End to End Example

Creating Assets

Repository Path

Creating assets requires a repository path to be set. This change lasts during the duration of the current application (or python process), so it is needed only once.

API: grill.cook.Repository

>>> import tempfile
>>> from pathlib import Path
>>> from grill import cook
>>> cook.Repository.set(Path(tempfile.mkdtemp()))
<Token var=<ContextVar name='Repository' at 0x00000213A46FF900> at 0x00000213C6A9F0C0>
>>> cook.Repository.get()

GUI: Repository Path

If not set, a dialog to set it will be prompted upon creation request on any relevant widget (e.g. Create Assets, Taxonomy Editor).

To set the repository path at any point, go to Grill -> Preferences -> Repository Path:


Defining Taxonomy

For asset organization, The Grill uses the concept of asset taxonomy. This is a hierarchy for organizing assets into groups (Taxa) where members of each individual group (Taxon) share characteristics (e.g. Characters, Props and Shots are common organizational groups found on Film and Animation projects).

API: grill.cook.define_taxon()


For quick prototyping, grill.names.UsdAsset.get_anonymous() can be used to get temporary but valid grill identifiers.

>>> stage = cook.fetch_stage(cook.UsdAsset.get_anonymous())
>>> character = cook.define_taxon(stage, "Character")
>>> character
>>> cook.define_taxon(stage, "SecondaryCharacter", references=(character,))

GUI: Taxonomy Editor

On the upper left, all existing taxa in the current stage are listed. On the lower left, a graph with ancestors and successors of selected existing taxa is displayed. On the right, details for new taxa to be created. The following are optional:

  • References provides a selection dialog for new taxa to inherit properties from existing ones. This helps compose and extend asset taxonomy.

  • ID Fields are additional key=value asset field identifiers.

By default, the amount of new taxa to be created is one, but any number can be created at the same time by changing the Amount field at the top:


Creating Asset Units

An Asset Unit is considered to be a meaningful, unique member for each taxon. A taxon can contain any number of individual units.

API: grill.cook.create_unit()

>>> cook.create_unit(character, "Hero01", label="Hero 01 🦸")

GUI: Create Assets

In the example below, 240 City assets are created, copied from a CSV file and pasted directly on the Create Assets table.

All created asset units are saved to disk on the current repository path.


Modifying Assets


Creation of assets on Houdini via the GUIs should be considered experimental at the moment.

Any USD application should be able to modify the grill assets.

In the example below, an asset defined on USDView (on the right) is opened and modified in Maya (on the left). Once Maya changes are saved, USDView can pickup the edits. In a similar way, asset taxonomy is modified in Maya, then USDView loads the updates.


Following the above, both a new taxon and new asset units are created, this time in Houdini:



Note how same rules apply (e.g. the Repository path must be set before any creation action).