ADOBE AFTER EFFECTS: Forum Expressions Tutorials Creative Cloud

Working with 3d layers in precomps

COW Forums : Adobe After Effects

<< PREVIOUS   •   FAQ   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
Quinton LiddleWorking with 3d layers in precomps
by on Feb 23, 2014 at 12:42:20 am

Hi,

I've found myself struggling with something that I believe could have a simple answer. I want to create a film strip that moves from side to side, and it needs to have photos inside of each individual 'frame' of the strip.

I have a custom film strip that I've imported into AE.



I know that I can now simply create a comp for this custom film strip, then add further images to the comp and scale them accordingly, etc in order to have images within each frame. However, I want to do something slightly different. I want to have 3d layered images inside of these 'frames'. More specifically, I want each individual 'frame' to have its own desired photo (that needs to be pushed back in Z space), accompanied by a textured image that is pushed forwards in Z space (this textured image will be set to screen mode and will be lowered in opacity as to create a glass-like dirty texture covering the photo).

Therefore, in the end, I want each photo in each frame to appear as if though they are further back in Z space, and that they have this glass-like texture covering them. My ultimate goal is to move this film strip from side to side, and have the subtle effect of 3d within each 'frame'.

My question is: How do I go about doing this neatly and effectively? One of the biggest things that I've been struggling with here is Collapse Transformations (I created PreComps for each 'frame' but I could not execute 3d successfully). My mind tells me that I need to create a PreComp for each individual frame. But, It seems like I'm overwhelmed by the fact that the film strip consists of many different frames, and therefore everything becomes a tad more complicated. I am essentially used to working with 3d layers, cameras, etc in a more simple space.

Please excuse me if I did not explain myself very well. It's very late at the moment and I have to post this now because I'm rather desperate for an answer.

Thanks in advance.

Quinton


Return to posts index

Roland R. KahlenbergRe: Working with 3d layers in precomps
by on Feb 23, 2014 at 3:40:32 pm

Creating precomps for each photo is a good setup and may be easier for some users to manage. Concentrate your efforts on making one photo looking good in its precomp and then parenting its movement to the filmstrip in the 'final comp'.

Once you've nailed the look of a single photo, it's then a simple matter of duplicating its composition and replacing the photo layer with another photo to create your second and subsequent photos.

In the 'final comp', simply animate the filmstrip to suit your needs. Then place the nested photo comp into the filmstrip before parenting it to the filmstrip. Remember to switch on Collapse Transformations for the nested comp so that the 3D texture effect comes through into the final comp.

HTH
RoRK
Latest AE Workshop - MoGraph Intensity - Shapes & Text

Intensive mocha & AE Training in Singapore and Other Dangerous Locations

Imagineer Systems (mocha) Certified Instructor
& Adobe After Effects CS6 ACE/ACI


Return to posts index

Quinton LiddleRe: Working with 3d layers in precomps
by on Feb 23, 2014 at 5:53:29 pm

Hi Roland,

Thanks for your reply, it's much appreciated.

With regards to your statement "Creating PreComps for each photo is a good setup and may be easier for some users to manage." - what would your other suggested method be? Would it be to simply create these 3d layer comps in the 'film strip' comp without the use of PreComps? If so, what would be the best way to go about it, because this is where I find things become a bit messy?

I've tried doing it the way you explained it. However, when I do switch on Collapse Transformations for the nested photo comp, I lose my 3d effect. AE views the nested comp as a 2d image. I want to be able to move my camera around in the 'final comp' and see the layers inside of the nested comp 'respond' - I want to see their depth (the textured image that is pushed forward in Z space should essentially appear to be moving around due to its distance from the desired photo that is pushed back in Z space). I hope I've made enough sense.

Thanks.

Quinton


Return to posts index


Roland R. KahlenbergRe: Working with 3d layers in precomps
by on Feb 23, 2014 at 6:41:16 pm

[Quinton Liddle] "With regards to your statement "Creating PreComps for each photo is a good setup and may be easier for some users to manage." - what would your other suggested method be? Would it be to simply create these 3d layer comps in the 'film strip' comp without the use of PreComps? If so, what would be the best way to go about it, because this is where I find things become a bit messy?"

This option precludes having an precomps. It gets messy cos all your layers are in this single comp. There is no technical nor creative advantage going one way or the other - it really depends on the user's preference which I assume is related to their experience and comfort levels when working with a large number of layers in a single comp

[Quinton Liddle] "I've tried doing it the way you explained it. However, when I do switch on Collapse Transformations for the nested photo comp, I lose my 3d effect."

Ensure that ALL layers in the precomp are 3D layers. More info
here on 3D in AE.

HTH
RoRK
Latest AE Workshop - MoGraph Intensity - Shapes & Text

Intensive mocha & AE Training in Singapore and Other Dangerous Locations

Imagineer Systems (mocha) Certified Instructor
& Adobe After Effects CS6 ACE/ACI


Return to posts index

Quinton LiddleRe: Working with 3d layers in precomps
by on Feb 23, 2014 at 7:33:25 pm

Hi Roland,

Thanks for the quick response.

The next question may seem rather simple, but please bear with me. Thanks by the way - the PreComp's 3d does work if I switch on Collapse Transformations. What is the best way to do things here - should I have a camera inside of the PreComp as well as in the 'final comp', or should I aim to only have one camera active in a specific comp?

What I find complicated about this specific 'project' is the fact that I have this film strip which has several 'blank spaces' (the frames). If I do create a PreComp and place it below the 'film strip' layer, and then switch on Collapse Transformations - then the layers of the PreComp 'reveal themselves' as their real size (in other words, if I have a dirty glass-like texture in the PreComp that is scaled up to be larger than its comp, then obviously the 'excluded' scaled area of this layer does not reveal itself, but Collapsing Transformations in the 'final comp' does then reveal this excluded area). I feel like I'm missing something really simple here. if this is the case, then how do I make use of these 3d layer PreComps in such a way that they still remain 'tidy' once I switch on Collapse Transformations in the 'final comp'. Correct me if I'm wrong, but it appears that once one switches on Collapse Transformations for the 3d layer PreComp, then it's essentially the same as just having 3d layers inside this 'final comp' - almost as if though the only purpose of this PreComp is to keep several layers together? That may sound very obvious, but I was hoping that if I Collapse Transformations in the final comp, then the PreComp would still keep its specific size, but provide me with the capabilities of 3d.

If I'm still making sense, then you I'm sure you know what it is that I'm trying to achieve. Would you suggest a specific way of going about this? I can't seem to wrap my head around the fact that I have this film strip that has several blank spaces (the frames), simply separated by a small thin line between each frame. How do I go about keeping these individual images in their individual frames separate from each other; prevent them from overlapping; etc. The only thing I can think of is drawing a mask over each PreComp in the 'final comp' that is equal to the size of the specific frame, thereby eliminating the excluded layers that have revealed themselves.

Your help is much appreciated.

Quinton


Return to posts index

Roland R. KahlenbergRe: Working with 3d layers in precomps
by on Feb 23, 2014 at 8:10:10 pm

1) If your nested comp is Continuously Rasterized, then the camera in its precomp will be neglected. You can still use a camera in the precomp as will allow you to have a better idea where the layers are in 3D space. IOW, the camera is still useful in the precomp for placing your layers in 3D space.

2) In the precomp, mask out the areas of any layer that extend over the composition boundary. This ensures that your nested comp doesn't carry over any pixels into the 'final comp' that are outside of the precomp's comp boundary

3) Precomps are used to increase creative opportunities, to overcome technical limitations in AE and for grouping a set of layers to simplify a 'final comp'.

4) You can and should scale your nested comps so that they fit the area that they are supposed to be placed into. You should of course ensure that their 3D position values are correct, relative to the filmstrip. The workflow to make this happen requires (1) placing the nested comp in accurate 3D space relative to the filmstrip (2) scale the nested comp to fit into its required position. When scaling, take note that the Anchor Point acts the center for scale.

You should have sufficient info to get going. If you hit any obstacles, study the issue and try to understand the cause. Then make corrective/alternative measures.

HTH
RoRK
Latest AE Workshop - MoGraph Intensity - Shapes & Text

Intensive mocha & AE Training in Singapore and Other Dangerous Locations

Imagineer Systems (mocha) Certified Instructor
& Adobe After Effects CS6 ACE/ACI


Return to posts index


Quinton LiddleRe: Working with 3d layers in precomps
by on Feb 23, 2014 at 9:03:03 pm

Hi Roland,

Thanks so much for your quick and very informative responses. Until now I've only used PreComps on a smaller scale so this project seemed a bit overwhelming. But I feel a lot more comfortable with it now - thanks!

Quinton


Return to posts index

Roland R. KahlenbergRe: Working with 3d layers in precomps
by on Feb 24, 2014 at 11:04:25 am

You're most welcome Quinton.

Cheers
RoRK
Latest AE Workshop - MoGraph Intensity - Shapes & Text

Intensive mocha & AE Training in Singapore and Other Dangerous Locations

Imagineer Systems (mocha) Certified Instructor
& Adobe After Effects CS6 ACE/ACI


Return to posts index

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
© 2017 CreativeCOW.net All Rights Reserved
[TOP]