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ernesttx
Hello again everyone. I apologize for the lapse of postings. I took several days off for a short vacation, I had worked on a live action short film for an upcoming film festival and I've gotten a new, faster computer and had to set it up with software and files.

All in all, things are now back to a somewhat normal operating situation. I have about 2 minutes of Episode 6 under wraps and diligently working on the remaining bits.

With Episode 6, it will be the last episode for this "season". I call it a season for lack of a better word. Don't worry, there will be a season two once Episode 6 is out. Also, with the release of Episode 6, I should have the book out as well. That's right, you read correctly, there will be a book. I plan it to be about 100-120 page paperback book. I have about 40 pages written so far. Until then, let me know what your thoughts are. And here's a little picture of a new character in Episode 6:

Click to view attachment
HomeSlice
Awesome. Love your characters. Great news about a book. That means you will have most of your script done. Will the book be like a graphic novel or comic book?
ernesttx
The entire script won't be done. This is a episodial series. Almost like a weekly television series. The book will cover the episodes that I will have completed thus far. I'm debating a graphic novel, as well. However, that will come after I get Episode 6 online and the book out. It would be a bit much for me at this time to complete all 3 at the same time. But, it is something that I am thinking about making.
ernesttx
Sometimes upgrading to newer, faster, (supposedly) better hardware and software doesn't allow for a better workflow or pipeline.

I had to make a decision about upgrading to a newer computer. I was weighing the odds about moving over to a new Mac computer; but, the cost of changing over my software was a bit prohibitive. So, I decided to stick with Windows. However, Ulead Movie Studio Pro doesn't play well with Vista. It hasn't been updated in over 2 years. So, I decided to move over to Sony Vegas.

In doing so, I've had to learn how to move around in Vegas and be able to work with it as I had with Ulead. However, it's taking a bit longer to get accustomed to Vegas. In Ulead, I could mix different frame rates with the video and audio files; ie, video files were 24 fps and audio was recorded at 30 fps; but, I could mix them and Ulead would format accordingly on the 24 fps output and the audio (dialog) would sync up to the video files.

Vegas seems to be a bit different. So, I'm kind of stuck at the moment. My audio (dialog) files are not syncing up with the video files. I've tried time stretching the audio files; but, a weird stuttering effect is generated.

Episode 6 is pretty much complete except for the audio issue. Anyone else using Sony Vegas?
martin
QUOTE(ernesttx @ Oct 16 2008, 08:51 AM) *
Episode 6 is pretty much complete except for the audio issue. Anyone else using Sony Vegas?

You might be able to use A:M's built-in NLE.
A:M Editor
KenH
QUOTE
However, Ulead Movie Studio Pro doesn't play well with Vista.


Perhaps you just need to play around with the compatibility options? You can find them if you right click on the program icon>Properties. Also, turn off desktop composition.
ernesttx
I'm trying different things with AM, like rendering out as movie files with the audio file.

KenH, thanks for that tip. I'll give that a try, as well.
ernesttx
Interesting find from AM.

In AM, I have the Units set to 24 fps in the Options window and set to Cels for frames. I have animated my character from frame 1 to 202. I was rendering out as individual PNG files at 24 fps. Vegas can import as a sequence at 24 fps and reads as 202 frames. This is what I would expect.

Then, I changed to render out as QT mov (to include the audio file in AM) set to 24 fps in the codec Setup. I still have AM Units set to 24 fps. When I view the rendered movie file, QT player says it's now 30 fps, and reads as 162.4 frames and Vegas imports it as 30 fps and reads as 162.4 frames. ???

Not sure what is affecting this change. But, alas, Episode 6 will be delayed a bit longer.
ernesttx
I think I know what is happening.

The audio files were recorded and/or sampled at 30 fps. When outputting from AM in QT Mov codec (even though I specify 24 fps), it is outputting to the 30 fps in the audio file. I opened up just the audio file in QT player and Audacity and each read file as 4.73 sec. When importing just the audio file into a 30 fps timeline, it reads in as 4.73 sec.

When I import the QT Mov (the 30 fps one) with the audio file that is rendered at supposed 24 fps, the audio files line up exactly at 4.73 sec in the timeline.

I also compared the QT Mov file and the individual PNG files against each other. The 202 PNG files at 24 fps reads at 8.12 sec. The QT Mov file at 30 fps reads as 6.73 sec with 162 frames. If you take 202 and divide by 30, you will get 6.73 sec.

In AM, the audio file is in an Action for the character. That Action is 4.73 sec long as it correlates to the audio file.
Also, in AM, the Timeline (when Units are Cels), the animated character goes from frame 1 to 202. When Units are set to SMPTE, it's length is 6.21 or roughly equivalent to 6.73 seconds; which would correspond to 30 fps not 24 fps that I have setup in Units.

Ok, I'm writing this as I test out different things. So, the following is my observations as I test.

So, now I'm totally bewildered. If I'm animating at 24 fps, and my animated character is moving for 6.73 seconds, I should only have 162 frames (6.73 times 24). So, how am I getting 202 frames out of the 6.73 seconds? Well, 6.73 seconds times 30 fps equals 202. ????

However, in the QT Mov file with audio at 30 fps, it's length is 162 frames. That's the 24 fps frame count.

So, now I'm thinking that alot of my "floating animation look" has been due to thinking I'm animating at 24 fps (ie, my characters arm moves in 1/2 second or 12 frames) but in reality, when rendering out individual frames, it's actually creating more frames based on a 30 fps timeline. ??

I did a short test with one character. I started each arm out at frame 1 in a horizontal position. The right arm I animated at 24 fps. So, at frame 1 arm is outstretched, at 12 frames arm is down by side, and at 24 frames arm is again outstretched. This should be a one second action. I rendered out frames 1 to 24, for a total of 24 frames.

With the left arm, I switched the Timeline to SMPTE and animated by seconds; ie, 0 seconds outstretched, 1/2 second down by side, 1 second outstretched. However, when rendering out 1 second, I have 30 individual PNG files. Eventhough, in the Units panel, I have 24 fps.

I'm thinking, I have to re-render each shot again, and use the QT Mov file with audio for the audio and correct action per frame. Because, eventhough the QT Mov file with audio reads as 30 fps, it's total frame count correlates to the frame time for the given action. With the example above, my 6.73 second action should only be 162 frames at 24 fps.

I'm now thoroughly confused and need a nap. tongue.gif
Rodney
Just to be sure you rule this out as well...

Double check your Project's FPS in the Dropdown menu under the Project filename. (See attached image). This may have defaulted to 30 before you created your current Project?
ernesttx
I've been using AM for how many years now and I have never known that was there. OMG. It was set to 30. Yes, now SMPTE on the Timeline shows up correctly. As I'm sure everything else will fall into place.

Thanks Rodney. Now I will give up AM and animating forever.
Rodney
QUOTE
Thanks Rodney. Now I will give up AM and animating forever.


Well... that certainly didn't have the effect I thought it would. wink.gif

I'm glad that worked out for you.
When someone passed that on to me I was just as shocked as you.

I would so love to be a fly on the wall at your studio.
Your productions seem perfecty suited to take advantage of reusable motion, limited animation (if I can use that term without being misunderstood), stock footage and reoccuring characters.

With Subject 99 you've been tackling a tough storyline/production too.
Lots of dialogue with limited movement required. Slow suspenseful camera moves. Introduction and refinement of characters. Those are some of the hardest things to animate yet there you are doing it consisently every episode.

Keep up the great work. Looking forward to Episode 6!
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