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Mograph Techniques: Animating with C4D Effectors

Using Morph Camera to create a smooth camera move


From:

Mograph Techniques: Animating with C4D Effectors

with EJ Hassenfratz

Video: Using Morph Camera to create a smooth camera move

Adding a dynamic camera move can bring some extra energy and life to even still objects. In this movie, you'll add a quick camera move to this promo animation. So, we'll create our first camera here, and let's rename it Camera 1, and make sure that we click on this so we're seeing the pointer view of the camera. Now, we just need to frame this to frame our first word here at the beginning of our camera animation here. And we can also adjust this Focal Length here. Let's bring it down to, say, 22. If I zoom in, it gives a really nice perspective and depth to the scene.

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Mograph Techniques: Animating with C4D Effectors
1h 39m Intermediate Feb 27, 2013

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Harness the power of the CINEMA 4D MoGraph module to create complex animations with only a couple of keyframes. By stacking multiple MoGraph effectors, you can achieve nice-looking animations quickly and easily, saving you time spent keyframing moves manually. Discover how to change your text on the fly or create iterations of it, while keeping the animation intact. Author EJ Hassenfratz introduces a real-world postproduction workflow, by creating a network bumper promo. This project covers creating 3D text in CINEMA 4D, compositing, and adding final polish to the footage inside of Adobe After Effects.

Topics include:
  • Creating a cube grid with the MoGraph Cloner
  • Creating first-, second-, and third-wave animations
  • Using a null object to group and keyframe multiple effectors
  • Limiting the influence of an effector
  • Adding texture
  • Using an HDRI map for reflections
  • Lighting the scene
  • Importing a CINEMA 4D project into After Effects
  • Isolating and changing text color with object buffers
Subjects:
Video Motion Graphics Compositing Projects
Software:
After Effects CINEMA 4D
Author:
EJ Hassenfratz

Using Morph Camera to create a smooth camera move

Adding a dynamic camera move can bring some extra energy and life to even still objects. In this movie, you'll add a quick camera move to this promo animation. So, we'll create our first camera here, and let's rename it Camera 1, and make sure that we click on this so we're seeing the pointer view of the camera. Now, we just need to frame this to frame our first word here at the beginning of our camera animation here. And we can also adjust this Focal Length here. Let's bring it down to, say, 22. If I zoom in, it gives a really nice perspective and depth to the scene.

We are actually going to use a new R14 feature called the Morph Camera, and what the Morph Camera does is basically morphs between two camera views, or more if you have more than just two cameras. So for right now we are going to create two cameras. The first one is going to have the view at this angle and our second camera, if we just go and Ctrl+Click and drag and rename this Camera 2. And then we are going to click on this so we're looking through the view of this camera. We're going to move our camera over here, and we can see our Camera 1 right here.

We're going to scrub ahead in our Timeline to where the second word PIXEL shows up, and we are just going to frame this up with our second camera, have a nice dynamic angle here. We need to keep in mind that for this promo animation, we are going to have some retail information, some extra text down here that we are going to add in After Effects, so we need to be mindful of that whenever we are framing this shot right here. We also need to make sure that we are not seeing the edge of these cubes.

So now that we have our Camera 1 and Camera 2, we are going to create a new camera, and this is going to be our Morph Camera. Now I'm going to look through the view of this camera. Now to make this a Morph Camera I have to add the Morph Camera tag, so go to Motion Camera Tags and choose Camera Morph. And you can see, when I add that tag, I have Camera 1 field and the Camera 2 field. I also have this Blend property. In Camera 1, I am going to place Camera 1, and in the Camera 2 field, I am going to place Camera 2.

And you see that this Morph Camera, we are looking through this view, it automatically gets defaulted to the Camera 1 view, because we're set at blend 0. But let's see what happens when we drag this Blend over to 100%. So we are now looking through the view of Camera 2 here. So you can see if we animate this Blend, we are blending through the two camera angles of Camera 1 and Camera 2. So now all we have to do is go to frame 0 and make sure our Blend is at 0, hit a keyframe, and let's go down to frame 70 and make this blend to, let's say 90.

And why I choose it at 90 is I'm going to go ahead to frame 100 and bring that to 100%. So we're going to have a nice drift by doing that. We have some constant camera motion throughout the whole entire duration of the scene. So let's actually play the entire animation here. So the camera move is actually kind of slow for my taste, so let's go into our timeline. Let's adjust that Camera Morph Blend here. So, you see it's starting off slow with this curve.

Let's actually start it off fast by making this curve a little bit steeper. We can go in here and kind of straighten this curve out and adjust this curve here. Let's kind of smooth this curve out all over. And let's actually move this keyframe up, so we want the camera move to be a little bit faster. So by moving this up, we'll get to the Camera 2 view a little bit faster as well. Let's close the Timeline. Let's go to frame 0 and hit Play.

That's a little bit better. Let's go back to our Timeline, make it just a little bit faster though. Close the timeline. Let's hit Play. That looks a lot better. I think what I'd like to do--we start off Camera 1 at more of a dramatic angle, so let's go up even higher here, making sure we don't see any edges of the cube grid here.

Move this a little bit higher. And now we don't have to set any new keyframes. Because we're using that Morph Camera, all we have to do is go to that view again and let's hit Play again. You can see that that camera move is a lot more dynamic because we have that extra angle of the top there. So we can even speed that up a little bit more, go back into our Timeline. Let's make this even sharper. Now let's see what that does. The animation has a lot more energy to it.

Right off the top, it gets to this Camera 2 view a little bit faster. It looks a little bit nicer. Go back into our Timeline, tweak it so it's not so fast. Close this timeline again, go to frame 0, and hit Play. That looks a lot better. So with adding that Camera Move, our animation is basically done. You can see how adding a fast camera move can bring a lot of energy to a scene. The Morph Camera feature in R14 makes it easy to animate even the most complex camera moves.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Mograph Techniques: Animating with C4D Effectors.


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Q: I rendered a Compositing Project File (AEC) from CINEMA 4D, but I am unable to import that file into After Effects.
A: In order to import an AEC file into After Effects, you will need to have the free Cinema 4D Importer plugin for After Effects installed. The plugin can be downloaded here: http://www.maxon.net/support/updates/plugins.html

For more information on this plugin, including instructions on how to install it, refer to Cinema 4D Essentials 5: Rendering and Compositing with Rob Garrott.  The movie titled "Rendering and importing elements into After Effects" explains how to install this plugi
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