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Intimidated by 3D modeling packages? Dip a toe in the water with CINEMA 4D (C4D) Lite, a slimmed down version of CINEMA 4D included with After Effects CC. Motion graphics designer Angie Taylor shows you how to build a complete sequence in C4D Lite, progressing from initial object modeling, to animation, lighting, camera rigging, texturing, and final render. Plus, learn to animate text, create random movement with wiggle expressions, track cameras in live-action footage to add new 3D elements, and light your scene. Angie also round-trips the project files to After Effects for visual effects and color correction. With over 100 videos, this course allows you to explore almost every aspect of 3D motion graphics creation, within this accessible introductory tool.
- Cinema 2 supports the Multipass feature from Cinema 4D which allows you to render your movie or image in individual components rather than a final rendered single image. You can render other things like shadows, reflections, refractions, specular values as individual passes and that makes it easier to do post production tasks and to add effects in a compulsing application like After Effects. Now you have several ways of using the Multipass Option.
If you haven't set up your Multipass Options in Cinema 4D you can still use the Multipass Workflow, and we're here in Chapter 12 CU*R16 if you want to follow along and you have access to the files you can open that and follow along. Now I have my layer down here in the timeline. I've opened up the Cineware Effect and in here you'll notice down at the bottom we have a multipass section. Now it's important that you have a linear workflow set up. That means having a 32 bit project.
So if you're working with Multipass you want to be working in a 32 bit project. So let's go back to the Effect Control Panel. The other thing you need to do, actually, is make sure you're not working in Software Mode. You need to be in Standard Draft or Standard Final Mode in order to access these Multipass Options. So once you've checked all of that you have access to this section here. If I got Cinema 4D Multipass I can click on this button to set up my Multipass Options.
Now when you do that it will set the Multipass Option for that layer and the default is for it to show you the RGB and Alpha image. So it's basically showing you the rendered image, but you can come in here and you can select individual passes, and we'll have a look at that in another movie but that is an option available to you. But if I say Add Image Layers, it will add all of the passes that I need.
Even if I haven't set up my Multipass Options in Cinema 4D I can still do that. I can add image layers and it'll add all of the passes that are required to create my image. Now what kind of passes can be created? Well, let's have a look at what's being created down here. You'll notice that we have now instead of one layer we have 11 layers. So we have an Atmosphere Layer, a Refraction, Reflection, Ambient Inclusion Layer, Global Illumination Layer, Shadows, Specular, Diffuse, and each of these contains different information for my image.
So how does it work? You'll also notice that it's placed these in a specific order and it's also changed their blending modes. So let's have a look at those individual passes. Okay, now some of them will have a lot of information in them. For example, this one here, is our basic image layer and obviously that has all the image information in it, but if we go to something like the Diffuse Layer it only contains the kind of diffuse values from my render and if we go to Specular it only contains the specular values.
So you'll see that anything that has a specular highlight will be included in that pass and then if we have a look at the Shadow Pass that's showing us all the shadows. Ambient is showing us the ambient values. Some of them like Caustics isn't really used here. So that's not really giving us anything. Same with Global Illumination. We don't have that set and Ambient Inclusion. Reflection, Refraction, Atmosphere, and then there's another Atmosphere Pass here that shows the eyes of the robot, okay? So if we put them all on they combine to make a full image.
Now why is that useful? Well it's useful because I can do things like, in post production like something really simple like thinking "Okay, I want to reduce the amount of shadow," and just by adjusting the opacity I can reduce the amount of shadow that's being cast on my image. Or if we go to Standard Final Mode that will make my reflections work and if I have Synchronized Layers switched on it will adjust the render mode for all of the layers.
So if I now go and solo my Reflection Pass you'll see that I now have reflection information in that layer and it's using the add mode to composite that onto the other layers. So again if I just reduce the opacity of that and then combine it with the other layers you'll see that basically I've got a control for reducing or adding more or less reflection onto my robot. So it just makes things more flexible in post production.
Now that's one way of working with Multipass. You can add all of the layers like this, but you'll see that even when we're rendering Standard Final Mode some of the layers don't really contain very much information. For example, this Atmosphere Layer doesn't really contain anything so what's the point in creating it? Well a much smarter way of using the Multipass Feature if we just go up here and revert the project back to the beginning... So let's do that, let's revert it back to here. Is to actually open up this file in Cinema 4D.
So I'm gonna select it and hit Command D to edit original and that's gonna open it up in Cinema 4D here. And what we're gonna do is we're gonna go into Render Settings and just change the Multipass Options in here. So we're gonna click on Multipass and in here it's now rendering Multipass but I can selectively choose which passes I want to render. So I may decide okay I want Shadow. I want Specular, I want Reflection, I want the Depth but I may not want anything else.
That might be all I want to render. Maybe they're the only things I want to change in post production. So if I close that and save that and then jump back to After Effects... So let's just quickly jump back to After Effects. Now when I go into the Cineware Effect, so let's go back into Cineware and this time what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna click on Multipass but this time I'm gonna say Defined Multipass. Now notice when I select Multipass it's choosing the Shadow Layer for this particular layer.
Now that can be affected by whatever was selected before. If the file has been used before like we've just used it and we've reverted it. That's affected our Cinema 4D file and it's left this set as the Shadow Layer. If that happens you can revert back to the RGB image layer just by selecting it here. Clicking Okay, and that refreshes it back to the default settings. Little bit of a bug in there, I think, that hangs on to that setting.
Anyway, so now instead of clicking Add Image Layers which would add all of the layers, what we can do is say "Select Defined Multipasses" and now when I add image layers it will only add the ones that I have selected. So those are Reflection, Shadow, Specular, Depth, and we have our original image layer. Now you'll notice something strange has happened. It doesn't look how it should look and why is that? Well, if we turn off the layers and then turn them on one by one you'll see that this one here, the Shadow Layer, isn't really compositing correctly.
So what we're gonna do is we're just gonna step through that again. So we've got our Depth Layer in there. Now we don't want to render our Depth Layer. What we want to do is use that Depth Layer to adjust a Blur Value which we're gonna do later. So if we put our Specular Layer that should work okay. You'll see that's working nicely. Particularly if we go to final mode you can see that that's rendering quite nicely as it should do. Then we've got our Shadow Layer on top, and then we've got our deflection on top of that.
So the only thing that was causing the problem there was this Depth Layer, and we're not really wanting to see that at the moment. So we're just gonna turn that off. So that's the last step there. So now we're able to just adjust the Reflection, the Shadows, and the Specular highlights on our final layer just by dialing down these values. So two or three different ways of using those Multipass Options in Cineware.
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