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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.
Now as we've seen we have to open Cinema 4D Lite from within After Effects but once it's open you can actually go to File Open and open Cinema 4D files from within the Finder or Explorer. And I'm going to open up Chapter 302.C4D. And we have this foot here. This is a robot foot that I've created using a Primitive object. Now before we start messing around with this, it's important that you're familiar with the navigation tools. So if you haven't already practiced with them, remember, number 1 allows you to move around the scene on the x and the y-axes, if you like.
Number 2, held down as you move the mouse, allows you to Zoom In and Out of the scene. And number 3, held down allows you to move around. And that does the same as these three buttons here. If you prefer to use these buttons, by all means, do so. There's also a fourth button here which allows me to toggle between four views and one view. You'll notice it keeps going back to the same view source. So I prefer to use middle mouse button. And click on the view that I want to highlight. And then middle mouse button again to go between the four different views.
Really handy shortcuts there. So use those as we move through this lesson. Now what we want to do now is we want to create a copy of this and create a leg to go with the foot. Now, I have the Live Selection tool selected and with that if I hover it over this three way axes and hold down the Ctrl key, you'll see that I get this little indicator telling me I'm about to duplicate this object. And if I click and drag, as I drag, you'll see that I'm actually duplicating the object, rather than just moving it.
If I hold down Shift as I'm dragging, it will constrain to increments of ten pixels so I'm going to move it about 150 on that y-axes. So by dragging on the green upright axes we're moving it on the y-axes by 150 centimeters. Then I'm going to use the 1 key just to move that so I can see both quite clearly. Now you'll notice that as I'm moving these objects it's adjusting the values down here in this Coordinates Manager.
We're going to have a look at that in a second, but before we do, what I need to do now is I need to scale this object. Now you'll notice beside the Live Selection tool are three other tools, Rotate, Scale, and Move. Now I can select them by clicking on them or I can use E, R, and T, to select them, and you'll notice that as I select them, the axes change. So when it's the Move tool, it's this triangular end to the axes, if you like.
When I hit the T key it changes to cube, which is the Move tool. When I hit R it changes to this lovely gimbal, which allows me to rotate it on whichever axes I'm highlighting. So, I'm going to hit T to change it to scale. Now, notice what happens. As I scale the object up using these axes, it scales it uniformly, okay? Which is okay at the moment. I'm going to scale it down to about 60, and if I can't get it exact, I can come down here to the Coordinates Manager, type in 60 and that will uniformly scale my object.
But I don't always want to uniformly scale it. Sometimes I want to non-uniformly scale it. Now you'll notice that with the Scale tool selected the Attributes Manager has changed. And it's now showing me the Attributes for the Scale tool. And I can no longer access the controls for my cube. So, how do I non-uniformly scale it with the Scale tool selected? Well, you'll notice these little buttons on each axes. If I click and drag these, notice I can Scale non-uniformly.
So I can Scale that using these controls. Now you may think, well why don't I just type in a value down here. But watch what happens if I type in a value down here and hit Enter on the number pad. It scales it uniformly again, which is, a little bit annoying. So what if I want to put an exact number in here? Well, I don't do it down here in the Coordinates Manager. What I want to do is do it in the Attributes Manager. And in order to get back to the cube values, I can click on the cube and bring back my Cube Object controls.
Now this can be a little bit confusing for people coming from After Effects. Because this is context sensitive, you have to remember to select the item that you want to adjust the Attributes of in order to bring up its Attributes here. And funnily enough, if I adjust the value in here rather than down in the Coordinates Manager, so I'll type in 150. Notice it doesn't scale it uniformly. So if you want to scale it non-uniformly, either uses these little buttons here, or use the values in the Object tab of the Attributes Manager.
I'm now going to switch back to the Move tool, so E selects the Move tool. And I'm going to move it down into position. Now, it's quite hard to see where I'm putting it in this view, so I'm going to use the Middle Mouse Button to click between the different views. So, I'm going to start with Front View. Make sure I have it lined up. We're going to use the number 2 key to Zoom In. Number 1 key to pull that down. And then just hover over the Move tool. Now, you'll notice something strange is happening. I'm still scaling that.
And that's because I'm actually clicking on that little button there. Because it's overlapping the axes, it's very hard for me to select the axes without the button. So again, if that happens, just go to your cube, select it, and you can use things like the Coordinates to adjust the position. You could go in here to the Position Coordinates, and just nudge that into position using the arrow keys. So, just get used to using these different areas and different controls to control your objects.
And then I'm going to Middle Mouse click again. And them I'm going to go to right view, because what I want to do is just move that back a little bit so it's like a foot. So, we've got more of the foot at the front than at the back. And then I'll Middle Mouse click again. Go back to my Perspective View. And then I can use my 1, 2, and 3 key just to move around that and make sure that I'm happy with it, and make any slight adjustments that I need to Scale that or Move it, I can do.
So, have a practice using those tools So using the Move tool, the Scale tool, the Rotate tool, the Live Selection tool and the Coordinates here in the cube object. And remember that when you select the tool it actually selects that tool in the Attributes Manager. And then you need to select the cube in order to bring back your cube coordinates and objects settings. So have a play with that until you feel a bit more comfortable using these tools and navigating around that 3D space.
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