3ds Max 2015 Essential Training
Illustration by John Hersey

Building up animation in passes


From:

3ds Max 2015 Essential Training

with Aaron F. Ross

Video: Building up animation in passes

When animating in 3D, you'll usually want to To minimize the amount of grief that we have with rotations, we should always And we've got the key filter set to position.
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  1. 2m 6s
    1. Welcome
      1m 2s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 4s
  2. 14m 44s
    1. Using project folders
      5m 42s
    2. Customize user interface and defaults
      4m 4s
    3. Setting preferences
      4m 58s
  3. 49m 17s
    1. Getting familiar with the interface
      3m 39s
    2. Using the Create and Modify panels
      3m 36s
    3. Choosing units of measurement
      4m 12s
    4. Controlling the grid display
      5m 16s
    5. Navigating in viewports
      6m 2s
    6. Using hotkeys
      5m 55s
    7. Transforming objects
      7m 26s
    8. Choosing shading modes
      6m 30s
    9. Configuring viewports
      6m 41s
  4. 37m 49s
    1. Creating an image plane
      6m 1s
    2. Controlling Display properties
      2m 28s
    3. Creating primitives
      7m 4s
    4. Working with Scene Explorer
      3m 39s
    5. Understanding level of detail
      2m 46s
    6. Working with the modifier stack
      3m 38s
    7. Understanding dependencies
      5m 23s
    8. Collapsing the modifier stack
      6m 50s
  5. 1h 5m
    1. Using the Graphite ribbon with Editable Poly
      4m 47s
    2. Working with subobjects
      6m 0s
    3. Welding vertices
      6m 47s
    4. Choosing a transform center
      4m 22s
    5. Detailing with Cut and Remove
      4m 30s
    6. Detailing with QuickSlice
      4m 56s
    7. Using soft selection
      4m 9s
    8. Faceting corners with Chamfer
      3m 2s
    9. Using Window/Crossing Selection
      2m 50s
    10. Using Paint Selection
      5m 21s
    11. Combining objects with Attach
      1m 44s
    12. Joining elements with Bridge
      4m 39s
    13. Branching polygons with Extrude
      3m 44s
    14. Smoothing and hardening edges
      8m 46s
  6. 43m 50s
    1. Understanding subdivision surfaces
      7m 35s
    2. Creating an editable poly object
      4m 29s
    3. Adding the Symmetry modifier
      3m 30s
    4. Choosing NURMS or TurboSmooth
      7m 16s
    5. Roughing out the shape
      8m 9s
    6. Inserting edge loops with SwiftLoop
      3m 8s
    7. Constraining subobject transforms
      1m 37s
    8. Welding the seam
      1m 59s
    9. Adding asymmetry
      2m 14s
    10. Baking subdivisions
      3m 53s
  7. 35m 52s
    1. Sculpting with Paint Deform
      6m 33s
    2. Using Noise and Relax Brushes
      4m 30s
    3. Setting Paint options
      3m 46s
    4. Controlling Brush options
      5m 11s
    5. Conforming one object to another
      3m 53s
    6. Sculpting with Conform Transform brushes
      5m 52s
    7. Duplication with Object Paint
      4m 20s
    8. Positioning objects with Select and Place
      1m 47s
  8. 33m 32s
    1. Creating a line
      2m 21s
    2. Moving a pivot point
      1m 37s
    3. Revolving a surface with a Lathe modifier
      2m 27s
    4. Using different vertex types
      3m 4s
    5. Using axis constraints
      6m 14s
    6. Extending a spline
      4m 8s
    7. Snapping an Arc primitive
      2m 23s
    8. Combining splines with Attach and Merge
      1m 31s
    9. Rounding corners with Fillet
      1m 28s
    10. Offsetting a spline with Outline
      4m 13s
    11. Adjusting level of detail with Interpolation
      4m 6s
  9. 31m 34s
    1. Understanding NURBS
      2m 48s
    2. Creating NURBS curves
      4m 24s
    3. Converting objects to NURBS
      3m 32s
    4. Cloning subobjects
      3m 13s
    5. Creating a U loft surface
      3m 29s
    6. Rebuilding curves
      3m 18s
    7. Setting Surface Approximation
      6m 36s
    8. Grouping objects
      4m 14s
  10. 41m 25s
    1. Understanding hierarchies
      3m 1s
    2. Moving and rotating pivot points
      7m 50s
    3. Understanding coordinate systems
      6m 53s
    4. Setting Axis Order for rotation
      6m 0s
    5. Linking objects
      3m 41s
    6. Using the Schematic view
      3m 8s
    7. Locking transforms
      2m 57s
    8. Avoiding problems with scale
      7m 55s
  11. 32m 35s
    1. Exporting paths from Adobe Illustrator
      2m 40s
    2. Importing Illustrator paths to 3ds Max
      1m 20s
    3. Creating a Text primitive
      4m 25s
    4. Applying a Bevel modifier
      3m 48s
    5. Instancing a modifier
      2m 13s
    6. Editing text splines
      6m 12s
    7. Viewport clipping
      1m 16s
    8. Controlling level of detail
      3m 44s
    9. Editing polygons
      6m 57s
  12. 29m 7s
    1. Merging scenes
      1m 43s
    2. Managing Display layers
      5m 0s
    3. Creating a target camera
      5m 51s
    4. Enabling Safe Frames
      3m 23s
    5. Choosing an aspect ratio in Render Setup
      2m 34s
    6. Adjusting Field of View
      3m 48s
    7. Using a free camera
      6m 48s
  13. 40m 17s
    1. Setting up Time Configuration
      2m 5s
    2. Choosing Set Key Filters
      2m 11s
    3. Creating keyframes in Set Key mode
      3m 37s
    4. Editing keyframes in the timeline
      1m 24s
    5. Editing position keys with trajectories
      3m 5s
    6. Editing function curves in the Curve Editor
      8m 33s
    7. Creating keyframes in Auto Key mode
      5m 55s
    8. Building up animation in passes
      5m 34s
    9. Editing keyframes in the Dope Sheet
      7m 53s
  14. 21m 23s
    1. Understanding controllers
      2m 53s
    2. Assigning a Link constraint
      2m 27s
    3. Adding link targets in the Motion panel
      1m 56s
    4. Animating constrained objects
      4m 47s
    5. Constraining animation to a path
      9m 20s
  15. 54m 32s
    1. Understanding CG lighting
      5m 56s
    2. Creating a target spotlight
      2m 6s
    3. Adjusting intensity and color
      2m 33s
    4. Setting spotlight Hotspot and Falloff
      3m 0s
    5. Correcting gamma
      5m 31s
    6. Previewing renders with ActiveShade
      3m 13s
    7. Controlling contrast and highlights
      2m 59s
    8. Choosing a shadow type
      2m 56s
    9. Optimizing shadow maps
      7m 4s
    10. Optimizing area shadows
      6m 9s
    11. Creating Omni fill lights
      6m 16s
    12. Using the Light Lister
      2m 49s
    13. Excluding objects from lights
      4m 0s
  16. 27m 21s
    1. Using the Slate Material Editor
      3m 28s
    2. Choosing material and shading types
      4m 0s
    3. Working with scene materials
      4m 49s
    4. Adjusting specular parameters
      5m 53s
    5. Assigning Multi/Sub-Object materials
      9m 11s
  17. 46m 48s
    1. Applying 3D procedural maps
      8m 34s
    2. Working with bitmap image files
      4m 32s
    3. Tracking scene assets
      7m 32s
    4. Projecting UVW mapping
      3m 3s
    5. Using Real-World Map Size
      3m 50s
    6. Mapping a bump channel
      2m 25s
    7. Adding reflections with a Raytrace map
      6m 47s
    8. Painting objects with Viewport Canvas
      10m 5s
  18. 19m 27s
    1. Choosing a renderer
      6m 7s
    2. Choosing Quicksilver options
      2m 33s
    3. Enabling motion blur in the software renderer
      3m 38s
    4. Rendering image sequences
      3m 58s
    5. Playing image sequences in the RAM Player
      3m 11s
  19. 15m 37s
    1. Controlling mental ray sample quality
      4m 28s
    2. Tuning Final Gather
      5m 15s
    3. Enabling motion blur in mental ray
      3m 18s
    4. Distance blurring with depth of field
      2m 36s
  20. 24s
    1. Goodbye
      24s

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Watch the Online Video Course 3ds Max 2015 Essential Training
10h 43m Beginner May 13, 2014

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In this course, Aaron F. Ross covers all the features you'll need to start creating advanced 3D models and animation with 3ds Max 2015. Learn the most suitable techniques for modeling different types of objects, from splines and NURBS to polygonal and subdivision surface modeling. Then learn how to design 3D motion graphics, set up cameras, animate with keyframes, and assign constraints. Aaron also provides an overview of lighting scenes within a simple studio setup, and construction of materials with the Slate Material Editor. Finally, learn about your hardware and software rendering options, and make your projects more realistic with motion blur, indirect illumination, and depth of field.

Topics include:
  • Navigating the interface and viewports
  • Understanding the Modifier Stack
  • Modeling with polygons and subdivision surfaces
  • Freeform sculpting
  • Modeling with splines and NURBS
  • Linking objects in hierarchies
  • Modeling for motion graphics
  • Framing shots with cameras
  • Creating and editing keyframes
  • Controlling lights and shadows
  • Building materials
  • Texturing with bitmaps and procedurals
  • Painting objects with Viewport Canvas
  • Rendering a sequence
  • Adding special effects with mental ray
Subject:
3D + Animation
Software:
3ds Max
Author:
Aaron F. Ross

Building up animation in passes

When animating in 3D, you'll usually want to build up the animation in passes or layers. And that's simply when you animate one parameter or transform and get it mostly the way you want, before moving on to the next thing, instead of trying to do it all at once. So that's what I'm doing here with the sword hilt. I've animated the position and now I'm ready to move on to the rotations. To minimize the amount of grief that we have with rotations, we should always check in on what the optimal rotate order should be for that particular animated object.

In this case I've experimented a little already and I determined the optimal axis order is going to be y, z, x. Let's go and change that. I'll select the hilt. Go to the motion panel and the rotation section here and set the axis order to y, z, x. And now we're ready to go ahead and create some key frames. Choose the Rotate tool and we want to be in gimbal as our reference coordinate system. And we've got the key filter set to position. We'll need to go into there and change that up.

Click on key filters, turn position off and rotation on, and close the set key filters dialog, and enable set key mode. Let's go down to the end of the animation, frame 90. I can just skip there. And I just want to rotate in the x axis so I can right-click in the camera view so I don't lose my selection, and then rotate in x until that's 90 degrees or so. And if I can't get it exactly 90 degrees I'll just type it in, 90 degrees. Okay with that set the way I want it on frame 90.

And in set key mode, I'll click on the set keys button. And now I've created a key frame for the rotations. And if I move the time slider over and un-select that key frame, you'll see it's got two colors. It's both red and green. That means there's both a position and a rotation key present on frame 90. Red is for position, and green is for rotation so you see we don't have a rotate key on frame zero yet. Okay cool, so I'll go down to frame zero, and with the rotate tool I'm going to spin this around in the z axis, I'll do that in the perspective view.

Right click to select the perspective view without losing the selection, and I'm going to rotate this around, and I want it to be about maybe 140 degrees or so. Now you'll notice that as you rotate, you're getting, kind of strange numbers showing up here. So this is a little bit problematic, because I can't really tell what I'm doing very well. There is a button down here, that you can switch, that really should affect that. But, it's also, kind of problematic, because when you release the mouse, it will go back to zero.

So the only way you'll ever be able to see the rotations at all times, while you're rotating and when you've released, is to open up the dialog here, and right click on the Rotate tool. And, we're in gimble mode. And now as I rotate this I can see the actual values at all times, whether I'm making an adjustment or not. So this is really the only way to do this, unfortunately. So I'm going to set that to be about 140 or so as shown here. And I also want to rotate it in y just to have it pointed towards the camera a little bit.

So I can rotate that and give that a value of about, let's say, negative 20 or something like that. Alright and with those values set on frame zero I can Click on set keys. And I've created key frames there. Now let's play it and see what that looks like. Okay. So that looks pretty smooth. We can make some adjustments to it. One of the 12 principles of animation from the old Disney studio is overlapping action. And that basically states that things like rotations and positions don't generally all happen at the same time.

They start and stop at different times. So, you want some overlap. We can adjust that in the function curve editor. I'm going to close that dialogue with that hilt still selected. Go back into the curve editor and I only care about the rotation keys here. And I don't think I've animated x, right, if I select that it's flat so x doesn't matter. Y and z are all that matters so I can Ctrl+Click on both of those so I can see them both at once. And I can introduce some overlapping action so they don't actually start and stop at the same time.

I don't want to actually change the values, I just want to move the positions of these keys. So, I can select that key. Hold down control and move it. So, I'm changing it's time but not it's value. Same thing here, I can Click on one of these and drag to move it. Likewise here, hold down control, so that they're not exactly synchronized. All right, let's see what that looks like. Rewind, play it back. So I wasn't entirely happy with that. I think at the end here I do want them to be a little bit more synchronized than they are. So I can just set them both to have the same value if I want them to sort of stop on a dime.

So I can select them both and set them to end on a particular frame. So I can say let's end them both on frame 90. Press Enter. Alright, so that's our rotation keys. We can turn set key off again. Play that back. That was pretty straightforward. That's just the simple concept of animating in Passes. Don't try to animate everything all at once. Break it up into separate little jobs and do them sequentially.

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