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Trim Paths feature on shape layer creates flickering on anchor points

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Kevin KnutsonTrim Paths feature on shape layer creates flickering on anchor points
by on Feb 25, 2013 at 8:07:33 pm

Hi guys-

Going crazy here:

I'm creating some simple custom shapes in AE and adding the TRIM PATHS feature to animate them (see image) "drawing" on. Essentially I have a comp with two shapes (a line made of three points to create and obtuse angle, and a circle). Both shapes are stroked using the shapes contents setting, not an effect).

This comp is then nested into another comp with a video background.

All looks fine in the program monitor, but upon rendering an export, the circle and the line "flicker" the last few pixels of the shape at the end anchor points (see video).

I've played with the TRIM PATHS [offset] setting with some success but not consistently. I've also tried pre composing the shapes into a single layer before nesting their comp into the video footage comp.

I've also purged the cache, restarted, opened a new project, and bargained with the devil.

Not working.

Odder still, the flickering is inconsistent upon render. Sometimes it flickers after :01 sometimes after :05. Sometimes during the whole timeline.


Using AE: 11.0.1.12
MAC OSX 10.6.8

image: 5528_screenshot20130225at12.01.38pm.png.zip
video (compressed segment):http://reels.creativecow.net/film/ae-trim-paths-flicker-sample


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Ridley WalkerRe: Trim Paths feature on shape layer creates flickering on anchor points
by on Feb 25, 2013 at 8:55:31 pm

[Kevin Knutson] "Using AE: 11.0.1.12
"


Current version is 11.0.2.11


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Kevin KnutsonRe: Trim Paths feature on shape layer creates flickering on anchor points
by on Feb 25, 2013 at 8:59:18 pm

As a large company, updates must be scheduled and performed through a ticket system. This is hardly a new feature (trim paths) and unless you can back up the fact that this specific issue is resolved in an update, then I'll wait for further feedback.

Regards.

visit Very Loud Ideas


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Ridley WalkerRe: Trim Paths feature on shape layer creates flickering on anchor points
by on Feb 25, 2013 at 9:03:54 pm

I wasn't suggesting that was the issue, merely that the version you indicated was not up-to-date.


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Ridley WalkerRe: Trim Paths feature on shape layer creates flickering on anchor points
by on Feb 25, 2013 at 10:26:33 pm

I've just experimented with a similar shape-based trim paths animation but did not composite it over a video background. I have no jitter at all through a 35 frame animation of the path.

When I look at your screen grab, I'm not sure I see what you're referring to, for some reason I cannot view the video.

5529_jittertest.aep.zip



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Kevin KnutsonRe: Trim Paths feature on shape layer creates flickering on anchor points
by on Feb 25, 2013 at 10:50:23 pm

Thanks Ridley-

Looks like the creative cow upload is going bonkers. Here's a dropbox link:

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/64284203/nat_gym_burpees_02.mp4?dl=1

You may want to set it in loop play to get a feel (kept it short for file size reasons).

The flicker is most noticeable on this clip at the intersecting point of the line and circle (just to the right of S in BURPEES) and at the closing point of the circle as well. On a higher resolution version you would also see the same behavior on the end anchor point of the line (underneath the talents body).

The perplexing part too is the flicker does not happen in the program monitor of AE, just upon rendering.


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Kevin KnutsonRe: Trim Paths feature on shape layer creates flickering on anchor points
by on Feb 25, 2013 at 10:54:22 pm

... I want to add that I have created similar shapes throughout the project (circle and various different lines) using the same trim paths feature, without incident.

I should ALSO ALSO add for sake of spec clarity that the video footage coming IN to the project is ProRes 422, and my output matches that. However I've tried rendering as ProRes 444 (just to give it something to think about) and as Animation. But I get the same results.

visit Very Loud Ideas


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Todd KoprivaRe: Trim Paths feature on shape layer creates flickering on anchor points
by on Feb 26, 2013 at 12:26:37 am

Show us screenshots of the Timeline panel to show how you have the animation set up. Or, better, upload the project.

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Todd Kopriva, Adobe Systems Incorporated
After Effects quality engineering
After Effects team blog
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Ridley WalkerRe: Trim Paths feature on shape layer creates flickering on anchor points
by on Feb 26, 2013 at 7:00:05 am

I see clearly it at 3 o'clock on the circle around the heart and at 9 o'clock on the line to the left of the heart.

It looks like something to do with the opacity or blending mode. What format is the video?

I'm really just guessing here but if the video is a long GOP format like an MTS file or any compressed format it has to be reconstituted into frames during the render. That could generate the jitter if the overlay blends in any way with it.

What happens when you move the overlay to another location in the video?


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Kevin KnutsonRe: Trim Paths feature on shape layer creates flickering on anchor points
by on Feb 26, 2013 at 5:59:13 pm

Ridley-

Yes, that's the effected zone for sure. I was able to port the project to another identical system on site and low and behold, the render is fine (same exact media, same exact project, same exact comp). Which makes me uneasy about fixing the issue on my machine.

The long GOP suggestion is an interesting one, however, the same shapes are used in other comps with footage from the same shoot, and seemingly at random don't experience the flicker.

All footage is input and output as ProRes 422. This is of course transcoded from the native camera files (canon 5d mkIII).

The user Vishesh gave me a project with essentially the same exact shape, and I used that in the same way I've used my own shapes with the footage from the project, and there was no flickering.

I guess now, I need to figure out what needs to be reset/purged/deleted/changed/re-installed on my system.


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Vishesh AroraRe: Trim Paths feature on shape layer creates flickering on anchor points
by on Feb 26, 2013 at 4:14:56 am

Kevin

Check this example:

5532_trimpathsshapelayer.aep.zip

I have created the similar effect using Trip Path in Shape Layer and Using Stroke Effect on a Mask Path.

Check the final render on your system. There is no flickering on my machine.

Vishesh Arora
3D and Motion Graphics Artist
Films Rajendra

Blog:
http://digieffects.wordpress.com

2011 3D Demo Reel:








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Kevin KnutsonRe: Trim Paths feature on shape layer creates flickering on anchor points
by on Feb 26, 2013 at 5:51:14 pm

Thanks Vishesh-

Your set up is essentially the same as mine, and renders just fine. I also used the comp you created to nest over video footage, and parented it to a motion tracked null layer (as I'm doing in my project) AND reset your shape layer's OFFSET (under trim paths) back to 0. And it all worked fine.

I can't break it if I try.

Unfortunately, this is the same behavior I'm experiencing throughout my projects. I currently have 14 clips in THIS project that use a similar shape (made always in the same way, and in many cases created by duplicating and altering a shape comp). And seemingly at random between 25% - 75% of the rendered clips experience the flickering.

I think at this point its safe to say I'm not necessarily doing anything wrong, and I'm having some system vomit.


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Vishesh AroraRe: Trim Paths feature on shape layer creates flickering on anchor points
by on Feb 26, 2013 at 9:24:46 pm

Glad I could help.

Just try an experiment:

Increase the stroke thickness to say 3 and then check out the rendered file. The video that you have uploaded has very thin strokes which might a problem. Just a guess.

Vishesh Arora
3D and Motion Graphics Artist
Films Rajendra

Blog:
http://digieffects.wordpress.com

2011 3D Demo Reel:








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Kevin KnutsonRe: Trim Paths feature on shape layer creates flickering on anchor points
by on Feb 26, 2013 at 11:00:57 pm

Thanks Vishesh.

I don't think that's a practical solution, unfortunately. The line thickness has been used without incident or issue in several projects. The weight of the line has successfully been used and adopted in the design standard for ongoing content in this bucket.

The heart of the matter is not rooted in design aesthetics (I'm convinced) but a feature not behaving how its intended on my system (see above that another system rendered the identical project just fine).

I would be open to suggestions on how to purge the issue out of my system however.


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