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Rotating camera around animated objects

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Jay Williams
Rotating camera around animated objects
on Sep 11, 2014 at 4:19:29 pm

Howdy guys,

I am fairly new to After Effects so I apologize if this question is a re-post.

I have been playing around with our 3D models from Solidworks that we create for our products and am wanting to do rotational product demonstrations and How-Tos for servicing our products.

I have created a simple animated video for replacing the ratchet arm on our racks but am having a bit of trouble with the camera rotations.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OAeteV4NNrE&feature=youtu.be

I have built the video using the Video Copilot plugin to allow the import of the 3D objects from our files with each moving part in the video as it's own layer. I have created the camera as well as the null object to rotate the camera around.

I would like to be able to rotate a camera around the animated object while the parts are expanding but when I try to move the current camera, all the parts seem to move off of their original paths.

Any ideas on how I can do this differently? Is there a way to add a second camera rotation or second null object?

Thanks in advance,
Jay


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Derek Boettcher
Re: Rotating camera around animated objects
on Sep 12, 2014 at 10:36:35 pm

Make sure that you aren't pairing the 3D objects to the null object as well.

And you can pair as many null objects to one another as you want. So you could do Camera>Null 1 Null 1>Null 2 etc. If you have a video of what is messing up, I can probably help you out further.

Best,
Derek Boettcher
Creative Management
BTH Media Group
http://bthmedia.com


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Derek Boettcher
Re: Rotating camera around animated objects
on Sep 12, 2014 at 11:50:04 pm

actually, as I was driving home, I realized the problem. Element 3D, though it is a powerful program, is not full 3D in AE. Instead it is 2.5D. What it allows you to do is to interact with 3D objects, but instead of keeping in 3D space, it keeps whatever layer is on top as the fore front layer, regardless of if you are rotating the camera. The fix: Instead of having each 3D asset in a different Element layer, use the plugins native grouping options to animate your assets. You won't be able to use the 2 keyframe interpolation animation method, but you can manually keyframe what you need to do, and the camera should still behave correctly. To summarize, utilize just ONE layer of element 3D and use its 5 different groups to maintain your animation and 3d positioning.

Best,
Derek Boettcher
Creative Management
BTH Media Group
http://bthmedia.com


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