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3D Transitions in discreet combustion

3D Transitions in discreet combustion
A CreativeCOW Combustion Tutorial


the 3d transition in combustion
Ben Munkres Ben Munkres
www.bmunkres.com
Lynnwood, Washington, USA

©2004 by Ben Munkres and CreativeCOW.net. All rights are reserved.


Article Focus:
In this tutorial, Ben Munkres demonstrates building a transition in order to instruct in the use of the 3d workspace and how to put into use in a production piece. (Note: This is a pc tutorial)


Download Combustion Workspace and Footage

For Part 2 go here.

Purpose:       To build a transition that helps to instruct the use of the 3d workspace, and how to put it to use in a production piece.

Goal:            To build a transition that will tie sections of a presentation video together.

Files:            back-panel01.jpg              back-panel02.jpg

                   back-panel03.jpg              featureclip01.avi

                   featureclip02.avi               featureclip03.avi

                   flicker.avi                         frameVideo.jpg

                    frameVideoEdge.jpg



Design Sketch:



History:

Our client has asked for a very dramatic transition between segments displaying a lot of technology, motion, and to draw interest via ‘pop’.  They wanted to play on some of the ‘old school’ ideas of what school was all about, the use of “projected looking” images, as if it were being projected from a 16mm projector.  They wanted the images to be footage of the classrooms and classes.

We suggested using a 3d environment and giving it a modern ‘grunge’ look, these ideas the client liked and were incorporated into our project.

There are a couple of ways to move around in 3d space one is to place a ‘null object’ in your composite and parent all of your objects to it and manipulate it in front of the camera, and secondly to move the camera in space, for reasons of complexity within the composite we will be using the latter of the two methods for this tutorial.

 

Step 1: Create New Composite


Open Combustion

Click <File> then <New> or Ctrl ‘N’

Under “Type” choose “Composite”, name it “3d transition”, use D1/Discreet edit NTSC format, and make it’s length 5 seconds (150 frames).  Keep the background color black, and select 3d under mode.  See fig 01.

     



Step 2: Import Footage and Nesting Setup


Click <File> then <Import Footage> or Ctrl ‘I’

Browse to the location of the unzipped files included with this tutorial, deselect Collapse at the top and center in the interface, and select these files with the Ctrl key held down:  

1. back-panel01.jpg          2. featureclip01.avi

3. back-panel02.jpg          4. featureclip02.avi

5. back-panel03.jpg          6. featureclip03.avi

Click OK, and in the workspace, if you selected them in the order specified above your workspace tab (f3) should look like fig 02.  If you did not select the elements in the order specified, re-order them to match fig 02.

NOTE:  Keep in mind that the order of elements is very specific in this tutorial, we will be building some fairly complicated elements, and I will be showing this workspace tab throughout so you will know if you have the elements stacked correctly.

                                         

Select elements “back-panel03” and “featureClip03” and then while they are selected click on <Object>, then choose <Nesting> (Use Ctrl E) at the bottom, or right click and choose <Nesting> the second item up on the list.  In the interface select the button for <Selected Layers>, and in the Composite Name field enter the name “Technology”.  See fig 03.

 

Repeat this for the other two groups.  Using the names as follows:

For 02 name it “Learning”

For 01 name it “Teaching”

See fig 04 for the end result.



Step 3: Repositioning the Nested Composites and Import Other Elements


Select Camera and going to the Composite Controls (f8) to the Transform panel reposition the camera as follows:

Position

 

Rotation

 

X

-820.00

X

0.00

Y

-90.00

Y

36.00

Z

-1000.00

Z

0.00

This is the camera’s starting position.

  Select “Teaching” then go to the Transform panel and reposition this element as follows:

Position

 

Rotation

 

Scale

 

X

30.00

X

0.00

X

70.00

Y

154.00

Y

0.00

Y

70.00

Z

400.00

Z

0.00

Z

70.00

  Select “Learning” and reposition as follows:

Position

 

Rotation

 

Scale

 

X

415.00

X

0.00

X

70.00

Y

-25.00

Y

0.00

Y

70.00

Z

200.00

Z

0.00

Z

70.00

Select “Technology” and reposition as follows:

Position

 

Rotation

 

Scale

 

X

-105.00

X

0.00

X

70.00

Y

-235.00

Y

0.00

Y

70.00

Z

75.00

Z

0.00

Z

70.00

These are the permanent positions for these ‘Nested’ elements.

Next we will import other elements into our workspace to change our video clips into scratchy old projector elements.

To Import select <File> then <Import Footage> or use Ctrl I

Then select the rest of the elements:

                   flicker.avi      frameVideo.jpg       frameVideoEdge.jpg

Click OK.

 



Step 4: Aging our Elements


Let me start this step by explaining the elements we just imported.

We will use “flicker.avi” to add projector flicker to the video.

We will use “frameVideo.jpg” to add dirt and grunge to the projected element.

We will use “frameVideoEdge.jpg” to add a ‘hotspot’ from the projector lamp.

So lets implement the changes; first we must scale our clips within their nests, and so to do this we dig into our workspace to the sub-composite level to the “featureClip” element (See fig 05) in each one scaling proportionally down to 80%.  Do this for all three.

 
Text Box: fig 06

Next we are going to add a copy of the three elements we just imported to each of the ‘Nests’.  However first we are going to completely set one of our ‘Nests’ up and then copy all of the elements and operators all at once.  So lets put our three elements in to the sub-composite “Teaching”, we do this by selecting the three elements in the workspace, and right-clicking selecting <cut>, then selecting the nest at the sub-composite level we right-click and <paste>.

Afterwards your workspace should look like fig 06.



Then we will need to reorder and scale the elements to reflect how they are going to be used.  Flicker will remain where it is, so we need only move “frameVideoEdge” below “frameVideo” and scale “frameVideo” in the Transform panel to 73%, the reasoning for these moves will become evident later on in this step.

So lets work with our “featureClip01” first, lets add some style to this element, under the Layer panel lets make the image more projected looking by reducing Opacity to 73%, and to enhance the “grunge” spin we are going to make our edges ragged with “frameVideo” as a stencil in the Stencil Layer drop down select “frameVideo”, and set it to Luma.  See fig 07.

With film, especially old film, we end up with washed out color, and yet the black tends to stay black and in fact grows into other color, we would also have artifacts of dust and age.  Remembering that this is to be a play on old film not an exact replica we are going to add three distinct operators:

  1. Discreet Color Corrector Color Wheel: To move the color towards sepia.
  2. Brightness and Contrast: To add brightness and contrast to really bring the black out.
  3. Dust and Scratches:  To add age artifacts.  



So lets start with the Discreet CC Color Wheel.  To apply the operator first select the element so that it is highlighted in yellow, then either right-click and go to <Add Operator4> then <Color Correction4>then with the Ctrl key held down select <Discreet CC Color Wheel…> or from the pull down menu click on <Operators> then <Color Correction4>then with the Ctrl key held down select <Discreet CC Color Wheel>, you can also find it under the Operators tab (f5) under the Color Correction category.

So the interface you are looking at is called the color-wheel and I only chose to work with the Master channel and the highlight channel, this was intended to keep much of the shadows and midtones the way the Master channel forced them.  See fig 08. 

 

So then we go on to apply a Brightness and Contrast operator, which you will find under the Color Correction category.  This will further degrade the footage for age.  Set Brightness to 20% and Contrast up to 100%.

 

Last of all we add artifacts of age with Dust and Scratches, which is found in the Noise category.  Setting our Radius to 1.40 and the Tolerance up to 39%, this gives us plenty for aged film.

 

That completes the operators on our clips, later we will copy these operators, along with the other elements after we set them all up in this composite.



Step 5: Adding Further Detail


Flicker is the next to set up, and may be the easiest to understand in a direct sort of way.  Flicker is a five-frame clip that flips between white and black, however it is also only five frames - we have 150!  We are going to go into the Output panel for the footage (See fig 09), and we are changing the Playback Behavior to <Loop> and setting the number to 30 (150 45).

Text Box: fig 09

 

Flicker will add shutter flicker to the video behind it, and this means we need to see through it.  We also want it to add to the brightness without messing with the color, so to do this we need to modify the way we see through it.  With combustion we have the Transfer mode under the Composite Controls’ Surface panel, this changes the way we see through an object, change it from <Normal> to <Overlay>. See fig 10.  Overlay is like making a gel out of the current layer to see through to what is behind.

   

 

Lets take a look at what we have accomplished with this sub-composite.  The way I focus in on specifically what I am working on is to first make sure I am in the two Viewport option under the Viewport Layout List, then with the left viewport selected double click on the sub-composite to change the position of the viewport icon, this icon shows where your viewport is focused.  See fig 11. 

Turning off the remaining element by clicking on the layer icon to , then cache’ about 30 frames or so and view the flicker, way too strong!  In the Surface panel set opacity to 6% (See fig 10), cache’ and play the frames again, much better.  Depending on your monitor 6% may not show up - try rendering out 30 frames to see it.

The next thing we need to do to flicker is to cut away the edges the same way we did with our video clip (in Step 4) by using “frameVideo” as a Stencil Layer repeat this process for “flicker.”

So then the one element left is a projector hotspot, because at this moment the image is flat and very even – so lets add the hotspot.

Turn on the element “frameVideoEdge” this is going to add its luminosity to the overall, and also darken down the edges.  We need to change its Transfer mode to Multiply to get this to happen.  Multiply has the effect of darkening and lightening depending upon the current imagery.

This completes the adjustments to the layers and operators in this “Nested” composite.

 

Text Box: fig 12



Step 6: Duplication.  Duplication.  Duplication.


Now we need to spread this work across all the other “Nested” composites.  In fig 12 you will see what your workspace tab should have at this point.  So we have two different levels of stuff that we need to copy to the other two “Nests”; first we have the operators in the “featureClip01” layer, then we have the other layer elements themselves.

 

The will be moved in the same way, by simply copy and paste.  So marquee select our three operators in the “featureClip01” layer, then right-click and choose <copy> or Ctrl c, then select the “featureClip02” layer in the “Learning” sub-composite (make sure it is highlighted in yellow), right-click and choose <paste> or Ctrl v.  So now then select our three layer elements from the “Teaching” sub-composite, and paste them into the other two sub-composites, making sure to select and highlight the sub-composite level.

Text Box: fig 13

So then finally we need to set all of our “featureClip”s to have the appropriate Stencil Layer (don’t forget the <Luma> switch), and Opacity under the Layer panel (See fig 07).  So now your workspace tab should look like fig 13.

 


Step 7: Camera Motion


Lets remind ourselves what we need to do with the camera by looking at our sketch at the beginning of this tutorial.  This sweeping camera move has position keys and rotation keys.  Lets animate!  Selecting our camera turn on <Animate> by either the <Animate> button or the 'a' key, move our time slider over to 00;00;02;00 and move the camera in the Transform panel to the following coordinates: 

Position

 

Rotation

 

X

-273.00

X

23.00

Y

566.00

Y

17.00

Z

-1182.00

Z

0.00

At time code 00;00;03;15

Position

 

Rotation

 

X

-364.00

X

4.00

Y

9.00

Y

-9.00

Z

-1078.00

Z

0.00

 

At time code 00;00;04;15

 

Position

 

Rotation

 

X

30.00

X

0.00

Y

154.00

Y

0.00

Z

-67.00

Z

0.00

 

As you can see we zoom up on the Teaching sub-composite element this will allow the editor to fade effectively into the appropriate video for the segment.

 

Shut off <Animate>.

Save.

Render it out.

In part 2 we will add text and movement elements that will add further interest and pizzazz.

For further information I have included the finished .cws file as well as my end result for this part. For Part 2 go here.

 

Copyright © 2003, 2004  Ben Munkres. Reprinted by permission.

Ben Munkres

Discreet combustion Training Specialist

benm@bmunkres.com

www.bmunkres.com

Discuss this technique in the Combustion forum at Creativecow.net.



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