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The Blocker tool in Movie Clips.

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ElliMann
The Blocker tool in Movie Clips.
on Sep 4, 2007 at 4:13:46 pm

I find using the blocker tool when dealing with emitters on Image backgrounds very neat and simple. But i can't seem to find a good way to use it effectively in short movie clips. Do i have to do it frame by frame? Or is there an easier way to do it? I have a clip which is 160 frames long. So the frame by frame option takes forever to do.



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Elvis Deane
Re: The Blocker tool in Movie Clips.
on Sep 4, 2007 at 5:15:23 pm

There's never a quick way to mask a movie. The best methodology I find when working with a movie is instead of going frame-by-frame and moving the whole Blocker, go every 5 frames (Ctrl+Right Arrow Key) and move just one point. Then go back to the start and move the second point every 5 frames, etc. It cuts down a lot of the time of selecting the different points and dragging them around. If the clip is long, I suggest some nice music that puts your brain into a trance, and just forcing yourself to work through it, and save often.


--
Elvis Deane!

The Apprentice Magician's Guide to particleIllusion

Wilbur of Wumbaberry


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Alan Lorence
Re: The Blocker tool in Movie Clips.
on Sep 4, 2007 at 5:19:48 pm

Tip: once a blocker point is selected, the TAB key should switch to the next point in the blocker.



Alan.

http://www.wondertouch.com


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ElliMann
Re: The Blocker tool in Movie Clips.
on Sep 4, 2007 at 6:20:31 pm

Alrighty. Thanks guys. So is there a way to move all of the blocker points at the same time? With other words move the whole mask instead of having to reset the keys one by one?



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Elvis Deane
Re: The Blocker tool in Movie Clips.
on Sep 4, 2007 at 9:26:51 pm

Just move the anchor point of the Blocker, it's the one that appears between all your points when you finish putting them down.

--
Elvis Deane!

The Apprentice Magician's Guide to particleIllusion

Wilbur of Wumbaberry


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Soniclight
Re: The Blocker tool in Movie Clips.
on Sep 7, 2007 at 12:02:20 am

Good question, short clip or not, and thanks to those who responded. As stated in an other thread, I'm learning and using blockers more and more, and such tips are great.

And, yeah, good music to get "in the zone" helps too, for using PI is kind of like a photonic neuro-surgery. Got to keep those good vibes in the OR :)


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Trelawney
Re: The Blocker tool in Movie Clips.
on Sep 7, 2007 at 9:20:54 pm

I've found blockers to be really handy on still images as well as animations:

http://TrelawneyHope.co.uk/DragonCoast.png

I've only tried blocking on a couple of simple video tests, and whilst far from perfect, it did add complexity when I started adding points over frames.

http://TrelawneyHope.co.uk/Forcefield.html and

http://TrelawneyHope.co.uk/Halo.html

I think I might try motion tracking in future, and try pasting the position data into the blocking position to see if this works...

Kind regards

Rod Davies (UK)


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Soniclight
Re: The Blocker tool in Movie Clips.
on Sep 8, 2007 at 2:33:17 am

Rod,

Loved the forcefield-in-English garden :) Is that you in the clip?

Now, coming from a design and details-compulsive background (and slowly but surely getting better at this PI thing), I'd like to suggest a few things that may improve the realism of your effects.

Let's take your Forcefield clip as an example (though the gist of the following can be applied to anything):

--- The curtain of light that goes across the red rods is a bit too intense/white. Perhaps lower the Visibility so one can see a little bit of the background scene bleed through. The lighter the background image, the more particles are prone to white-out.

--- If you don't wish to add this subtle transparency, you can play around with the "Number," "Size," "Life" and "Velocity" and see if you can reduce the white-out effect that way.

(The latter two will obviously change the speed and emitter range behavior, but experimentation and discovery is part of the fun :)

--- Other or additional route, add some color variation to the particle's vertical force-field "curtain" -- i.e. thin, razor white-hot leading edge fading to translucent blue or whatever. Or, even to orange or red matching the rods. Fool around with the gradient range slider also, see what happens.


As to outside of PI:

I don't know what NLE you use, if any, but the essence of what I eventually learned about the PNGs in that recent posting of mine you participated in (on color-to-background interaction and details loss) can be applied to your work too, whatever your file with alpha channel type may be.

If you do have a good NLE, the right compositing mode can keep the particles fidelity, hence bump up the realism and so on.

______________

Pardon my possibly tipping into an advice-giving pompous ass, but hey, I like to share what I'm learning as I go along, as others have with me.

Cheers and enjoy the particles ride :)


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Trelawney
Re: The Blocker tool in Movie Clips.
on Sep 8, 2007 at 7:37:02 am

Thanks Soniclight

Good tips thanks. These were among my first few attempts with PI3 last year, but referenced mainly for the moving blocker component. I will try your suggestions moving forward.

A old college friend of mine is now Head of Music - he likes to use some of my clips so he can teach the kids at his school to score music over visuals. This was an added bonus to have 'Sir' in a clip - I was holding the camera.

The garden was part of Cliveden - a stately home near me in the UK - often used in films, as Pinewood Studios is not very far away.

Regards


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