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Colin@movecraft

"Venom" effect Reveals

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Okay. I'm working on some compositing for a pretty nice looking job. It's an interactive piece, with heavy 3d animation components. I'm in charge of the compositing from 3d. The video will then be imbedded in flash for the web. This job is technical looking. Because of NDA, I can't show stills of the product, or reveal what it is, but I have reproduced some of the pieces of what I am trying to accomplish here - I'm using a shot of a motorcycle helmet here for my example, it's not actually the product I am animating and revealing, but it is similar in that it needs to be broken into several pieces that need to be offset and animated piece by piece.

 

Essentially I am trying to create some masks that are recreating the "venom" effect of Spiderman 3. Since to actually do this was way too expensive to create (3d fluids or particles), we are now trying to come up with a compositing based solution, so essentially trying to do the same thing with offset masks, revealing each piece of the model. It was also described that the effect should be more "liquid" and "organic". I am animating the masks on UV maps, which will then be remapped back onto the 3d model, and then a luma pass will be kicked back to me for composite, + I need to show several cross slices of the model (wireframe, geometry + etc) revealing plus the liquid-y reveals of the beauty pass. here's a rough example of a photoshop mock up of what it would look like on a model.

 

www.movecraft.com/clients/movecraft/Flip-up%20silver_BT2_blue%20copy.jpg

 

Getting the look of the mask reveals has been a bit of a journey + they still don't look correct. I started using Turbulence.2d and created fluid simulations of different pieces of the UVs to create reveals. While I rather liked the look of these, they were deemed "too smokey".

 

www.movecraft.com/clients/movecraft/drop_800.mov

 

Then I created a particle playground simulation, bouncing particles of mask walls, blurred them, crunched them with levels (basically making c4d metaballs in AE) and used the result as luma mattes. This was deemed "too noisy" but was looking solid and organic.

 

www.movecraft.com/clients/movecraft/pp.mov

 

Then I attempted to reveal shape layers with adjustments layers of turbulence displace and roughen edges to get rough, liquid-y looking effects, but this I feel is far too computer generated.

 

www.movecraft.com/clients/movecraft/_side_new%20_noise%202.mov

 

Finally, getting frustrated with procedural solutions, I ended up hand keyframing masks to get the organic look the client and I was after. Here is a cropped down version. This still has been deemed "not tentacley" enough.

 

www.movecraft.com/clients/movecraft/UV_keys.mov

 

The client and agency are just having trouble moving passed the venom effect, I guess, because that is what was initially pitched and presented. I have a few more ideas, (animated strokes for the tentacles, plus blur/crunch for edge "blobbing"?/frame animation?) but thought maybe I would ask you smart guys if there is anything you would do if you were tasked with this.

 

Thanks

 

Colin

Edited by Colin@movecraft

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I don't know if it helps, but I think a good flash animator would do it pretty quick if you can hire one.

 

I would go for flash vector animation, but I am sure someone has a better idea

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To me, what feels most off about all of the animations above is that its simply a matte revealing a vector shape.

 

If the vector shape itself had some movement to it, up to the point where it's finally revealed, it would make any of those animations feel allot stronger.

Edited by Spence

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@ thiago

 

yeah. That was my next step to try some flash frame by frame onion skin tests. We did this sort of thing on the beginning of this-

 

http://movecraft.com/source/motion_files/page2-1013-pop.html

 

but it was wicked time consuming. I'm trying to move away from frame animation, as I've already burned so much time on this thing, but might bring in the wacom tomorrow.

 

thanks man

C

Edited by Colin@movecraft

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To me, what feels most off about all of the animations above is that its simply a matte revealing a vector shape.

 

If the vector shape itself had some movement to it, up to the point where it's finally revealed, it would make any of those animations feel allot stronger.

 

Hmm.. well the edge of the shapes on the UV maps are getting mapped back onto the geometry, so it will be in motion, and they need to be static to register.

 

I tried it with RGB id passes knocking out each piece from Maya and the moving mattes were very hard to animate, at which time it seemed best to remap the static stuff back onto the model.

 

Or do you think the shape shouldn't reveal the edge of the mask so quickly?

 

c

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though i'm not completely certain what your desired look is for the final animation (like does the venom tar ever exceed the physical space of the final product like the spiderman3 venom does? or does it just incrementally "fill in" the 3d space of the product kinda like a realflow shot? also, is there a lot of extensive camera movement in the shot?)... the following thingees might help a little and are fairly fast.

 

1. use time echo/stacked matte/etc technique on the smokey turbulence one, so that it only appears to continue to grow, rather than having the dissipated areas that is characteristic of smoke (does that make sense?). doing this to smoke footage/simulators in general has a unique movement quality that feels more liquid-like but still lifelike and unusual.

 

2. hand animation will give the best results if someone is skilled at it and the schedule allows. but you seem to have already thought about that. using technique 1 and bolstering it with a few key moments of well-crafted hand anim might be a prudent approach.

 

3. using puppet tool and/or meshwarp in AE at the right key moments may help, and can satisfy the agency's thirst for that exact look they want since it's fast and editable.

 

4. there is an effects substance that can be bought in sf that can look and behave very closely to the spiderman venom if photographed in reverse slowmo (though obviously not as articulated and contollable as cgi). i have used it for similar practical/shot elements... but depending on your shot (cam moves etc) it may not be useful. but in six hours or less you could have enough footage to composite over any way you like. pm me if you need the specifics. hope this somehow helps.

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Hair.

 

Mylenium

 

Now that sounds exciting. What was that spot with the running shoes growing out of hair? maybe you could find that and check it out for inspiration of the hair growing in organic shapes, there was a big thread on it here a while back

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though i'm not completely certain what your desired look is for the final animation (like does the venom tar ever exceed the physical space of the final product like the spiderman3 venom does? or does it just incrementally "fill in" the 3d space of the product kinda like a realflow shot? also, is there a lot of extensive camera movement in the shot?)... the following thingees might help a little and are fairly fast.

 

1. use time echo/stacked matte/etc technique on the smokey turbulence one, so that it only appears to continue to grow, rather than having the dissipated areas that is characteristic of smoke (does that make sense?). doing this to smoke footage/simulators in general has a unique movement quality that feels more liquid-like but still lifelike and unusual.

 

2. hand animation will give the best results if someone is skilled at it and the schedule allows. but you seem to have already thought about that. using technique 1 and bolstering it with a few key moments of well-crafted hand anim might be a prudent approach.

 

3. using puppet tool and/or meshwarp in AE at the right key moments may help, and can satisfy the agency's thirst for that exact look they want since it's fast and editable.

 

4. there is an effects substance that can be bought in sf that can look and behave very closely to the spiderman venom if photographed in reverse slowmo (though obviously not as articulated and contollable as cgi). i have used it for similar practical/shot elements... but depending on your shot (cam moves etc) it may not be useful. but in six hours or less you could have enough footage to composite over any way you like. pm me if you need the specifics. hope this somehow helps.

 

Jaan,

 

Thanks for taking the time to respond. I really appreciate it. I'm sure the "desired" look of the shot would be to have the 3d geometry deform with a bunch of particle or fluid simulations and well-thought-out dopeness, but the reality of the situation is that we are trying to cook up a compositing solution, so the incremental fill in of a realflow shot like you described is probably more like it. I will probably try and do some deforming after I get my UV mapped lumas from Maya in composite in AE, but basically I am just masking in the beauty passes. Baseline would be mask or stroke reveals of the pieces, we are trying to bring some more sex then that.

 

 

1.

 

coolio -here is what I was kind of thinking to run my hand masks through. Adjustment layer of roughen edges, time echo, turbulence displace, blur, levels crunch.

 

www.movecraft.com/clients/movecraft/UV_keys_adjustments.mov

 

This is starting to look like standard turbulence noise reveals, though. I doubt we will go backwards to the fluid sims at this point, although I still like the way they look with the crunch here.

 

www.movecraft.com/clients/movecraft/drop_800_adjust.mov

 

2.

I am messing with this although we are kind of out of time for it. I think it will probably be a combination of what has been done already of the hand animated masks + some sort of extra special sauce.

 

3.

I was thinking of applying this sort of deformation after I get the masks mapped back onto the shoe... also I ran my masks through find edges and will kick out two passes- might use the front edge of the masks to generate some particles for added compositing "stuff happening"

 

4.

Cool, got your jpeg image with the teeth. Whole hearted yes. I mean, I should do this regardless of this job or not. If my past experiences have taught me anything it is that simulations in computer = boring, lighting stuff on fire = motion magic.

Edited by Colin@movecraft

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Now that sounds exciting. What was that spot with the running shoes growing out of hair? maybe you could find that and check it out for inspiration of the hair growing in organic shapes, there was a big thread on it here a while back

 

Yeah. I will not deny this is cool

 

http://www.umeric.com/#/project/royal_elastics/feilfri/

 

Can't like.... ya know... change the concept, the boards, or the technique or anything... next job...

 

 

C

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4. there is an effects substance that can be bought in sf that can look and behave very closely to the spiderman venom if photographed in reverse slowmo (though obviously not as articulated and contollable as cgi). i have used it for similar practical/shot elements... but depending on your shot (cam moves etc) it may not be useful. but in six hours or less you could have enough footage to composite over any way you like. pm me if you need the specifics. hope this somehow helps.

 

 

Is that substance secret? i'd like to know.

It happens Dvein did the CG for the spiderman titles. Some shots of the TOCA ME opening have this aesthetic also. I think they poured acetone on polystyrene. It dissolves very quickly. If you put it in reverse you can achieve this type of effect. After a lot of trials and errors i guess.

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