First of all, I'm a total Invigorator newb, so I'm sure there's a simple solution that I just don't know. That said, I'm on a tight deadline. I promise I'll read the manual in full eventually. This is kind of complicated to explain, so bear with me.
I have a 3d Object in Invigorator. It begins oriented face-on, flush to the camera, then rotates 90 degrees until it is flat (ie, the face now faces up). The camera tracks in and over the object. As it does, we pass several cut-out photographs of buildings, positioned in 3D space.
I thought that it would be simple to take the 2D cutouts and position them so that they stand out of the face of the Invigorator object. Then I would just parent them to the object and that would be that. However, I am having a tough time getting the 2D pictures to interact with the 3D model. No matter where I position them in 3D space, I cannot seem to get them to line up. I can't even move a building so far back in space that it becomes obscured by the Invigorator object. What am I doing wrong? It seems like I'm working in two completely different 3d worlds where I can see everything, but nothing interacts.
You have no idea how right your last sentence is. In fact, Invigorator is a separate 3D universe from the 3D space created by After Effects. The software is designed so it looks like elements share the same space and most of the time, it works really well. When it doesn't, as in this case, there are options of course.
If you really need interactivity, it's best to choose one 3D universe or another. In this case, here's what I would do.
Create one plane in Invigorator for each of those cut-outs. Make sure each plane is in the same aspect ratio (height and width) as the associated cutout. Now you'll need to create a material which includes the cutout image in the normal image channel and an alpha map for the transparency channel. Apply that material to the face of the plane and you're good to go... total interactivity with the rest of the items in the Zaxwerks universe.