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LightWave 10 Essential Training
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Using motion plug-ins to enhance keyframes


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LightWave 10 Essential Training

with Dan Ablan

Video: Using motion plug-ins to enhance keyframes

Setting up keyframes in LightWave is not too complicated. Start with one point, set a keyframe, move to a second point, set another keyframe. But sometimes you can do things a little more automated. You can let the system work for you. And that's done with motion plug-ins. Let me show you what I mean. I am going to press 4 on my keyboard to take it to a Perspective view and I am going to rotate around just to see things a little bit, and I will select the big red ball here. Now, notice that the pivot point for this ball is right at the center origin. We never changed that in LightWave Modeler, which means if I rotate this by pressing the Y command, it's going to rotate from that point.
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  1. 4m 22s
    1. Welcome
      49s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 30s
    3. Working with projects and setting the content directory
      2m 3s
  2. 46m 20s
    1. Understanding the LightWave 3D interfaces
      1m 50s
    2. Exploring the Hub
      1m 54s
    3. Understanding 3D space
      1m 13s
    4. Working in Modeler
      6m 49s
    5. Working in Layout
      4m 48s
    6. Selecting elements
      5m 31s
    7. Identifying the elements of a 3D model
      5m 26s
    8. Using the Numeric panel
      3m 10s
    9. Using layers
      8m 38s
    10. Using the Statistics panel
      2m 52s
    11. Working with menu and keyboard configurations
      4m 9s
  3. 22m 49s
    1. Working with geometric shapes
      4m 21s
    2. Using Extrude
      5m 11s
    3. Building with Bevel
      3m 47s
    4. Working with Polygon Bevel
      6m 4s
    5. Editing polygons
      3m 26s
  4. 34m 37s
    1. Understanding subdivisional surfaces in LightWave
      3m 20s
    2. Comparing Subpatch with Catmull-Clark subdivisions
      2m 18s
    3. Creating a basic model
      4m 27s
    4. Beveling with subdivisions
      3m 50s
    5. Adding detail to models
      6m 39s
    6. Deforming and shaping objects
      7m 13s
    7. Recapping subdivisions
      6m 50s
  5. 48m 42s
    1. Working with EPS files
      3m 24s
    2. Correcting EPS errors
      6m 13s
    3. Creating 3D text objects
      8m 1s
    4. Building objects with curves
      10m 6s
    5. Exploring Rail Clone methods and uses
      5m 13s
    6. Exploring Rail Extrude methods and uses
      2m 49s
    7. Modeling with Array
      4m 42s
    8. Using Symmetry
      8m 14s
  6. 56m 24s
    1. Understanding the Surface Editor
      10m 56s
    2. Comparing the Surface Editor and the Node Editor
      5m 12s
    3. Creating surfaces for polygons
      5m 11s
    4. Editing surfaces
      4m 39s
    5. Understanding the Texture Editor
      6m 22s
    6. Looking at image map textures
      4m 29s
    7. Using procedural texture options
      7m 40s
    8. Adding bump maps for realism
      4m 39s
    9. Enhancing surfaces with specularity and glossiness maps
      2m 43s
    10. Creating a reflective surface
      4m 33s
  7. 42m 2s
    1. Building 3D scenes
      1m 26s
    2. Importing, loading, and working with objects
      8m 29s
    3. Organizing a 3D scene
      8m 48s
    4. Working with different light types
      9m 25s
    5. Lighting a 3D scene
      6m 39s
    6. Employing environmental lighting
      7m 15s
  8. 22m 27s
    1. Understanding LightWave cameras
      8m 25s
    2. Setting up a camera in a scene
      7m 6s
    3. Placing multiple cameras
      3m 27s
    4. Animating cameras and camera elements
      3m 29s
  9. 38m 23s
    1. Understanding the Timeline
      3m 9s
    2. Adding and controlling keyframes
      6m 9s
    3. Fine-tuning keyframes in the Graph Editor
      8m 44s
    4. Using motion plug-ins to enhance keyframes
      5m 15s
    5. Animating textures
      7m 37s
    6. Enhancing scene animation with displacement maps
      7m 29s
  10. 36m 58s
    1. Introducing particles
      7m 29s
    2. Creating a particle animation
      7m 21s
    3. Working with Hypervoxels
      9m 6s
    4. Going a step beyond with particle animation
      8m 8s
    5. Replacing particles with items
      4m 54s
  11. 21m 58s
    1. Understanding dynamics in LightWave
      1m 27s
    2. Setting up a dynamic scene
      4m 21s
    3. Animating cloth
      2m 39s
    4. Building collisions
      6m 16s
    5. Creating a hard dynamic scene
      7m 15s
  12. 27m 30s
    1. Understanding bones
      3m 14s
    2. Understanding skelegons and when to use both skelegons and bones
      4m 4s
    3. Placing bones in an object
      6m 10s
    4. Fine-tuning bone placement and activating bones
      3m 51s
    5. Setting up Inverse Kinematics
      6m 37s
    6. Working with rigged characters
      3m 34s
  13. 21m 32s
    1. Understanding resolutions and rendering
      2m 21s
    2. Setting up a render project
      6m 50s
    3. Determining the proper anti-aliasing filter
      4m 24s
    4. Rendering to movie files vs. image sequences
      7m 57s
  14. 4m 8s
    1. Exporting an object
      2m 13s
    2. Exporting a full scene for backup
      1m 55s
  15. 1m 0s
    1. Final thoughts
      1m 0s

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LightWave 10 Essential Training
7h 9m Beginner Mar 21, 2011

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In LightWave 10 Essential Training, author Dan Ablan provides thorough, step-by-step instructions on building 3D models, scenes, and animations in LightWave 10. Beginning with a tour of the interface and LightWave's two main programs, Modeler and Layout, the course covers key concepts such as building models from basic polygonal shapes, assigning textures, and employing lights and 3D cameras to build real world scenes. Also included are tutorials explaining particle animation, dynamics, and bones. Exercise files accompany the course.

Topics include:
  • Understanding and navigating 3D space
  • Configuring menu and keyboard settings
  • Molding basic geometric shapes
  • Creating detail using subdivisions
  • Casting reflections and creating surface textures
  • Building and lighting a 3D scene
  • Incorporating and animating cameras
  • Simulating collisions using dynamics
  • Determining the proper anti-aliasing filter for renders
  • Rendering a project as movie files and image sequences
  • Exporting a full scene
Subject:
3D + Animation
Software:
LightWave
Author:
Dan Ablan

Using motion plug-ins to enhance keyframes

Setting up keyframes in LightWave is not too complicated. Start with one point, set a keyframe, move to a second point, set another keyframe. But sometimes you can do things a little more automated. You can let the system work for you. And that's done with motion plug-ins. Let me show you what I mean. I am going to press 4 on my keyboard to take it to a Perspective view and I am going to rotate around just to see things a little bit, and I will select the big red ball here. Now, notice that the pivot point for this ball is right at the center origin. We never changed that in LightWave Modeler, which means if I rotate this by pressing the Y command, it's going to rotate from that point.

Well, I want to change that. So what I am going to do is go to Modify, and then go down to Move Pivot, right here under the Translate category, and very simply I can move this over. And let's press the 2 on our keyboard. It gives us a top-down view, and very easily I can move that pivot point. Press 4 to go back to Perspective and even 3 if you like to go to a Side view, and I can move that up to the center of the ball. But I think we could leave it there for what we are going to do right now. Make sure though when you're moving a pivot or anything, you check it from all axis.

Now, if I go back to the Move tool, now I can move it very easily from that center opine. reusesP the Y command for Rotate and now it rotates from that base point. So very easy to change that. And that's important to do if you've got things like doors that are opening and closing. You are going to want to move that pivot point. With that object selector, I am going to press the M key for Motion Options. You will have Motion Options for any item in LightWave. Camera, light, or an object. I don't want to do any parenting or targeting to this. I actually want to work down under modifiers, and modifiers are a plug-in, just a little accent that you can put in, such as something like gravity, and there is a long list, there is quite a few things, but I am going to choose Gravity.

Any time you add something, you can double-click it and you'll get additional tools that follow beneath it. So the Strength of gravity, right now it says 1. Well, 9.8 will give you a little bit more realistic gravity. The Ground Level is 0. Now, we know that that's going to work, because we build everything right on that 0 plane, and that pivot I just moved is right at 0. Start Time is 1, End Time is 60. Elasticity at a 100% means it will bounce. So let's do this. I am going to leave this open. Put it off to the side so you can see what's happening.

I have got the red ball selected and I am going to move it up like that. I have not set any keyframes for it. There is always a keyframe at 0 to hold it in place but there is no others on the Timeline. When I press Play, it automatically falls and bounces, and let's make our animation 300 frames by adding the last frame to 300. And so now you can see it stopped after 60. Well, that's because our End Time was only 60 in our Motion Options.

So I'll select that and choose 300, or better yet, let's make it 200, so we could see what happens after. So now for 200 frames, that ball is just going to bounce. I didn't have to set any keyframes, and at 200 it stops. Well, I want it to bounce a little bit, but not keep bouncing. Well, that's where the Elasticity comes in. So I am going to come over to Elasticity and maybe choose 20%, hit the Play button, and there it goes.

So it's a little heavier, like a bowling ball. If I want it lighter, put a little more bounce into it. A little bounce in your step, and there you go. Now, you can certainly add some keyframes to this to accent it. I have actually used this quite a bit for logos. I had logos drop right in from behind the camera and fall. It works really well. Let me show you one more thing you can do. We'll pretend that we're viewing it from here. Let's say our camera wants to shake a little bit. This is a big heavy red ball. You want your company logo to just really shake the screen.

Let's press 6 to get to Camera View. When this comes down, it bounces. It hits right at about 14 frames. So I am going to select the Camera, press Properties, press M to get the Motion Properties. You don't need the regular properties. And we are going to add the Modifier Jolt. It's right under Gravity. And this is Motion options for the Camera. I am going to double-click Jolt and I get this whole other panel that pops up. Now, don't be confused by all this.

It's actually pretty easy. What we are going to do is go to that frame that we just set, which was probably 11 or 12, 13, you can even manually punch it in, and then I want to hit Create Key, and I want a light jolt of the camera, and all these values are automatically set. I'll click Continue, I'll rewind, and now watch what happens. Now, the camera has a little bit of a shake to it. Let's bring this back down to about 90. Now, you can adjust that to more of a medium jolt; you can extend it so that it wobbles the camera.

It can rotate the camera, whatever you like, but those motion plug-ins are very useful for little accents in your animation that are often sometimes hard to keyframe, and something to consider whether you're doing realistic animations, logos, or even simple product shots.

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