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Fixed light over 3D comp

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Mario Sahe-Lacheante
Fixed light over 3D comp
on Feb 3, 2010 at 8:48:35 pm

Hi there

I'm having a struggle with adding a light to my comp and get it to do what I want.

I've created a 3D animating house (from architectural plans) for an architectural firm, which builds from scratch in 3d over a 2d blue backdrop - to create the 'blueprint' effect with a motion graphic slant.

What I want to do, is to add a fixed light over the entire comp, to make it look like a desk light shining down over the blueprint image, but to have it throw shadows through the white lines of the plans animating into a house. So think for instance this skeleton house has a camera that goes around it (so it's basically turning 360 degrees) but the shadows are cast from a fixed source.

If I can't have shadows, I won't cry, but I'd still like to have a fixed light shining into the comp without following camera movements.

Not sure if this makes sense.

Thanks for your thoughts

Mario


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David Franklin
Re: Fixed light over 3D comp
on Feb 3, 2010 at 9:40:33 pm

Unless there's something I missed in your post, this should be relatively easy.

First, make sure that all your "house" layers (the ones you want to cast the shadows) have their material options for "casts shadows" and "accepts lights" are set to "on."

Then make sure that the blueprint background is also a 3D layer, and that its material options for "accepts shadows" and "accepts lights" are set to "on".

Then in the Layer menu, choose New > Light and position it to cast the shadows you want.

Finally, in the Layer menu choose New > Camera and set key frames head and tail to animate the camera to rotate around the scene.

But is there something I missed? It seems like maybe you were asking something more than this?

http://www.artisanaltelevision.com
Made With Care In Brooklyn, NY


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Mario Sahe-Lacheante
Re: Fixed light over 3D comp
on Feb 3, 2010 at 9:53:15 pm

HI

Yea, it's not entirely what I was looking for.

Imagine a blueprint drawing on a desk, but with the house being white architectural plans animating into a 3D house on the blue background, so there's depth to the house, but the blue BG is just fixed.
As the house animates from one single floor to a 3D house, there's camera movement around and through the house.

That's all done - but I just wanted to add a light that's fixed so that you can make it look like a lamp that got switched on over everything, while still shining 'into' the 3D house.
One Idea was to precompose the entire thing and put the light over the precomp as a single layer - but instead of having the light just shine 'onto' the layer, like it would on a desk, I thought it'd be awesome if the light could actually shine into the 3d house, meaning that the lines of the plans will throw shadows over each other as the house moves.

My problem so far is that any light I add animates with the camera, no matter what I do, I can't get it to stay in one place like a desk lamp would be.

Does that make sense?

Thanks again


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David Franklin
Re: Fixed light over 3D comp
on Feb 3, 2010 at 9:59:07 pm

That's really odd. I just tried a version of this, making a solid layer masked into a "post" and another acting as a ground plane. I put up a light and cast a shadow. I just tried adding a camera and animating it to rotate around the ground plane and the light stays right where I left it, and the shadow moves around the post.

How are you animating the camera?

http://www.artisanaltelevision.com
Made With Care In Brooklyn, NY


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David Franklin
Re: Fixed light over 3D comp
on Feb 3, 2010 at 9:54:27 pm

Oh, and you have to make sure the light's "Light Options" setting for "Casts Shadows" is also set to "on".

Re-reading your post I see that you say the blueprint is in 2D. This won't work with a light. You can still have it look 2D, but in order for it to interact with a light or have shadows cast upon it, it has to be a 3D layer.

Hope this helps.

http://www.artisanaltelevision.com
Made With Care In Brooklyn, NY


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Mario Sahe-Lacheante
Re: Fixed light over 3D comp
on Feb 3, 2010 at 10:32:58 pm

Do you mean the light stays fixed within the movement of the camera? in other words, if you put the light pointing at the front of a little car, and the camera moved around, that the light stays fixed on the front of the car, but both the light and car moves in perspective to how the camera moves?
Because my light stays fixed on a point on the house, but then it moves altogether with the rest of the house as the camera moves.

What I wanted to do is fix a light so that it's position, even just perceptive position, doesn't change with the camera movement, so the animation moves around but the light physically stays just on the one spot.

That's where I'm stuck - forgetting the shadows for the moment.

I don't know, perhaps I'm just going to frustrate myself and not get it done in time. I can find a work around if we've lost each other, or if you think I'm confusing both of us :).

Thanks for your thoughts though

M


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David Franklin
Re: Fixed light over 3D comp
on Feb 3, 2010 at 10:38:33 pm

I mean what you say in the first sentence. If there was a car in my scene and the light was pointed at its front, it would stay pointed at the front of the car. The camera moves around the scene without affecting the position of the light.

Which brings me back to my previous question. How are you animating the camera?

http://www.artisanaltelevision.com
Made With Care In Brooklyn, NY


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Roland R. Kahlenberg
Re: Fixed light over 3D comp
on Feb 4, 2010 at 8:31:15 am

Parenting the Light to the camera may do the trick. You may also look into using Radial Shadow to create fake shadows. If it looks good, then you'll save yourself lots of rendering time.

HTH
RoRK

Sell your AEPs with broadcastGEMs' DVD series of templates. Click here for more


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Philippe Lessard
Re: Fixed light over 3D comp
on Feb 4, 2010 at 4:21:06 pm

What about animating the house instead of the camera!It should do the trick for sure!Just make sure everything is well parented to a null, for example.


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