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Painting with Light? It Can't Be Done! Feb 2014


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#1 robcat2075

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Posted 05 February 2014 - 04:36 PM

Posted Image




We begin "It Can't Be Done", a tutorial thread in which we try to do the undo-able... with Animation:Master!

Part1 Attached File  ICBDEpisode_2014_02_01_H.mov   60.69MB   215 downloads...This month's topic is revealed and we get started.

PRJ of example in video Attached File  ICBD_2_2014_02_line_test.prj   13.61KB   149 downloads
The photograph shown in the video is used with the permission of the artist, Rob Walker.



Part 2 is on Youtube... With comparative analysis we learn to cook our own A:M files.

I recommend you Fullscreen it and use the "Settings" button at the lower right of the Youtube player to choose 480p or 720p. If anyone can't view Youtube, let me know.

Error: at 7:45 I say "I added three splines to the model" when I should have said "I added three CPs to the model"

PSPad.com, for the freeware text editor for PC used in the video. MarkW informs me that TextWrangler can do on the Mac what PSPad does on PC.



Part 3 is on YouTube... We magically create 90 Cps in an instant!

Open Office, seen in the video, is available free for both PC and Mac

Spreadsheet in .xls format can be loaded in both Open Office and MS Excel Attached File  Light_Painting_03_Create_Cps.zip   1.97KB   81 downloads



Part 4 is on Youtube... We finish text editing and test it and... it works!

Current version of spreadsheet for CPs, bones and constraints Attached File  Light_Painting_06.zip   3.25KB   77 downloads
PRJ shown in video with working spline animation Attached File  90CPs_90Bones_90Attached_89ConstrainedC.prj   75.26KB   103 downloads



Part 5 is on YouTube... See the wondwous wuminous wabbit of wight!

Current version of spreadsheet adds Groups: Attached File  Light_Painting_10_groups.zip   36.47KB   74 downloads
Animation PRJ used as test scene: Attached File  RabbitPRJ.zip   360.37KB   81 downloads



Part 6 is on YouTube... the painted light emits light of its own!

Attached File  Light_on_Spline_PRJ.zip   360.47KB   89 downloads

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#2 Vertexspline

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Posted 05 February 2014 - 05:58 PM

Lots of good stuff here Robert. Thanks for this new inniative. I am sure folks are going to really like this.
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#3 Rodney

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Posted 06 February 2014 - 04:56 AM

Nicely done Robert! You've given me a few ideas with that approach. :)
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#4 largento

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Posted 06 February 2014 - 09:10 AM

Bravo! There's some great info here that could apply to lots of different tasks.

#5 robcat2075

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Posted 06 February 2014 - 09:18 AM

BTW, that's me playing the theme song on my tuba. :o

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#6 johnl3d

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Posted 06 February 2014 - 12:00 PM

tuba part of multitasking ? nicely done played with similar idea sometime ago with worm segments

http://johnl3d.blogspot.com/

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#7 Fuchur

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Posted 06 February 2014 - 12:43 PM

tuba part of multitasking ? nicely done played with similar idea sometime ago with worm segments


I really like the lag-approach you are doing there :).
I thought of a path with different ease-values for the bones, but your approach seems much more flexibel :) Very cool Robert!

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#8 zandoriastudios

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Posted 07 February 2014 - 07:14 AM

Elegantly simple! Nice job!

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#9 robcat2075

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Posted 09 February 2014 - 07:45 AM

Episode 2 is 2 good to miss. Now live with a link in the first post.

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#10 markw

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Posted 09 February 2014 - 10:15 AM

"...Can anyone recommend a text editor for Mac that has an ability to display "difference" as PSPad does in the video?

Yes, the Mac version of TextWrangler can do it.
As always Robert you have produced two more excellent videos.
On a Mac? Not used Netrender before?
Then have a read of this...

#11 Fuchur

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Posted 09 February 2014 - 02:37 PM

"...Can anyone recommend a text editor for Mac that has an ability to display "difference" as PSPad does in the video?

Yes, the Mac version of TextWrangler can do it.
As always Robert you have produced two more excellent videos.


Very helpful and interesting... If I find the time I will use PHP to create a huge line with that approaches... maybe tomorrow or the day after that... we will see.

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#12 johnl3d

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Posted 09 February 2014 - 07:56 PM

I remember as I probably said before fixing models with a text editor or at least most of a model...this carries it another step further ..Thanks Robert

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#13 fae_alba

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Posted 10 February 2014 - 06:29 AM

"...Can anyone recommend a text editor for Mac that has an ability to display "difference" as PSPad does in the video?

Yes, the Mac version of TextWrangler can do it.
As always Robert you have produced two more excellent videos.


Very helpful and interesting... If I find the time I will use PHP to create a huge line with that approaches... maybe tomorrow or the day after that... we will see.

See you
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I would use excel and a macro. The macro can build out the xml-ish string for the cps and bones...make it as long as you like. Perhaps today at lunch I'll work it up and attach post it..

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#14 robcat2075

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Posted 11 February 2014 - 09:30 PM

The third thrilling episode is now online! Link in top post of thread.

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#15 Rodney

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Posted 12 February 2014 - 02:34 AM

I'm enjoying these Robert and looking forward to seeing how you automate rigging in Open Office. Which leads me to my next sentence... Your latest link points to Open Office rather than youtube (along with your link that corretly points to Open Office that is) Looking forward to seeing Episode 3!
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#16 robcat2075

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Posted 12 February 2014 - 03:29 AM

Your latest link points to Open Office rather than youtube (along with your link that corretly points to Open Office that is)


Whoops! Fixed now.

Thanks, Rodney!

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#17 Rodney

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Posted 12 February 2014 - 07:17 AM

Thanks Robert! You expertly demonstrate how we can extend A:M by creating our our utilities in A:M itself or via integration with other programs. Open Office (or a similar suite of tools) should be on everyone's computer whether for the purpose of indirectly manipulating elements in A:M or simply crafting a script, storyboard or framework for holding rendered images (i.e. through html). The fact that A:M's file format is accessible in this way is powerful and the results only limited by one's creative imagination. Thanks again for these videos! Edit: For those with the propensity to dream big dreams, I hope through videos such as these they can see how they can take the first step toward realizing those dreams. Creating a workable prototype (in Open Office or any program) can be a critical forerunner to programming a plugin and utility. If the process can be broken down and demonstrated to someone with a talent for programming then that process can then more easily be transferred, streamlined, automated and extended in other (programming) languages.
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#18 robcat2075

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Posted 16 February 2014 - 08:39 AM

Ferocious fourth episode is up. Link in top post.

(It's OK to watch even if you didn't do your homework from episode 2. :) )

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#19 NancyGormezano

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Posted 16 February 2014 - 12:11 PM

Muy muy bueno! Love seeing the A:M data structure revealed & explained, as well as how to use spreadsheet and text editor. Wonderful new helpful info !

#20 Rodney

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Posted 16 February 2014 - 01:32 PM

Superbly demonstrated Robert. That carriage return... gah! That has eluded me for a long time and I thank you for bring its code (in spreadsheets) to our attention. (I've actually just been too lazy to look it up in the past but now thanks to you have it delivered straight to me!). There are several things that this latest demo brings to mind (beyond just this latest 'It Can't Be Done' focus on painting with light): - Fluid drawing with splines without constantly clicking works very well in real time (I hope that angle on spline technology can be further leveraged in the future in A:M). - The approach you outline using a spreadsheet or other program to automate text can be used to solve many other 'It can't be done' scenarios. The one that immediately springs to mind is the automatic scripting of animation via xsheet/dopesheet... even easier to implement than constraining bones to CPs in a spreadsheet. - It can be useful to maintain the entire A:M file structure inside the spreadsheet (with different elements on different tabs) all feeding into one master spreadsheet. Then when data on one tab is updated the master sheet is updated as well. - Immediately after opening a file created externally from A:M it is a good idea to save the file from inside of A:M as A:M will often 'repair' elements that aren't ideally formatted. (example: an empty value might be filled with a default value because A:M knows 'something' must be there. - Programs such as Visual Basic for Applications can further automate A:M file creation. (I'm not sure what macro/basic language is used with Open Office) You've given us a lot to consider and I am indebted to your patience. Taking time to create files in the way you've demonstrated can be difficult and running through it step by step even more so... especially with such clarity! Thank you Robert for delving so deeply into this. It is very illuminating. :)
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#21 itsjustme

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Posted 16 February 2014 - 03:15 PM

Great stuff, Robert!

#22 robcat2075

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Posted 16 February 2014 - 07:38 PM

Thanks for the good reviews, everyone!


- The approach you outline using a spreadsheet or other program to automate text can be used to solve many other 'It can't be done' scenarios. The one that immediately springs to mind is the automatic scripting of animation via xsheet/dopesheet... even easier to implement than constraining bones to CPs in a spreadsheet.


Yup. There's lots of potential in it. That's kind of why i picked this "painting with light" topic, I thought it might provide a good case study for explaining text editing.

I'm glad the Spreadsheet stuff works; i hadn't actually tried any of that before I got started. :D A big breakthrough was when I realized i could export in "Comma Separated Value" format... without commas!

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#23 johnl3d

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Posted 16 February 2014 - 08:53 PM

excellent use of spreadsheet to modify file

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#24 robcat2075

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Posted 17 February 2014 - 10:59 AM

I recall that the original TSM was an app outside of A:M that would read a MDL file and save out a modified MDL. They wrote it in Macromedia Shockwave and basically it was automated text editing. Now that I know this spreadsheet thing works... I'm thinking TSM2! I think it may be possible to recreate TSM2 as a manipulation done by a spreadsheet. You could paste your entire MDL into one cell at the top, magic would happen somewhere in between, and then you'd copy out the rigged MDL from a cell at the bottom. And it would work for both Mac and PC again. Somebody do that. :D

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#25 largento

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Posted 17 February 2014 - 11:20 AM

That would be awesome!

Maybe this is something that could benefit the new rigs we've got or even serve as an open-source type rig for the community.


I recall that the original TSM was an app outside of A:M that would read a MDL file and save out a modified MDL. They wrote it in Macromedia Shockwave and basically it was automated text editing.

Now that I know this spreadsheet thing works... I'm thinking TSM2! I think it may be possible to recreate TSM2 as a manipulation done by a spreadsheet.

You could paste your entire MDL into one cell at the top, magic would happen somewhere in between, and then you'd copy out the rigged MDL from a cell at the bottom.

And it would work for both Mac and PC again.

Somebody do that. :D



#26 robcat2075

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Posted 19 February 2014 - 06:42 PM

Today's episode will probably not arrive until Saturday. Just in case anyone was staying up late waiting for it. ;) Rabbitpose46.jpg

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#27 jason1025

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Posted 19 February 2014 - 11:04 PM

im waiting for it.

Free tuts

http://www.hash.com/...t=0#entry319614


I have hours and hours of organized free Video tutorials on Data DVD. Because Storage and bandwidth are an issue its difficult to give these for free as they not only cost me money I can not pay for delivery and the time it takes to burn them for you. I will send you all the free organized video tutorials regarding AM I have. The link below will help you get the ball rolling.

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#28 Shelton

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Posted 20 February 2014 - 06:53 AM

Me too! Steve
In Production (somewhat of a production) "Cupid's Sick Day"

#29 markw

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Posted 20 February 2014 - 10:49 AM

...You could paste your entire MDL into one cell at the top, magic would happen somewhere in between, and then you'd copy out the rigged MDL from a cell at the bottom.

And it would work for both Mac and PC again.

Somebody do that. :D

That sounds like the Holy Grail of rigging to me! I drop a model in the top, press a button and out it comes rigged and ready to go! Ah, if only!

But back to your latest video there and its another great one! Thank you for doing them.
On a Mac? Not used Netrender before?
Then have a read of this...

#30 robcat2075

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Posted 20 February 2014 - 11:24 AM

I'll note that my rigging scenario still involves you assigning CPs and fan-boning or weighting or whatever. <_< But if you like the TSM2 workflow, the spread sheet could revive the part the TSM2 did which was adding all the non-geometry bones and constraining them.

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#31 Fuchur

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Posted 20 February 2014 - 11:34 AM

Me too!

Steve


Who is not waiting for that? ;)

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#32 robcat2075

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Posted 20 February 2014 - 05:36 PM

Rabbitpose42.jpg

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#33 robcat2075

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 08:03 PM

Fiery Fifth Episode is now posted. Link in top post.

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#34 Rodney

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 09:12 PM

Awesome. Not only educational... entertaining! :) Well worth the wait as well. I think I know where you are headed with this in the next episode. If not... I'm thinking of a decent alternative. Time will tell!
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#35 GAngus

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Posted 27 February 2014 - 02:27 PM

Wow Rob, this is so interesting and helpful… but... (Perhaps, I am doing something wrong) but, when I download the Prj.zip file , all I get is a "BlueHorizon.tga" picture file and no project file.

#36 robcat2075

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Posted 27 February 2014 - 02:47 PM

Wow Rob, this is so interesting and helpful… but...

(Perhaps, I am doing something wrong) but, when I download the Prj.zip file , all I get is a "BlueHorizon.tga" picture file and no project file.



Sorry! Try again, it should be fixed now.

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#37 Rodney

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Posted 27 February 2014 - 03:08 PM

Just played with your Project file. Awesome. Everyone in the world should have a copy of A:M just so they can play with files like this. :) There's nothing like realtime spline animation... except perhaps realtime spline anmation mixed with spline based effects!
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#38 GAngus

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Posted 27 February 2014 - 04:42 PM

OK, cool, got it now… thanks so much.

#39 Fuchur

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Posted 27 February 2014 - 04:48 PM

OK, cool, got it now… thanks so much.


Really looking great Robert :) Well done!

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#40 Shelton

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Posted 27 February 2014 - 05:50 PM

Bravo!! Very well done. I loved the part about the glow differences. Netrender I see at the end is causing some issues. Steve
In Production (somewhat of a production) "Cupid's Sick Day"

#41 robcat2075

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Posted 27 February 2014 - 06:13 PM

Netrender I see at the end is causing some issues.


Now a reported bug! :P

v17 was able to render it properly so i think this is a blip that can be fixed.

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#42 zandoriastudios

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Posted 28 February 2014 - 06:18 AM

Great job all around, Robcat!

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#43 thefreshestever

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Posted 02 March 2014 - 06:26 AM

wow! this is really cool. :blink: :yay:

#44 robcat2075

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Posted 06 March 2014 - 12:18 PM

There will be a slight delay for Episode 6. I'm pondering my way around a few exotic bugs I've encountered. :)

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#45 robcat2075

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Posted 06 March 2014 - 03:04 PM

I think what I've found is that multi-pass motion blur doesn't always slice time exactly right. For example, 256-passes slices time in the increments that one would expect for 225 passes and then the last 31 passes are all on top of each other. This is almost never noticeable for motion blur purposes but when swinging a light around it is detectable. B)

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#46 robcat2075

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Posted 15 March 2014 - 10:03 PM

I've got this episode edited, I just can't get After Effects to spit it out. It Can't Be Done! :angry:

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#47 robcat2075

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Posted 16 March 2014 - 12:48 PM

The shadowy sixth episode is now posted!

Link in the post at top of thread.

Episode 6 is a bit long but it introduces a number of important concepts that many A:M users are not familiar with...

-path constraints and "ease"
-multipass and motion blur
-fractional keyframes
-channel post-extrapolation
-animating light color
-rendering in passes
-A:M composites
-composite Post Effects
-compositing modes


CompositeGlow128.jpg



If any one has questions about what has been discussed so far, post them and I may incorporate them into the last episode.

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#48 Rodney

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Posted 16 March 2014 - 03:37 PM

Outstanding episode Robert. You cover a whole lot of territory in this one! There are so many areas of interest you cover in this video that it's hard to refer to just one but EVERYONE should watch it. The intro to A:M Composite alone will be enlightening because that feature is so seldom invoked. You explored one thing I have never even glanced at before... because I didn't think I had a use for it... but you have expertly demonstrated how shortsighted my thinking was. That was your use of the Repeat Interpolation. Whoa... why haven't I been using THAT one! You delved deeply into some other areas that I've only scratched at as well and it's always good to see that exploration validated. One of the things I note is that you run into the problem of the default color of the ground plane being white. If it were a mid grey I believe you wouldn't have had to intially adjust your light because the ground plane was too bright. Turning down the illumination was a proper solution but darkening the ground plane would work well also, especially if only wanting to change the effect of the light on the ground. When you move into the arena of glow there is one area that will pay off big dividends and that is Lens Flares There are some attribute of Lens flares that have not yet been leveraged to good effect in Animation:Master but are there to be exploited by anyone with sufficient time and curiosity. (Tip: When in doubt get rid of everything except the part of the Flare you want). ThankyouThankyouThankyouThankyou for this series of video tutorials. A W E S O M E ! :)
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#49 NancyGormezano

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Posted 17 March 2014 - 08:16 AM

Excellent! excellent! excellent!...umm...AND did I mention absolutely excellent? Amazing treasure of good info! These videos are incredibly chockful. You have a wonderful style of presenting information in a simple and easy to follow way. You're a keeper! :lol:

#50 Shelton

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Posted 18 March 2014 - 05:00 AM

Robert Just wonderful! Thank you so much for doing this! I took away a great deal of information! Steve
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