Cowboy Curtis in the Pee Wee Herman Show uses an animated magic lariat that creates shapes. I'd like to create an animated effect like this "on stage" using projections. How would I create something like this today? Can I use After Affects? How would I do this? Does anyone know how they did it on the show?
Not being able to see it in motion makes it rather difficult to tell what's going on. It looks like it could be done with Trapcode's 3d Stroke or with a particle effect. The first image especially looks like they're moving a particle emitter around with 0 velocity on the particles.
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[Price Johnston]"I'd like to create an animated effect like this "on stage" using projections."
By this is sounds like you're saying, "I want to do this effect during a stage production, and have the effect precisely follow a live actor in 3D space, using projections."
If my paraphrasing is correct, you can't do it.
Try as they might, researchers have not yet perfected the technique of holographic projection, to say nothing of tracking in 3D space to generate a real-time effect. Nor can you probably use techniques like you see in 3D TV -- those tricks require HARDWARE which is in very short supply. Unless your budget for pulling this off is in the high six figures, you have to count it out, too. Besides, Who wants to watch a TV picture of an actor on stage just for a fancy effect when the actor is already right in front of them?
Sr. Promotion Producer
KCRG-TV (ABC) Cedar Rapids, IA