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Stencil PNGs/Transparency Not Working in PI

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Philip Knight
Stencil PNGs/Transparency Not Working in PI
on Mar 21, 2010 at 11:10:35 pm

I use PNGs alot and they show up fine in my image editing software (Corel PhotoPaint and Gimp 2 -- where they are created) as well as in my NLE, Sony Vegas Pro 8.

Luckily I'm just experimenting with stencils now in an "untitled" project with one emitter, so no projects are in danger. But I do need to master/fix this before I go any further.

I'm using a simple black 1280 x 720 background PNG with transparent circle cut out within a 1280 x 720 project. But here is what happens:

--- Neither "Use Image Transparency", "Use Image as Stencil" or using the slider bars make the BK image act as it should (let particles only show up within circle).

--- The layer icon for the BK image never shows the cut-out-circle, just a black rectangle. Toggling "T" either blocks particles completely or not at all.

--- I'm also experiencing weird stage behavior when these are loaded whereby stage zooms too large and gets squeezed partly off-screen to upper right hand of work area; sometimes I can't even zoom-to-fit back.


What's going on/what may I be doing wrong? Oh, and yes, I have rebooted the system. Same thing happens.

Thanks.


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Philip Knight
Re: Stencil PNGs/Transparency Not Working in PI
on Mar 21, 2010 at 11:45:55 pm

P.S. to Alan:

While do wish to get this solved for I could use stencils in the future for other stuff, I was wondering if there was an alternative using blockers and/or blockers.

Here is the general idea I have that I wish to pull off:
Remember the Genesis Project scene in one of the Star Trek movies whereby the planet is getting populated? It starts at the curve of the horizon line and progressively fills the entire globe (going from slim crescent to circle, in essence).

I wish to do the same with some of my NASA and other Earth sequences I have, but instead of ecosystems, I'd be "populating" the globe with particles. Hence the need for something to keep the particle action within the circle of the planet starting with the crescent/horizon line area.
This will also require some fine tuning because of a) curvature of the Earth and b) perspective (horizon line particles will have to be smallest). So the stencil idea may not work best.

Maybe using blockers or deflectors set up in a garland parallel to the horizon line might do the job as "stencil" in a more realistic way. Which brings me to...

Is there a way to curve a deflector line? From what I can tell, their mass is like blockers:straight-edged. The only thing one can curve is its action path.

The only problem with this garland of blockers or deflectors is that I'd have to create quite a few of them to simulate a curved barrier. But still feasible.

Your thoughts/suggestions appreciated.
At your convenience.


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Alan Lorence
Re: Stencil PNGs/Transparency Not Working in PI
on Apr 8, 2010 at 6:57:10 pm

Stencil is like an overlay that masks out particles and parts of particles. You can achieve the same thing using masks in other applications.

A better solution might be to use and area emitter mask.

1) add an area emitter to the stage
2) Make it the same size as the stage
3) Add a background image, sequence, or movie that contains alpha
4) open properties dialog for stage emitter
5) check "mask area emitter with image(s)
6) click the mask "options" button, etc.

The area emitter mask is different in that it defines where the particles are created. It does not cut off parts of particles, or restrict where particles can go after they are created.



Alan.

http://www.wondertouch.com


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Philip Knight
Re: Stencil PNGs/Transparency Not Working in PI
on Apr 8, 2010 at 9:39:52 pm

Thanks for response, Alan. I did consider the Area Mask, but... what if the emitter one is using is not and area emitter? This is where I got stuck for the one I wish to use wasn't -- and hence did not give me the options for an area mask.

Ergo why I tried the PNG which didn't work for some reason as explained in the opening post of this thread and which is its subject. Any fixes on why PNG just isn't acting right?

At your convenience.
Thanks.


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Alan Lorence
Re: Stencil PNGs/Transparency Not Working in PI
on Apr 8, 2010 at 10:04:22 pm

You can convert any emitter to an area emitter by r-clicking on it on the stage and "make area".



Alan.

http://www.wondertouch.com


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Philip Knight
Re: Stencil PNGs/Transparency Not Working in PI
on Apr 8, 2010 at 11:25:28 pm

OK, thanks. But won't that somewhat drastically affect the overall behavior of the emitter/particles, some more so than others? I spend a lot of time fine-tuning these babies :)

That said, I can always do a "Save As" backup copy of a project and try the conversion and see what happens to them...


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