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Learn how to create stunning motion graphics and animations for video production. Author Ian Robinson explains how to format and animate type with the Transform Glyph tool and explores Motion's real-time 3D tools. The course also covers working in 3D space, creating depth with lights and shadows, keying green screen effects, and working with particle systems. In addition, Ian offers practical advice on integrating Motion into a professional video workflow and explains how to work smarter using rigs and templates.
Now there are a number of great generators that are perfect for creating stylized, ready-to-go motion graphics, and a lot of those just create graphics, but a couple of those actually create things you can actually edit with, and what I am talking about are the text generators. So in this graphic that we are building here, we are just making reference to how long dancers have to typically work in the studio, and to show that we are going to represent different methods of time, and we will easily animate those using the text generators.
So if you jump to the Library, in the Generator section, I want you to go to the Text Generators folder over here on the right, and notice the icon for any text generator has a T over top of the color bars. Now just like any other generator, when you select it, you'll get a description up here. So I just wanted to draw your attention to the File text generator because this is really helpful when you got text from, I don't know, a client and you want to integrate that on the screen you can literally just have Motion reference that text document.
But the three we are going to focus on right now are Numbers, Date and Time, and Timecode, because all of these can be easily used in just about anybody's day-to-day productions. Now in order to apply Numbers, let's just drag and drop the generator right up here in the top of my text group, okay. Now I'd like this number to be significantly larger, so after we drag that in, let's go ahead and increase the scale. And notice I accidentally clicked on the rotation there, so I will click on the other corner, making sure to hold down Shift as I scale this up, and I can bring this back down here.
Now one of the interesting things, my playhead was parked right at the end of my composition, so when I drop the time in, it actually had the largest number. If we move our playhead back to the beginning, check this out: it actually does one number per frame. So already it's animated, and we haven't even had to make any adjustments. Let's just stop playback for a second. If you notice here, we can actually specify what number to start with and what number to end with. You can create different options, like decimal points or a minimum number of digits.
So let's say we want to have a minimum of three digits. This way it starts from 001. Okay. You can obviously change Random and adjust the Hold Frames. So you can have a hold on specific frames. All right! So that's the Numbers generator, pretty straightforward. Now you can adjust this for Currency, Percent. Scientific is kind of interesting. It gives you scientific notation.
You can have it spell out the numbers. This is really cool, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. For all you type people out there, that's really kind of a fun one. You get the general idea. The Numbers generator is a lot deeper than it appears at the surface. So I'll just delete that generator for right now, and let's jump back to the Library. Date and Time is pretty straightforward as well. If we just drag that up into our layers here, you'll notice I have full options to make adjustments to the date and time.
Now I can check Animate and it will actually start animating through the time. This is a great way to actually denote the passage of time if you're doing like a documentary or something else like that. You obviously have the same level of control that you had with the previous text generator ,where you can specify very important things like hours, days, months. You get the general idea. You can have a countdown through a myriad of different formats. You can even adjust the language.
Now, that all depends if you have the Language pack installed, but you know that's usually installed by default. So that's the Date and Time generator. The last one I want to show you, which is kind of important, is this Timecode generator. See, when you add this to your composition this can actually allow you to create a burning for your projects. Imagine that, a burning. Now, as I drag through the comp, you notice it's defaulting to 0, 4, 0, et cetera, et cetera.
Now if you go to the Project Properties in your composition, you notice that you can actually specify a start timecode for the comp. So let's say I know this piece of footage was shot on a tape that started at 5. Well, notice when I adjust the Start Timecode here, it actually adjusts the generator there. So this is a great, very easy, fast way of adding timecode window burn back into your footage.
Just drag it and drop it right onto the footage and as long as you have the start time for your project setup properly, your timecode will match perfectly well. Now you can adjust how much of the timecode you want to display, as well as the timecode base. So obviously, by default it sets up the current project, but you could choose whatever. So as you can see, when it comes to creating type using text generators, they are actually a lot more advanced then they appear on the surface.
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