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Animated Thread...

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Eric Barker
Animated Thread...
on Jan 5, 2010 at 2:55:05 am

Hello, I'm trying to create a line drawing animation in which a horizontal logo is constructed out of one single vector mask line from one end of the screen to the other, and then it looks like the "string" is pulled taught and the logo simply unravels into a single horizontal line. I tried doing this with a mask and the "stroke" effect, but I can't get it to look right, since any beveling I put on the thread to give it highlights is done in 2D, and intersecting lines simply merge together instead of going over top of each other (hard to explain). Basically, how would I construct a line that looks like it's crossing over top and underneath itself? And are their any scripts for animating a complex mask into an elongated one?

Television Producer
KTVF-11 Fairbanks, Alaska

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david bogie
Re: Animated Thread...
on Jan 5, 2010 at 7:14:10 pm

No idea what you're seeing in your head.
You can build something that looks like embroidery in Illustrator. You should be able to make the pattern into a single single line that could come into AE as a vector with lots of control points. You'd be unraveling them by hand, though.

Might be easier and much more fun to shoot a sewing machine.

Patience, A few more days and someone might actually have a workable suggestion for you.


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Michael Szalapski
Re: Animated Thread...
on Jan 5, 2010 at 11:04:49 pm

If I hear what you're saying, you want to see a thread form a logo then pull back out to being a straight thread.

But you don't want it to just be a solid line, you want it to look like an actual thread with texture and form.

If you absolutely must use AE, you might try the puppet tool for this. I've never tried something like this myself, but I imagine if you create a long thread in Photoshop (or a precomp), you could use the puppet tool to move it around. My AE machine's tied up in a render at the moment, (thus my presence on the forums) otherwise I'd try it and see.

Of course, a true 3d application will be much better for this.

Oooh, ooh, I forgot, you could do it with an actual thread and stop motion! It'll look much more realistic and have that touch of warmth that only stop motion can bring.

- The Great Szalam
(The 'Great' stands for 'Not So Great, in fact, Extremely Humble')

No trees were harmed in the creation of this message, but several thousand electrons were mildly inconvenienced.

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