Tag Archive: cinema 4d


The Travail – new work is up

Here it is. I’m pretty happy with the output. The loops within it aren’t perfect as i should have done more calculations as to the timing of each stop-mo clip withing the composition.

As i said as the vimeo comment, I think this will be the last time i’ll use dirt as a stop-motion material, at least for a while. I love the look of it but it is hell to work with and control. Still don’t let me discourage any of you out there brave enough to experiment with it… dirt is awesome XD

I haven’t had time to go into Horse Bazaar and put it up yet, so i’ll go in next monday for a jam after my first uni night class of the year ‘electronics for artists’… I’m so pumped to bend some circuits!

Seeing as my video camera got stolen last year i’ll have to borrow a phone to take the video of the projection… so the quality won’t be great but at least it will be a record of where it went.

I’ve also been thinking lately of upgrading to Vimeo Plus because it’s only $60 a year and the benefits look schweeeet. So depending on my bank account tonight, i’ll upload some older stuff to juicy vimeo quality.

 

I hope you guys liked the piece. Pretty soon I’ll start to throw up and document the creating of a new narrative animation i’ve been thinking about, so you can see my process in full.

-Perm

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I’m getting close to finishing the CG part of this project. I still need to put in the 2d lever elements the man will interact with, and i’m not sure about the framing of the hemisphere. I also need to place some dirt down the bottom where the character sits. Then it’s all lighting and animating.

The low poly mushrooms allowed me to practice my hypernurbs. I use heaps of loft, arch and lathe nurbs to make 2d splines(2 dimensional line shapes etc.) into 3d objects, however i don’t use many hypernurbs which help turn blocky animations into smoother models with more polygons, as i’ve always found them difficult to manipulate.

I’m also pretty proud of this chain. Although it’s easy to do, i learned about clone objects and a bit more about modynamics. Modynamics is this really sweet feature in C4D that allows 3D objects to interact with each other, and it can add physics etc. It’s pretty difficult compared to modelling but there are some things that are impossible to animate by keyframing, modynamics is really useful in this regard.

 

Although i’m taking my time with this scene, the reality is that i need to make things look better in C4D, and also be way faster. If i’m ever going to finish a feature animation by myself i’ll need to be very quick, otherwise it will take 5 years instead of the 3 i’m aiming for. It’s really tricky because I want it to look better, yet wish to be quicker at doing it. I guess practice on top of practice is the only way i’m going to get there. *punches brick wall*

 

Anyway, enough of this CG talk that most of you would find boring. It certainly doesn’t help that there’s this whole 3D lingo, FOR EACH SPECIFIC SOFTWARE PACKAGE! That’s probably why CG artists hang out in wild street gangs with other artists using the same package. They’ll totally fuck you up with their polygonal style BIATCH! :p

The next stage is stop-mo dirt and compositing 😀

-PERM

 

So i’ve finally gotten around to creating the Horse Bazaar Panorama i’ve talked about doing. It pretty much involves a man pulling levers in a spherical space. All around this space there will be stop-motion dirt orbiting. When i went out collecting different hues and textures of dirt yesterday i was getting some pretty weird looks. I guess if i was playing with my kid in the sandpit at a park and some disheveled dude comes in and starts collecting sand in containers; i’d be pretty wtf’d out too haha.

The project has started out pretty promising, however the levers will be the biggest gamble. The sphere the man is in will be CG but the man is hand drawn and rigged in After Effects. So the levers might be better off being drawn in because i’m not too sure about the paper interacting with 3d. The other option i might take is to create the levers in Cinema 4D but render them out to flat .tiffs and animate them in 2D space directly from After Effects.

Here’s the character. I’m not sure if i’ll end up making his head float or not. I’ve left him completely white, so he will be coloured more by the lights i’ll put in in compositing.

Here’s the early stages of the man’s sphere. Still need more modelling, texturing, lighting but you can start to see what it’ll look like.

I’m also thinking of creating a tutorial on how it’s done for you peeps out there. I’ll finish it, then spend a day back tracking and i’ll teach you guys one way to rig 2.5d puppets in AE, and some compositing 101. If there’s anything you’d people out there would like to see in the tutorial, flick me a comment or email.

I’d better get back to modelling over 9000 pipes.

-perm

This week I’ve been up to a few interesting things. Besides getting my studio into workable condition, i’ve been doing test renders and preview renders for the cg/drawn collab i’m doing with Monkeh. I’ve got to get all the scenes rendered with correct lighting, camera placements and movement so monkeh knows how the light will fall and he can get started on the frame by frame drawn character animations.

I’ve started to really experiment with lighting as it’s the beating heart of moving image. Every filmmaker should without a doubt study light in detail because it really makes or breaks a shot. As an animator using computer graphics it is extremely important to study how light works and the effect it has on human perception as CG light doesn’t quite function as light in real life. CG lights are just computer equations not burning filaments, phosphorescent matter or the sun, and GI lighting is for pussies who want the computer to light the scene for them.  As i’m lighting large scenes i’m using up to 40 lights. Some of which have dust running through them, caustics(visible light beams) and ambient illumination which is slowing down render times to a snails pace.

The latest shot i just rendered was 375 frames, or about 13 seconds and it took 68 hours to render! I’ve also put the anti-aliasing to 4×4 because any lower really makes the shots look dodge.

(rendering the last few frames after a crash mid render. as you can see 10 frames has taken 1hr30min to render D:)

(part of the scene unrendered.)

 

RENDER RIG:

My RIG system has a 1gig graphics card, 4 core 2.7ghz intel cpu, and 4 gigs of ram which is really not enough. I used to have 4 sticks of 2gig ram which was way faster but so instable i had to pull out 2 sticks.

The next money i come into i’m upgrading  to a new i7 cpu, new mobo, and more ram which will speed things up dramatically. However i’m too pov at the moment to afford much besides rent and food so it might take a little while :S. I’ve also got to look into learning how to set up a render farm if i’m going to follow this CGI down the rabbit hole much further(which i will). I haven’t even gotten into thinking particles, hair or character animation yet which will really push my system to it’s limits.

 

If anyone has any advice on tech shiz or setting up a render farm, send me a message.

Time to go practice for my 1st ever VJ set next Thursday. 😀

__PERM

First off let me start by saying, ‘I Hate iPads’. I think they are a gimmick, pretty much a useless piece of technology and a massive waste of hard earned cash brought to you of course, by the gimmick masters at MAC.

There! Now that’s out of the way, we have this; an interesting new use of old techniques brought to you by ‘Dentsu London’, who are some sort of advertising agency.

Now i’m going to teach all you guys how to use this technique so you can subvert it for YOUR ‘real’ messages and stories other than creating ‘cool’ demo reels and advertisements for corporations. As my esteemed Comrade Mdot Strange says, ” FUCK “COOL” put some heart and soul into it! “COOL” shit lingers in peoples minds for as long as it takes them to say “COOL” to some other shiny vapid thing “.

And here is another interesting piece of text i’ve been reading lately, on subversion of corporate culture and tools from ‘Re-Imagining Animation’ by Paul Wells and Johnny Hardstaff.

‘RESISTING CORPORATE AGENDAS

—–

Where once the dreams and visions of practitioners led the development of CGI technologies, now CGI technology can shape human dreams and visions, and it is important that the software does not determine an approach. Arguably, corporate agendas can lie at the very heart of even the tools we use to design, develop and deliver our work. Corporate culture provides, refines and sells tools, and it is crucial that animators and artists filter out corporate political doctrine from the visual and privilege personal work with integrity and challenge.” (p.78)

Essentially the technique utilises any portable screen, tablet pc(urgh) or laptop to light paint cross sections of a CG object. It also looks like they’ve use Cinema 4D as opposed to other CG packages to create this which interests me as it’s the software i’m most comfortable with.

Things you might need to know:

Light Painting: Light painting is where a camera is set for a long exposure time in a dark shot, often over 1-5 seconds. While the shutter is open, a light source such as an LED or in this case a PC screen is moved in the shot. This will create a luminous pattern or stroke in the photo. Doing this for several shots can create light painted ‘stop-motion’ animations.

_______________________________________________

I’ll take you through how to do this in a few steps now.

1. To learn how to create text and seperate sections of the letters in cinema 4d, check out the first half of this modynamics tutorial on creative cow.

2. The second step involves you rendering out the cross-sections of the image you wish to ‘light paint’ into a video file such as a .mov quicktime file.

3. Then just set up your camera(you need a tripod) for a shot in the darkness. Make sure your shutter speed is really long. The speed will depend on how long it will take you to move the screen in the shot. I reccomend 5-10 seconds, however you will need to experiment with the aperture to get the effect you need.

4. Take the shot and while the shutter is open move your screen through the shot. Make the screen play the cross section in full screen so it is surrounded by blackness while you do this.

5. Do this several times(12 shots will create 1sec of footage at 12fps), perhaps with different cross-sections if you wish your ‘light painting’ to move or morph.

6.Then import the image sequences into After Effects or your editing/compositing program of choice.

Now that you’ve just learnt this animation technique; pass GO, collect $200 and go subvert this technique to create something great and interesting.

😀

-PERMIAN

I’ve been working for a little while on some 3D CGI scenes for a collaborative animation with my friend ‘Mad SKillz James‘. The short(like really short) animation is going to take place inside a cinema. We’ve decided to use 3D for the set but mix it up a bit with digitally cell drawn characters(using photoshop and AE etc). I’ve never actually been taught any CGI but always thought that I would need to eventually get some training.

Lately I’m beginning to see realise is not true. If you needed to create generic boring graphics for the $, like in a CGI studio environment you will likely need training so you fit the mold and can create generic boring graphics like everyone else. If you’re using computer graphics for purely creative reasons there seems to be no point. By teaching yourself from the hundreds of thousands of tutorials online you will end up with your own distinct style which is preferable anyway. Of course this is applicable to any creative skill. Although my CGI skillz are still far from advanced I’ve made massive advances in my technique, skill and style in a relatively short time. The best way to do this is to learn while creating something and it won’t feel like a lesson, it will feel more like problem solving. You will eventually be running around yelling “ZOMG LOOK AT THIS BIT OF CG CLOTH I MADE FLAP… LOOK!” and they won’t care, but that’s ok because it feels GOOD that YOU learnt it and figured it out by yourself. The more demanding goals you set yourself the more you will learn.

Just starting out in 3D CGI and/or want to start teaching yourself? Make a short animation entirely in computer graphics. “But wtf pErm! I don’t know shit about CGI”. Just take it one step at a time. If you want to make a cube but don’t know how, type into a search engine ‘how to create cube’ and the name of the program you want to use. Between this learning technique and just fiddling around with parameters/buttons you can learn anything.

In conclusion, don’t be a bitch, be bitchin’ 😀

– Permian * *
((((______))))