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globalsocialite
zax logos as stills
on Nov 8, 2007 at 2:40:20 pm

I did some logos in Zaxwerks with motion for a client and he loves the reflectivity and bevels.

He wants me to make the same ones without motion and in jpg format.

what is the best way to make incredible reflective logos like in Zaxwerks, but as a still? (with transperant backgrounds)

can I do this in AI?

Thanks.


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globalsocialite
Re: zax logos as stills
on Nov 9, 2007 at 1:02:57 am

I figured this out:

in ZAX: save as FRAME and then select ".jpg" from drop down.
open photoshop and create new
place photo
select color range and choose white background
click on left mask icon on lefthand toolbar
select white background
delete it
save as png

there you go...badass 3d logos from ai>zax>photoshop

now I can load these into my Edirol CG8 and have a bangin video show in the clubs!


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Jon Okerstrom
Re: zax logos as stills
on Nov 9, 2007 at 2:07:01 am

Hi globalsocialite,

That's one way to do it, but there is an even better way. Rather than saving the still image as a jpg right away, save it as a photoshop file or some other format that includes the alpha channel. It will make your later work in Photoshop cleaner.

Also, don't be afraid to do higher resolution stills. Check out the resolution presets. Choose film or cineon or do something custom. All of these can give you amazing stills at the resolution you'll want for high-end print work.

Jon


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globalsocialite
Re: zax logos as stills
on Nov 9, 2007 at 4:38:28 pm

Thanks Jon:

I olny saw 2 options when saving...

I am currently using the standalone.

If I fire Zaxwerks up in After Effects, do the other options appear, or are these options already included in the stand alone?

I can use after effects too...I have 6.0.


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Jon Okerstrom
Re: zax logos as stills
on Nov 9, 2007 at 7:51:44 pm

When I use the standalone ProAnimator and the render frame>save picture, I get pict, targa and jpg as my options (I'm on a Mac). Open any of those in Photoshop and look at the channels created. All three types give me alpha channels.... try that and see which of the formats available to you does the same. (I'm on a Mac - I suspect you're on a PC)



Jon


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BirdRock
Re: zax logos as stills
on Nov 11, 2007 at 3:01:25 pm

I am trying to do the same thing by creating a 3D logo in ZaxWerks and then import it into PhotoShop to create a 600 dpi print job. The printing company and am planning to use for printing has me just a little confused as I am more of a video specialist verses stills for printing purposes. I was told by the printing company that you can't take a 72 dpi output image know matter how large (width and height you output it) and print it on a high resolution printer and have it come out looking sharp and crisp. He said that the graphic is still only going to print at the 72 dpi that AnimatorPro exports at. He is saying the artwork needs to be created at the same resolution you want it to be printed at because it will only print out at the resolution it was created at. Does any of this make sense to any of you pro's out there and if so could you please shed some light on a way to increase the actual resolution of a logo coming from ZaxWerks AnimatorPro? Thanks in advance for your guidance!


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Jon Okerstrom
Re: zax logos as stills
on Nov 11, 2007 at 5:42:54 pm

Hi BirdRock,

What you're being told is not true, assuming you use Photoshop to resize your image to the correct resolution and size. However, you do need to understand what's going on to get the best-possible print output.

Think of it this way: Your normal 720 x 420 pixel image contains 345,600 pixels, whether you print it at 72 pixels per inch and get a 10 inch by 7.5 inch image, or 600 pixels per inch and get a much smaller image.. 1.9 inches by 0.9 inches. It's still the same amount of information. The larger image will look pixelated on a high end printer because it's at 72 ppi. The smaller image will look tack sharp because it's at 600 ppi.

The shrinking process I've just demonstrated is why it's good to render a giant-sized still from Invigorator or ProAnimator when you're doing something for print. Then, when you scale the resolution and size in Photoshop, you'll get the detail you want.

One more tip: If the size (in megabytes) of your image remains the same when you change the size and resolution, you're not adding or losing detail. However, if your file size goes way up when you resize, Photoshop is interpolating the data to create more pixels. The more interpolation you do, the softer your image will look. You may want to sharpen the resuulting image with one of Photoshops sharpening filters to compensate for that and for dot gain, but if you do, wait until the end of the process. It should be the last thing you do.

Maybe Serge will pipe in with some more tips... for now, I hope this helps.

Jon



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BirdRock
Re: zax logos as stills
on Nov 11, 2007 at 8:06:57 pm

Hello Jon,

You did an excellent job both describing correlation between dpi and ppi and you also helped me breath a little easier regarding being able to count on being able to get high resolution prints generated from ProAnimator. If I could just follow up with another couple of quick questions, it would be very much appreciated.

Question 1 - What is the optimal output choice for the highest quality end result, I'm assuming it would be either Cineon Full, 3656 x 2664 or Film (4K) 4096 x 3112?

Question 2 - When you were referring to resizing the image to fit my layout in PhotoShop I'm hoping you to mean the following. Currently I am rendering the graphic from animatorPro as a .tga file using the preset Film (4K) 4096 x 3112 and then opening it in Photoshop, I then open it in PhotoShop and simply drag it over into my existing 600 ppi PDF layered layout. At this point it is way to big for the design layout so I use ctl+T to resize the image using the old shift and drag technique to size the image to fit my layout. So the question is, is that correct procedure for properly resizing an image created in AnimatorPro to achieve the best result when printing using a high resolution 4 color printing press process?

Question 3 - Should I do any resizing of the 3D image in PhotoShop before I pull it into existing PhotoShop working project?

Question 4 - Considering I'm currently scaling the 3D image down instead of up in PhotoShop to fit my design, do I still need to consider using the sharpen tool to address the issue you described regarding the issue of Photoshop interpolating the data creating more pixels?

Thanks so much for the help! I will surely "pass it on"!


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Jon Okerstrom
Re: zax logos as stills
on Nov 12, 2007 at 12:28:56 am

Hi BirdRock,

>>You did an excellent job both describing correlation between dpi and ppi and you also helped me breath a little easier regarding being able to count on being able to get high resolution prints generated from ProAnimator. If I could just follow up with another couple of quick questions, it would be very much appreciated.

Thanks and certainly.

>>Question 1 - What is the optimal output choice for the highest quality end result, I'm assuming it would be either Cineon Full, 3656 x 2664 or Film (4K) 4096 x 3112?

It depends on the art. I would do two things: Use the camera to make the logo fill the image you render with very little border. If the logo is not the same aspect ratio as your chosen image size, use the custom option to adjust things. Generally bigger images are better.


>>Question 2 - When you were referring to resizing the image to fit my layout in PhotoShop I'm hoping you to mean the following. Currently I am rendering the graphic from animatorPro as a .tga file using the preset Film (4K) 4096 x 3112 and then opening it in Photoshop, I then open it in PhotoShop and simply drag it over into my existing 600 ppi PDF layered layout. At this point it is way to big for the design layout so I use ctl+T to resize the image using the old shift and drag technique to size the image to fit my layout. So the question is, is that correct procedure for properly resizing an image created in AnimatorPro to achieve the best result when printing using a high resolution 4 color printing press process?


You can do it that way... good thing you're constraining the scale tool by holding down the shift key. However, doing it this way, you really don't have a feel for whether your image is detailed enough. Personally, I would do the resizing of the original image based on the size you need in your final project... then place the logo where it belongs. This way you can really know whether you have enough detail in your rendered image.



Question 3 - Should I do any resizing of the 3D image in PhotoShop before I pull it into existing PhotoShop working project?

It's personal preference, but I would - see answer to question 2.


>>Question 4 - Considering I'm currently scaling the 3D image down instead of up in PhotoShop to fit my design, do I still need to consider using the sharpen tool to address the issue you described regarding the issue of Photoshop interpolating the data creating more pixels?

It depends. It makes sense that you would scale down a 72 ppi image to make it fit in your document... the question is whether you're scaling it down enough that Photoshop isn't creating its own interpolated pixels to get to your desired resolution. You would most likely need sharpening if Photoshop is adding pixels. There are lots of theories about the best way to do this. Some people switch to lab color and sharpen only the lightness channel... but your mileage may vary. The other thing to consider is that changing the antialiasing settings can affect the sharpeness of your original image. A bit of edge softness is actually preferred for television - but not so much for print.

I would think your printer could do a proof so you can get a look at things before you commit.

Hope this helps. I should add that almost all of my work is television - I don't pretend to be an expert on doing this for print... I do hope this basic stuff helps.

Jon


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BirdRock
Re: zax logos as stills
on Nov 12, 2007 at 1:11:27 am

Hello Jon,

You came through for me again; I really appreciate your time and guidance...

Bird


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