeb seemed to have the answer, but he lost me when it came to making different scenes… why would they even be needed? I basically have one movie in VSE, which I would like to parse through compositor nodes as it renders.

I’m confused by the thread. It seems like Fweeb is actually talking about adding multiple strips, whereas I just want to know how to make a single video work through Compositing Nodes.

The film is made & rendered in basic form. So how do I add a “glare” filter to the movie (found in node compositor) once it’s playing through the VSE?

I’m pretty sure this connection does not exist. You need to prerender the VSE’s edit first. There’s some ideas in the blenderstorm’s wishlist:

I believe it is currently one way, VSE --> Nodes --> Output.

Also Nodes don’t respect Field rendering, so when using video with movement you get a strobe effect.

Well, if I could do that… it sounds pretty much like what I’m asking for. Are you saying it can be done?

Pity if not… I’m asking on behalf of an animation school (post-grad programmes) who are seriously considering using Blender in their pipeline as an Open Source alternative to Nuke, AfterEffects and the like. They are impressed with the filtering and general wiring capabilities in Nodes, and also with the Sequence Editor. They have made movies in other software (generally Maya passes) but they are really wanting to efficiently link the composite nodes to the VSE on the fly… prerendering as animated textures and then slicing and dicing the result is not what they would call efficient.

Lancer, I know how you feel. I’ve done a lot of compositing with AE but now that I’m mainly working in Kubuntu system, Blender has been also my main video editing / compositing program. Lots of stuff can already be done with it, but still it is just a bit too far from being “good enough”. I’m still struggling with it and use AE/Premiere only when it is simply not possible in Blender or if the project gets too complicated.

Although I’ve got the impression that Blender is mainly developed as 3d tool, I’m keeping my fingers crossed for 2.5 that it might have some of these bottlenecks corrected, or that it will give the possibility to correct them more easily for future releases.

Composite nodes aren’t capable of effecting anything loaded into the sequence editor. If you want to directly effect image sequences with composite nodes then you have to load your sequences uinto the compositor. The compositor can only work with images loaded into it as above and also those being currently rendered via the 3D view port. After this takes place Blender moves on to the sequence editor and can stack or layer the compositor based renderings with whatever you have in the sequencer. This is a one way work flow from compositor to sequencer to final out put (like water in your drains which always flows down hill). The only way to reverse the order is via pre-rendering from VSE and manualyyl loading these back into the compositor.

just a correction 3pointedit has it backwards. see the attached illustration from my upcoming book, Digital Compositing with Blender. If you want to composite a sequenced video, you have to save it as an image asset first, and then read it in using the image input node. The compositor (nodes) do respect fields rendering; see the Image Input node doco for imported fielded video.


Yes all, my bad.
I feel silly posting so hastily, as I remember asking this very question not so long ago.

Papasmurf, recently I had a 2D move of a large still image -in a video sized frame- using nodes (as per your excellent tutorial), and found that as soon as I applied an effect (eg a blur) that the motion strobed, or became progressive. Maybe it was a function of the effect.

Thanks for your answers… I’ve only got the 'net while in house at work at the moment, though I’ve been playing with your suggestions and am pulling together something of a tutorial at the moment on the basic steps. My scribbled note at this time amount to…

  1. Set up wndows as such…

[node editor] [preview]
[ … VSE … ]
[ … buttons … ]

Hit render once (should show a cube) and change preview windows to “IM: Render Result”
Node editor: Click the face and also “Use Nodes”
Name the Scene “Scene01”
Node editor: Add > Input > Image and direct to your movie
Hit “Load New” and link to the film.
Wire the “image” to the “composite” node
Change the frames in the image node (Frs) to match the film
In Render buttons, make “Do Composite”
Change scene length (End) to match your film (Frs).

Optional: You MAY hit the car symbol on the image node to make update in realtime when moving the sliderbar, but it slows Blender down horribly. I prefer to just hit F12 for updates.
===> Delete render layer node?


We want to basically add a new movie with the same settings as the last scene, just change the movie file and framelength settings.
Scene: Add New =>>> Full copy
Change Scene name to “Scene02”
This now plays a second scene but it is a copy of the first.
Hit “Load new” and change movie to new one
Update times of Node (Frs) and scene frame length (End)


Scene: Add New =>>> Empty
Change its name to “Edits”
In the VSE editor, hit Add >> Scene
…choose Scene01 when asked. Position is at frame 1
Now hit Add >> Scene for the next scene
…choose Scene02 when asked. Position is where needed. The sequencer looks downwards along the timeline, only seeing the first strip.
UNSELECT “Do Composite”
SELECT “Do Sequence”

You are now pretty much set up. Use the “Edits” scene to slice’n’dice the movie, and the node editor scenes (Scene01, Scene02 etc) to add node effect filters etc. A good feature is that if you move the timeline in the VSE, it will be in the correct place when moving to the Node Editor scene (does not work the other way).

I think you are right here.

Maybe it works when using a Image Input but not when rendering from one or two scenes.

So before rendering a big project, check! (be aware that the Animation will NOT flicker on a computer monitor… So make a DVD out of it at least or check in your video app)


Also check the type of filtering you use at the render stage. On the render panel it is the button above the Border button. this can significantly affect the quality of 2D type node work. I think that the interlacing is put on before the nodes are applied, then trashed by node effects.